Minutes of Bishops Frome Parish Council Meeting held on Tuesday 18th October 2016
Cllr Partridge (Chair), Cllr Guise, Cllr Mrs Roberts, Cllr Parker and local Cllr Mrs Morgan.
Mr Brooman, the Council’s Treasurer was also present.
2016/119 To receive apologies for absence
Apologies had been received from Cllr Ms Sincock, Cllr Pudge, Cllr Marshall, Cllr Hydes and Cllr Nash.
2016/120 To receive declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation.
There were no declarations of interest.
2016/121 To adopt the minutes of the previous meeting
A copy of the draft minutes had been circulated to all councillors prior to the meeting. They were accepted as a true record and signed by Cllr Partridge (Chair).
2016/122 Public Participation
There were no members of the public present.
2016/123 Neighbourhood Plan
There were no members of the Neighbourhood Plan Committee present at the meeting.
124.1 Precept 2017/2018
Mr Brooman presented details of expenditure since 2014/2015 and the budget for 2016/2017. The Councillors present then debated the forecast figures for the year 2017/2018 and a proposed budget was drafted. The figures do not have to be submitted to Hereford Council until December and there were several Cllrs not present, therefore it was agreed that the draft proposal would be sent to all Cllrs for further consideration and the budget for 2017/2018 would be confirmed at the next meeting.
Mr Brooman advised Cllrs that he had received an email from HALC regarding the possibility of a referendum being introduced for the setting of precepts in future. HALC were recommending that Parish Council’s object to this. Cllrs agreed an objection should be made on the grounds that a Parish Council is sufficiently local to control funds and is best placed to know how money needs to be spent locally. A referendum system could encourage councils to hold large reserves in case restricted on raising funds in the future.
The Clerk explained the new procedures for Traffic Regulation Orders to Cllrs so this could be taken in to account when establishing a budget for the coming year. The Balfour Beatty Toolkit for Traffic Regulation Orders had already been circulated to Cllrs prior to the meeting.
Mr Brooman distributed copies of the council’s accounts and explained the current position.
He listed the outstanding invoices/estimates and Cllrs agreed payments should be made as follows:
124.2 Donation request from Bishops Frome Church for Churchyard maintenance – £1000.00 was agreed £500.00 for the current year and £500.00 for last year.
124.3 Permanent Pathways to sides of Bishops Frome Play Area – estimate received £400.00- £600.00.
124.4 Removal of Moles from Sports Field estimate – £25.00 for first visit then additional £20.00 for each subsequent visit.
124.5 New Play equipment for Bishops Frome £8027.00
125.1 P163168/F The Barn, The Firlands, Bishops Frome, WR6 5BA
Prior approval for proposed change of use of agricultural building to 3 bed
This application is a prior approval and requires no comments from the Parish Council.
2016/126 Traffic Regulation Orders
This item was covered under finance.
2016/127 New Parliamentary Constituency Boundaries
The Clerk advised that she had received notification from Electoral Services that the England Boundary Commission have started a 12 week consultation period on an initial proposal for amended parliamentary boundaries from 2018. She explained the new proposed Parliamentary Constituency under which Bishops Frome Parish Council would fall, Malvern and Ledbury CC. Public hearings are being held across the country to allow the public to have their say. Full details have been issued to all Cllrs.
2016/128 Flooding and Sandbags
The Clerk confirmed that empty sandbags had been ordered and are to be delivered to the Hop Pocket. Cllr Pudge had said previously that he would source some sand and filled bags could be collected from the Hop Pocket as required.
She also advised that she had heard that Balfour Beatty had put a camera down the drain outside Parsonage Crescent to establish the cause of the flooding on the B4214 in heavy rain, but had not yet heard the conclusion.
2016/129 Speed Indicator Device
Notification had been received that the Speed Indicator Device (SID) deployment programme is now back up and running following the purchase of 6 new SIDs. The cost for 1 month deployment before April 2017 is £150.00 plus VAT. In April 2017, the fees are to be reviewed. Cllrs discussed the hiring of SID’s for both Fromes Hill and Bishops Frome but decided not to request them at this time. They stated that the speed camera is regularly monitoring traffic speeds at Fromes Hill.
2016/130 BT Payphone Consultation
BT Payphones have started a 90 day consultation on the removal of under used pay phone (kiosks) in the County. The payphone outside Bishops Frome Village Centre is on the list for removal. Data provided showed that this phone box had only been used 7 times in the last 12 months. Cllrs felt that most people had mobile phones now and if they didn’t, they would call in to the shop or pub in an emergency and therefore had no objection to its removal.
2016/131 Fromes Hill Report
131.1 Signage. Cllrs had received concerns from members of the public that the signs for the new shop in Fromes Hill were too bright at night and made turning on to the main road difficult as you became dazzled. Cllrs had investigated this themselves and also had concerns. The Clerk agreed to speak to the owner of the shop and ask if they could be dimmed or repositioned.
131.2 Field Update – awaiting meeting of Field Management Committee.
2016/132 Bishops Frome Report
132.1 Grass cutting and general village tidiness – the Clerk advised Cllrs that she had spoken with Rob Collins and he confirmed that he was happy to continue to cut the grass at the bottom of the old cricket pitch next year for no charge. She confirmed that a letter of thanks had been sent to Mr Collins.
Cllr Partridge confirmed that he had found someone to cut the grass in between as agreed at a cost of £8.50 per hour.
132.2 Bishops Frome Play Area – The new play equipment is now installed. Painting of the existing equipment was started but due to the cold nights it wasn’t drying properly so the painter recommended postponing until the spring. He confirmed there would be no additional cost to the council.
A member of the public had been in touch saying that his father had found the children playing on the basket swing very noisy and wondered if the old fence at the back of the houses at Summerpool could be re-instated to reduce the noise. Cllr Partridge explained that when the old fence was removed the general feeling was that the residents didn’t want the fence reinstated. Cllrs felt that as the basket swing is new, the children are likely to be a bit more excited initially and this could be monitored. Also, Welsh Water are planning to replace the mains water pipe behind Summerpool in the next few months which will involve digging up this whole area and make any other works impossible in the short term.
132.3 Welsh Water – replacement main. Notification had been received that Welsh Water intend to replace the water main from the B4214 to the industrial estate which will involve digging up land behind the village centre and the back of the houses in Summerpool to the industrial estate. A formal Notice of Entry had been received from Welsh Water.
Notification had also been received that Welsh Water will be starting replacing 12km of pipe in the Bishops Frome Area week commencing 14th November 2016. They will be working from Burley Gate towards Bishops Frome, then from The Old Smithy towards Bishops Frome and finally from the Hop Pocket to the A4103. An information event for residents is being held in Bishops Frome Village Centre from 2.30pm-7pm on Thursday 27th October.
Further works to replace 7km of pipe around Stanford Bishop, Acton Beauchamp, Bishops Frome and Bringsty are also commencing week commencing 14th November 2016. An information event is being held at Stanford Bishop Village Hall on 31st October 2016 2.30pm-7pm .
Cllr Guise had been approached by members of the public asking if there was any way garden rubbish bags from the council could be made available locally as at the moment they have to go in to Bromyard to obtain them from the library. The Clerk agreed to look in to this and Cllr Mrs Roberts confirmed she would be willing to stock them in the shop if the council agreed.
Cllr Guise also enquired about if we still have a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme in Bishops Frome. No one had heard anything about it for a long time so the Clerk agreed to try to find out the current position.
A suggestion had been received that a Parish Council “surgery” be held once per month for example, to enable parishioners to talk to Cllrs. This was felt to be impractical and Cllrs confirmed they were happy to be approached by the public at any time, as is the Clerk. Parish Council meetings are open to the public, agendas being placed on the noticeboards in both Bishops Frome and Fromes Hill and there is also a facility to “get in touch” on the Parish Council website.
2016/133 Sports Committee Report
Cllr Partridge confirmed all was running well and the facilities were being well looked after.
The Clerk reminded Cllrs to subscribe to the website.
2016/135 Footpaths Officer Report
Nothing to report this month.
2016/136 To note the information sheet and date of next meeting
The Clerk drew attention to the items on the information sheet and confirmed the date of next meeting as Tuesday 15th November.
There being no other business, the meeting concluded at 21.07.