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Thakeham Parish Council
ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE MEETING – Monday, 16 January 2017
Meeting opened: 6.15 p.m. (Village Hall)
Present Mr N Prince (Chair) Mrs C Hounslow Ms F McConnachie, Mr D MacEachern Mr D Scott Kerr
In attendance Mr O Richards Clerk to the Council
37. Apologies for absence
Apologies were received from Cllrs Hunt and Taylor
38. Interests of Members
No interests were declared.
39. Minutes of the last meeting
Minutes of the last meeting held on 17 October 2016 were approved and signed.
40. Report on action items from previous meetings (not otherwise on the agenda)
29.2 High Bar Lane maintenance works: now completed, subject to some further tree pruning.
32 Greening Thakeham bench had now been installed, and bulb planting completed. Members thanked Cllr McConnachie for her considerable work on this.
33 Winter Emergency Plan: actions complete except new salt bin location awaits final move of bus shelter
36.2 20mph speed limit suggestion for High Bar Lane: not yet progressed (action: Clerk)
36.3 Low-flying helicopter: no further incidents
36.4 Woodland Way fence: need for repairs had been flagged to WSCC, who were assessing works.
41.1 Furze Field
Cllrs MacEachern and Smith had met and resolved land ownership and maintenance issues relating to the boundary strip. Paintwork touch-up awaited better weather. HDC to be chased re. gate repair. (Action: Clerk).
41.2 High Bar Lane
Members noted that, as part of approving the 2017/18 budget, TPC had endorsed the proposals to build up the HBL equipment renewal fund to ~£10K (including draw-down of existing S106 sums). This would be used as a platform to seek additional funding - detail of which will be subject to assessing and costing equipment replacement needs. The Committee agreed to set up a sub-group to take this project forward, comprising Cllrs Prince, MacEachern and McConnachie. An early step in this process would be to consult local children about what they would like to see: suggestions included contacting Thakeham Primary School and St Mary’s Youth Group.
(Action: Clerk, Cllrs Prince, MacEachern, McConnachie).
42. Rights of Way
The Committee noted a paper providing an update on progress with proposals for RoW improvements linked to the Abingworth phase 2 s.73 application. Members were invited to send any comments to the Clerk in advance of the Neighbourhood Planning Committee meeting of 23 January.
43. Bus service situation
Members noted that the parish had lodged a strong objection to the WSCC’s December proposals, which had included withdrawal of the 74/75 service (the only meaningful service to Thakeham). The outcome of the consultation was expected to be known at the end of January and would be considered at future meetings.
44. Roads matters
44.1 The Clerk updated members on developments relating to safety improvements to Abingworth access junctions, and parking surface arrangements.
44.2 The following TRO-related developments were noted:
Jackets Hill: a solution acceptable to WSCC Highways and Sussex Police had emerged, to create a 40mph zone between the Abingworth 30mph limit and the Storrington boundary, subject to installation of speed control measures including a vehicle-activated sign for northbound traffic. WSCC would not fund the cost (£10-15K initially, plus future utilities/maintenance) but a potential source was via further S106 community benefit from Abingworth phase 2 proposals (if approved).
Picketty Corner/B2139 bends southwards: further to WSCC Highways’ disappointing rejection of this TRO application (mainly because current average speeds were too high above the proposed 40mph limit), Cllr Prince and the Clerk were re-engaging with the Horsham district Highways manager to identify other possible safety improvements.
Crays Lane/Goose Green Lane junction: Highways had agreed to incorporate some improvement to signage and sight lines as part of routine work (not as a TRO per se).
Cllr MacEachern flagged, as member attending Chanctonbury CLC meetings, that all local parishes were also seeking additional TROs – exceeding WSCC budget capacity.
44.3 Extra signage in the Abingworth 30mph zone: Sussex Police had paused this until traffic calming measures relating to the Abingworth development (including phase 2 proposals) were confirmed.
44.4 St Mary’s Church steps drainage issue. Several members had recently visited and noted that the situation had been improved by surface treatment where the new steps met the road, and that the drain opening was currently clear. However, it remained an area subject to water pooling and would need monitoring.
45. Dog Waste bins
The Chair flagged that a resident had recently made contact seeking provision of additional dog waste bins. Cllr Smith’s property had also been subject to anti-social dumping of bags containing waste, which had been reported to HDC. Members endorsed the Chair’s view that, although the issue was important, timing was not yet right to make decisions on the number and location of additional bins. Costs involved are substantial (collection costs £120/year), new bin locations are quite constrained (including access by HDC collection vehicles), and there is a need to assess the situation once the public areas and new rights of way in the Abingworth estate become functional. In the meantime, the PC should highlight the need for responsible behaviour (via Spring newsletter, web-posts etc.) and would investigate any assistance available from HDC regarding signage. (Action: Clerk)
46. Recycling locations
The Clerk reported that he was investigating the issue of what future recycling provision might be appropriate in the central Thakeham area. (Action: Clerk to liaise with HDC initially).
47. Abingworth-related issues
Members noted that a positive response had been received from the developer to the suggestion of PC input regarding planting arrangements for the open public spaces, e.g. wildflower meadow areas.
48. Meadowbrook (Water Lane)-related issues
Cllr Scott Kerr reported on recent liaison with Crest Nicholson, mainly regarding boundary planting issues – which was requiring persistence due to staff turnover. The front-of-site watercourse culvert was not performing as expected, requiring continued use of mechanical pumping, with associated noise disturbance. (Action: Cllr Scott-Kerr/Clerk to continue progressing/monitoring issues)
49. Any other business
49.1 It was noted that a resident had volunteered to regularly litter-pick on Jacket’s Hill (via HDC’s Adopt-a-Street scheme. While very appreciative, there were some concerns about safety. Cllr Scott Kerr undertook to assist with a review of current litter-picking arrangements. (Action: Cllr Scott-Kerr, Clerk)
49.2 Cllr McConnachie reported regrowth of Japanese knotweed near the top of Woodland Way, and that repairs to the footpath steps from The Street had not yet been done. (Action: Clerk to report both)
49.4 The Clerk reminded members that it had agreed previously to revert the timing of the 2017 Village Tidy to the historic norm of later in the Spring. (Action: Clerk to get date agreed by circulation).
Meeting closed: 7.15 p.m.
Date of next meeting: Date and venue to be confirmed, in week commencing 17 April 2017. rol measures including a vehicle-activated sign for northbound traffic. WSCC would not fund the cost (£10-15K initially, plus future utilities/maintenance) but a potential source was via further S106 community benefit from Abingworth phase 2 proposals (if approved).
Cllr MacEachern flagged, as member attending Chanctonbury CLC meetings, that all local parishes