The Minutes of the previous meeting (January 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.
Jessica Vale, Parish Clerk


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


Jessica Vale (Parish Clerk) and 2 members of the public, also, for the public open session, PCSO Andrea Bowditch on behalf of PCSO Tony Over.

Before the meeting commenced there was an opportunity for the public to speak.
Mike Bickerton expressed his concern about the bad state of local roads and the damage being caused to hedge banks and verges by large vehicles, especially along Pen Lane where some agricultural contractors had been moving liquid substances.
PCSO Andrea Bowditch asked whether those present had any matters that they wanted to bring to the attention of the Police. She reported that some hay bales had recently been stolen from a local farm.

    Apologies had been received from Keith Blackwell and Cathy Bakewell (District and County Councillor).
  2. MINUTES OF MEETING held on 15th January 2013 (Already Circulated)
    1. The minutes were approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record of the meeting.
    Peter Bysouth made a declaration of prejudicial interest in Item 11b (Grant to St Mary’s Hardington Mandeville Parochial Church Council) as he is the Treasurer for the Church.
    1. Item 10a: Signature of the Clerk’s salary cheque which had been approved at the previous meeting was completed.
    2. Item 10d: The Clerk apologised for causing confusion over the amount to be precepted from the District Council for 2013-4. Since the previous Parish Council meeting she had discussed the amount to be notified with SSDC’s Finance Manager and as a result a new precept notification form to the amount of £15,120 had been signed by the Chairman and submitted to SSDC, as they will make a grant of £380, thus ensuring that the Parish Council will receive £15,500 as resolved.
    Gina Seaton wished it to be noted that South Somerset District Council’s Scrap Store is now situated in the former Museum building next to Hendford car park and is open to the public. The Community Development team for Area South has produced their annual report and their Manager Kim Close would like to attend a Parish Council meeting at some point. An extended Full Council meeting has recently taken place to pass the Council Tax Benefit reduction scheme and amendments to the draft Local Plan. The draft plan has now gone to the Inspector and there will be more attention to it at a meeting on the 6th of May. SSDC has also added its support to the A303 “Dual It” campaign. She also noted that the County Council is holding a major meeting about next year’s budget on the 20th of February.

    1. Planning Application received: 13/00164/FUL demolition of dwelling and erection of a replacement dwellinghouse at Winyards, Coldharbour Hill Hardington Mandeville for Mr & Mrs R Grave; the Parish Council had no objections to the proposal.
    2. Applications had been received since publication of the agenda: there were none.
    3. Results of previous applications received: Application no 12/04428/FUL Mr B R Middleton, formation of window on side elevation (retrospective), Cherry Tree House, Broadstone Lane, Hardington Mandeville has been permitted; noted.
    4. Results of previous applications received after publication of this agenda: there were none.
    1. Report from Highways Representative: Neil Dyer said that all defects that he has reported to Highways have been acknowledged and he has been informed that they will all be dealt with in due course. The method of filling potholes combined with poor weather means that some repairs are certain to fail in a short time. The ditch beside the road at the bend in North Lane where previous work had been done has been repaired with stone. The collapsed drain leading from the Community Field into the Chinnock Brook has been reported again but Highways cannot deal with it yet. Neil will ask again for road repairs to be carried out where North Lane crosses the Chinnock Brook but the road is still muddy there. A resident of Hardington Marsh has reported to Neil the risk of ice on the road past Chasers Farm where water is running down the side of the road. There may be a blocked pipe under the entrance to Chasers Farm and a ditch north of that. ACTION: Clerk to write to the owner of Chasers Farm to ask them to put matters right. Neil also mentioned the problems in Penn Lane as raised by Mike Bickerton. Neil has compiled a list of ideas for road improvements to go to the County Council; ACTION Neil to circulate this to all Parish Councillors for them to add further proposals as a matter of urgency. Jetting of drains and gullies is a priority.
    2. Grit bin for upper end of Coker Hill: there was no news to report.
    3. Any other issues: the grit bin at Lyatts has been refilled by Paul Vallis using the bag received earlier in the winter.
    1. Date for spring litter pick: this was agreed as Saturday 23rd March, starting at 10 a.m. from the Village Hall. Clerk to make arrangements with SSDC to get equipment and ask for volunteers through the Messenger.
    2. Location for planting ornamental cherry tree: possibilities were discussed and it was agreed that this should be planted as soon as possible in the Community Field, but that it is not suitable for the wild flower meadow. Malcolm White to arrange with the Clerk to collect it.
    1. Report from Recreation Space Committee; Robin Carpenter reported the removal of metal obstructing the cycle track. Although hedge-cutting is usually carried out at this time of year, the ground is currently too wet for the tractor. He also reported that the Annual Inspection and Risk Assessment will be carried out by SSDC for £77.40.
    2. Mowing Contract renewal; It was proposed by Robin Carpenter, seconded by Peter Bysouth and RESOLVED to accept the quotation of Somerset Landscapes Ltd for mowing the Field and carrying out weedkilling from March 2013 to February 2014 for £1,506.00 excluding VAT, to be paid in monthly installments. Clerk to inform SLL and arrange to amend the standing order accordingly.
    Gina Seaton left the meeting at 8.30 p.m.
    1. Nomination of Councillor to join personnel committee; Robin Carpenter asked Paul Vallis whether he would take on this role and he agreed to do so. It was proposed by Robin Carpenter, seconded by Vanessa May and agreed AGREED that Paul Vallis join Vanessa May and Peter Bysouth on this committee.
    1. Confirmation of Clerk’s hours for January 2013: these were confirmed as presented.
    2. Donation to St Mary’s Church Parochial Church Council: (Peter Bysouth, having declared an interest in this item, took no part in the discussions or voting thereon). The request for a contribution towards the expense of insuring the Church was discussed. It was proposed by Robin Carpenter, seconded by Bill Turner and RESOLVED that the Parish make a contribution of £120.00 (Section 137 grant).
    3. Village Hall Improvements: Peter Bysouth informed the meeting that there is to be a meeting of the Village Hall committee shortly. The Clerk reported that she had received information about potential grant sources from Natalie Ross at SSDC, which she had forwarded to Stewart Ogden. Cathy Bakewell has also offered to contribute £1,400 from her County Council Health & Well Being scheme. Clerk to forward to Stewart more information recently received by post.
    4. Authorised signatories: it was proposed by Vanessa May, seconded by Malcolm White and RESOLVED that the form provided by the bank to update the list of authorised signatories for the Parish Council’s accounts should be signed, and this was done in accordance with the mandate.
    5. New Reserve Account: the Clerk presented documentation previously circulated enabling Councillors to compare the interest rates of the existing reserve account with that of another type of account on offer which would obtain a higher rate of interest subject to there being no more than one withdrawal per quarter. Councillors discussed this and it was proposed by Robin Carpenter, seconded by Malcolm White and RESOLVED that the full amount in the existing reserve account be transferred to a Bonus Saver account. The forms required by the Bank for this purpose were provided by the Clerk and signed in accordance with the mandate.
    1. Report from Footpath Representative: Robin Carpenter reported that many paths are currently very muddy.
    2. County Council consultation on addition of bridleway between Ridge Lane and North Lane: Councillors considered a letter from the County Council’s Rights of Way Definitive Map team ( previously circulated) asking for evidence of public use. There were various comments made, including recollection of a parish working party clearing the lane and providing surfacing materials, from which it was concluded that there is a case for bridleway designation. Clerk to draw the comments together into a letter to respond and pass to Chairman to check before sending.
    1. January’s work; the Lengthsman’s report was considered. Robin Carpenter will speak to a resident at Lyatts whose entrance drive crosses a ditch believed to be blocked and causing water to flow onto the road. Malcolm White thanked Bill Turner for doing some cleaning on Primrose Hill.
    2. Report from Coker Division meeting 13th February; Robin Carpenter reminded the Council that the current Lengthsman will retire at the end of March, and that also the scheme’s administrator will be stepping down. At the meeting members were introduced to a new alternative scheme offered by the District Council called the Streetscene Parish Warden Scheme. He had also met with officers at the Lufton depot, and commended this scheme as offering more flexibility and a wide range of equipment. The District Council will charge parishes £17.00 per hour per person, which is closely comparable to the current rate. The working day will be longer in summer and shorter in winter. The Coker Division scheme has some money in hand which would be returned to the parishes pro rata if it is terminated.
    3. Work for February (Thursday 21st):
      1. Clear drains in Wimborough Lane and gully opposite sewage works.
      2. Clear drain in Hardington Moor on the west side of Pig Hill outside Hillsprings.
      3. Clear any other drains or gullies as appropriate.
  14. ANNUAL ASSEMBLY 16th April
    1. Speaker and presentations; it was agreed that the Clerk should contact Stewart Ogden to ask him to make a presentation about the proposed improvement works for the Village Hall. The Clerk also to write to representatives of the village groups.
    1. Correspondence to be circulated was issued.
    2. Correspondence received:
      1. From Somerset County Council Library Service asking for feedback on planned policy changes; noted and to be circulated
      2. Notice of consultation on Somerset Minerals Plan; noted
      3. The Clerk advised the meeting that Mrs Sam Winter has joined the staff of SALC.
    Item 17 of the Agenda having been taken after 15, the Clerk left the meeting for the following item.
    1. Jessica was appointed to start work on 1st August 2011 at a salary based upon an average of 20 hours per month at £8.05 per hour. After some discussion it was proposed by ****** and seconded by ******* that this should be raised to £9 per hour, and passed unanimously.
    1. Chairman:
      1. advised the meeting that the Council would need to decide with a resolution at its next meeting whether to adopt the new Parish Warden Scheme.
      2. read out a letter from the owner of Moorend Nurseries advising the Parish Council of his decision to close the Nurseries and find alternative uses for the site. The Clerk was asked to bring more information to the next meeting.
    2. Councillors: none
    3. Clerk:
      1. advised the meeting that she will be going to Taunton in the near future and intends to deposit at the Somerset Heritage Centre the Parish Council’s minutes for 2005, 2006, and 2007.
      2. reported that she has updated various Parish Council documents published on the village website but needs to do more work to update the schedule of assets. She asked for confirmation that Councillors have no gifts or hospitality to record, and all Councillors present confirmed this.
    The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Tuesday the 19th of March 2013 at 7.30 p.m. in the Village Hall. The meeting closed at XXX p.m.