Minutes 18th February 2019


18th February 2019, Whitney on Wye Village Hall

Present: Alan Watkins (Chair), Chris Davies, Phil Eggerton, James Forrest, Ken Goodman, Terry Morgan, Andrew Layton, Andrew Preece, Lewis Price, Sue Prosser, Tony Raymond, Paul Whittall, Steven Whittall

In Attendance: Deputising Ward Councillor Roger Phillips; Clerk to the Parish Council, Alison Morgan

Members of the Public: 6

1. Apologies were accepted from Ward Councillor Clive Skelton and Cllr Julian Wyatt. Not in Attendance: Cllr Rob Taylor

2. No Declarations of Interest were made.

2.1. No requests for Dispensation were received for this meeting.

3. Open Discussion:

3.1. Ward Councillor Address: As usual, Roger’s report covered a range of topics, including county funding and cutbacks. Locally the rate paid for social care by the council is being increased to £20 p/hour to help attract more staff. Highways funding decisions on resurfacing are still awaited; Roger is meeting with Balfour Beatty next Friday regarding local issues. Roger’s latest ward update report will follow shortly and posted on the EGPC web site when available.

3.2. Public Participation Period: Items discussed included:

  • The amount of business rates collected locally was questioned, but Roger advised the funding received back from central government into Herefordshire was greater.
  • Crash barrier repairs on the A438 past Whitney Toll bridge: Roger had finally received information on costs claimed via insurance, which amounted to just over £7,000.00
  • It was thought there were plans to close the Police station in Kington; nationally police & fire services are now often being co-located to save running costs.
  • Winforton TRO status: It was advised a decision should be forthcoming in the next 2 weeks.
  • Courtlands Priority Signage: (see item 7.1 below); PCC funding is likely to be in demand, so if EGPC plans to put in an application, this should be done asap.
  • DMMO (see 7.7 below). The notice has been published for an additional footpath EE49.
  • The Planning Appeals Bill second reading is delayed until 22nd March.

4. The Minutes of the meeting held on 21st January 2019 were APPROVED and signed by the Chairman as a true record.

5. Finance & Compliance Working Group (FCWG): The Chairman gave an update from the recent HC Summit meeting he attended, which focused on the community led housing initiative. In addition, the following items were discussed:

5.1. June Meeting Date: the FCWG recommended and it was AGREED the June meeting should be moved back one week to 10th June to fit better with the annual return process. The meetings schedule will be updated and re-circulated accordingly.

5.2. Policies for Consideration:

5.2.1. Data Retention and Disposal Policy: This policy was ADOPTED without amendment.
5.2.2. Data Security Incident Procedure: This policy was also ADOPTED without change.
5.2.3. Vexatious Complaints Policy: more time was required for Councillors to properly review this policy and it was therefore AGREED to roll it forward to next month’s Agenda.

5.3. Insurance Renewal: The Clerk advised the new insurance provider has automatically registered EGPC for a 3-year agreement, meaning costs will stay very similar to now until 2021 (unless there is a raise in tax by the Government). The provider has undertaken to try and make renewal details available by the beginning of May to better fit with EGPC’s meetings schedule. On this basis, it was proposed and AGREED it would not be necessary to go out to tender at this point.

5.4. Parish Noticeboards: The Clerk highlighted the current 3 noticeboards all needed attention and were very often full, making it difficult to ensure proper display of PC materials, especially at key times such as year end and during the upcoming elections. It was proposed and AGREED the FCWG should investigate options and costs of purchasing new boards for the 3 parish villages.

5.5. Elections May 2019: The Clerk will be attending a briefing at Shire Hall, organised by HC on 6th March. Meanwhile, information and links sent by HC will be circulated to residents by email and posted on noticeboards. The Clerk will also look into setting up a new web site page.

6. Planning Working Group (PWG) matters: The Brick Cottage (Winforton) decision was discussed since approval by delegated report was given, without reference to EGPC objections. Cllr Forrest undertook to contact the Planning Office in this regard. The Clerk had contacted the Enforcement Officer at HC, who planned to visit Winforton soon to investigate recently reported issues. Concerns about Winforton Wood need to be made directly by individuals to the Enforcement Officer with specific details.

6.1. There were no new active applications to consider at this meeting. A round-up of all planning activity can be found in Planning Minutes February 2019 on the EGPC web site and you can review full details of each application via the HC Planning Portal (direct link from EGPC web site): https://eardisleygrouppc.org/planning-applications/

6.2. Winforton War Memorial Listing: The Clerk confirmed the decision had been taken to list the structure as Grade II. This news was welcomed by those present.

7. The Highways Working Group (HWG) reported the Footpaths Officer and P3 contractor had investigated issues on Eardisley footpaths reported by a member of the public. Some remedial signs and small works were noted and would be followed up.

7.1. Priority R.O.W for Motorists (the Courtlands): Graham Hornsby (BBLP) had provided estimated costs, which were in the region of £2,000. It was proposed and RESOLVED that the Police & Crime Commissioner’s office should be approached regarding potential grant funding.

7.2. Lengthsman/P3 Scheme Update: LM: The Clerk explained about the outstanding LM works dating back to 2018 that were now completed and the need to pay the associated invoice – approved last year. Some non-urgent LM works orders were outstanding and it was not clear if these would be completed this year; it was agreed the WO’s could be rolled forward to next year, if necessary, without issue. P3: The Clerk had submitted a PROW furniture order to BBLP as agreed at the last meeting to optimise use of the final year of grant funding. In addition, BBLP had provided a number of gate warning signs (free of charge) to help with issues caused by dog walkers, walkers not keeping to the footpath and gates being left open.

7.3. ‘No SatNav’ Warning Signs: Cllr Steve Whittall has kindly put up the signs; the situation will be kept under review.

7.4. Parking Issues, Almeley Road, Eardisley: Issues were reported with cars parking on pavements, especially at weekends, causing pedestrians to have to walk out into the road. It was suggested offenders should be reported and/or photographed & details sent to the local community police team for investigation.

7.5. Bell Bollards, Eardisley: It was confirmed Parish Council funding was no longer required for this item. It was therefore proposed and RESOLVED to cancel approval for expenditure, as per item 8.6 of the minutes dated 21st May 2018.

7.6. Standing Water A4111, Central Eardisley: This issue was originally reported during a drive round of Eardisley with the BBLP Locality Steward and had been followed up several times since, most recently by the Clerk. No further update was available at this time; Roger Phillips is aware and the Clerk will continue to chase feedback.

7.7. DMMO Addition of EE49, Eardisley: Following discussion, it was AGREED the Clerk would include the PC view that the proposed footpath B-C-D should follow the hedge line rather than extend out into the field by some metres. [The point regarding the value of the additional path without rationalising other paths coming out in the same location was made again but is not relevant in terms of providing feedback to this Order.]

8. Community Matters:

8.7. Defibrillator & Dog Fouling Signage: Two dog fouling signs were given to Cllr Preece, who kindly agreed to put them up in the vicinity of the Pump House, as previously agreed. Representatives of the Highways Group for each village need to liaise regarding the siting and installation of the Defibrillator signs.

8.8. Rural Broadband Services: Advice from ‘Fastershire’ was for individuals to contact their broadband provider to complain about poor service and slow speeds; some priority was being given to business customers, which may help those trying to run businesses from their home location.

8.9. Crime Prevention Talk: The Clerk has been in touch with Eardisley Neighbourhood Watch and the Crime Prevention Officer and it was suggested EGPC should host a presentation, probably in June once the year end and elections were over. It was APPROVED EGPC will book and pay for the hall and the Clerk will liaise with interested parties to arrange, as well as advertising the event.

9. Bank balances as at 8th February were confirmed as follows:

Main Account                                  £8,160.80
No. 2 Account                                  £7,858.97
Business Saver Account               £3,784.44

Since the last meeting, with the Chairman’s agreement, the Clerk paid the following item relating to Lengthsman works carried out between March and October 2018. The item was pre-approved for payment in June 2018 (minutes reference 7.1):

Payee                                                      Description                          Gross Amount (£)   VAT (£)
Richard Mills                                          Lengthsman Works                    1,700.40               283.40

It was RESOLVED to pay the following:

Payee                                                      Description                          Gross Amount (£)   VAT (£)

Eardisley VH                                           Hall Hire (January 2019)                 19.00                 0.00
A Morgan                                                Office & Clerk Exp. (Jan 2019)       31.17                  1.33

10. Correspondence: The following items were noted:

10.1. Chair of Eardisley Tennis & Croquet Club: possible donation request for a defibrillator
10.2. Crocodiles Pre-School Manager: possible purchase of Paediatric Defibrillator pads
10.3. HC: results of Litter Innovation Fund Research project
10.4. HC: Briefing Note on revisions to NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework)
10.5. Diocese of Hereford: consultation on proposal to close the church of St Silas, Bollingham
10.6. HC: Expression of Interest Form (Lengthsman/P3 schemes)

11. Matters for the Next Agenda – no discussion:

Please send Agenda items to the Clerk by Friday, 8th March, thank you.

NEXT MEETING: Monday, 18th March 2019, 7:30pm in
Eardisley Village Hall