A meeting of Stoke Gabriel Parish Council was held on Monday 28thSeptember 2015 in the Village Hall
14 Members of the public were present
Present: Mr R Tully (Chairman), Mr P. Fenwick, Mr S. Avery, Miss E Bridge, Mr R. Harris, Mr R. Hunt, Mr I Jones, Mr H. Rawlings and Mr J Robinson.
In Attendance: District Cllr Rowe and District Cllr Bastone
- Apologies – None
2 Police Report – Cllr Robinson reported that the local Crimestoppers was an independent charity which helps Police locate criminals and help solve crimes. There is an anonymous free phone number, 0800 555 111, on which people can pass on information about crime. Two crimes had been reported. Police received a report of a young male wearing a black baseball cap selling cleaning goods for exorbitant prices in the Aish area of South Brent. Residents are asked to exercise caution when purchasing goods at the door which can often be of poor quality. Sometime between 1400hrs on Friday 11th September and 0945hrs on Saturday 12th September 2015 an attempt was made to enter a garage in Orchard Way, Stoke Gabriel. The metal garage door was forced from the bottom but no entry gained and nothing stolen.
3 To confirm the minutes of the last meeting on 20th July 2015
Taken as read and signed by the Chairman
4 Matters arising from the Minutes – None
5 Chairman’s Report – Cllr Tully advised that he had received a colourful message from the village Pre-school thanking the Parish Council for allowing them to use the village orchard for their forest school sessions. They advised the Chairman that they are very lucky to have such an amazing space where they can explore, learn and play.
6 Reports from County & District Councillors Cllr Roweadvised thatDevon County Council representatives had managed to get fairer funding from the Government for our schools. The County Council along with Devon Districts and neighbouring Counties had been working together to submit a statement of intent to the Government to signal their intention to make a devolution bid for the Heart of the South West area. This is simply to put down a marker to set the scene and have future discussions with the Government. There had not been many meetings at County level due to the summer holidays. Cllr Rowe advised that she had made a number of visits to some County Council farm holdings. The winter round of meetings would soon be starting and Cllr Rowe would be visiting the ten Parish Councils in her division. The County police were considering raising their share of the Council tax and cut police numbers including PSCOs. There had been a scam circulating where a household would receive a phone call advising that they could arrange for the Council tax to be reduced for a payment of £ 350.00. This is not correct as the Council is the only authority that can reduce or increase the local tax and should be avoided.
Cllr Bastone reported that at its meeting on 23rd July the Executive agreed the award criteria for the joint leisure Service procurement project with West Devon Borough Council. Residents in coastal communities are reminded that reusable seagull proof sacks are available from the District Council free of charge. An amended TAP fund process has been agreed for 2015/2016 and the deadline for applications is 12 noon on Friday 18th December 2015. To enable Town and Parish Councils to set their precepts accordingly applications will be determined by local DCC and SHDC members on 14th January 2016. Officers have developed a simple Town and Parish Council precept calculator tool which will be circulated to all clerks in December and will show Councils the effect of changing their precepts up or down. Town and Parish Councillors were reminded of the need to update their Register of Interests forms as and when their personal circumstances change. The District Council is inviting residents and businesses to have their say on a new Alcohol and Entertainments Licensing policy. The consultation period will expire on 6th November and the renewed policy will determine how the Council will make decisions on licensing over the next five years. At a special meeting on 10th September members considered a report which sought to revert back to the 2 to 10 affordable housing threshold policy in light of a recent High Court decision to quash national policy in respect of planning obligations for affordable housing. This proposal was approved. The Development Management Committee considered a report at its recent meeting which recommended that Town and Parish Council representatives could speak at DM Committee meetings as being a success and was formally adopted in the Council’s Public Participation Scheme. Households who wish to be considered for a vacancy in affordable rented housing are required to register with Devon Home Choice.
7 Reports from Sub-Committees Cllr Fenwick reported regarding the Cavanna, Paignton Road planning application that we were now awaiting South Hams District Council to make their decision. Regarding the SHDC Local Plan there will be an attendee at a meeting on Neighbourhood Planning in Totnes on October 3rd. Cllr Rawlings reported that he had recruited willing Parishioners to assist with the editing of the web site and that he hoped that it would be updated on a regular basis.
8 Neighbourhood Plan Report Cllr Harris advised that seven people had attended the second full meeting of the Neighbourhood Plan steering group committee on 10th September 2015. Although no minutes had been circulated he advised that a proposal for the governance of the steering group would be given at the next meeting. In spite of a number of e-mails being sent out no new members had come to the meeting. It was essential that the process of engaging the community was properly recorded. The next meeting would be held on 7th October in the village hall when the above issues would be discussed at length.
9 Planning The following planning applications were considered at planning committee meetings held on 7th and 28th September 2015.
- 52/1503/15/FCavanna Homes Ltd – Erection of 53 dwellings and erection of an employment hub together with community building. No objection
- 52/1663/15/F R.J.and Mrs J. Tully – Single storey extension and associated alterations. No objection. Cllr Tully declared an interest and left the room.
- 52/1683/15/F Whitehill Country Park – Caravan storage area and wildlife conservation area. No objection. Cllr Hunt declared an interest and took no part in discussions.
- 52/1883/15/F Dolphins, Vicarage Close – Replace render with cladding No objection
- 13/1832/15/F Installation of 20m MIP communications mast, 6 antennas and 2 transmission dishes at Cornworthy. This is only for consultation as it is not in our Parish. No objection
- 52/2006/15/F Little Hayes, Vicarage Road – Demolition of extension and erection of new extension. No objection Cllr Fenwick declared an interest and took no part in discussions.
- 52/3009/15/F Gabriel Court Hotel – Additional unit 10 with minor amendments to parking. No objection although concerns with lack of parking
- 52/2081/15/F Marian Maples, Vicarage Close - Demolition of existing dwelling construction of new dwelling with three additional dwellings within the grounds. Full Council site meeting to be arranged.
Planning Applications Granted by SHDC –
- 8 Andrews Park, Rowes Meadow – Change of use to domestic cartilage and erection of greenhouse and shed. Discussion was made on this application being granted and frustration was shown as it was granted by the District planning Chairman’s casting vote. Cllr Robinson advised that perhaps the Chairman should have arranged a full District Council site meeting and had further discussions. Cllr Harris requested that a letter be written to the Cavanna Homes case officer outlining the suggested and agreed proposals made at the meeting held on 7th September. This was agreed.
Planning Applications refused by SHDC – The Post Office - Change of use of post office to dwelling.
Applications Withdrawn – None .
Appeals Received by SHDC – None .
Ongoing Applications – Cllr Robinson advised that this Council was now the proud owners of the access strip leading to the proposed burial site land. The official land registry form had been received. He now requested that a subcommittee be set up to take this proposal forward. This was agreed.
10 Items raised on behalf of the Clerk – Cllr Robinson advised that the draft housing needs survey had been submitted. As it had already been circulated to all Cllrs Cllr Robinson requested that it be formally approved. This was proposed by Cllr Fenwick and seconded by Cllr Avery and agreed by all. Cllr Robinson reminded Cllrs that there were new rules regarding change of use applications which allowed the District Council to make decisions without consulting the Parish or Town Councils. A number of Parish Councils had objected to this decision and had requested that the District Council reconsider. From a proposal by Cllr Robinson it was agreed that this Council would also request a reversal of this decision. Cllr Robinson read out a letter received by the Mother and Toddlers group from the village PCC advising the group that they would have their lease terminated after Christmas. This decision was because the pre-school group had to offer five days a week or lose children to other pre-school organisations. It was agreed that this decision was rather harsh and a meeting of the organisations involved should be set up to discuss the decision. It was agreed that such a meeting should be arranged and Cllrs Bridge and Robinson would talk to the relevant groups. Cllr Robinson read out a letter addressed to all primary school parents from the Totnes Federation of village schools which advised that a consultation would take place to decide if the village primary school should convert to an Academy. Concerns were raised and a lengthy discussion took place. It was agreed that the Council should raise objections to this proposal and attend an open surgery on Thursday 8th October to be held in the school.
11 Hoyle Copse Cllr. Jones’s reported that the meadow had been mowed and the hay would be picked up and removed on Wednesday. Regarding the village orchard he advised that some trees requiring pruning and two had fallen over. He and the Tree Warden would visit the area and decide on the best course of action.
12 Highway and Hedgerow Matters – Cllr Bridge asked if the ownership of the small strip of land adjoining the village shop had been discovered. Cllr Robinson advised he was still awaiting advice from Devon Highways. Cllr Avery advised that the village was beginning to look very shabby and unkempt. He requested discussion on weed spraying next spring. After discussion Cllr Avery requested that it should be publicised when spraying would take place and arrange for Plandscape to carrying out this work on behalf of the Parish Council. This was proposed by Cllr Rawlings and seconded by Cllr Jones and agreed by all. Cllr Robinson was asked to contact Plandscape to arrange this. Cllrs Harris and Jones reported potholes in Coombe House Lane and Cllr Tully reported some at Waddeton. Cllr Jones also advised that about 30 sheets of asbestos roofing sheets have been deposited in Drymoor Lane. The sheets were not tipped but appear to have been carefully placed without breaking them. The site was near to where the off roaders have destroyed the wood. The Locality Officer from SHDC a Mr John Salter came to see them today.
13 Matters raised by Councillors – Cllr Harris requested clarification about the recent road works and was advised that it was work to bring high speed broadband to the village. This should be in place before the end of the year. Cllr Bridge advised that there was to be a village scarecrow competition during October and encouraged everyone to display a scarecrow. Cllr Fenwick advised that he had spotted a drone over the village centre.
14 Accounts –
Cllr Robinson advised that the 2015 annual return had been approved by the external auditors. The auditors requested that a Risk Assessment and Internal Control policy be adopted and it was agreed that these documents should be prepared.
It was proposed by Cllr Rawlings and seconded by Cllr Bridge to make the following payments at the meeting held on 7th September 2015:
Plandscape July orchard, hedges and verges cut and an additional cut VAT Reclaim
For the village carnival. Work carried out 2nd week of July and 3rd week of July £ 525.26 £ 87.54
J. Robinson Expenses for the period July to August 2015 £ 96.70
South Hams District Council Work at play park May 2015 £ 180.00 £ 30.00
Buysigns Slate sign in memory of Pauline Ellis £ 90.00 £ 15.00
It was also proposed by Cllr Rawlings and seconded by Cllr Bridge to make the following payments at this meeting:
Grant Thornton – Annual Audit £ 150.00 £ 25.00
Stoke Gabriel PCC – School Room hire Neighbourhood Plan £ 15.00
Plandscape – August maintenance of flower beds £ 45.24 £ 7.54
J. Robinson September expenses £ 43.22
CPRE – Annual donation £ 50.00
Stoke Gabriel Village Hall – Hall Hire July and September £ 45.00
There being no other business the meeting closed at 9.15pm
Date of next Meeting-
Full Council meeting 26th October 2015
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