HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL
MINUTES OF THE HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD IN THE MEMORIAL HALL ON THURSDAY, 12 NOVEMBER 2015 at 7.30pm
Present: Councillors Kane, Hicks, Griggs, Watkins, Wright, Matthews, Brotherston and Mrs R Watts (Parish Clerk).
Apologies for Absence – Cllrs Casson, Henderson, County Cllr Reynolds and District Cllr Jelf
Chairman’s Announcements: the Chairman had written to the Banbury Guardian complaining about Cherwell District Council’s approval of planning application 15/01290/F, a new build at Priory Cottage, Netting Street. The application was dealt with as a delegated matter by officers, despite the Parish Council objecting to the application and the District Councillor asking for the application to be ‘called in’. CDC has not given a satisfactory explanation for this oversight.
Declarations of Interest: there were none.
Minutes of Previous Meeting held on 8 October 2015 and Matters Arising
Cllr Hicks proposed that the minutes of the meeting on 8 October 2015 be resolved as a true and accurate record of the meeting. This was seconded by Cllr Griggs and passed unanimously.
At the request of the Parish Clerk, OCC Highways has recently installed a salt bin on the Hook Norton/Swerford Road near ‘Southfield’. The Chairman has received a letter of thanks from the resident who had requested that a bin be purchased for the site.
It was agreed at the last meeting that a new Parish Council noticeboard would be purchased for the front of the village shop. The shop is due to be re-furbished however and therefore any purchase will remain on hold until after the works are complete.
The Parish Clerk had written to estate agents who were displaying ‘For Sale’ boards on the corner of Hollybush Road with Station Road, asking for them to be taken down. All the boards have been removed.
Report of the Planning Co-Ordinator on Planning Applications – Annex 1
Five planning / TCA applications had been received since the last meeting. There were no objections.
Cherwell District Council had granted eight planning / TCA applications.
Cherwell District Council had confirmed a Tree Preservation Order on an Oak tree at 4, The Sidings.
Concerns were raised about the owner/occupiers of 13 Orchard Road extending their boundary fence. The Parish Clerk will write to them to enquire whether or not they have permission to do so.
To Invite Members of the Public to Comment on Planning Applications: there were no members of the public in attendance.
Reports of Working Groups
a) Playdale has replaced the cushion floor under the zip-line.
Cemetery and Allotments
a) A new water stop cock has been installed in the cemetery. This will be turned off during the winter months to prevent frost damage.
b) Four allotment holders are overdue with their rental payments and reminders have been set out. Reminders attract a £5 surcharge.
c) Cllr Griggs and volunteers have planted a further 1,000 spring bulbs in the cemetery (5,000+ in all). Councillors thanked those who had donated bulbs and also the volunteers who have planted them.
d) Cllr Griggs will meet with John Blackam to discuss other works in the cemetery.
e) The dry stone wall between the upper and lower cemetery needs attention.
a) CDC has recently cleaned the road gullies through the village.
b) The Parish Warden has cleared the area around the bottle bank.
Hook Norton War Memorial Hall
a) A tile is missing from the roof and there is water ingress. Cllr Matthews has offered to replace it.
b) Replacement windows and fire doors – one quotation has been received. A second quotation has been sought and is expected soon..
c) Cllr Kane has received quotations from Bob Bickley for maintenance work in the Memorial Hall garden and in the churchyard. Cllr Hicks proposed that the quotations be accepted. This was seconded by Cllr Matthews and agreed unanimously.
Hook Norton Neighbourhood Plan (HNNP) sub-Committee
a) The HNNP was approved by CDC’s full Council on 19 October. It now forms a statutory part of the local planning process. Anyone wishing to build in the village will have to demonstrate that they are complying with the policies in the plan. Councillors thanked everyone who had contributed to the compilation and success of the plan.
b) An unspent portion of the grant from Groundwork UK will be returned to them.
Training for Councillors: this item was deferred to the December meeting.
Budget and precept 2016 – 2017 – the Parish Clerk, having discussed the matter with the Chairman, had emailed a proposed budget for 2016-2017 to Councillors before the meeting (Annex 2). Cllr Kane proposed that the precept should be increased to £70K to allow for an increase in the cost of grass cutting, library funding, maintenance of play areas on new housing estates and other services which OCC is seeking to transfer to parishes. Any spend over and above that will be taken from reserves. This was seconded by Cllr Wright and agreed unanimously.
Appointment of Internal Auditor for 2015-2016 Accounts
Mr David Ralls AAT; ACCA, Springfield Avenue, Banbury carried out last year’s internal audits. Cllr Kane proposed that Mr Ralls be appointed again to inspect both the Parish Council and War Memorial Hall Trust accounts for 2015/2016. This was seconded by Cllr Wright and agreed unanimously.
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 November totalling £3,496.80 for the Parish Council (Annex 3) and £282.30 for the Memorial Hall (Annex 4). Cllr Hicks moved acceptance of the payments detailed. This was seconded by Cllr Wright and agreed unanimously.
Cllr Kane proposed that the Parish Council approve a request from the Royal British Legion for a donation of £30 for poppy wreaths bought in 2014 and 2015. This was seconded by Cllr Wright and agreed unanimously.
District Council Report: no report submitted.
County Council Report: no report submitted.
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 members of the public attending.
a) The post office in Hook Norton is closing on 17 November 2015. The Post Office is optimistic that it may be able to move it to another location in the village but this will take time. In the meantime it will send the mobile van that currently goes to Great Rollright and Great Tew to Hook Norton for one hour on a Friday afternoon (time to be confirmed). The Sun Inn has kindly offered to let the van park on its land in front of the public house.
b) The annual Bonfire raised £2,500 for charity. This will be split 50/50 between the Firefighters Charity and Sobell House at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford, where the late Stuart Willis was recently cared for.
c) A complaint has been received about mud on Croft’s Lane following the annual Bonfire. The Parish Clerk has reported the matter to OCC Highways.
The next Parish Council meeting will be held on 10 December 2015 at 7.30pm in the Memorial Hall.
There being no further business Councillor Kane thanked everyone for attending and closed the public meeting at 8.33pm.