/ Parish Council / Minutes / 12th April 2021


Minutes of the Meeting of the CSM PC held on Monday 12th April 2021

held using Zoom at 7pm.

Present: PCllrs S Greenhalgh (Chair), B Brighton, P Brown, C Cudlip, N Davidson, Y Guest (from minute 21/65), A Gunstone (from minute 21/70), J Peilow and P Tucker. (Parish Councillors). The Clerk. SCCllr D Fothergill (to minute 21/74 (2.4). One member of the Public attended (until minute 21/84).

21/64. Chairman’s Welcome. SG welcomed all and Chaired the meeting.

21/65. Minutes Silence. As Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh had died the previous Friday the Chair paid testimony to the Duke and a minute’s silence was held.

21/66. Apologies. Vice Chair Cllr S Hutchings (reason accepted). SWTCllr D Durdan.

21/67. Declarations of Interest. (1) Declarations of Individual Members. SH re the caretaker and Finance 21/74(2), ND re Canal Panel see min 21/79, Planning 21/73 (0013) and Finance 21/74(2), JP re Planning 21/73 (0006) and SG re planning 21/73 (0003). None spoke or took part in the votes on these items.

21/68. Vacancy on the PC. An individual had come forward interested in the PC vacancy and she attended the meeting. Given the PC decision (see Oct 2019 mtg item 19/187 mtg) that individuals to be considered for Co Option should have attended at least two meetings it was explained that a decision will not be made before the June mtg. (Anyone else interested in becoming a PCllr should speak to the Clerk soonest).

21/69. SWTC Councillors’ Report. No response on the request that SWTC pay for a lifebuoy for Derham Close canal bank has been received. A reply from SWTC on the PC’s written request that the SWTC maintenance grant be increased advised that it will be considered later this year for next financial year.

21/70. SCC Councillors’ Report. DF advised:

(1) Future Parish Council meetings: The Gov’t announced on the 25th March that the Coronavirus regulations allowing for remote Parish, Town and City Council meetings would not be extended beyond 6th May 2021. This effectively means that all Council meetings scheduled for the 7th May or later have to be held in public, face-to-face. A legal challenge has been launched by Herts County Council but this will not be heard until later in April and planning should now be made to either pull forward meetings before 7th May, postpone meetings or determine Covid secure meeting facilities. (Clerks note see minute 21/83(1) below). In response to a question from PB DF confirmed that if Herts is successful this would give Councils the ability to meet virtually if it wished to in perpetuity.

At the same time the Government have launched a consultation on allowing remote or hybrid meetings on a permanent basis via their website: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/local-authority-remote-meetings-call-for-evidence/local-authority-remote-meetings-call-for-evidence

(2) Road Map out of lockdown: From 29 March - Outdoor gatherings of either six people or two households were allowed including gatherings in private gardens. Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis or basketball courts reopened and organised adult and children's sport, such as grassroots football, returned. From 12th April: major parts of the economy are permitted to reopen including non-essential retail, hairdressers and some public buildings like libraries; Outdoor settings like beer gardens, zoos and theme parks; Indoor leisure like swimming pools and gyms; Self-contained holiday accommodation, such as self-catering lets and campsites. Wider social contact rules will continue to apply in all settings - meaning no indoor mixing between different households.

(3) Coronavirus infection rates: As at 1st April the number of confirmed Covid cases in Somerset was 19,982 (up from 18,890 on 28th February) and the number of Covid-attributed deaths 787 (722). The rate per 100,000 stands at 41.8 for Somerset with SW&T at 22.6. The current number of total deaths across the County is currently 25% below the 5-year average and the latest R-value is between 0.7 and 0.9. It is vitally important to remember, even those who have had a jab, to observe Hands-Face-Space and to Ventilate indoor areas at all times.

(4) Somerset Coronavirus Support Helpline: A single phone number continues to be available for anyone in Somerset who needs Coronavirus-related support. 0300 790 6275, is open seven days a week from 8am to 6pm.

(5) Vaccination programme roll-out: have worked round the clock at 13 GP-led community vaccination sites, two hospital hubs, two large vaccination centres (incl Taunton Racecourse) plus seven local pharmacy sites. As a result, Somerset has one of the highest vaccination rates in the country with the latest figures showing 309,227 having received at least their first vaccination in the County or 66.7% of the 16+ population. In addition, 33,765 have received their second dose. Take up rates across the County of the first dose remains very high: 80+ (98.7%), 75-79 (100%), 70-74 (99.3%), 65-69 (91.6%), 60-64 (96.5%), 55-59 (94.2%) and 50-54 (88.3%).

(6) Somerset Medal: The Somerset Medal is designed to say a heartfelt thank-you to the best of the best that have really gone beyond the call of duty during the Coronavirus pandemic. So many people, from teachers and nurses, police and fire officers, carers, shop workers, volunteer drivers and waste collectors have all gone the extra mile to make sure that every effort was made to support communities. To nominate someone who has really made a difference to your community please submit an email with a maximum of 250 words, providing the nominee’s name and location and describing why they deserve the medal to  DemocraticServices2@somerset.gov.uk and put ‘Somerset Medal nomination’ in the subject field. Nominations close on 23 April with the inaugural Somerset Medal award winners unveiled on Somerset Day, 11 May.

(7) One Somerset: The government’s public consultation into changing the way local councils work in Somerset ends on the 19th April. The County Council’s proposal to replace the county’s five existing councils with a simple, single unitary model to end confusion for residents, remove waste and duplication, and free up funding to invest in vital public services is a key part of the consultation.  It would also offer more powers for local Town and Parish Councils and one strong voice to lobby for funding and support. For more information and to take part in the consultation visit:  www.onesomerset.org.uk

(8) Investing in School: (8.1) Plans are underway for a major £6.2m project to expand Holyrood Academy in Chard to increase student numbers. The new building is set to be completed by Sept 2022. To have your say then email FuturesInfo@Somerset.gov.uk . (8.2) The new Somerton primary school will open after Easter following a £7.3m build programme by Somerset County Council. Plans for the school to open in September 2020 were delayed due to archaeologists uncovering evidence of Roman and Iron Age settlements at the site ahead of construction.

(9) Highways Awards: The multi-million-pound project to upgrade Taunton’s M5 Junction 25 has won two prestigious awards at the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transport (CIHT) South West Awards 2021 ceremony. As well as winning the Project of the Year and Collaboration Awards for the £19.2m scheme SCC also picked up the Innovation Award for on traffic modelling for the Toneway scheme.   

21/71. Minutes of the PC Meeting held on 1st March 2021. (These had been previously circulated to PCllrs). The minutes of the 1st March mtg were agreed. The minutes were then authorised to be signed and dated by the Chair as an accurate record of the meeting. Proposed CC, Seconded PT all voted for.

21/72. Matters Arising from the minutes of the 1st March 2021 Mtg. The Clerk having previously circulated a report reported that:

20/134(7) Banking. No change. He has yet to apply to open a Deposit Acc with Nationwide Bdg Soc. ND and PT now had online authorisation.

20/175. Footpaths/Rights of Way. No change. 11.3 Bull Street Waste Bin EA permission now granted, SH/CC to install waste bin on the Bull St ramp.

(5) SWTC Local Plan SHLAA/MH2 Update. The Clerk having circulated SWTC’s maps explained that Council as part of their local plan work had approached local landowners and developers with a “Call for sites”. These had yet to be subject to either SWTC evaluation or to a planning application. The Clerk suggested that representations be made to SWTC to support the site being included within the MH2 development as this would facilitate passage from CSM to/from Walford Cross and the green necklace envisaged between. The Clerk wrote to Nick Bryant at SWTC and received a reply from Ann Rhodes saying it would be considered alongside the local plan and advising a new officer had been appointed to manage MH2. In the interim pending the officer starts agreement was reached in principle that Rebecca Miller would meet with the PC. Following much chasing (on 7/4,30/3,22/3,12/3) a date for the meeting requested has been offered 19th April.

20/196. Rec Park (2) Rec Park Panel. No change he is aware of. CS is currently looking at noticeboard costs and external funding. JP to develop booking system further. AG to raise issues at Panel mtg - the need for a sign to warn about kite flying near cabling at the bottom of the Rec Park, the Play Inspector’s report stating the need for a sign for the outdoor gym equipment stating height and age requirements (larger sign), the app referred to on the notice doesn’t work (Sutcliffe’s should shortly activate as they’ve now been paid).

BB asked if the noticeboard project had advanced. YG advised she had not been informed of the latest position.

(5) Play Equipment Project. No change. The Clerk advised that £354.39 remained and suggested an item be purchased for the Rec Park. It was agreed the panel is to make a decision. Rec Park Panel decided to put on hold pending acquisition of a noticeboard.

20/197. Village Hall AV equipment. No change. PC’s agreed grant of £1k be held back in order that a drop-down screen and a projector from a different supplier be examined in order for PB to try and get a cost nearer the budget; noting as the main user the PC may need to top this up if not achieved.

BB asked if there had been further progress with Audio Visual Equipment for the Cartwright Room in the Village Hall. PB advised that there is nothing further to report at this time.

12.3 Dog bin. Request for additional bin. It was agreed to purchase and site a bin by the existing Canal and River Trust sign about 8 metres from the bridge (Creech side) nr Cathill Farm. Clerk asked Canal Trust for permission to install and this has now been granted so the Clerk is discussing installation at present. Clerk has also written to the resident that suggested an additional bin was required.it has now been agreed that the Canal Trust will provide and site the bin and the PC will empty. Canal Trusts Bin arrival is now awaited.

20/200 and 21/16 Canal. A bollard is suggested rather than a gate in order to stop overnight parking without blocking other forms of access and location is to be agreed subject to establishing who owned a stretch of the road. Clerk has established ownership of road and written to them and is awaiting replies. Follow up calls to letter left with request to telephone. Gate now erected.

20/203. Bull St Waste Bin. No change. JP asked when this would be put in place. JP advised that there is a Bat roost in the pill box and suggested a sign be placed to deter disturbing the bats. It was agreed the canal panel would examine this and it was agreed a sign would be ordered. The Clerk has ordered this and it is ready for collection. CC has fitted Bat roost Sign.

21/13. Rec Park. (2) Rec Park Panel. No change. YG to contact Marine Fitness to see if they can be more flexible. AG to get keys cut. Clerk is currently developing a job request sheet.

21/30. Personnel Sub Cttee. DF had obtained a copy of the NJC Green Book. Sub Ctte to do Caretakers Review first and then Clerk to arrange a DBS. As review was done this month the Clerk had spoken to Spark Somerset who had advised that DBS was not required and therefore, he had informed the Personnel Ctte of this.

Action. Personnel Ctte to decide whether to proceed and then staff to be informed.

21/35. Canal. (4). Derham Close Lifebuoy. The Clerk has asked the District Councillors to seek SWTC funding of a lifebuoy. No response despite reminders on 11/3 and 7/4.

21/54 (3) West Monkton and Cheddon Fitzpaine PC’s have issued a Draft Revised Neighbourhood Plan with a nine-week Consultation Period 22 February to 30 April 2021. The PC authorised the MH2 panel to draft a response.

Proposed SG, Seconded PB. All voted for. MH2 panel yet to meet to agree response to the consultation.

21/57. Highways. No change to his knowledge. (1) Hyde Lane. CC reported that the improvements had been installed highlighting that the speed tables had needed to be redone by the contractor. PT added that the 20mph flashing lights have yet to be installed. (2) Tunnels under the M5. It was noted that Highways England are planning to undertake examinations of the two tunnels in April.

21/58. Footpaths/Rights of Way. The report of the Parish Footpath Liaison Volunteers identifying where improvements was considered to be required. It was agreed that the Clerk would write to SCC highlighting the priorities and asking for the improvements to be implemented in conjunction with the Landowners. This was accepted by SCC who then asked who the landowners are. PCllrs asked. Responses awaited.

21/62. (1) Coombe. The Clerk highlighted the size of the lorry that got stuck in Coombe on 1st March. It was noted that the road signs that had been put in place stating no lorries had been removed.CC suggested bollards to stop them are required. Clerk to establish Highway’s intentions. Sent 10th March No reply received from SCC Highways to date. Reminder sent 7/4. A Neighbours email received on 12/4 had also been forwarded that day.

21/73. Planning (1) The following applications were considered and observations agreed;





11 3 21


Sun Up, Bull Street, CSM. Erection of a single storey extension to the rear.

To Support with a recommendation to improve neighbours’ privacy.

BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for bar JP who did not vote or take part.

17 3 21


The Cottage, Worthy Lane, CSM - Erection of a part two storey and first floor extension with construction of balcony to the rear.

Unable to make any informed comments as proposal cannot be viewed. Some concerns for neighbour’s privacy raised.

BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for.

26 3 21


Top Cottage, Coombe Lane, West Monkton. Erection of a two-storey extension to the front.

To support. BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for bar SG who did not vote or take part.

26 3 21

14/21/0009 and


Rock House, Adsborough Lane, Adsborough Replacement of oil tank with construction of concrete plinth to the rear.

As cannot be viewed from the road reliance is on plans from which this appears acceptable. BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for.

27 3 21


2 Ann’s Orchard, St Michael Road, CSM Erection of a two-storey extension to the side and conversion of loft to ancillary accommodation.

To Support with a request for a condition any west elevation windows being obscured or non-opening. BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for.

30 3 21


Land south of Canal Side Car Park, Vicarage Lane, CSM. Application for approval of reserved matters following outline application 14/18/0024, for the appearance, landscaping, layout and scale for the change of use of land with erection of cafe with associated outdoor seating area, access and parking.

To unanimously support with a recommendation regards planting.

BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for bar ND who did not vote or take part.

1 4 21


Applegarth, Ham Rd, CSM – erection of single storey rear extension with raised decking.

To support. BB Proposed, CC seconded, all voted for.

(2) Planning applications. It was noted that the following applications were considered by the PCllrs since its previous meeting in order to meet SWTC deadlines;




Observations agreed.

4 3 21


3 Francis Close CSM add Garage

To support. Nine votes for.

11 3 21


Flightline, Adsborough. Replacement of workshop on land (resubmission of 14/20/0006)

To support. Nine votes for.

21/74. Finance. (Draft Minutes of Finance Sub Cttee of 7.4.21 circulated in advance). The Clerk reported;

(1) Routine Payments since the March Meeting (schedule circulated); The Clerks, Caretakers and Parish Lengthsmans Wages, HMRC and SCC Pension Fund payments, Clerks March Exps £120.28, Lloyds Bank (Bank Charges 10 2 21 to 9 3 21) £7.85, K Signs £552.00 (10 Signs for Canal Carpark), Utilitia (Pavilion Gas 13 2 21-28 2 21) £2.08, Wilson & Barnes (5 Bus Shelters Cleaned 12 3 21) £75.00, EDF (Rec Park Garage Electricity 10 7 20-3 3 21) £161.21, SCC Rights of Way (application) £50.00. Proposed PB, Seconded BB All voted for.

(2) Payments authorised N Davidson (Reimbursement of Expenses for Canal Carpark) £378.54, N Davidson

(Reimbursement of Covid Fencing and padlock for Rec Park) £251.81. SWTC (Grass Cutting 24th March and 4 Qtr.

Dog Bins) £619.20, S Hutchings (Reimb for parts to repair play equip) £13.24) Proposed PB, Seconded BB All voted for bar ND who did not vote or take part.

(3) Invoices not paid. Opus (Pavilion Gas supply 11.2.21 - 12.2.21 as a/c was £3.51 in credit) £ Nil, SWTC (Rec Park Rates 21-22) £Nil. Proposed PB, Seconded BB All voted for.

(4) Income Received and banked since the last meeting; SW Lottery (Proceeds Feb) £8.00 and Opus (Pavilion Gas supply – closed Acc wef 12.2.21 - refund of credit bal £3.51. Nigel’s Window Cleaning, QSP Printers, Way Ahead Care and Heathfields Hair & Beauty £50 each (Website Adverts 2020). Proposed PB, Seconded BB. All voted for.

(5) Final Year End A/cs. The final accounts for the year 2020-2021, bank reconciliation and asset listing for the year to 31.3.21 were considered. These reports having been previously circulated. The bank balance was verified to bank statement by PB. Expenditure for the year totals £96,786.60 with Income of £97,897.43. Expenditure and Income are much lower than the previous year which had been hugely inflated by the large spend on additional improvements to the Rec Park funded by S106 monies from 3 developments. Year end balances total £124,851.06 however the uncommitted balance is £31,547. As this is above the PC min reserve the Clerk recommended that the surplus be allocated to cover future recruitment costs. This was agreed. Proposed PB, Seconded BB All voted for.

Action. The final accounts for the year 2021-2022, bank reconciliation, asset listing, Governance and Accounting statements and other papers to go to the PC’s Internal Auditor.

(6) Annual Governance Statement. Each responsibility was reviewed and confirmed as undertaken during the year (annual return previously circulated) bar No 4 Exercise of electors’ rights. Last year the Auditors report had stated that whilst no other matters had come to their attention giving cause for concern, they had identified that in advertising the audit in August 2020 the period stated was a day short of the 30 days required (account had not been taken for a bank holiday). As a result, the PC must answer ‘No’ to Assertion 4 of the Annual Governance Statement for 2020/21 and ensure that it makes proper provision for the exercise of public rights during 2021/22.

The CSM PC will ensure in 2021 that 30 working days will be covered in the commencement of the audit period notice. The wording to be submitted to the External Auditors this year was agreed. Proposed PB, Seconded BB. All voted for.

(7) Accounting Statements. The Accounting Statements for the year were reviewed and figures verified.

(annual return and year end acc’s previously circulated). Proposed PB, Seconded BB All voted for.

(8) SWTC Maint Grant. To note that though there will be no increase this year as the amounts were set at their last budget setting and agreed with the full council SWTC agreed to review the grant for the financial year 2022/23.

21/75. Rec Park. (1) Operational Issues. SG/YG highlighted the problems with litter. It was agreed additional bins were required and it was agreed to authorise the Rec Park panel to spend up to £1000. SG Proposed, YG seconded, all voted for.

(2) CSM Rec Park Panel (YG/AG/JP) YG update on the recent meeting;

(2.1) Signs. Suggestions were made on content and quotations to come to May PC meeting.

(2.2) Out of Hours. CC suggested the panel drew up a list of escalation contacts for the security firm to use directly in an emergency rather than refer all issues via the Clerk; once done then a contract be entered into.

(2.3) Refreshments. A wide-ranging discussion took place on the options for provision of refreshments to users. It was agreed to contract with Ice Cream seller if acceptable terms can be agreed. PT proposed, JP seconded. All voted for bar ND who abstained.

(2.4) Hiring’s. Two were considered. One was accepted for Thurs a.m.; the second could not be accommodated at the times (sat eve/thurs eve) desired as the Park has other users then. It was agreed to see if the hirer had any scope for flexibility, perhaps using a MUGA [If so, the gate would need to be reinstated] and to ensure neither used music too loudly. A laminated notice is to be put up on the new MUGA highlighting that hirers have priority.

(2.5) Locking. NC is currently locking up weekday evenings during covid lockdown, it was agreed that SG/YG meet with Marine Fitness and agree arrangements or alternatively NC be asked to continue in order that all gates are to be locked at 9pm. SG highlighted that new locks were required and it was agreed to also purchase 3 locks @c£35 each. The padlock on the field gate at rear of pavilion to remain as present. SG Proposed, PT seconded. All voted for.

(2.6) Benches. As a request for bench at the far side of the Park was considered and it was agreed to ask NC to site on the far side with one with its back to the motorway and another to enable users to watching footballers.

(2.7) Poster Comp. YG advised children had been given sweet prizes. Posters need to be laminated before going up in the park. CC offered use of a A2 laminator and the Clerk offered use of a A4 laminator and pouches.

(2.8) Lights. JP proposed that the lights would come on (they are on a light sensor) as darkness onsets and are automatically switch off at 9pm. SG counter proposed and BB seconded that the lights stay off whilst covid restricted to groups of six however this was not agreed (2 votes) and the original proposal was then agreed with 7 votes for.

A sign reminding of the rule of six to be erected on the MUGAs.

Action. Panel to draw up a escalation contacts list, negotiate with the various prospective hirers, put up signage, arrange two benches installation, new locking arrangements and to put up the colouring pictures.

21/76. Highways. (1) Defects raised. None though it was noted that the potholes reported in the track at the end of Vicarage Lane had been repaired by Wessex Water. (2) Notice of application for street trading

consent - Gourmet Salad Box. PCllrs had considered this application and advised SWTC that they agree to support the request to use The Bell PH Car Park. The PC also suggested to SWTC Licensing that it consider neighbour consultation on future requests. (3) A358/A303 Dualling (Southfields to J25 Taunton). The Clerk advised that at a recent virtual meeting held on 8th April Highways England had informed him that it had let a contract to Taylor Woodrow plus worth £328million. TW+ are now getting to grips with the scheme and are developing the design, a delivery programme and have surveys and assessments underway. Construction is expected to start in 2024. Further consultation and a meeting with the PC had been promised.

21/77. Footpaths/Rights of Way. The report of the Parish Footpath Liaison Volunteers was considered.

21/78. Website. PB advised that there was more work to be done identifying and preparing which pages need to be converted to the new website. There is a risk that this is not done in time to enable a May demo.

Action. PB/CC/Volunteers to help prepare website pages for conversion. JP to provide details of a booking system. PB/CC to take forward the system demo.

21/79. Canal. (The notes of a meeting of CSM PC Canal Panel held on 11 3 2021 with Hannah Booth from Canal Trust and a meeting held on 6 4 21 had previously been circulated). ND reported that tree works had been done, the new gate was in place along with a new noticeboard with signage. The car park was being locked by the Panel overnight. An application to SCC Right of Way has been submitted. ND highlighted that there was more work planned and items to follow up with Canal Trust. There is also a need to repair the bench and to source a payments system.

Action. Panel to arrange repair of the bench, to source a payments system and to follow up items with Canal Trust.

21/80. Youth Panel. It was agreed that the youth club can recommence on Thurs 22nd April, 6.30pm-8.30pm at the Rec Park and have use of the facilities there. Whilst CYP had sent a contract for the forthcoming year it was agreed not to sign this as CYP are now funding. The PC holds the Somerset Community Foundation funding to support the youth club to enable it to financially support the first two months following the end of Lockdown and a further £850 worth of grants to be dispersed. BB advised that the toilets are presently locked.

Action. CC/NC to arrange replacement of damaged handle.

21/81. Climate Emergency Community Fund. It was noted that the two applications made to the SCC Fund (for the Village Hall and the Rec Park) had not been successful.

21/82. New Pharmacy. The PC considered NHS consultation on their proposal to site a new pharmacy in the former Landrover Site at Bathpool. The MH2 panel had put forward a proposal to the meeting to supporting this.

Proposed YG, seconded BB, all voted for.

21/83. Parish Council Admin (1) Future Mtg arrangements. The Clerk outlined options for PC meetings post the Covid restrictions rollback (paper previously circulated). See also minute 20/70 (1) above. As online full PC mtgs cannot now take place from May 7th the Village Chown Hall is booked for the next meeting on Monday 10th May at 7pm. Meeting’s arrangements beyond that are to be agreed once the Herts CC case outcome is known and other options explored and availability determined.

Action. Clerk to put forward a proposal for the June PC meeting at the May PC meeting for agreement.

(2) PC (hard copy) Records. The Clerk proposed transferring some of the physical records to the Somerset County Record Office (paper previously circulated); Accounts 2011-2018; Former Rec Park Charity Papers; CSM Rec Park Equipment Tenders; PC signed off Minutes from April 2003-2017 [all are on the website] and PC attendance record book 1/12/08 to 1/4/2017. This was agreed subject to a limited number being put online first, Proposed SG Seconded CC. All voted for.

Action. Clerk to put online some documents identified online and then to transfer records to County Archivist.

21/84. Correspondence. No correspondence received was raised.

21/85. New Matters to be carried forward. PC AGM. Broadband.

21/86. The Council decided to exclude the Public and Press for this item. (1) The Personnel Sub Ctte to report post staff reviews.

Mtg ended 9.13pm

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

Future Meetings;

The next full PC meeting will be held in person on Monday 10th May in the Village Chown Hall at 7pm. As the Covid rollback rules still apply this will be a business meeting not open to the public. To have an issue raised with the PC at the meeting please email the Clerk by Friday 7th 5pm and the Clerk will then put the question to the Parish Council at the meeting and feedback any response.