NORTH NIBLEY PARISH COUNCIL
AN ORDINARY MEETING OF NORTH NIBLEY PARISH COUNCIL WAS HELD ON MONDAY 4 NOVEMBER, IN THE VILLAGE HALL, NORTH NIBLEY AT 7.30PM.
Present: Mr D Purnell (Chairman).
Mr K Brown; Mr S Hale; Mr K Larkin; Mr D Palmer; & Mr L Smitherman.
District Councillor: Mr P Smith (from item 8).
County Councillor: Dr J Cordwell.
The Clerk: Mr R Symons.
There were five members of public present for part of the Meeting.
The Chairman opened the Parish Council Meeting.
The Council invited apologies. An apology was received and accepted from Mrs J Burton; & District Councillor Mrs J Cordwell. District Councillor Mr P Smith had previously explained that, due to attending another meeting, he would join the Meeting later in the Agenda.
Declaration of Interests. The Chairman invited members to declare any Interests relating to this Meeting. There were none.
The Council approved and signed the Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 7 October, as a true record. The Minutes of the October Ordinary Meeting had previously been distributed to all members and displayed on the public notice boards and the website. All members agreed the Minutes should be signed, as a true and accurate record. The Minutes were duly signed by the Chairman.
The Council noted matters arising from the Minutes, not covered by agenda items. The Clerk referred to his Update Note, which had been issued prior to the Meeting. He advised that:
Bird Farm. Mr Martin Evans, Legal Dept. Stroud DC, had advised the Clerk that although Mr & Mrs Bird have removed their mobile home “the Enforcement Notice also requires the permanent cessation of residential use of the site – so continued residential occupation of the touring caravans would still be in contravention of the Enforcement Notice”. Mr Evans has requested the Enforcement Team to check the site again to establish whether all residential occupation has ceased. The Clerk had not received any further update.
The Island flower borders. Work was carried out on the Island borders by Jenny Wren, on the morning after the October Council Meeting. The Clerk had subsequently spoken to Mrs King who will thank Jenny for doing the work and advise her that volunteers will be taking on the task from next year.
Pre-Budget Meeting. Councillors should have received papers for this informal meeting. The date of the Meeting has been moved to 11 November.
Checks of Council Accounts. The Chairman and Vice-Chairman have carried out half yearly checks of the Council’s Accounts. The Chairman reported that the Council’s Accounts were in good order.
New Road Cottages access & car parking. The Clerk has written to Ms Jill Fallows, Property Manager, Stroud DC about New Road cottages access & parking arrangements, on 10 October. The letter was copied to Mr Tim Power, Head of Housing Management, Stroud DC & District Councillors. A letter from Ms Fallows, which the Clerk considered to be an inadequate reply, was received on 30 October. Meanwhile there has been an exchange of correspondence between Mrs Convery & Ms Fallows. The Clerk has forwarded a copy of Ms Fallows reply to the Parish Council and he awaits the Council’s instructions. The Clerk has separately written to Land Registry in support of the residents’ case.
Training for Councillors & the Clerk. The following nominations have been made for GAPTC training events.
Mr Hale to attend “Being a Better Councillor” on 19 November (subsequently withdrawn as Mr Hale had been on an earlier event);
Mr Larkin & the Clerk & to attend “Planning Explored” on 3 December;
The Clerk to attend “Clerks More Knowledge” on 10 December;.
Mrs Burton will attend a future “Being a Better Councillor” event in 2014.
The Chairman closed the Meeting for Public Discussion and Questions. The five members of the public present sought the Council’s continued support on a matter relating to access by their vehicles to land behind their houses in New Road. The parishioners reported on an exchange of correspondence with Stroud DC and legal advice they had received. Following a full discussion of the issue the Council provided ideas and advice on the way forward. Meanwhile the Clerk will investigate the contents of the “North Nibley 1867 Inclosure Award”, by visiting Gloucestershire Records Office.
There being no further matters the Chairman re-opened the Meeting.
The Council considered and commented upon the following Planning Applications:
S.13/2237/FUL. Westwinds, 36, Barrs Lane, North Nibley, Gloucestershire , GL11 6DT. Second storey extension & alterations to domestic dwelling. Following a discussion and consideration of the documents linked to the Application the Council agreed to make “No Comments”.
The Council noted that Planning Consent has been granted in respect of:
S.13/1869/HHOLD. Homewaters, Pitt Court, North Nibley. Erection of a white UPVC conservatory and associated works, including modification to the existing decking to the rear.
The Clerk reported that there were no Invoices due for payment at the Meeting.
The Council noted that the Direct Debit for (£1,068.74) payable to the Public Works Loan Board, in respect of the pavilion on the Recreation Field, had been taken on 1 November 2013.
The Council noted that HMRC have made a VAT repayment of £471.69 into the Council’s Current A/C.
The Council received a verbal report from the Clerk on recent discussions he had held with a representative of St Martin’s Parochial Church Council. The Clerk had been approached by the Church Warden (Mrs Holcombe), to discuss the possibility of the Parochial Church Council handing over responsibility to the Parish Council for the management of the closed churchyard. The Clerk reminded the Council that there had been an earlier approach in January 2013. (See Minute 8/02/2013). This had not been followed up by the PCC.
The Clerk reported that he had advised Mrs Holcombe of the legal position and that the PCC is required to provide 3 months’ written notice. (Local Government Act 1972 S215 (2)). The Parish Council will then have 3 months to take on the responsibility, or to give notice to the District Council to take on the responsibility. Either way the cost is likely to fall on the parishioners of North Nibley through the Precept, as Stroud DC is likely to charge the Parish Council. The Clerk reported that the matters under consideration included the grass, trees and walls.
Grass cutting. The Clerk had spoken with Mr Wincup from TW Hawkins (the Council’s current contractor for the Cemetery) to obtain a quotation to carry out grass cutting at the Churchyard. The Clerk reported that the cost would be in the region of £1,000 pa plus VAT.
Trees. The Clerk advised that if responsibility is taken on, the Council should arrange an assessment of the trees.
Walls and gates around the churchyard perimeter. Mrs Holcombe said that the PCC still hold the £500 Parish Council Grant paid in 2012 (for tree surgery, wall repairs, maintenance of churchyard and grass cutting as haven for wildlife). She thought that the PCC might be willing to retain responsibility for the walls. In which case the grant would form the basis of a fund, for future wall repairs.
The Clerk pointed out that in his opinion the “Closed Churchyard” did not include the grassed area outside of the gates. Should the PCC give notice to the Council this matter would require clarification.
The Council was advised that the next PCC Meeting is on 28 November and that the Clerk had advised Mrs Holcombe of the need for an early decision, to inform the Council’s budget discussions.
The Council agreed to include these matters in their budget considerations later in the month.
The Council received a written District Council Report from District Councillor Mr P Smith. (See filed aside). Cllr. Smith also presented a verbal report on an announcement made to District Councillors at a meeting earlier that evening. He reported that Stroud District Council’s appeal in the High Court against the Inspector’s findings on a planning application in respect of Box Road, Cam, had been rejected. The judge had found that Stroud DC did not have a “five year supply of land” and as a direct result it was anticipated that there could be a significant impact on future building developments in the District. There were no questions for Cllr Smith.
The Chairman thanked Cllr. Smith for his report.
The Council received a written County Council Report from County Councillor Dr J Cordwell. (See filed aside). There were no questions on his report.
The Chairman thanked Cllr. Cordwell for his report.
The Chairman invited Parish Councillors to report on any Meetings they had attended:
Mr Larkin reported that he had attended the AGM of the Recreation Field Trust. As a result of a successful Music Festival in 2013 the Trust were financially self sufficient and in a position to consider carrying out improvements to the field and pavilion.
Mr Palmer reported that he had attended a meeting of the Tyndale Monument Trust. A quote had been received for carrying out maintenance work on the stone work of the Monument. The work is likely to be carried out around April 2014. Mr Brown pointed out that during 2013 a bird of prey had been nesting in the monument and carrying out these building works in Spring 2014 could be problematic. Mr Palmer agreed to bring this to the Trust’s attention. Mr Palmer also reported that Mr Brown had recently carried out grass cutting around the monument perimeter.
Mr Brown reported that he had heard back from the Rural Payments Agency about the inaccuracies he had reported upon on their records of the Council’s land at Breakheart Hill.
Mr Purnell reported that he had attended a Meeting of Stinchcombe Hill Trust. The Trustees were shortly due to sign the new lease for the land with Stinchcombe Hill Golf Club.
Mr Purnell reported that he had attended a Meeting of William Purnell Education Trust. There had been no applications for the Trust to consider.
The Clerk reported that he had completed the Annual Report for North Nibley United Charities to the Charity Commission.
The Council received the following Cemetery Reports:
The Clerk reminded the Council the contractors were due to start work at the Cemetery on 12 November.
The Council was advised that Treecreeper Arborists are due to carry out a tree safety assessment in the Cemetery on 18 November.
The Clerk reported that moss has grown on the paths and he has requested that Garden Supplies carryout out work to remove the danger, particularly around the war memorial area.
The Clerk reported that Mr & Mrs Willcox had requested permission to place a bench in the Cemetery. Following discussion the Council agreed to the request but suggested that the Clerk should oversee the location of the bench.
A request was received from Mrs Dommett for a memorial stone to be placed on her husband’s grave. Following discussion the Council agreed to the proposal.
The Council received a written report (See aside) on Correspondence & Messages received.
The Chairman reminded the Council that a Remembrance Service would be held at the Village War Memorial on Sunday 10 November.
There being no further business the Chairman closed the Meeting at 9.25 pm.
The next Meeting of the Parish Council will be held in the Village Hall, on Monday 2 December 2013 at 7.30 pm.