Present: Mr D Purnell (Chairman). Mr K Brown; Mrs J Burton; Mr K Larkin; Mr D Palmer; & Mr L Smitherman.

District Councillor: Mrs L Reeves.

County Councillor: Dr J Cordwell.

The Clerk: Mr R Symons.

There were no members of the public present.

The Chairman opened the Parish Council Meeting.

  1. The Chairman invited apologies. Apologies were accepted from Mr S Hale; Dist. Cllr. Ken Tucker & Dist. Cllr. Mrs June Cordwell.

  2. Declaration of Interests. The Chairman invited members to declare any Interests relating to this Meeting. Councillor Brown declared an interest in Agenda Item 6.

  3. The Council approved and signed the Minutes of the Ordinary Council Meeting held on 2 November 2015, as a true record. The Minutes of the November Ordinary Meeting of the Council 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.

  1. 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:

Councillors expressed concern that Severn Trent Water had taken action (see above) without first obtaining the Council’s permission.

  1. The Chairman closed the Meeting for Public Discussion and Questions. There being no members of the public present, the Chairman re-opened the Meeting.

Councillor Brown left the room at this point in the Meeting.

  1. The Council considered and commented upon the following Planning Application:

The applicant was present and provided the Council with additional information; and answered the Council’s questions relating to the application.

During its discussions the Council took into account the following policies from the recently adopted Stroud Local Plan:

The Council agreed to make the following comments:

  1. Should the Local Planning Authority decide to agree Permission the building should have an “agricultural tie” linked attached to it.

  2. Any Permitted Development Rights should be removed.

It was noted the applicant has offered such conditions in their Design and Access Statement.

Councillor Brown returned to the Meeting following conclusion of discussions on the application.

  1. The Council noted that Permission has been granted in respect of:

  1. The Clerk reported on progress made on taking forward arrangements towards improving the broadband service. He reported a public meeting had been arranged for Friday 5 February at the Village Hall for the MP and representatives from Fastershire and BT/Openreach. The Meeting will start at 6.00 pm. The Clerk outlined his plans for publicising the meeting.

  1. The Clerk presented a paper on Defibrillator developments since the November Meeting (see aside). Following discussions and consideration of material presented by the Clerk, the Council approved arrangements for the purchase of a cabinet to house the defibrillator at the Village Hall.

The Clerk advised the Council that he had received equipment and materials for CPR training. He reported that he was in discussion with the Village Hall about putting on training for volunteers.

The Council asked the Clerk to investigate how a First Responder could be appointed and trained. The Clerk will contact South West Ambulance Service for advice.

The Clerk reported on the latest funding situation. The Village Hall based defibrillator is fully funded by a grant from North Nibley Music Festival.

The Recreation Field Trust has indicated to the Council that they intend to fund a defibrillator to be based at the pavilion.

The Clerk reported further funding, currently available to the Council, was insufficient to fully fund the proposal of a defibrillator at the BT ‘phone box at Pittcourt. The Council decided to delay a decision on any plans to locate a defibrillator there.

  1. The Clerk provided the Council with information he had received from Stroud DC in relation to recreational facilities for the Parish which could be funded by Section 106 payments from developers. The Council discussed the 5 recreation projects in the Parish and following discussion agreed information to be sent to Stroud DC.

  1. Councillor Brown provided a verbal update on arrangements for fencing the land on the Knoll. Natural England would be providing a grant but the work needed to be completed by August 2016. The Knoll Trust would be arranging for a contractor to do the work, as the majority is for fencing around the Trust’s land. There would be some cost to the Council, but how much was unclear.

Councillor Brown also outlined the Trust’s thoughts on establishing viewing points from the Hill. He suggested that clarification was required whether felling the trees on Wood Lane bank would require permission.

  1. The Council had not received a written District Council Report prior to the meeting. District Councillor Mrs. Reeves informed the Council that Stroud DC had adopted the Local Plan. Following the Meeting the Clerk received and distributed a written report from District Councillor Mrs. Cordwell. (See aside).

  1. The Council received a written County Council Report from County Councillor Dr J Cordwell. (See aside). The Chairman thanked Cllr. Cordwell for his report.

  1. The Chairman invited Parish Councillors to report on Committees and Meetings they had attended.

  1. Parish Council Finances.

  1. The Clerk provided information on the Council’s Provisional Budget for 2016/17, along with comparisons against the current budget. (See aside). The Clerk advised the Council that they would need to adopt the Budget at the February 2016 Meeting.

  2. The Clerk advised the Council that a request for a voluntary contribution had been received from Stroud DC for the Neighbourhood Warden Service. The Clerk reminded Councillors that service levels had fallen significantly short of what had previously been experienced. An email recently received from the senior warden assuring all parishes that efforts were being made to recover the service to previous levels. Councillors expressed dissatisfaction with the level of service the Parish had experienced. Following discussion the Council agreed not to pay the voluntary contribution towards Stroud DC Neighbourhood Warden Service in 2015/16.

  3. The Council approved the Invoices and drew cheques for items on the enclosed Payments Schedule.

  1. The Clerk reported back on the legal requirements for the Council, should it decide to sell its land at Breakheart Hill.

He advised the Council that:

The Council agreed that Councillor Brown should seek to establish an estimated value for the land and report back to a future meeting.

  1. The Clerk advised the Council that the Cemetery rates were last reviewed and increased in February 2015. Following a brief discussion the Council asked the Clerk to review rates and draw comparisons with other Cemeteries in the area.

  1. The Clerk advised the Council about the exchange of correspondence with St Martin’s PCC. The PCC will be continuing to carryout grass cutting as previously. The Clerk had advised that the ivy on the boundary wall had been treated and requested that the PCC did not take any action to remove the ivy as this could affect the wall structure. He informed the Council the wall may need a further treatment.

  1. The Council received for information details of Correspondence received. See attached.

There being no further business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 9.20 pm.

The next Meeting of the Parish Council will be held in the Village Hall on Monday 4 January 2016 at 7.30 pm.