CRADLEY PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council held on
Friday 11th May 2018 at 7.00 pm in Cradley Village Hall
Councillors: Bruce Herriot (Chairman), Judith Aldridge, Ann Carver, Giselle Edgar, Alan Eldridge, Geoffrey Fielding, Janita Goodwin, Wynne Harries, Clare Jones, Miles Meager, Diane Merker, David Roys, Sarah Thomas
Lynda Wilcox (HALC) … Admin Cover. 15 local residents.
1. Election of Chairman for 2018/19
1.1 It was RESOLVED to elect Bruce Herriot as Chairman.
1.2 Councillor Herriot completed his declaration of acceptance of office form.
2. Apologies for absence were received from Ann Carver, Simon Davies and Janita Goodwin.
3. Declarations of interest & written requests for dispensation
Sarah Thomas (non pecuniary) – planning applications P180573
Diane Merker (pecuniary) – planning applications P181003
4. Election of a Vice-Chair for 2018/19
It was RESOLVED to elect Wynne Harries as Vice Chairman.
5. Minutes of the previous meetings held on 10th and 20th April 2018
5.1 10th April … It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes subject to the following amendments:
5.1.1 Item 7.3.2 … First sentence to read “The tender documents were agreed in principle but the need for amendments was identified.”
5.1.2 Item 20.1 … Spelling of Wyne corrected to ‘Wynne’ and Gizelle corrected to ‘Giselle’.
5.1.3 Item 9.1 … To read ‘Biennial’ rather than Biannual.
5.2 20th April … It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes subject to the following addition ‘3.1.2 … Geoff Fielding read a statement regarding the legal case concerning the ex- clerk’.
6. Open Session
6.1 The Ward Councillor was not present to give her report.
6.2 Representations from the public included:
6.2.1 Support from one resident for the Green Farm planning application.6.2.2 Objection from one resident to the Shuttifield Coppice planning application because there was no need for a storage building in connection with agricultural activities because there had been no agricultural activities for a number of years. There were no facilities for the disposal of sewage and no parking. The design was not conducive to an agricultural workshop, the site was on a blind bend adjacent to SSSI designated woodland with protected species and there was no social or economic benefit to the community.
6.2.3 One local resident had raised the on-going poor condition of local roads with the Ward Councillor and the Herefordshire Council officer concerned. Photographic evidence was available if required by the parish council.
6.2.4 Ivan Smart thanked the Parish Council for its hard work over the past year.
7. Planning Matters
7.1 It was RESOLVED to make the following comments on planning applications for determination by Herefordshire Council:
7.1.1 P180573 Land at Shuttifield Coppice, Storridge. (Retrospective) storage building. PC Comment: Strong objection because:
a) The previous permission was granted in relation to the storage of agricultural equipment for use on the specific plot of land in question.
b) A condition on the previous permission stated that the building would be demolished if it was not used for the above purpose within a set period of time – it is believed that the time limit has expired and there has been no evidence of any agricultural activities on the land over many years.
c) It is understood that the farm machinery to be stored in the building is not machinery used to farm the surrounding land but is to be brought in from outside the area for commercial purposes in relation to the applicant’s construction and agricultural machinery retail business in Malvern.
d) The land is within the AONB and the above proposed use therefore conflicts with Policy 5 of Cradley NDP.
e) Access to the site is down a narrow lane and because machinery is being brought to the site for storage prior to being driven out when sold on, there would be an unacceptable level of heavy traffic which is not even connected to agricultural practices within the parish.
7.1.2 P181003 Southrise, 4, Brookside, Cradley. Replacement of rear extension (conservatory type) with new rear and side extension.
PC Comment: No objection.
7.1.3 P181245 The Lodge, Storridge. Proposed conservatory ground floor side extension.
PC Comment: No objection.
7.1.4 P181459 Crumpton Hill Farm Shop, Storridge. Proposal to convert ¼ of the existing shop floorspace into a tea/coffee shop.
PC Comment: No objection but, in the interests of road safety as the site is on a bend, it is requested that a condition be imposed to restrict any advertising hoardings to be sited behind the fencing within the curtilage rather than on the roadside.
7.1.5 P181174/F Green Farm house, Chapel Lane, Cradley. Proposed conversion of redundant farm building to Artist’s Studio.
PC Comment: Application supported.
7.1.6 P181176/L Green Farm house, Chapel Lane, Cradley. Listed Building Application. Proposed conversion of redundant farm building to Artist’s Studio.
PC Comment: Application supported.
7.2 The following planning approvals given by Herefordshire Council were noted:
7.2.1 P180402 Winthill Farm, Cradley. Replacement agricultural building on existing footprint, no change of use.
7.2.2 P180433 The Mill House, Cradley. Fell or prune various Leylandii, fruit trees, and Silver Birch due to snow damage.
7.2.3 P180702 Coach house, Cradley. Fell fir tree because of snow damage and fell Eucalyptus because of significant bend in trunk.
7.3 Sale of land within Cradley Neighbourhood Plan Strategic Green Gap
7.3.1 In response to the Estate Agent – Fisher German – stating in sale particulars that ‘future development is likely’, Anne Scarsbrook would draft a letter pointing out that the development on the site would be against policies in Cradley NDP.
8. Election of members to Working Groups
8.1 Finance … Cllrs: Alan Eldridge Bruce Herriot, Clare Jones, Anne Scarsbrook, Clerk.
8.2 Employment … Cllrs: Geoff Fielding, Bruce Herriot, Wynne Harries & Miles Meager.
8.3 Planning … Cllrs: Ann Carver, Alan Eldridge, Wynne Harries & Giselle Edgar.
8.4 Village Infrastructure … Cllrs: Judith Aldridge, Simon Davies, Geoff Fielding, Janita Goodwin, Clare Jones, Miles Meager, Diane Merker, David Roys & Sarah Thomas. Lay member: Derek Scully.
8.5 Neighbourhood Development Plan … Cllrs: Ann Carver, Geoff Fielding, Clare Jones, David Roys, Anne Scarsbrook, Sarah Thomas. Lay members: Tanya Lloyd-Jones, Chris Lowder & Jeff White.
8.6 Communications Strategy … Cllrs: Simon Davies, Giselle Edgar, Alan Eldridge, Wynne Harries, Miles Meager & Anne Scarsbrook (Lead Person).
8.7 Task & Finish Working Groups:
8.7.1 Standing Orders & Working Group Terms of Reference … Cllrs: Diane Merker, Miles Meager & Sarah Thomas.
8.7.2 Clerk Recruitment … Cllrs: Miles Meager, Diane Merker, David Roys & Anne Scarsbrook.
8.8 Parish Council Representatives:
8.8.1 Cradley Village Hall … Ann Carver.
8.8.2 Storridge Village Hall … Sarah Thomas.
8.8.3 East Herefordshire Area Meeting of HALC … Miles Meager.
8.8.4 Parish Paths Officers … Anne Scarsbrook (Footpaths Officer) & Geoff Fielding.
8.8.5 Tree Warden … Jill Upton.
8.9 Parish Volunteers:
8.9.1 Parish Clock Winding … Chris & Gillian Lowder, Deputy – Hugh Forsyth.
8.9.2 War memorial Grass Cutting … Ian Cartwright.
8.9.3 Defibrillator Checks in Cradley village … Bruce Herriot.
8.9.4 Crumpton Hill Village Green Grass Cutting: Pending
8.9.5 Putting notices on parish noticeboards:
a) Chapel Lane … Geoff Fielding.
b) Butcher’s and Fincher’s Corner … Bruce Herriot.
c) Buryfields … Anne Scarsbrook.
d) Storridge Village Hall … Janita Goodwin.
8.9.6 Lengthsman Assistance … Yet to be agreed. The Chairman suggested a list of councillors and non-councillors.
8.10 Charities of Richard Hill and Others: Fred Beard, Di Cale, Sarah Herriot, Robert Ward.
8.10.1 The resignation of John Rowe in November 2017 was noted – a vote of thanks was accorded.
8.10.2 It was RESOLVED to approve the appointment of Mike Moseley and the re-appointment of Fred Beard.
8.10.3 Retirement Rota noted: Mrs D Cale – 2018/19 and Dr S Herriot – 2019/20.
9. To note outcome of Employment Tribunal
9.1 The Chairman read out a statement on the outcome of the Tribunal which had found in favour of Cradley Parish Council. Advice would be sought as to whether the judgement could be displayed on the parish council website.
10. Village Infrastructure
10.1 It was RESOLVED that the Chairman would sign the previously circulated contract between Balfour Beatty and Cradley Parish Council for the 2018/19 Lengthsman Scheme and P3 Footpaths Scheme.
10.1.1 Members considered the recommendation of the Working Group following the tender process and RESOLVED to appoint Richard Clarke of ‘Really Rural’ from Bromyard as Lengthsman for 2018/19 with immediate effect.
Geoff Fielding read a statement concerning the outgoing Lengthsman who had asked for a reference from the parish council. The rate for the lengthsman is £20.00 per hour. Geoff Fielding spent several thousands of pounds of his own money during the 3 to 4 years he was involved with running the lengthsman scheme. Our standing orders were not adhered to No. 18 section d, ii, iv and v.
10.1.2 ‘Scheme Administrator’ for Lengthsman and P3 Footpaths work. There was detailed discussion and Lynda Wilcox clarified that the parish council was not lawfully able to delegate decision making to an individual councillor, only the Clerk. It was therefore RESOLVED that the new Clerk would be delegated to issue the orders to the Lengthsman and receive invoices for payment.
However, a liaison role could be undertaken by a councillor, i.e. showing the Lengthsman exactly where the required work authorised by the parish council or clerk was required, as well as checking that the work had been undertaken correctly. It was therefore RESOLVED that Diane Merker would undertake the liaison role on behalf of the parish council.
10.1.3 Members identified the following areas of work for the new Lengthsman:
a) Fallen branches in Chapel Lane.
b) Bonfire piles by the bike track and the corner of Brookside.
c) Items under the arches at Kings Bridge.
d) A dustbin required emptying at Buryfields.
e) Diane Merker would walk the parish with the new Lengthsman.
f) An item would be placed in the newsletter to ask local residents to report work required to be undertaken to the new Clerk.
10.2 It was RESOLVED to accept Surepest’s fixed fee offer of Mole Control services for the period 1.4.18 to 31.3.19 in the sum of £440. The previously circulated agreement was signed subject to one amendment … bullet point four to read: ‘Mr Howard to liaise with the CPC Clerk to ensure good communications.’
10.3 Members considered the draft grass-cutting contract and tender documents which had been circulated in advance of the meeting. Following discussion it was RESOLVED to review the current contract in September and go out to tender at that time, using the tender document.
10.4 Members confirmed that it was the responsibility of Cradley Parish Council to repair and maintain Crumpton Hill Village Green, including the triangle and ditch. It was noted that there was a large hole in the access track. It was RESOLVED to see the title deeds which would involve a fee of around £3 payable to the Land Registry.
10.4.1 It was noted that the parish council had four options:
a) PC to maintain the land via the Lengthsman.
b) Local residents maintain the land.
c) Land could be left as scrub and go wild.
d) Land could be sold.
It was RESOLVED that the matter would be discussed at a future meeting.
11. Standing Orders Working Group
11.1 The Working Group had removed references to Wales and inserted GDPR references. An electronic copy would be supplied by HALC and it was RESOLVED to discuss the matter at the next meeting.
12. Recruitment of Parish Clerk
12.1 Documents had been circulated to members and the process was on-going. It was noted that the deadline for applications was 18th June.
12.2 It was RESOLVED that the new Clerk would work twelve hours per week, to be reviewed after three months.
12.3 It was RESOLVED that a budget of up to £500 would be available for recruitment.
13.1 The Chairman gave a brief financial report.
13.2 It was RESOLVED to approve the following invoices for payment:
13.2.1 St John the Evangelist Church – Storridge … £750.00.
13.2.2 Community Heartbeat Trust … £135.00.
13.2.3 Cradley Village Hall … £38.50.
13.2.4 Kidwells Solicitors … £990.00.
13.2.5 Storridge Village Hall … £133.00.
14. General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)
14.1 Lynda Wilcox reported that due to lobbying by NALC, an amendment to exempt parish and town councils from the requirement to appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO) was likely to be agreed.
14.2 Wynne Harries reported on a training session he had attended at HALC.
14.3 It was RESOLVED that a Working Group be set up to recommend action and implementation of GDPR in liaison with HALC. The following members volunteered: Judith Aldridge, Wynne Harries and Miles Meager.
15. Review of Cradley Parish Council Action Plan
It was noted that this was still on schedule generally.
16. Purchase of Community Access Defibrillator for Cradley Surgery
16.1 It was noted the donations of £2484.41 had been received towards the total cost of £2424.00 (including VAT).
16.2 It was RESOLVED to leave the matter for the next meeting because a cheque for £1k had not yet been received.
17. Community Speed Watch initiative
It was RESOLVED to postpone discussion to the next meeting.
18. Councillors were reminded to update their Registers of Interest if necessary.
19. The Chairman mentioned items of information received:
19.1 Emails from Storridge residents supporting a change of name to Cradley and Storridge Parish Council.
19.2 Email from local resident re traffic going the wrong way down Pixiefields Lane which was one way.
19.3 Templates from HALC re GDPR.
19.4 Email from Herefordshire Council confirming reduction of speed limit on Cowleigh Road.
19.5 Email from Balfour Beatty re sale by auction on 11th May of 2 x 6’ flail mowers and a 3.5 ton twin axle trailer.
20. Key items for CMS Newsletter included:
20.1 Election of Chairman and Vice Chairman.
20.2 Result of the Tribunal.
21. Items for future agendas:
21.1 Change of name to Cradley and Storridge Parish Council.
21.2 Crime Prevention Scheme presentation.
21.3 Neighbourhood Watch registration.
21.4 Village Picnic.
21.5 Cradley Community Awards.
21.6 Review Communications Strategy.
21.7 Church Clock Lottery application.
21.8 Recreation Grounds Working Group.
21.9 Making the Butchery a Community Asset.
22. Date of next meeting … Tuesday 12th June 2018 at Cradley Village Hall.
22.1 The date (22nd May) and content (presentation from Ward Councillor Ellie Chowns, Charities Report, Village Hall Reports) of the Annual Parish Meeting to be held at Storridge Village Hall, was noted.