Minutes of the Monxton Parish Council Meeting held on Wednesday 20th November 2013 in the Monxton Village Hall at 7.30pm.
Present: Cllr Mike Cleugh – Chairman; Cllr Sarah Dowding – Vice Chairman; Cllr Judith Balding; Cllr David Eaglesham; Cllr David Bateman; Richard Waterman – Parish Clerk; Members of the Public – 5
Apologies: Borough Councillor Mr Ben Few-Brown and County Councillor Mrs Pat West
WELCOME – The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting.
DECLARATION OF INTEREST
Cllr Sarah Dowding declared an interest in the planning application for School House Reference 13/01776/LBWN.
MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING
The Chairman signed the minutes of the September meeting as a true record.
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC
The Chairman stated that members of the public have a 3 minute slots to speak, which they must register the issue 10 days before the Parish Council meeting. There were no pre-booked slots for this meeting.
- 13/01556/FULLN – Application for retrospective planning for the bridge at Upper Mill House is still awaiting a date for the TVBC committee meeting.
- 13/01776/LBWN – Change of front door – School, House, Amport Road, Monxton. The Parish Council had NO OBJECTIONS to this planning application.
- 13/02433/LBWN – Replace concrete paviours to drive with bound gravel and a line of sandstone paviours at the road boundary – Brewery House, Green Lane, Monxton. The Parish Council had NO OBJECTIONS to this planning application
- 13/02478/TREEN – Fell one Cherry Tree – Newcott, Amport Road, Monxton. The Parish Council OBJECTED to this planning application and suggested that pruning would be the preferred course of action.
ENVIRONMENT – Cllr Judith Balding
PILLHILL BROOK: Cllr Judith Balding was pleased to report that the current status of the Pillhill Brook is slowly improving, as the vegetation between the dam and the bridge, which was completely blocking it has recently had a channel cut through it.
Unfortunately, the channel is only approximately 3 foot in width, so it remains to be seen how effective this will be. The dam still only has a small notch in it, with the further proposed works to the dam, yet to be implemented. If these works allow an adequate flow of water to return to this stretch of the brook, any future flooding should be averted.
Report received from Tor Peebles, Project Officer, County Planning at HCC. A channel has been cut through the vegetation lying in the Pillhill Brook, this should allow water in the channel to move down stream rather than be held back. An environmental engineering company has been engaged to carry out the flood risk assessment of the lower watercourse and the solution to the weir. Any work on the weir will require consent from the Environment Agency of which the land owner is aware. He is not aware of any decisions made by Test Valley BC on the retrospective planning application submitted by the land owner for the bridge on the Pillhill Brook.
FOOTPATHS AND BRIDLEWAYS: An email was received from Peter Derbyshire reporting a large tree, which was brought down in the recent storms, blocking Hook Lane bridleway and making it impassable. Cllr Judith Balding contacted Cllr Charles Stephens from Amport Parish Council, and would like to thank him for his very prompt action to get it removed.
FRACKING: ‘Fracking’ is short for hydraulic fracturing, which uses high pressure water and chemicals blasted underground to fracture shale rock and release gas. The Department for Energy and Climate Change has issued drilling licences for possible fracking underneath an area a few miles from Andover, Stockbridge and many historic villages, including Monxton and Amport. Based on information available from DECC, the existing licences are located at the following locations: North of Winchester, from Kings Worthy stretching west almost to Stockbridge, and further north, reaching from Chilbolton west to Amport.
NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH – David James
Reported Crime: Once again, non-dwelling burglaries have been the most reported crime in the rural area of north and east Hampshire. Power tools have mainly been targeted together with off road vehicles. In addition there has been an increase in thefts from stables including horse tack and rugs in Hampshire. A separate alert was posted regarding this on Monxton Matters.
Telephone scams continue to be a problem. Hampshire Trading Standards Service publish information on these including prize wins, tax rebates and loan scams.
Crime Alerts – Since the last meeting there have been no general alerts distributed in Monxton.
HIGHWAYS – Cllr Sarah Dowding
The bollards are now installed around the village green and various other vulnerable sites, including Old Hoyles’ garden wall. There were other sites identified that will be pursued by the Traffic Steering Group.
The Traffic Steering Group have produced a map of actions required and have given it to TVBC (the map and supporting information can be vied on the Monxton Web Site).
Cllr Sarah Dowding explained the various items on the map. TVBC are to start work on agreed actions week commencing 25th November 2013.
It was noted that Lorries using the Monxton Road to get to the Co-op site are fined £500 a time. The fines pot controlled by HCC stands at some £500,000. Monxton are getting some of this money to fund the traffic calming measurers. The Chairman will visit the Co-op in person to discuss the traffic problems in person.
The Police have carried out speed radar checks in Monxton and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
The Chairman spoke about the problems the village are having with the Nelson Lorries visiting Georgia Farm. A recent aggressive confrontation with Mr Nelson was not a pleasant experience, and this was witnessed by a TVBC Planning Officer who happened to be present.
PORTABLE SPEED INDICATOR: Cllr Sarah Dowding reported that the chosen portable speed sign displays speed of vehicles and records speed and time. Funding has been discussed with various options including sharing the sign and costs with neighbouring parishes. However Monxton may purchase the speed sign outright asking if the HCC Coop fines fund would help with the cost.
SUNNYBANK – No issues to report at this meeting.
MONXTON WEB SITE – Cllr Sarah Dowding
18,610 views since the launch in March 2013. October: 1653 page views and 400 visitors. November (to date): 1063 page views and 233 visitors.
September – November = 4 pages/visit (peak 10 pages/visit in July).
FINANCE – Cllr David Eaglesham
The Audit has signed of the Accounts for the Year 1st April 2012 – 31st March 2013 on the 27th August 2013. There were no issues raised. The Parish Councillors signed a ‘Request for Dispensation’ form enabling them to discuss the Precept.
Cllr David Eaglesham gave a full report on the Parish Council finances. This will be available to view on the Web Site. The Parish Council have a healthy reserve so he suggested that the Precept for the year 2014/2015 is reduced by £350 to £5,200. This was discussed at length taking into account the various ongoing projects in the parish.
The Chairman proposed that the 2014/2015, Precept be reduced to £5,200, this was seconded by Cllr Sarah Dowding. All agreed. The Monxton precept for the Year 2014/2015 was therefore set at £5,200.
CHEQUES ISSUED IN NOVEMBER 2013
R.N. Waterman Wages September – December £800.00
Clive Hutchinson Mowing of the Village Green £360.00
N W Adams Sunnyside Play Ground Inspection £65.40
The Chairman reported that developers/builders have expressed scepticism regarding the support by the various councils, therefore Monxton PC & Abbotts Ann PC wrote open letters confirming their support in principle for a development.
The MPC Chairman met with the Planning Consultant appointed by Alpine to manage the new development (& the move to a new factory location) and the Head of Planning at TVBC to discuss the proposed development at the site. The consultant is twin tracking the search for a site and the development as one is needed to fund the other.
The Chairman reported that work to repair the garden wall at Old Hoyles has been agreed by the Alpine Group and should commence shortly.
VILLAGE PROJECTS – Cllr Mike Cleugh
VILLAGE GREEN CLEAR UP: The response from the village to the request for help to clean up the green was a total of 3 people over five dates which was extremely disappointing and therefore the council will revisit this early next year. After some discussion it was agreed that another clear up will be organised in the spring with refreshments in the Pub after the event for any volunteers.
VILLAGE POND PROJECT: There has been some conflicting information distributed around the parish on whether this is actually a pond or a soak away. It was confirmed at the meeting by residents that it is actually a natural pond. However it was agreed that the area should be tidied up regardless and the work required to re-instate the pond carried out next year with the villagers support and if NOT abandoned.
VILLAGE VERGE WEED REDUCTION: It was agreed that a working party will be organised to tackle the various overgrown areas in the parish. Mr Clive Hutchinson (current Garden services provider) will also be asked to quote to take on some of the more overgrown areas and verges in the event that villagers do NOT come forward to undertake the works.
DATES FOR THE NEXT MEETINGS
Wednesday’s 7.30pm in Monxton Village Hall
CLOSE OF THE MEETING The Chairman thanked everyone for coming and closed the meeting at 8.45pm.