PRESENT: COUNCILLORS J. CROWE (CHAIRMAN), MRS. M. FOX, J. RICKMAN, B. PRICE, COUNTY COUNCILLOR C. WILLIAMS, DISTRICT COUNCILLOR C. MILLS, C. HILL (Clerk) and 9 members of the public
1. Apologies for absence
Cllr. Mrs. H. McGrath (business commitment).
2. Questions from the public
A resident told the meeting that car transporters are still operating after midnight and before 6am. He also said that the car alarms on the vehicles that are being transported are still being heard although this has eased a little. He asked if the Parish Council had seen Land Rover Jaguar's transport policy and whether these issues are being addressed. The Clerk was asked to follow-up on this with the District Council. The other matters would be discussed at the Gaydon Liaison Meeting.
A question was asked as to why the pipe which runs down the Banbury Road has not been fixed. The Chairman explained that this would be looked at when the equipment is on site to install the pipe going under the road. The Chairman said that a meeting was arranged for the following Monday with the landowner and the County Council to discuss an alternative route for the pipe. The Chairman said that the resident was welcome to contact him after the meeting for an update.
Loose kerbstones along Church Road outside the Malt Shovel were reported. The Clerk said that she would contact highways.
Weeds growing out of the drains were reported and the Parish Council was asked why weed killer is not used to eradicate them. County Councillor Williams pointed out that the County Council have never used weed killer to remove these weeds and would not consider using it. The Parish Council agreed that they would look into this problem. The resident said that he was happy to provide materials to help clear the drains.
The Parish Council was asked about the forthcoming wind farm application. The Chairman explained that they would discuss the application once it has been received and it would appear as an agenda item at that meeting.
A resident asked County Councillor Williams if he could please investigate the issue regarding school transport. The resident explained that if a bus breaks down parents are not informed. County Councillor Williams said that he would look into this.
3. Declarations of Interest
No interests were declared.
4. Acceptance of the minutes of the previous meeting (November 2011) and the extraordinary meetings held to discuss planning applications.
These minutes had been circulated prior to the meeting. It was agreed unanimously that they represented a true report of the meeting and were signed by the Chairman.
5. Matters arising from the previous meetings
(a) Parish Plan update
Cllr. Rickman reported that questionnaires were distributed before Christmas. 65% (215 completed) have so far been returned. They will be forwarded to the District Council at the end of the month for an independent report.
(b) Emergency Plan
Councillors confirmed that this has been updated. The Clerk was asked to pass the amendments to the County Council.
Cllr. Price explained the background. It was agreed that the milestone should be returned to Gaydon. The Clerk was asked to write to the person who is refusing to return it.
(d) Website Redesign
The Parish Council currently has 2 websites. It was agreed that only one is required. Cllr. Rickman volunteered to administer the website he currently manages. The Clerk was asked to contact the resident who kindly volunteered to organise the second site which is no longer required.
(e) PCC re. Church Clock
Cllr. Rickman said that he has spoken to the person who looks after the clock regarding the repairs the Clock Maintenance Company has suggested need carrying out. It was agreed that The Chairman and Cllr. Rickman would talk to this resident to gain access to the clock to try and establish with him the amount of work necessary.
6. Councillor's Reports
Cllr. Mrs. Fox reported that the cemetery looks very tidy at the moment. Cllr. Price said that he would attend to the broken branches. It was agreed that councillors would cut back the hedge at the bottom of the cemetery.
(i) Outstanding debt
The Clerk confirmed that the RAF have apologised for the delay in payment and will be settling this account shortly. They have also said that they would like to continue with the Parish contractors maintaining these graves.
(ii) Cemetery Maintenance Contract
This was discussed and it was agreed that the dead heading of flowers on graves should be included in the contract and also the removal of cuttings to a designated area. Hedge cuttings would still need to be burnt in a designated area. The Clerk was asked to incorporate these changes to the contract and forward to interested contractors. Cllr. Mrs. Fox said that she has been approached by contractors who are interested in this work and she would pass their details to the Clerk.
(iii) Bricks by bin
It was confirmed that these have now been removed.
Highways have confirmed that they will be looking at repairing this bridge.
(b) Lights/Litter/Street Furniture
(i) Esso Garage Lights
These have still not been sorted. The Clerk was asked to liaise with Highways.
(ii) Banbury Road lights
The Clerk explained that these lights were reported but Street Maintenance had taken longer than usual to repair them. County Councillor Williams said that he would follow up on this. It was noted that the light on the bollard which displays a 30mph sign is out. The Clerk explained that she has been told that there is no legal requirement for these lights to be replaced.
However, she would report it and comment on the visibility of the sign.
(c) Play Area
(i) Replacement chains and swings
Cllr. Rickman reported that the swing has been replaced at a cost of £220. The wall has not been repaired and the Clerk was asked to follow up with Orbit Housing.
No new report.
Cllr. Price reported that some branches have come down and these have been dealt with. He said that he would check to ensure that the footpaths are marked.
(f) Gaydon Liaison Meeting
It was agreed that Cllr. Price should attend this meeting.
(g) Neighbourhood Watch
The Clerk was asked to contact the neighbourhood watch co-ordinator for a report for the next meeting.
7. Any matters from the District Councillor or County Councillor
District Cllr. Mills said that if materials are put into the incorrect bin then the refuge people will not empty it.
County Cllr. Williams reported that the County will be finalising their budget in the next 4 weeks. Council tax will remain frozen but there will need to be more savings made.
8. To receive any new planning applications
(a) 11/02502/FUL - The Firs, Church Road - no objection
(b) 11/02360/FUL - Hillside, Kineton Road - no objection
(c) 11/01998/VARY - Village Farm Stables - the Parish Council agreed to object to this application. See minutes dated 3rd December 2011.
9. To receive any results of planning applications
(a) 11/01727/FUL - Byfield, Kineton Road - granted
(b) 11/01959/FUL - Aston Martin Lagonda - granted
10. To agree the details for the removal of the Chestnut Tree on the Village Green, to appoint a tree surgeon and to approve the cost (between £700-£1500)
The Clerk reported that she has received 2 quotes for the removal of the tree; 1 for £1500 and 1 for £700. 2 residents said that they did not want the tree to be removed. The Clerk explained that the Parish Council has been advised verbally by a tree surgeon recommended by the District Council that the tree needs to come down. District Cllr. Mills said that he would ask the District Council tree specialist if she would be able to look at the tree for us. The Parish Council agreed that if the District Council were unable to offer advice then they should be asked to recommend arboriculturists who would be able to provide a written report.
11. To receive any correspondence
(a) Complaint re. fly tipping in Banbury Road lay-by
The Clerk said that she has passed this complaint to the District Council. They have asked if residents could note the registration numbers of the vehicles involved in this.
(b) Food hamper from Ellis Machinery
It was agreed that this should be passed to Barnfields. The Clerk to ask Cllr. Mrs. McGrath if she could arrange this.
(c) Notification of Appeal for The Stables, Upper Farm Meadow (11/01338/FUL)
This had been circulated to councillors via email.
(d) Nomination for Royal Garden Party
This was discussed and it was agreed that Cllr. Rickman should be nominated.
(e) Invitation to Broadband Workshops
This had been circulated via email.
(f) Annual Playground Inspection
The Clerk reported that we have been notified by the District Council that they will no longer fund these inspections.
12. Flood Defence Plan
Discussed under item 2.
13. To agree 2012/13 Budget and to set precept
A draft budget had been circulated to councillors prior to this meeting. Cllr. Rickman said that he would like the Parish Plan budget to be increased by £150 which should cover the printing costs. The Chairman said that he thought that the Parish Plan grant was higher than the amount on the budget. The Clerk and the Chairman agreed to investigate. The Clerk was asked to add £150 to Section 137 to cover the cost of this printing. It was proposed that the precept be increased by 2% and this was agreed unanimously and carried. A copy of the revised budget is attached to these minutes.
14. Financial Report/Administration
(a) Grass Cutting Contract
It was agreed that a clause covering the removal of cuttings and placing in a designated area should be added to this contract. Cllr. Rickman asked the Clerk to forward details to a contractor who had approached him.
(b) Cemetery Maintenance Contract
Discussed under item 6(a)(ii).
(c) Clerk's Employment Status
The Clerk confirmed that she is registered with Inland Revenue as an employee.
(d) To agree a fixed payment for expenses covering telephone/internet/use of home as office
It was agreed that the Clerk should be paid £10.00 per month with affect from 1st February to cover this expenditure.
(e) To report loss of British Legion cheque
A letter has been sent to the bank stopping payment of this cheque.
It was reported that the Clerk has achieved the Certificate in Local Council Administration.
(g) Bank balances
Community Account - £6,063.03
Business Account - £10,575.54
15. Passing of any accounts for payment
The following accounts were proposed by Cllr. Price, seconded by Cllr. Mrs. Fox and carried unanimously.
(a) C. Hill - Clerk's fee - £283.29
(b) HM Inland Revenue - PAYE (Oct-Dec) - £119.22
(c) e.on - Street Lighting - £47.36
(d) Mr. Pickering - grass maintenance - £105.00
(e) British Legion - replacement cheque for wreath - £65.00
(f) Gaydon Village Hall - 2011 rent - £1000.00
(g) Mrs. J. Rickman - copier paper - £19.99
16. Closure of meeting
Annual Parish Meeting - 1st March at 7.30pm to be followed by the Ordinary Parish Council meeting.
The Chairman closed the meeting at 10.05pm.