The Minutes of the previous meeting (September 2013)


Members were reminded that the Council has a general duty to consider the following matters in the exercise of any of its functions - Equal Opportunities (race, gender, sexual orientation, marital status & any disability); Crime & Disorder, Health & Safety and Human Rights.
Nancy Chapman, Parish Clerk


Robin Carpenter (Chairman), Peter Bysouth, Keith Blackwell, Bill Turner, Malcolm White, Paul Vallis and Gina Seaton (District Councillor).


Nancy Chapman (Parish Clerk) and 4 members of the public.

Before the meeting there was an opportunity for the public to speak.

Referring to an article in September’s Messenger, a parishioner asked if any action was going to be taken in relation to unauthorized business activities at The Stables, Partway Lane. The Chairman replied that in the past, a number of letters had been written to the District Council suggesting that they should investigate this, but no action had been taken by them. Gina Seaton agreed to speak to Marcus Fysh to determine if he had been able to follow this up since the last meeting.

    Apologies were received from Vanessa May and Cathy Bakewell (District Councillor)
  2. MINUTES OF MEETINGS held on 17th September 2013 (Already Circulated).
    1. The minutes were approved and signed by the Chairman as correct records of the meetings.
    Gina Seaton reported details of the Area South Committee October meeting. The Lufton housing development was now off the ground, with work beginning on a section of 59 houses. Half of these will be affordable housing and half will be split ownership. The Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) is currently extremely busy and in need of volunteers to help. It was agreed that an item should be placed in next months Messenger asking for volunteers. The Heart of Wessex Rail Partnership that promote the importance of the Weymouth to Bath/Bristol (via Yeovil) Rail link is at risk due to funding issues. The All-weather Hockey Pitch at Mudford Rec is now complete and available for hire should anyone wish. Gina circulated some correspondence relating to half term children’s activities, affordable finance for repairing homes and revised recycling dates for the forth-coming year.

    The Chairman summarised a previously circulated report from Cathy Bakewell who was unable to attend the meeting as she was being “introduced” to the House of Lords. In addition to the points that Gina made, Cathy made a plea for members of the community to become mentors on the Family Focus Programme. Training is provided before mentors are allocated a family. Once a week, an hour meeting takes place with the family, to listen to their problems and report back to a Link Worker. It was agreed that an item should be placed in next month’s Messenger.

    1. The following notification has been received:
      App No.13/03522/AGN Notification of intent to erect an agricultural building at Milcombe Farm, Coker Hill Lane by R J Turner. Prior approval not required.
    2. There were no results of previous applications.
    3. The following application was received after publication of this agenda:
      App No.13/03897/COL. Application for a Lawful Development Certificate for the existing continued use of building and residential curtilage as a single dwellinghouse at Walnut Tree Farm, Lyatts, Hardington Moor. Applicant: Mrs Margaret Partridge.
      The Chairman summarized the application. When the house was built over 10 years ago, pre-start condition (4) of the original planning application, relating to the internal floor levels was not discharged. The original planning permission is therefore invalid. As the dwelling has been erected and occupied in excess of 4 years without the benefit of planning permission, the applicants believe the property is immune from enforcement action and now seek a Lawful Development Certificate. It was noted by the council that if the certificate was granted the property may not have an agricultural tie. There were no objections.
    4. All members of the Parish Council have received an anonymous letter from a parishioner regarding unauthorized activities at Woodentop Farm, West Coker. The letter stated: planning decisions have been ignored (part of the wooden cabin which should have been removed is still standing); numerous people were living and working at the property staying in various mobile homes and caravans sited there; and unauthorized sales activities were taking place from there. The farm is in the West Coker Parish and their council is also concerned. It was viewed by the council that this was a planning issue. A resolution was passed for the Clerk to write a letter to Dave Norris of the planning department expressing concern that planning conditions are being ignored.
    Stewart Ogden reported that the Village Hall Kitchen refurbishment was almost complete. The total spent was just under nine thousand pounds which only just exceeds the original estimate. The main area of overspend was the electrical work. The committee would still like to replace the window. They also need a new table. The feedback so far had been good – the kitchen is now lighter and tidier. Stewart thanked the Parish Council for their support. The next project was replacing the heating system. Stewart planned to approach the District Council to determine if there are any grants available.

    The chairman thanked Stewart for his work on the kitchen project.

    Stewart was asked to explain the overspend on electrical work in more detail. Stewart explained approximately an extra 420 was spent to install a new cable from the fuseboard to the cooker and also to make the fuseboard safe. The original cable and fusebox had only been installed recently by a local electrician. The local electrician has only just submitted is invoice and the Village Hall Committee have taken the opportunity to deduct the cost of the work that needed re-doing from the bill payment (426). This has resulted in a dispute which may result in the committee being taken to the Small Claims Court. A Councilor commented that given that the electrician was local it would be ideal if the dispute could be resolved without too much upset.

    A Resolution was passed to approve the following payments:
    Kitchen Updates (kitchen units, worktops, taps etc) 2880.00 + VAT 576.00
    P D Ford (Safety flooring) 596.00 + VAT 119.20
    N C C Cheeseman (Kitchen Fitting) 3670.00
    Derren Paull (Plasterer) 280.00
    DJM Electrical (Electrics) 790.60 + VAT 158.12

    8216.60 + VAT 853.32

    1. Follow-up letter to SCC relating to quality of repairs. Having received a reply from David Huxtable from SCC, the next step planned was to meet with Cllr Harvey Siggs, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport. Neil Dyer and Robin Carpenter have agreed to arrange a meeting with him on 5th November in Hardington.
    2. Wall Damage at the top of North Lane. Neil has received a letter from SCC agreeing to pursue an insurance claim with the company whose vehicle did the damage and giving an assurance that the repair would be completed within 3 months.
    3. Water on the road at Chasers Farm. Ongoing (still waiting for heavy rain!).
    4. Blocked Drain on Lyatts Lane. Neil reported that there is an overflowing drain in the hedge along Lyatts Lane (opposite the entrance to Apple Tree Cottage) that needs clearing. He asked if it could be added to the Rangers list of work. Neil also commented that the Ranger had done a very good job of clearing many other roadside surface water drains.
    5. Grit Bin on West Coker Hill. A location for siting a Grit bin on West Coker Hill has been found. Ian Coates of Marrowleaze (on the south west side of the road junction) has agreed it can be sited on his private land adjacent to the highway. The previous two bins purchased in 2011 cost 372. As West Coker Parish Council have agreed to contribute 100 towards the cost, it was viewed that the most Hardington would have to pay is 100. The council discussed the possibility of bolting it down to prevent theft, but it was felt that this site was quite exposed and that the larger bin would be difficult to move. The Clerk agreed to get a quote for a Grit bin.
    1. The Chairman stated that the results of the Housing Needs Survey indicated that 8 people had expressed a desire for affordable housing within the village. He felt that the results of the survey should be published on the website. The Chairman agreed to email Brian Dodd regarding this.
    2. The Autumn Village Litter Pick was scheduled for Saturday, 7th December from 10am to 12pm. The Clerk agreed to make arrangements for hiring the equipment.
    3. The Clerk has printed off some Welcome Packs and agreed to deliver them to recent new residents in the village.
    1. The Chairman has rolled the area of new grass and reported that it was growing well.
    2. The Chairman reported that there is an area of road at the entrance to the community field that could possibly result in the underside of low car bumpers being scraped. It was felt that this could be resolved when all the other road surface repairs along North Lane/Coker Hill are carried out.
    3. The Chairman reported that a gazebo-style shelter for the community had been suggested. The question of possible planning consent for this was discussed. There have also been requests for a traditional swing set with a baby seat and also standard swings. It was agreed that some costs would be obtained so that decisions, and plans for fundraising, could be made.
    1. A resolution was passed to pay Came & Company, 1092.72 for the renewal of the Village Hall Committee insurance due 17th November 2013. This is year 2 of the 3-year binding agreement with the current insurers.
    1. Peter Bysouth reported that the audit for the year ended 31st March 2013 has been completed. The auditors have once again commented that the fixed assets should be valued at their original purchase cost, rather than current value, but there had not been time to ascertain these costs. It was viewed that this should be addressed for next year’s accounts.
    2. A resolution was passed to pay the auditors, Grant Thornton, 360.00.
    3. The Clerks hours for September were approved (23.25 hours).
    4. A resolution was passed to pay Clerk salary for July, August and September (634.50), expenses (55.45) and mileage (28.35) = 718.30
    5. A resolution was passed to approve the Clerk attending two training courses (40 + VAT).
    6. A resolution was passed to approve the Chairman and Vice Chairman attending the ‘Being a Successful Chairman’ training course.
    1. The Chairman reported that an email had been sent to Les Braunton following receipt of a letter from a parishioner reporting that the gate and stile on path Y10/46 had been surrounded by electric fencing, therefore illegally obstructing the footpath.
    2. A broken stile on path Y10/9 was discussed. Robin Carpenter agreed to contact Les Braunton with the suggestion that the stile is replaced with a small gate.
    3. The Chairman agreed that the stile on path Y10/43 on Partway Lane was very high and should really have three steps not two. It was decided that no further action would be taken as present.
    1. No update has been received regarding the work completed or hours carried out by the Ranger despite being informed that we would have one in time for the meeting. Stephen Fox has agreed to attend the next parish council meeting with a progress update. It was noted that the work that the Ranger had done so far was very good.
    2. It was agreed the following tasks should be added to the Rangers list:
      1. The area around the telephone box opposite The Mandeville Arms still needs strimming.
      2. The area around the telephone box in Hardington Moor needs strimming.
      3. The Notice Board opposite The Mandeville Arms needs re-painting/protecting.
    3. Keith Blackwell reported that Vivien Cherry was now maintaining the plants in the tyre around the Hardington sign. She has asked if it is possible to place a drum containing water in the hedge nearby so there is a water supply on-hand during the summer months. It was agreed that this should be done.
    The following previously circulated email correspondence was discussed:
    1. SSDC Town and Parishes Workshop 25th September 2013 in the Council Chamber
    2. Local Choices Event on 6th November 2013 (6-9pm). Peter Bysouth agreed to attend this meeting.
    3. South Somerset Together Assembly on 23rd October. Gina Seaton stated she was attending this meeting
    4. Somerset Community Justice Panel appeal for donations. The Chairman commented that it is not within the Parish Council’s policy to donate to organisation’s outside the parish, but it was felt that this is an important new charity and it should be given publicity.
    1. Chairman. Nothing to report.
    2. Councillors. Nothing to report.
    3. Clerk. Nothing to report.
    The date for next meeting will be Tuesday 19th November 2013 at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall. The meeting closed at 9.05 pm.