/ Parish Council / 2014 Minutes / 6th October 2014


Minutes of the Meeting of the CSM PC held at 7pm on Monday 6th October 2014

in the Lower Committee Room of the Village Hall.

Present: K Hunt (Chairperson), S Hutchings (Vice Chair), C Cudlip, Y Guest, G Hodge D Knight, G Lucas, K Reed, C Sampson and Ian Wright (Parish Councillors). Steve Altria (Clerk). Also in attendance for part were SCCllr David Fothergill and TDBCllr Dave Durdan. 3 members of the public attended.   


14/182. Chairpersons Welcome. Cllr Hunt began by welcoming everyone and explained that the PC meeting are recorded. He explained that 10 mins are set aside for public questions before the meeting starts. The PC would not normally enter in discussion that night but would consider the points made and respond as appropriate shortly.   


14/183. Public Speaking. 2 Parishioners spoke;

(1) Simon Salter re Lapthorne, Adsborough Planning application. SS advised that the application had been made on valid planning grounds and that he hoped the application would be looked on favourably.


(2) Steve Greenhalgh re Merlyn’s Copse. SG advised the PC that the vegetation cut in the Copse the day previously had not been removed and that he and Nigel Ford had been in the stream to ensure it was clear. SG also made a statement to the PC highlighting that following his address at the last meeting the Chairman and Vice Chairman had visited him. At that meeting he had been promised an investigation of the Council recordings would take place but neither had come back to him. SG then made an allegation. The Chairperson responded that he had called three times in person and also tried to ring but no telephone number was available to inform SG of his response. He disputed the allegation.


14/184. Apologies. SCCllr D Fothergill has advised he would arrive late as he was attending a meeting at the School. PCllr John Middleton has resigned and the Clerk informed the PC that a secondment could be made at a future meeting.


14/185. Declarations of Interest.  CS advised she had a business relationship with the owner of Lapthorne,  Adsborough and is known personally to them; but that she did not benefit financially from the relationship.

CS did not vote in the discussion at Planning item 14/191.    


14/186.  Minutes of the 1st September. (These had been previously circulated to Cllrs). Two changes were requested; at item 14/173 TME it was agreed to add to the action that the lease would be circulated prior to agreement and at item 14/166 it was agreed that YG apology be accepted. The minutes were then signed and dated by the Chairperson as an accurate record of the meeting.


14/187.  Matters arising from the Minutes of the meeting held on 1st September. The Clerk reported;


14/165. Ham STW New Access Road. The Clerk confirmed that he had written to both Wessex Water and Tarmac and that he had received a reply dated 2/10/14 from Colin Skellett Chf Exec at WW “I appreciate progress is slow and I understand yours and residents frustration.  I assure you we are equally as frustrated, but remain committed to building the new road.  The problem has been with Tarmac, who dispute our legal power to compulsorily acquire the land.  A meeting was held with them in early September 2014 where they did indicate they would consider selling us the land and rights at a price significantly higher than our own valuation.  However, we do now fully understand their position.  We have offered to have an independent valuation carried out and for both of us to be bound by the outcome.  We will continue to try to work with them, as well as continuing with the compulsory acquisition process, with the aim of putting ourselves in a position to gain the land and rights at an appropriate price. The detail design is complete and we are in the process of discharging planning conditions.  We had a contractor lined up for the first phase of work, but due to the situation with Tarmac, we have had no choice but to delay construction for this first phase.  A survey of the existing road has identified weathering and some deterioration that could have been made worse by our work.  Whilst the general maintenance of the road is the responsibility of the local highways department, we have assured residents that we will put right any defects caused by us and brought to our attention”.

14/39. The shelf required for Comms equipment is still outstanding. Action. SH is acquiring quotes.

13/224. Parish Plan. The PCllrs have yet to be identified to join the two parishioners who wish to be part of panel to lead the compilation of a parish plan along with the Clerk.

14/77(2). A no dog fouling sign had been requested for the canal car park footpath but it had not been installed yet or a reply received from TDBC. Action. The Clerk to remind TDBC of the request.

14/76. The need for the sewerage system in Hyde Lane to be replaced/improved is being queried with Wessex Water but a reply has yet to be received.

14/159(3). Rec Park toilet door. The door had been repaired by SH and a retainer fitted.

14/178.Arundels Way road sign. The Clerk confirmed he had reported to TDBC that a stay of the Arundells Way is broken and TDBC had confirmed they would recover the sign pending repair/replacement. It was noted this had yet to take place.

14/180.Verge Cutting. TDBC have yet to confirm to CSM PC whether it had reversed its verge cutting decision.

Action. The Clerk to take up with TDBC.

14/170. Merlyn’s Copse. CS referred to her request that she would like to listen to the transcript of the may meeting. KH advised that he, the Vice Chair and the Clerk had met in order to understand how the machine worked but had found that only the jan, feb and july meeting recordings had worked. KH drew attention to the minutes having been agreed by the full PC as accurate and SH advised that Standing Order 9e (adopted in 2010) states that recordings of meetings must be disposed off once the minutes had been accepted.

A discussion then ensued on why the vegetation in the copse having been cut had not been removed. The Clerk explained that he had asked the contractor to confirm that his quote included the removal of the vegetation cut down and had received a reply in writing saying yes, just like last time. Unfortunately it has since been noted that it had not been removed previously. The need for clear specification was highlighted. A vote was taken and it was agreed to pay the account once the Chairperson had inspected the work.

Action.  KH to visit MC and to confirm that the work is satisfactorily completed.


CC arrived.


14/188.  Merlyn’s Copse. CC distributed an updated report he had prepared; CC had identified four options open to the PC and expressed his opinion the Copse is too small to do much with and that it should be sold. The options identified are to sell, retain (having invested in facilities), retain (having been made minimum maintenance) or to rent. IW suggested costs be indentified before a decision was made. GL asked if the path was a permissive path and KR said it was not. GL suggested that the path be closed; the Clerk advised that there would likely to be ramifications if it were.  

Action. The MC panel to consider the future of the Copse and bring forward a proposal to the PC. 


14/189.  TME. The Clerk explained that the letter he had drafted and sent to the PC’s Solicitor had coincided with her departure on holiday. Unfortunately her locum had not felt knowledgeable enough to reply to TME on our behalf so a draft of the Solicitors letter to be sent to TME had not been received until last week. The Clerk acknowledged that this was not TME’s fault and that he had received their rent payment.  The Clerk highlighted that there was only one correction on the draft letter to be made so the letter could now be cleared and sent to TME this week. The Clerk opinion is there remains one key sticking point at present; that of reinstatement. Discussion then took place on the

amount of space the railway takes up at the park and the impact the railway has on the PC’s 10 year plan for the park and the desirability of a shorter lease period and their being a notice clause. KH explained that the PC had decided to allow TME to be based at the Rec Park and to enter into a long lease and that there had been considerable discussions over the lease since over several years.

Action. The Clerk to put on the agenda for the October additional meeting that the TME lease has an annual renewal clause.


14/190. Recreation Park.

(1) Rec Park Plan. KH thanked the panel for its plan. KH reminded the PC that a ten year plan had been requested rather than the three year one provided and suggested that the plan produced be read and considered at a future meeting. After some considerable discussion over timings it was decided to hold an additional informal meeting of the PC on 20th October following with the aim of decisions being taken at the 3rd Nov PC meeting; consultation with parishioners would then take place.  CS explained that considerable work had been put into the plan by the panel who recognised that the PC had a responsibility to Parishioners to reap early benefits from the sect 106 money that would soon start to be paid by the developers of the two sites in Hyde Lane. CS explained that the reason the plan is for three years is than TDBC Debbie Arscott had advised that was the period the funding would become available over. SH reminded the PC that once paid S106 funding could be spent within five years.


(2) The Chairperson asked Mr Greenhalgh, a member of the public to stop laughing or to leave.


(3) The Chairperson decided to call a break in the meeting for ten minutes. On resumption the Chairperson advised he was feeling unable to continue and it was agreed that the Vice Chair SH would chair the remainder of the meeting.


(4) The Vice Chair asked CS to introduce the plan. CS explained that the plan was set out on a quarterly basis and made use of the s106 money soon after it was due to be paid, the plan is separated into different sections reflecting the different s106 funding streams. It was recognised that there was not enough money to finance a replacement to the pavilion and the aim is to appoint an architect in order to start the process of drawing up plans and seeking other funding. Acknowledgement was given that Village Hall S106 money was not likely to be available as the Village Hall had two projects that are likely to secure all the funding. 


(5) Rec Park Development. DK explained that he had obtained a third quotation for an appointment of an architect.

GL asked who the Architects who quoted Mark Richmond, Jackson and TJ Spurway. CC highlighted the need to understand the role that we wanted the Architect to undertake.

Action. The Clerk to include on the October additional meeting agenda the appointment of the architect and their role for decision at the 3rd November meeting.


(6) Park Security. DK advised that a gate had now been fitted to the small carpark. A new lock was required and DK had purchased these and they are with the caretaker for fitting/issuing. There are four keys, one to be held by the caretaker, one for 3d security and the other with the DLO. The Clerk raised that TME would need access.


(7) Fencing. DK explained that he had obtained a quote for repairs from Taunton Fencing. The Clerk advised he had asked two further contractors to tender; the repairer of north end fence and the another who had not submitted a tender. CC highlighted the benefits of and offered to produce specifications for future tenders in order to improve the decision making process. A discussion took place on the need to spend as the PC expenditure is running significantly ahead of its budget, whether the PC was better off using available finances on the development plan items than repairing fences and what grounds the repairs where required on.

Action. CC to inspect the fencing, to make sure the fencing is safe and to recommend a way forward.   


(8) Update report. DK had obtained two quotes to test the appliances in the Pavilion. Action. It was decided that DK will confirm with Jim Pike that he will do the PAT testing at a cost believed to be £20 and the Clerk to then instruct JP.

SH advised he had repaired the pavilion door and fitted a door closer. CS confirmed she had uninstructed classic windows from undertaking the repairs.


14/191. Planning. Applications received: The Panel reported on applications received and the PC decided;









To Support.

CS abstained (see item 14/185 above).



14/192. County & District Councillors’ Reports. 

DD advised that;

(1) Council Tax. Council Tax payers who live alone can claim 25% discount. TDBC are checking entitlement in order to protect the public purse.


(2) Hyde Lane. TDBC Richard Bryant Democratic Services Manager, had advised him that the police had been in contact with the enforcement officer at TDBC. The traffic plan had been examined and it was found to say the developers would take reasonable steps to stop lorries using the lane during School drop off/collect periods. This is not a prohibition so if there are problems then the SCC needs to request changes to their plans.


DF advised that;

(3) A358. Major reconstruction work will take place over night at Henlade over the next 7 weeks.


(4) New West Monkton School. This is to be built as a 10 classroom school (14 in due course) to serve the new houses in Langaller and Walford Cross. A consultation is taking place at the existing WM primary school on 15th Oct between 2-7pm. A further school is envisage in the future at Hartnells Farm.  The existing primary school site is likely to become part of Monkton Heathfield School.


(5) Health and Wellbeing. DF advised he had some funds available and that clubs that help improve health and well who have a need should contact him.


(6) SCC Autism strategy. SCC strategy is currently out for consultation. See website http://www.somersetconsults.org.uk/consult.ti/autismstrategy


(7) SCC Learning Disability strategy. SCC is moving this service into a social enterprise company ‘wrapper’ so that it can retain any income raised.


(8) Patients participation Group. St John’s Ambulance are attending the medical centre on 16th October at 7pm to show attendees how to use the defibrillator. It was noted that a further defibrillator is kept at the Bell PH.


(9) Flood Prevention Strategy. Dredging is on schedule, 80% complete and will be finished by the end of October. A floodgate is being installed on the A361 so the road will be closed if the moors flood. The road into Mucheney is being raised and culverts are being enlarged under the Beer Wall so water flows quicker down the king sedgemoor drain. CC raised the need for better signing when roads are being worked on. DF highlighted that consultation was taking place on where the final road signs should be placed.


(10) Highways. KH reminded DF of his request that SCC visit and look at the problem of speeding in Creech Heathfield.  KH also raised the need for a crossing in Hyde Lane. DF reminded the PC that he anticipates being asked by SCC Engineers to bring forward two improvement schemes and he would need to know the PC priority. YG updated the PC on the work done with the School last academic year and that it was hoped that this would be restarted once the new year groups had settled in.


 14/193. Accounts.

(1) The following payments were approved; the Clerks and Caretakers Wages, HMRC (Tax Due on Salaries), the Clerks August Expense’s £76.63, AON (Post Laptop Ins) £2.25, British Gas (Pavilion electricity 7-8- 14 to 7-9-14)      £30.54,  Devon &Som Fire Protection Ltd (Extinguisher Maint 14-15) £16.50, 3d Security (Lock down/open up Park gates 4 8 14-31 8 14) £288.00,  Taunton Fencing Company (Supply and fit Field gate to small carpark)£504.00,

Nigel’s Window Cleaning (3 Bus Shelters 2 10 14) £45.00, Ian Pike (Clearing of vegetation at Merlyn’s Copse) £625.00 and S P Services (SW) Ltd (Investigations and emptying of cess pit at rec park) £240.00.

During this item GL queried the cost of emptying the cess pit and SH advised that the correct process had not been followed. CS explained that she had arranged for the pavilion drains to be unblocked as the manhole covers were over flowing with raw sewerage. CS advised she had believed there was main drainage and having got two quotes arranged for SPS to do the work the next day. In the event the emptying of a full 1500 gallon tank that had not been emptied for at least four years was done the same day. This involved emptying the tank, repairing a part, jet washing the pipes and then inspecting them via camera. The contractor had also met the caretaker the next day and explained the sewage arrangements in place and had indentified that the manholes covers need upgrading. KH advised that SH had said on the Tuesday; some days earlier when the problem was first raised that there was a cesspit not mains and KH had asked that procurement obtained quotes but CS had ignored these and had gone ahead with the work. SH reminded PCllrs that the proper process was to raise issues as they arise with the Chairperson and the Clerk. KH advised that he had  since got 3 quotes and it was evident that the emptying of the septic tank could have been done for £110 and suggested that if the correct procedure had been followed then a saving could have been made. CS explained they were not comparable quotes and that emergency action needed to be taken. KH disagreed and advised that having consulted SALC there was no requirement to pay as the correct procedure had not been followed. A vote was then taken and it was agreed to pay the invoice in full because it was an emergency and the work had been done as quoted for. Action. The Rec Park panel to consider the need to upgrade the Rec Park drainage covers.


(2) Monies received and banked since the last meeting; Other income received and banked; HMRC Vat refund (13/14 year) £972.21, TME rent (1 10 14-31 3 15) £550.00.  Parish Post Advert Income for 2014; Ian Beard £30.00.


(3) Risk Assessment of Assets. The Clerk advised that he had received reports from the Parish Caretaker, CS and himself of the PC Assets that cover their condition and risk. The schedule will be updated and circulated before the next PC meeting so PCllrs can consider these.

Action. The Clerk to report on the condition of the PC Assets before the next meeting.


14/194. Highways  DF advised that;

(1) North End. DF advised that the virtual footway cannot be installed before the completion of the works at Langaller.


(2) Hyde Lane Developments. GL asked if the Risk Assessment of the two sites be re-examined. DF asked to learn what the PC wanted? DF advised that MH PC is clear that it wants Hyde Lane beyond the motorway closed to lorries. CS advised that lorries must avoid school start/end times and YG asked that as Hyde Lane beyond the motorway is the most dangerous area and there is no footpath then the road should be narrowed further to create a safe path for the school children to walk to Monkton Heathfield School without lorries. CC suggested a copy of the traffic management plans are obtained and that a ‘ring forward’ system be implemented to manage lorry movements.

Action. DF offered to speak to the two companies and tell them of the problems the community is experiencing.


(3) A38. DF reported that he had no update on the 50 mph speed limit. GH noted that the 50 mph speed limit came in 25th September yet the signs had yet to go up.


(4) Hyde Lane installation of lighting and speed calming on the DWH estate. GH advised that work on lighting was in hand. The contractors had installed a sign in front of the school sign and had left a compressor unattended close to the school (hazard).


(5) Langaller. Work is progressing and KH asked if anyone knew when it would be finished. As the road is subject to a 26 week closure and there are many variable factors no answer was given other than hope it would be soon.


(6) Parish Highways Priorities. The Clerk asked PCllrs to clarify to DF the PC’s priorities. KR had circulated a list previously and had asked all PCllrs to let her know of any views on the list. It was noted only the top priority is likely to be taken forward this year. KR advised that these include Traffic calming from Mill Lane to the shop and also at the other end of the village, the need for traffic calming through the DWH estate, the desired new link to the relief road at West Monkton and a crossing at the Arundells Way cross roads be added amongst others. A vote was taken and DF was informed that the priority in CSM is for a crossing in Hyde Lane to enable the school children to get to their schools safely. SCC Highways to determine the correct location.


(7) Defects. YG advised of a pothole in Arundells Way. YG also advised that she was aware of a pavement and verge onto a drive that had not been dropped properly.

Action. DF offered to arrange for SCC Highways to contact YG. YG to report pothole on the SCC Pot hole report line


(8) Ditch behind Cooks Close. KH raised that contractors had put waste spill in the ditch behind the houses in Cooks Close. GL advised that TDBC are responsible for the ditch. 

Action. Clerk to inform TDBC. GL to visit a householder to examine the extent of the problem.


(9) Hyde Lane Verges. YG advised that the verge had collapsed close to the turning to the Hyde Lane cottages. Grass had now grown in the collapsed ditches on both side of the lane and this will mean water will sit on the road. DF confirmed that SCC Highways had walked the road and where aware of the problem.


(10) Grit Bins. The PC re-examined their provision and considered whether additional Grit Bins should be purchased. A parishioner had suggested two were required at Tristram Drive and at the bottom of the Hill adj Crufts Meadow. Cost of a bin is £136 each. Other sites discussed included Ham, Coombe and Creech Heathfield. It was decided not to proceed with additional bins.

Action. KR to highlight in the next Post that parishioners can use the grit in the bins as weather conditions determine. SH to drop a bag of grit at the two sites suggested. The Clerk to respond to the parishioner.


14/195. Footpaths and Rights of Way.

(1) Footpath T10/23. SH reported that he, GL and KH had met with DWH. The footpath alongside school is subject to a diversion order and GL praised contractors for the good job with the diversion route. It was noted a hole had been cut in the hedgerow. GL asked what had happened to the steel footpath gate posts that the parish had brought. DD advised that when the site was sold to the developer it went.


(2) Laburnum Terrace. GH advised that the overhanging trees where making it difficult for pedestrians. Trees at No 1 and 2 Anne’s Orchard need to be pruned to 7 feet to enable people so people can walk underneath them.

Action. Clerk to the write to the occupiers of the two properties to ask them to trim their overhanging trees.


14/196. Correspondence.

Rec Park Trees. SH advised that Western Power had contacted him to advise that a couple of trees needed trimming back to ensure they do not get in the power lines. The PC agreed to this work proceeding.


14/197. Dates for the PC meetings in 2015. The following dates were agreed;

Jan 5th , Feb 2rd, March 2nd,  April 13th, May 11th (Annual Council Meeting), June 8th, July 6th, August 3rd (Planning), Sept 7th , Oct 5th, Nov 2nd and Dec 7th.  Annual Parish Meeting: April 24th Friday.


14/198.  New Matters to be carried forward. (1) Vacancy. CS was asked if the vacancy for a PCllr had been posted on the notice boards and whether the PC could co-opt at its the next meeting. The Clerk confirmed that posters were up and a cooption would be possible at the next meeting. (2). Architects Fees.  DD advised that S106 can be used to fund architects fees. (3) DD suggested the PC clarify whether its £200 upper limit for expenditure in an emergency excluded or included VAT.




Future Meetings; The next full Parish Council meeting will be held on Mondays 3rd November and 1st December 2014. An informal additional meeting to discuss the Rec Park plan will take place on Monday 20th October. All meetings take place at the CSM Village Hall Lower Cttee Room (beginning at 7pm).


Steve Altria, Clerk to Creech St Michael Parish Council. Tel 01823 666295. Email clerk@creechstmichael.net