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Members are 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


Andy Webb (Acting Chairman), Paul Vallis, Clare Middleton, Bill Turner, Ernest Kong, and Gina Seaton (District Councillor).


Nancy Chapman (Parish Clerk) and 6 members of the public.

Before the meeting commenced there was an opportunity for the public to speak:

A parishioner spoke on behalf of residents of Moor Lane stating that the majority of residents have given a positive response to the new Moor End Nursery application for 10 dwellings. It was also encouraging that one young person from the village has expressed an interest in purchasing one of the lower cost homes. An SSDC planning representative has stated if there are 10 dwellings, then 3 should be affordable homes (as defined by SSDC). He has proposed a tenure of 2 social-rented and one shared-ownership. The residents believe there is no requirement for this type of housing in Hardington.

The parishioner also asked that if any member of the Parish Council chooses to make personal comments regarding a planning application, they should make it very clear that these views are their personal ones, and not given on behalf of the Parish Council.

Another parishioner spoke regarding the Moor End Nursery application asking that the Parish Council do not support the application for several reasons. He felt Origin3 exaggerated the extent of their community consultation. He also felt they should have withdrawn their appeal relating to their previous application prior to the new application being submitted. He still objected to the updated application on the grounds that the number of dwellings is still too dense and he felt Moor Lane would struggle to cope with the increased traffic, both during the construction phase and following this. The majority of residents had agreed that they did not want Moor Lane to be altered, yet an additional passing place has been proposed. This may result in people parking there, when there are events taking place in the village. The increased traffic from Moor End to the A30 could also cause significant problems. The parishioner felt the plans should also show the covenanted area (28% of total).

    Apologies were received from Robin Carpenter, Malcolm White, Cathy Bakewell (District Councillor) and Marcus Fysh (County Councillor).
  2. MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 17th November 2015 (Already Circulated)
    The minutes for October were approved and signed by the Chairman as correct records of the meeting.
    Gina Seaton reported that a new Lidl supermarket on the old Ashley's site had been approved at the Area South meeting. SSDC is continuing to work closely with Sedgemoor District Council to combine their resources.
    Gina read a statement detailing her position with regards to the Westland Sports and Leisure Complex (this statement is appended to the minutes below). A number of parishes have been asked to contribute towards the rescue package for the first 5 years. Gina reported that not all parishes had agreed to this so far.
    Gina circulated details of the South Somerset Together Assembly to be held on Thursday 17th March 9.30-13.00 at Edgar Hall, Somerton. The topic under discussion is the impact on communities of the changes to the welfare system.
    The Chairman then read highlights from reports received from Cathy Bakewell and Marcus Fysh (previously circulated).
    1. Planning applications received:
      App no: 15/05598/FUL Demolition of existing bungalow and erection of 10 dwellings together with associated landscaping, access and infrastructure at Moor End Nursery, Moor Lane, Hardington Mandeville. Applicant: Halsall Homes. This includes two 2-bedroom homes and one bungalow, but no element of affordable housing (as defined by SSDC). While 10 units is still more than some councilors would like to see on the site, it was viewed that it would be unlikely that an application with any less would be submitted. They also felt the type of housing more closely met the identified needs of the village. The council therefore agreed to support the application.
    2. Planning applications received after publication of the agenda:
      App no:16/00130/FUL Alterations and erection of single storey rear extensions, replacement garage doors, erection of a summerhouse (retrospective), erection of a timber storage box with retaining walls, steps and landscaping at 350 High Street, Hardington Mandeville. Applicant: Mr and Mrs M Dickson. There were no objections.
    3. Results of previous applications:
      App no: 15/04761/COU The change of use of existing annexe to holiday let. Poachers Lodge, Moor Lane. Applicant: Mrs Giselle Gearing. Approved with conditions.
    4. There were no other planning issues.
    1. Neil reported that a number of drains had been successfully cleared by SCC in recent weeks. The SSDC out-of-hours chainsaw team had also cleared a fallen tree from the Bridleway at North Lane.
    2. The subject of excessive mud on the roads, particularly around field gateways was discussed. It was viewed that little could be done to avoid this. It was agreed a note should be put in the Messenger, asking farmers in the parish to try to be as considerate as possible in minimising the hazard caused by mud on the roads. The subject of hedge-trimmings on the roads was also brought up and it was stated that this is unavoidable as farmers are required to keep their hedges under control.
    3. The subject of the PC funding drain-jetting within the parish was discussed. The Clerk reported that when the PC had looked into this before a quote of £1195 per day for 2 days was given, plus waste disposal of £205 per tonne (plus VAT). The PC viewed that this cost was too high and that SCC Highways should be responsible for the jetting. A resolution was passed to not take any further action at this time.
    1. A parishioner has suggested asking Henry Siebert-Saunders of Underhill Cottage to be the main speaker at the Annual Assembly in April. The clerk agreed to contact him.
    1. Bill Turner confirmed that he would arrange the hedge-cutting at the Community Field as soon as it was dry enough.
    2. It was reported that the last minute change of venue for the village fireworks display, from East Field to the Community Field due to waterlogged ground, had in fact been a very successful and popular move!
    1. There were no issues arising.
    1. The Bank Reconciliation at 31st December 2015 was approved.
    2. The Budget Analysis at 31st December 2015 was reviewed.
    3. Following discussion the final Precept for 2016-17 was approved. The budget will remain at £15,500 (the same amount as the last 2 years). There were still concerns that the PC reserves needed adjusting to more accurately reflect current requirements. It was agreed to agenda this for further discussion later in the year.
    4. The Clerk's hours for November (21.5 hours) and December (3 hours) were confirmed.
    5. A resolution was passed to pay the Clerk salary for October, November and December (£455.00), expenses (£37.86 (inc VAT £5.56)) and mileage (£10.80) = £503.66
    6. A Resolution was passed to pay the following invoices:
      • SALC Councilor Training £20.00
      • SSDC - Changes to Hardington & Pendomer Community Licence £21.00
    7. A letter had been received from Ric Pallister (SSDC Leader) asking several of the larger Town and Parish Councils to contribute to the Westlands Sports and Leisure Complex (WLC) rescue package. SSDC are looking for 50% (£48,747) of the remaining revenue subsidy of £97,495, to be raised from contributions from Town and Parish Councils. The letter asked Hardington Parish Council to consider agreeing in-principle to provide an annual contribution of £796, commencing in 1st April 2016 for the first 5 years, and commit to this sum being increased in line with the CPI index each year. The Parish Council discussed this in some detail. Some members were keen to support what they recognise as a valuable asset, but others felt they had received little benefit from it in the past. It was also too late to include this in the precept budget. It was agreed that the PC would not commit to the contribution at this point in time, although with further information may consider it in the future.
    1. There were no issues arising.
    1. There were no new tasks identified to be added to the Rangers current list of work.
    1. Consultation documents regarding the proposed Lufton and Wyndham Primary Schools had been received although the end date for comments had already passed.
    2. Youth Provision Forum - 6th February 2016. (Post meeting note: this forum has been postponed).
    1. Chairman. Nothing to report.
    2. Councillors: Nothing to report.
    3. Clerk: Nothing to report.
    The next meeting will be held on Tuesday 16th February 2016 at 7.30 p.m. in the Village Hall. The meeting closed at 9.15pm.

After the meeting closed there was an opportunity for the public to speak:

A parishioner reported that the narrow section at the Moor Lane end of the footpath between Moor Lane and Coker Hill Lane was now impassable for pedestrians due to horses churning up the ground. This will be on the agenda for discussion at February's meeting.

A parishioner spoke again on further issues regarding the latest Moor End Nursery application. This included issues with construction traffic damaging the road, the use of paved blocks instead of tarmac on the site, and the lack of a market survey from the applicants.

Statement From Councillor Gina Seaton re Westlands Sport and Leisure Complex:

I will be supporting my fellow councillors Nigel Gage and Gye Dibben in voting in favour of supporting The Westland Leisure Complex proposals because I know how important it is to many people, not only in my Coker Ward who have contacted me, but to our whole Area, including myself, who have had the opportunity to enjoy the venue over the years. and so providing that the business plans can be developed to make it a viable concern, as soon as possible I believe it can be, and with the right expertise which we have heard about this evening, this proposal will have my support.

There are many reasons already discussed for continuing to keep the Westland Leisure complex a going concern. But looking at the wider picture.

  1. Yeovil is a hub, in the middle of the South West Peninsular.
  2. Yeovil and south Somerset population is growing.
  3. The complex is very well sited with in Yeovil and _
  4. It is is easily accessed from our surrounding South Somerset and Dorset Area by our highway infrastructure from the N. S E. and W.
  5. We have a growing, young and older population who need access to sporting and entertainment venues. "We all need to keep fit and healthy and enjoy being entertained".
  6. The venue is large enough to attract much larger entertainment opportunities and -
  7. The Octagon is still our theatre but its capacity is restricted, although the ticket sales purchases show that support for the venue covers a very large surrounding area of people using the Octagon and so I believe that there is no reason why both venues would not flourish in their own individual way.
  8. Whist I agree with many of the points put forward by members against the Westland Leisure Complex, It has been part of Yeovil's social life and I know how much the importance of keeping this venue means to so many people and I am very aware of how much it means to all our communities, who are now placing their hope in us being able to save it and turn it into a viable operation to be enjoyed by many into the future.

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