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Minutes of Thakeham Parish Council Meeting – Monday 20 March 2017, Thakeham Village Hall
Meeting opened: 7.30 p.m.
Present: Mr N Prince (Chair) Mrs C Hounslow Mr E Linnell Mr D MacEachern Ms F McConnachie Mr D Scott Kerr Mr R Taylor
In attendance Cllr P Arculus County Council
Cllr J Blackall District Council
Cllr D Jenkins District Council
Mr O Richards Clerk to the Council
Members of the public
171. Election of meeting Chair
In the absence of the Chair and Vice-Chair, members agreed that Cllr Prince should chair the meeting, under Standing Order provision (1(o)).
172. Apologies for absence
Apologies were received from Cllrs Hunt and Instance.
173. Interests of members
These members declared an interest in item 6 request from Thakeham Village Hall for contribution to defibrillator project: Cllrs Instance, Hounslow, MacEachern, Prince. No other interests were declared on the agenda items below.
174. Minutes of the last meeting
With members’ approval the minutes of the last meeting of the Parish Council held on 20 February 2017 were signed, subject to minor amends to add relevant references to formal powers under which TPC had agreed grants/donations under items 159.3/159.4. In relation to interim actions under delegated authority it was noted that communications with HDC regarding clarification of TPC’s position relating to S106 aspects of the Abingworth phase 2 proposals (DC/16/2835), fell under this heading.
175. Report on Action Items not otherwise raised under items on this agenda
201.2 Abingworth stakeholders. Ongoing work to be reported under item 9.
264.2 Re. Water Lane roundabout S106 highways monies: an opportunity to re-focus WSCC attention on this via the Rydon schools planning proposals was noted.
91. Parish Design Statement update: being progressed at next Neighbourhood Planning meeting
118.2 New salt bin: still awaits relocation of bus shelter at Abingworth southern entrance (Action: Clerk)
133.3 Furze Common Road – responsibility for blocked drains. Southern Water had been contacted but no response so far received; indications are that they are legally responsible. Noted that Southern Water enquiry systems require a customer reference number. (Further action: Clerk)
147 Newsletter format: the option of re-joining the local Bulletin arrangement was being explored (action: Clerk/Cllr Instance)
159.5 Abingworth bus shelter repairs: see item 177.5
160.2 Meadowbrook boundary planting issues: see item 178.2
163 Picketty Corner road safety works: continuing to chase details and timing of works (action: Clerk)
167.2 Furze Common Road repairs: works scheduled to commence in w/c 24 April, and to include pass of carriageway repairs before resurfacing; seeking clear notice to residents by 10 April (action: Clerk)
168.1 Abingworth – condition of Storrington Rd, vehicle tyre cleaning etc. Members noted a circulated briefing on of this, and that the situation would remain closely monitored. Members also agreed to request an early site visit to review these arrangements and general progress. (action: Clerk).
176. Correspondence – the following recent correspondence was noted:
WSCC – notification of Operation Watershed budget renewal for 2017/18;
Chanctonbury CLC (1 March 2017): notice of approval of £1200 for Thakeham defibrillator;
Rydon CC capital works: receipt of plans from WSCC for comment (being considered by Neighbourhood Planning meeting of 27 March);
TNP-related: various referendum-related operational/formal communications with HDC electoral services;
Finance: NALC notification of minor uplift to the ceiling that PCs can spend under LGA 1972 s.137;
Roads/Rights of Way: notification of TRO in Pulborough and WSCC PRoW had submitted a report on their latest paths inspection report;
Letter of thanks from St Mary’s Church for TPC’s donation to Youth Group summer camp.
177.1 Financial Performance
A report on the current financial year to 28 February 2017 was received, showing that the forecast outcome (which was now fairly firm) was an overall overspend of ~£500 against budget.
March 2017 payments: A report on current bank balances was tabled and the following items were approved for payment:
C A Blundy: Litter Warden
M&D Services (Neighbourhood Plan flyer distribution)
Mr B Laker (materials for installation of litter bins, HBL)
Alocalprinter (Neighbourhood Plan banner printing)
Alocalprinter (Neighbourhood Plan flyer printing)
Horsham District Council (Waste bin emptying April-June)
Viking office supplies inv. 497381
Gross salaries including PAYE/NI, Clerk’s expenses, pension
177.3 Thakeham Village Day financial update
The Clerk reported that Oakford Homes had now agreed to be main sponsor for this event, for £800, and that sales of advertising space in the programme (£260+) should fully cover its own printing costs. It was also noted that the organising group continued to favour donating net profits from the programme raffle to the Village Hall defibrillator project (see also item 177.4).
177.4 Contribution to Thakeham Village Hall defibrillator project
Noting that excellent progress had been made in securing funding for this project, members agreed that TPC was willing to donate £200 towards electrical installation, which was planned for the Easter break.
177.5 Abingworth bus shelter
Further to liaison with insurers and having chosen a contractor, members authorised repair works to be commissioned with aim of completion by end of April. While the incident was clearly not the PC’s fault, it was noted that the terms of the PC’s current insurance policy meant that recovery of the £250 standard excess remained dependent on the PC’s insurers recovering costs from the driver. (action: Clerk)
178. Planning – major current developments
HDC Development South Committee was now due to consider the phase 2 s.73 proposals on 25 April. Members had been kept abreast of ongoing liaison to resolve a residual issue relating to proposed £50K uplift of funds for management and maintenance of the new Village Hall. Cllr Jenkins suggested that the situation would benefit from a further restatement of this case, focusing on inflationary effects, impact of revised house numbers/mix, and linkage to the Neighbourhood Plan. (Action: Clerk.) Members also noted that Oakford Homes had confirmed that they will retain grounds care responsibilities for cricket pitch/outfield and football fields until delivery of related buildings and release of relevant S106 funds.
178.2 Meadowbrook (Crest Nicholson, Water Lane)
Cllr Scott Kerr reported on progress of sales/occupancies: of the total 76 houses in the development, 30 affordable units (operated by Orbit Housing Association) were now occupied; within the 46 open-market units, 10 had been sold and occupied, 4 more were reserved, 6 were available and the remainder were still under construction. Works on the culvert at the front of the site were now complete and pumping had ceased. There had been further liaison with HDC and Crest Nicholson regarding boundary planting issues to safeguard neighbour privacy. Specific proposals had been put back to Crest Nicholson by TPC and HDC jointly and Crest Nicholson’s response was awaited (action: Clerk/Cllr Scott Kerr).
179. Neighbourhood Plan
Council noted that the referendum of Wednesday 22 March now approached. Factual pre-referendum communications from the PC had included flyers to all eligible voters, items in the local media, roadside banners and posters. A further final email reminder was planned for 21 March. Members looked forward to the conclusion of this process and receiving the results of the count on Thursday 23 March (which HDC would undertake without PC presence). (Action: post-results communications – Clerk)
180. Abingworth assets governance model
Council noted that this work was ongoing, and that a two-speed scenario was emerging, i.e. a need for some urgency in framing arrangements for the Pre-School building due for delivery in August 2017, whereas the next main tranche of asset delivery was now expected not earlier than mid-2018. Nevertheless, there was no intention to lose momentum in discussions with the Village Hall Trust (due to meet next on 27 March) or the WCT cricket club. Members noted that this would continue to be progressed, with recourse to further legal advice as necessary. (Action: Chair/Clerk)
181. Approval of new Health & Safety and Lone Working policies
Council approved these new policies, noting that the Fire Safety section (9) of the Health & Safety policy would remain in abeyance and subject to further review at the point that the PC office moved to the new Village Hall, as at the present time fire safety fell under Monaghans Mushroom’s policies.
182. Annual Parish Meeting 15 May 2017
After discussion members agreed to invite representatives of a local community minibus scheme, and Sussex Police to speak at this event. (Action: Clerk)
183 Neighbourhood Planning Committee minutes
The minutes of the Neighbourhood Planning Committee meeting held on 27 February 2017 were received.
A member of the public flagged that minute 225 may have assumed the existence of a right of way past the parade of shops near the Rydon roundabout that does not in fact exist. Although a proposal for works to implement this had been agreed with WSCC Highways in the past, it seems to have been lost in the major 2016 review of highways projects, and seems likely to need a new application. (Action: Clerk; Cllr Arculus)
A representative of the Village Hall Trust also raised the issue of liaison relating to further discussion of Village Hall finishes and it was agreed to ensure full consultation. (Action: Clerk)
184. Reports from Councillors
184.1 Cllr Blackall flagged that the Storrington Glebe Surgery proposals were due to be considered by the HDC Development South Committee meeting of 21 March. He also reported that there had been a strong public response to the new rural car parking permit scheme launch. It was noted that proceeds of the new scheme were required to be reinvested in parking provision.
184.2 A member of the public flagged the potential for confusion between the PC’s winter newsletter message that the overall PC budget for 2017/18 would rise by 9%, and the net 16% precept increase subsequently notified via Council Tax bills. Although it was noted that the newsletter had also mentioned the size of the absolute increase for a Band D household, it was agreed to put further explanation of the figures on the parish website. (Action: Clerk, Cllr Linnell, Cllr Instance) It was also noted that messages around the policing precept were potentially misleading in terms of delivering actual additional provision.
184.3 Cllr Hounslow flagged that Pavilion Close in the Abingworth development still lacked a road sign, which was causing issues for delivery drivers. (Action: Clerk to raise with Oakford Homes)
184.4 In response to a query from Cllr Linnell it was clarified that works at the south of the Abingworth site related to the 12 affordable units as part of phase 1, plus initial works relating to the Pre-School building.
184.5 Cllr McConnachie flagged again the brightness of Monaghan’s Mushroom front-of-site lighting, as an issue for neighbours and general light pollution concern. (Action: Clerk to raise with management)
185. Public Participation Session
No further issues raised.
186. Chairman’s Announcements
The Chair reminded members about the Village Tidy on 8 April, at which their attendance would be much appreciated, and flagged the intention for the May Day Walk to also go ahead as usual.
187. Any other business for noting or inclusion on a future agenda
Cllr MacEachern raised the issue of dog owners inexplicably throwing bags of waste into vegetation. The Clerk confirmed that he was seeking further advice/support from HDC. (Action: Clerk)
Date of next meeting: Monday 24 April 2017, at 7.30pm
Meeting closed: 8.45 p.m.me urgency in framing arrangements for the Pre-School building due for delivery in August 2017, whereas the