Minutes 19th September 2017

Minutes of the Monkland & Stretford Parish Council held on Tuesday 19th September 2017 in Monkland Village Hall, Monkland.

PRESENT: Cllr J Barnes (Chairman) Cllr M. Weatherhead (Vice Chairman); Cllr R Allen; Cllr K Hindle.

Present: Parish Clerk: Mrs Lesley Hay; Ward Cllr Trish Marsh and Four members of the public.

Chairman welcomed those present.

1. Acceptance of apologises for absence – none received

2. Declarations of interests: Disclosable Pecuniary, Non-Disclosable Pecuniary interests – none declared.

3. To receive a report from the local Police Officer – no representative present.

4. Ward Councillor’s report – Ward Cllr. Marsh again reassured Councillors that she was still actively trying to obtain some financial contribution towards the costs associated with the changes to Monkland signage.

Cllr Weatherall asked if Ward Cllr Marsh would take forward to Herefordshire Council and other appropriate bodies, the Parish Council’s concerns with regard to the million pounds overspend associated with the Blueschool House redevelopment.

5. Footpaths Officer’s report – Footpath Officer was not present.
Cllr Turner reported a tree had fallen across the footpath by The Monk which was obstructing the walkway. As this happened about a week ago, the Clerk was asked to contact the owner to organise removal.

Cllr Turner was thanked for all his hard work in erecting traffic calming signs and for clearing access to the footpath near to Mill House.

6. Open session – Matters raised by local residents.
A resident has reported that the footpath along the A44 in front of her and neighbouring houses has been left in a dangerous state. This is as a result of works done by various utilities companies during the past year. In the first instance, the Clerk has been asked to liaise with the Locality Steward.

The Clerk was asked, via the Newsletter, to request that residents refrain from parking on the footpaths particularly the path along the A44 opposite and up from The Monk. Vehicles are being parked along this stretch and are obstructing pedestrians and damaging the grass verges.

There was also discussion with regard to residents and visitors driving on the common and/or parking on the common despite the stone signs indicating the restrictions that are in force. It was decided to invest in two more signs politely worded in order to reinforce the issue.

Cllr Turner agreed to order and erect these signs.

At this point, the Chairman proposed that item 10 – Planning issues – was brought forward to be included in the Open Session.

10. Planning issues –

10.1 Old Road planning – no up to date news.
10.2 Mill House planning (a) Conservation order request has been sent.
10.3 Brick House Barn planning (a) Conservation order request has been sent
10.4 Bainstree Farm – No: 173059 – site visit – no objections
10.5 Stagbatch Poultry Houses – No 172845

After a lengthy discussion, the Parish Council agreed to send a letter to the Planning Officer expressing their many concerns with regard to this proposed Planning Application. A copy of this document is attached to this minutes for reference.

With no further questions – the Chairman closed the Open Session.

7. Approval of minutes from 11th July 2017. It was unanimously agreed that the minutes of the 11th July be adopted as a true record. The Chairman signed the minutes.
An Agreement for management/maintenance of the area of Monkland Village Green adjacent to Willow Cottage Orchard was agreed and signed by the Chairman. Mr Bernard Crick to sign – keep one copy and return second copy to the Clerk.

Parish Clerk’s Update:

7.1 Defibrillator – after discussion it was agreed to defer until the next meeting.
7.2 Newsletter – The Clerk confirmed that this will be ready for distribution on/or before the 1st October.
7.3 Website – no further update at the moment.

8. Finance.

8.1 Up to date accounts and schedule of payment had been circulated
8.2 To consider invoice payments: It was unanimously agreed to pay the outstanding invoices; cheques were raised and signed.
(a) Annual Norton virus security – payment agreed
(b) Upgrade to fibreoptic broadband – payment agreed
8.3 Precept/Budget 2018/19 – Clerk to prepare figures for discussion at November meeting.
8.4 HALC Information corner (circulated) – it was noted that possible election and data protection costs are to be taken into account when setting the 2018/19 budget/precept.
8.5 On-line banking – agreed not necessary at the moment but it may change as cheques are phased out by direct banking.
8.6 Internal ½ year audit – will be carried out by Internal Auditor in October.

9. Highways and Environmental Matters.

9.1 Signage Monkland bend – after misunderstandings over receipt of the cheque and the address on the invoice – Balfour Beatty have now acknowledged safe receipt and it is hoped work will start in the very near future. Ward Cllr Marsh continues to liaise with Balfour Beatty.

9.2 Speed limit data – an independent Consultant has been engaged by Balfour Beatty with regard to the speed limit on the A44 through Monkland. Cllr Weatherhead will set out some details/dates etc in support of a reduction in the speed limit and the Clerk will respond to the ADL letter.

9.3 Lengthsman Scheme – No Sept/Oct work sheet. However, Cllr Weatherheadaaaaaaaa will approach Derrick Richards with regard to mowing the banks along the A44 and will also mention the hedge opposite to Manor Cottage which is very overgrown.

9.4 Locality Steward Report – No report. It was agreed to ask Locality Steward to attend another site visit with regard to the visibility problem associated with the hedge at Mill House/Cottage. Clerk to liaise.

9.5 Scientific Special Sites of Interest – Monkland Common
Cllr Weatherhead requested that the Parish Council look into registering the Common as a Scientific Site of Special Interest. This was discussed and it was agreed in the first instance to approach Nature Trust for their help with taking this forward. As there is a huge shortage of true meadow sites and, as this site has never been ploughed and has many varieties of old fashioned wild flowers in situ, Cllr Weatherhead felt it would be beneficial for future generations if this land was protected/preserved by law.

Nature Trust to be approached and further discussion deferred to the next meeting.

10. Planning – moved to Open session

11. Correspondence:

11.1 Conservative invitation – noted but no one free to attend.
11.2 Seminar invitation – 28th September 2017 – noted – no names put forward.
11.3 Age UK –after discussion it was agreed – as is Parish Council policy – not to send donation.
11.4 Community Governance review – after discussion it was decided to apply for a future increase in the number of Parish Councillors to represent Monkland and Stretford Parish Council.
Clerk will liaise with the Community Governance Review Body.
11.5 Ignite – after discussion it was agreed to invite Ignite to the next meeting to give a short presentation. Clerk to liaise.

Date of next full council meeting – Tuesday 21st November 2017 – 7.30p.m. start

Chairman closed the meeting at 9.40p.m.