HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL
MINUTES OF THE HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD IN THE MEMORIAL HALL ON THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2016 at 7.30pm
Present: Councillors Kane, Watkins, Hicks, Griggs, Henderson, McCall-McCowan, Duggan, Brotherston, Casson (arrived 7.40pm), Mrs R Watts (Parish Clerk) and five members of the public.
Apologies for Absence – Cllrs Matthews, Wright, County Cllr Reynolds and District Cllr Jelf
Chairman’s Announcements: Fibre broadband is now operative in some parts of the village.
Declarations of Interest: Cllr Kane declared an interest in the damaged verge in Osney Close. Cllr McCall-McCowan declared an interest in the stream by her property and in Notice of Intent of Tree Works 16/00044/TCA. Councillor Casson, arriving after 7.30pm, was asked by the Chairman to declare any interests. He had no interests to declare.
Minutes of Previous Meeting held on 11 February 2016 and Matters Arising
Cllr Hicks proposed that the minutes of the meeting on 11 February 2016 be resolved as a true and accurate record of the meeting. This was seconded by Cllr Griggs and passed unanimously.
Village Networks, South Northants Volunteer Bureau: The Chairman invited Mr Nick King from Village Networks to address the meeting. He explained that a Village Networks bus will be visiting Hook Norton on 13 April, 11 May and 15 June. Villagers will have free access to money advice, reduction of household bills (water, electricity and oil), computer training, job-seeking advice and support, volunteering opportunities and debt counselling. The bus will stop at The Bourne (junction of Old School End) from 10.30 – 11.30 and Sibford Road (junction of The Glebe) from 11.30 – 13.00.
Hugo Brown: The Chairman invited Hugo Brown to address the meeting. Mr Brown explained that in May the whole of Cherwell goes out for election for sixteen 3-member wards. Mr Brown will be standing as one of the three Councillors covering the Deddington Ward, which will include Hook Norton. His particular interests are Value for Money, planning issues and communication and transport.
Report of the Planning Co-Ordinator on Planning Applications – Annex 1
Seven planning / TCA applications had been received since the last meeting. There was an objection to 16/00281/Q56, change of use of three barns to three dwellings at Field Barn, Whichford Road.
Cherwell District Council granted two planning / TCA applications.
Oxfordshire County Council approved MW.0132/15 – Extension to waste transfer apron and provision of a waste picking station at Banbury Plant Hire.
Two applications were withdrawn: 16/00040/LB and 16/00315/CLUP.
Residents should be aware that the Parish Council can object to a planning application on planning grounds, or support it. It does not have the authority to approve any planning applications or Tree Works. This is the responsibility of the District Council or County Council. Residents can object to any planning application via Cherwell District Council’s Planning Portal.
To Invite Members of the Public to Comment on Planning Applications: A resident raised the issue of the Parish Council having made a ‘no objection’ response to planning application 15/0002052/F, Bean Acre Cottage, Rope Way, demolition of outbuildings and erection of one low energy building. CDC had indicated in their report that their officers were aware that Common Land formed part of the parcel of land under consideration. Cllr Kane explained that the Parish Council had considered the application carefully and had not received any objections from the general public. It had come to the conclusion that there were no planning issues on which it could comment or raise objections. The Parish Council had therefore sent a ‘No Objection’ response to CDC. Residents are encouraged to make their own representations to CDC on any planning matters which they object to. However, CDC will ignore non-material considerations when making their decisionn
Reports of Working Groups
a) There was nothing to report.
Cemetery and Allotments
a) New arrangements for payment of rental at the beginning of each allotment year (i.e. by 1 April) have been put in place as a result of non-payments. No refund of rental will be made for the termination of any tenancy mid allotment-year. The Parish Clerk will contact the Allotment Association asking it to remind tenants that termination of tenancies must be sent in writing to the Parish Clerk.
b) Invoices for 2016-2017 have been hand-delivered to allotment holders. Payment must be made by 1 April.
c) Cllr Griggs has obtained two estimates for repairs in the sums of £1,200 and £750. Cllr Kane proposed that the lower quotation be accepted. This was seconded by Cllr Griggs and approved unanimously. Work will commence in the spring.
d) John Blackham has complained that the green bin in the cemetery is often not emptied and is not put back in the right place. Cllr Griggs will discuss the way forward with Kim Cooke.
e) The concrete structure in the cemetery currently used for dumping in rubbish is to be removed. The Parish Clerk will contact Banbury Plant Hire to see if they are able to dismantle and remove it.
a) Incredible Edible Hook Norton has put two raised beds in place ready for planting.
b) The white gates at the entrance to the village in Station Road are damaged. Cllr Griggs had contacted the manufacturers, H J Webb and Son but they will not repair items already in situ. Councillors agreed that they will get a quotation from Dan White for renewing the end posts.
c) The Hook Norton sign at the entrance to the village by The Firs is missing. The Burycroft Road and the Park Hill signs are damaged. The Parish Clerk will report this to OCC Highways and Cherwell District Council.
d) There are a number of potholes in and around the village. The Chairman asked Councillors and residents to report all potholes to OCC Highways.
e) Complaints have been received about estate agents’ boards being put on public land on the corners of Hollybush Road and Ironstone Hollow with Station Road. The boards are unsightly and at odds with the conservation area. The Parish Clerk wrote to all estate agents in October asking them to remove their boards but Hamptons had recently placed a board on the corner of Ironstone Hollow. The Parish Clerk will write giving them seven days to remove it. The Parish Council will remove it if they fail to do so.
f) The stream is blocked with vegetation and debris and flooding is being experienced at certain pinch points. The Parish Clerk contacted the Environment Agency to ask if they will clear it. They replied stating that there were no plans to carry out any work in the village and that riparian land-owners are responsible for water courses abutting their property. Councillors unanimously agreed that some steps should be taken by the Parish Council to clear the stretch of stream which nearly flooded two properties earlier this week. Cllr Griggs will speak to Cllr Matthews to ascertain what measures can be taken.
Hook Norton War Memorial Hall
a) Work to replace windows and doors with double glazed units is complete. Minor painting work has been done and the curtains re-hung (thanks go to Cllr Griggs for this).
b) Cllr Griggs has cleared the path around the hall of moss.
c) Cherwell District Council has confirmed that on receipt of copy invoices, Section 106 monies from the developers of The Grange in the sum of £5,168.74 will be passed to the Parish Council towards the cost of replacing windows and doors in the Memorial Hall. The Parish Clerk has sent copies to CDC.
d) Cllr Kane had applied for a £5K grant from TOE2 towards the cost of replacing the doors and window in the Memorial Hall. She will now submit copy invoices.
e) Cllr Watkins proposed that to encourage more users there should be a re-launch of the hall now that it has been re-furbished. This event could coincide with a celebration of the Queen’s 90th birthday. Cllr Kane has already applied to CDC for a grant towards this.
f) Thomas Cleaning are increasing their costs by £5.58 per fortnight to accommodate an increase in the minimum wage.
Hook Norton Neighbourhood Plan (HNNP) sub-Committee
a) Cllr Hicks had nothing to report.
National Energy Foundation (NEF) – a report on extending the gas network to Hook Norton: Cllr Duggan will take this matter forward and respond to NEF direct giving them the support of the Parish Council.
Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL): Cherwell District Council is carrying out a public consultation on the Cherwell Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) www.cherwell.gov.uk/policypublicconsulation CIL is a planning charge introduced as a mechanism for local authorities to deliver infrastructure to support development in their area. Since April 2015 the District Council’s ability to use the existing mechanism of pooling development contributions (Section 106 agreements) has been limited to securing site specific infrastructure and affordable housing. If adopted, CIL will enable the District Council to continue pooling contributions from new developments across the district to help funding of local and strategic infrastructure. Cllr Duggan will respond to the consultation on behalf of the Parish Council.
Finance/Schedule of Receipts and Payments for Authorisation by the Council
The Parish Clerk presented the schedules of receipts and payments and sought approval to pay the cheques itemised on the schedules for March totalling £2,391.93 for the Parish Council (Annex 2) and £140.24 for the Memorial Hall (Annex 3). Cllr Hicks moved acceptance of the payments detailed. This was seconded by Cllr McCall-McCowan and agreed unanimously.
District Council Report: District Cllr Jelf had not submitted a report.
County Council Report: County Cllr Reynolds had not submitted a report.
Correspondence: The Parish Clerk had forwarded all correspondence to Councillors during the month. There were no matters outstanding.
To Invite Questions and Comments from Members of the Public: there were no matters arising.
a) The village shop has re-opened and now accommodates a post office counter.
The next Parish Council meeting will be held on 14 April 2016 at 7.30pm in the Memorial Hall.
The Annual Meeting of the Parish Council will be held on 12 May 2016 at 7.30pm in the Memorial Hall.
There being no further business Councillor Kane thanked everyone for attending and closed the public meeting at 9.00pm.