Minutes of the Monxton Parish Council Extraordinary General Meeting held on Friday 26th July 2013 in the Monxton Village Hall at 6.00pm.
Cllr Mike Cleugh – Acting Chairman
Cllr Sarah Dowding
Cllr David Eaglesham
Richard Waterman – Parish Clerk
Borough Councillor Mr Ben Few-Brow
County Councillor Mrs Pat West
Mr Ray Alborough – TVBC Highways Engineer
Mr Steve Spender – HCC Highways
Kelvin Barry and Robert Barry – Alpine Group, Manor Farm
Sir George Young, MP
Members of the Public – 61
Apologies: PC Don Stubbington
Cllr Mike Cleugh – Acting Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and introduced those who had come to address the meeting.
PRESENTATION BY MONXTON VILLAGERS ON TRAFFIC ISSUES AFFECTING MONXTON VILLAGE
Mr Ewan Harris gave a PowerPoint presentation on the many traffic issues affecting Monxton village. Hard copy attached to the master copy of these minutes.
Mr. Harris spoke and gave examples under each of the following headings :-
- Size of the traffic using the village roads
- Damage caused to property, vehicles and the infrastructure of the village
- Alpine Group at Manor Farm
- Volume of vehicles using the village roads
- Speed of the traffic
- Objectives of this meeting – Agree the way forward to reduce the traffic problems in Monxton
- Draw up a schedule and route map that lays down the actions to be taken by whom and by when
The Chairman thanked Mr Harris for an excellent presentation, which showed the problems residents of Monxton experience on a day to day basis.
CLLR MIKE CLEUGH – ACTING CHAIRMAN
Cllr Cleugh introduced Mr Ray Alborough from TVBC Highways who is responsible for signage, the width restriction (6’ 6”), and for the speed survey for any potential 20mph Speed Limit. Mr Steve Spender is from HCC Highways and is responsible for the highways as related to verges and roads in Monxton and would address the potential use of bollards within the village.
MR RAY ALBOROUGH, TVBC HIGHWAYS
Mr Ray Alborough addressed the meeting and raised the following points :
- The new sign erected depicting that the road is unsuitable for lorries at the roundabout is the correct size. After some discussion Mr Alborough agreed to investigate placing the sign on a bigger backing to make it stand out more, and he will also look into the possibility of illuminating the sign.
- TVBC cannot look at Monxton Village in isolation and must look how the problems being experienced by residents will impact on neighbouring villages before any scheme is implemented.
- There have been three speed and volume surveys carried out in Monxton. Unfortunately one of the radars was put in the wrong place and will need to be redone. The data from the one positioned by Brewery House recorded an average speed of 30mph and an 85th percentile speed of 36mph. The data from the crossroads recorded an average speed of 19.2mph and an 85th percentile speed of 24.6mph. Taking these two recordings of data, Mr Alborough advised that does not appear to be a speed problem through the village. Members of the Public strongly disagreed with this data.
- TVBC have surveyed the lorry movements in the area and have produced a map showing the suggested 6’ 6” width restrictions to deter lorries from using the routes through villages. The authorized routes for the Coop lorries in Test valley is the A303, A34 and the A338. The map is attached to the master copy of these minutes. Mr Alborough advised that the survey results indicated there were very few through-lorry movements through Monxton and the problems the village have are with lorries delivering to specific destinations.
- A 20mph scheme is being piloted around Hampshire – the ones in Test Valley are in Floral Way and Berry Way, Andover by Hampshire County Council. At present similar schemes are not being rolled out to other areas until after the pilot schemes have been evaluated, and this is likely to take at least 12 months.
- There is a pot of money collected from fines paid by the Coop for their lorries using banned routes that is being used for several on-going schemes. Mr Alborough will push for any funding left to be used in Monxton.
Mr Ray Alborough took questions from the floor :-
- The results of the speed survey do not match the experience of the parishioners of the village and Mr Alborough was asked to explain the way data was recorded. Mr Alborough explained the figures and confirmed that the equipment records in both directions. The radar record 24/7.
- Traffic Calming was discussed. Mr Alborough stated that statistics were needed to prove a need before any scheme could be considered.
- Mr Alborough was asked how much money had been collected through fines on the banned lorry routes and how much has been apportioned to Monxton? In the region of £500,000 and to date no money has been apportioned to Monxton directly but any schemes required could receive funding which is in the control of HCC.
- Could an “Unsuitable for Long Vehicles” sign be erected at either end of Chalkpit Lane? Mr Alborough stated that he will look into this and look for a suitable site.
- What is the time scale for things to start happening? Mr Alborough stated that there are only three staff in his department and they have a heavy workload so he could not give a time scale.
Mr Alborough stated that he was happy to liaise with the Parish Council on any questions/points that the village wished to raise. The Chairman stated that parishioners can post their questions and points on the blog available on the Parish Council Web Site. The Chairman thanked Mr Ray Alborough for addressing the meeting.
MR STEVE SPENDER – HAMPSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL HIGHWAYS
County Councillor Mrs Pat West introduced Mr Steve Spender and spoke about his role and that he was present to report on how Hampshire Highways can help with the problems Monxton are experiencing.
Mr. Steve Spender addressed the meeting and reported on the following points :-
- Hampshire Highways have looked at the various problems in Monxton and intend to put wooden bollards in strategic locations to protect property and erosion of the village green. The style and height of the bollards will be down to the Monxton residents. Mr Spender suggested that the same style is used at all the locations identified.
- Suggested sites included the edge of the village green and on the corner of Abbots Ann Road to protect the wall. Mr. Spender suggested that a height of 1 metre would be ideal for the bollards.
- A power point showing a sample of 11 different styles of bollards was shown.
- The Chairman stated that the 11 styles will be posted on the web site so that residents can vote on line. It was suggested that hard copies be distributed through Neighbourhood Watch as some residents do not have access to a computer. The Chairman agreed with this request and will contact the Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator.
- Once the style has been selected and any additional sites in the village identified, Mr Spender will work with the Parish Council and produce a plan for the parish to view before installation.
- Highways have noted the state of the crossroads and the effect the recent hot weather has had on the road surface. An order has been placed to resurface this junction with a more hard-wearing material. An order has also been placed to re-instate the edge of the village green. Lead time 6 – 8 weeks.
Mr Spender answered questions on the issues he raised. The Chairman thanked Mr Spender for addressing the meeting.
SIR GEORGE YOUNG, MP
Sir George Young thanked Mr E Harris for his excellent presentation, as it highlighted the problems that Monxton experience with large lorries using the village roads. Sir George Young stated that he will help in any way he can to get the problems sorted and gave the Parish Council his full support and that the village should consider a Steering Committee be set up by the Parish Council. Sir George Young stated that he has also been in contact with the MOD and the Satellite Navigation companies re the postcode for the Business Park and restricted routes.
MONXTON PARISH COUNCIL
Cllr Mike Cleugh reported that Monxton and Abbots Ann Parish Councils have been in discussion with the Alpine Group regarding them re-locating to a site in Andover. The Chairmen of Monxton and Abbots Ann Parish Councils have met with Paul Jackson the Head of Planning at TVBC to discuss moving the Alpine Group out of Manor Farm by changing the use to residential and building a small number of mixed-use dwellings thereby providing the funding to enable Alpine buy a site for a new factory. Mr Paul Jackson has agreed in principle to support a planning application in principle for residential development on the site for low density residential dwellings. This would be a quality development that would enhance the site. It was noted that this would be an exemption site as it would be against planning policy.
Mr Kelvin Barry from the Alpine Group addressed the meeting. A statement from the Alpine Group was distributed and is attached to the master copy of these minutes.
The current management of the site is third generation of the Diplock family. The Farm has been in the family since the 1950s.
The Alpine group is in constant contact with their suppliers regarding the delivery of materials to the site and is fully aware of the problems that are being caused. The need to use national suppliers means the materials are delivered on larger lorries as part of multiple drops.
The Alpine Group have the right to run their business from Manor Farm and have full planning permission. However, they acknowledge that this is not the ideal site and have engaged a Planning Consultant to look at options for re-development. The right balance of development has to be found that will enable them to purchase a new site.
The Alpine Group, although not liable, are paying for repairs to property in Monxton.
The Manor Farm site is ideal for their business, the only problem they have is with the transportation of materials.
The Alpine Group is working with both Monxton and Abbots Ann Parish Councils to find a solution that will be of benefit to everyone.
CLLR BEN FEW-BROWN
Cllr Few-Brown stated that a lot of work is being done in the background to find a solution to the problems highlighted during this meeting. Cllr Few Brown stated that he is working hard with the Parish Council, the Alpine Group and TVBC Planning re the Manor Farm development and as this site will be against policy this needs to be tackled sensitively. Cllr Few-Brown also spoke about other lorry movement through Monxton to other sites in the area. It is not known what effect the changes at Fox Farm will have on lorry movement in the area.
Cllr Cleugh stated that Paul Jackson is confident that planning for the re-development of Manor Farm could be in place within 12 months.
QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Questions from the floor were asked on the issues discussed and were answered by the various speakers.
THE WAY FORWARD
- Mr Ray Alborough is to arrange for a larger backing board for the ‘unsuitable for lorries’ sign. The provision of a ‘Not suitable for Long Vehicles’ sign will be investigated. The data from the third radar will be sent to the Parish Council for distribution. The Parish Councils within the area will be requested to identify sites where lorries will need access as part of the 6’ 6″ width-restricted area which will be pursued over the next 6 months.
- Mr Steve Spender has arranged for the re-surfacing of the crossroads with a harder-wearing material. The edge of the village green is to be re-instated. The provision of bollards at vulnerable sites will be completed.
- The Alpine Group will continue to monitor the transporting of materials to and from the site and will work with the Parish Councils and TVBC to look at relocating and the development of the Manor Farm site.
- The Parish Council will continue to keep the village informed of any developments and will get the choice of bollards available for resident to view and choose.
CLOSE OF THE MEETING
Cllr Mike Cleugh thanked everyone for coming and closed the meeting.