Present: Cllrs D Hayward (Chairman), L Bennett (Vice Chair), P Clark, I Houston, T Hunt and S London.
In attendance: Mrs P Chapman (Clerk), County Councillor M Penfold, District Councillors M Lawrence, R Leg and 28 members of the public.
The Chairman Cllr D Hayward welcomed the members of the public and asked if anyone would like to speak now or during the agenda item. Two members of the public requested to speak during the agenda item for the Bradford Abbas Post office planning application (WD/D/17/002836).
- Apologies for Absence
Cllr D Coffin.
- Minutes of the Last Meeting
The minutes from the meeting held 2nd January 2018 were approved by the Councillors in attendance and signed by the Chairman, Cllr D Hayward, as a true record of the meeting.
- Declaration of Interest
- West Dorset District Council Applications
WD/D/17/002836 Bradford Abbas Post Office, Church Road, Bradford Abbas. Change of use of the building from a mixed use dwelling (C3)/(A1) to a residential dwelling. Cllr D Hayward noted the planning working group met to discuss a recommendation for the meeting today. The working group recommended objecting to the planning application. Cllr D Hayward read aloud the proposed comments from the Parish Council for WDDC.
Two members of the public noted they would like to explore the idea of community shop. It is necessary for those residents in the village that do not drive as the County no longer provides a bus service. One member of the public stated after speaking with a few parents at the primary school she felt it would be supported. A member of the previous shop working group informed the meeting that from the research provided previously a community shop is viable under the right circumstances, location and rent is key to its success.
Cllr T Hunt said the Post Office was referred to in the Conservation Appraisal as of community and architectural importance. He also queried if the Victorian Society, a UK charity, the national authority on Victorian and Edwardian architecture built between 1837 and 1914 in England and Wales could be of any help.
District Cllr R Legg stated he has contacted the Case Officer of this application to ask if evidence was provided by the applicant. He has recently been told information was provided but WDDC cannot share the evidence without permission from the applicant. The Case Office is waiting for a reply from the applicant. Cllr R Legg emailed the officer noting his concerns this contravenes planning policy if objectors have not received all the information/evidence.
Cllr D Hayward requested a vote from the Parish Councillors in attendance on the application. It was unanimous to object to the application. Cllr D Hayward will update the objection comments to incorporate what was noted at this meeting for the Clerk to submit. Action: Cllr D Hayward & Clerk
- West Dorset District Council Application Decision
No new decisions to report. The Clerk informed the Councillors Mill Farm has applied for non- material amendments to application WD/D/16/000389. The amendments can be seen online but the Parish Council does not need to respond.
- Parish and Town Planning Session (Hosted by Dorset Councils Partnership)
DCC has organised a Parish & Town Planning Session in Dorchester for Thursday 8 March 6 to 8pm. The Clerk has reserved for Cllr D Hayward and herself to attend but happy to provide the space for another Councillor if they wish to go. It was resolved the Clerk and Cllr D Hayward will attend. Action: Cllr D Hayward & Clerk
- Telephone box on Churchwell Street
Cllr D Hayward noted the decision has not been made concerning BT’s application to remove the telephone box on Churchwell Street. The Councillors agreed if the application is granted and the phone box is to be removed the parish council will purchase and list the telephone box in order to protect it from removal. Cllr T Hunt gave Cllr D Hayward documents from Thornhackett Parish Council that have already listed their box and it now has the defibrillator in it.
- Dorset County Council Definitive Map Statement Modification Order 2017
For the benefit of the members of the public Cllr D Hayward discussed the Parish Council’s application to put the footpath on East Farm on the definitive map. It has taken at least 8 years but the order has been approved by DCC but due to objections it has to be before the Secretary of State for the order to be confirmed. Currently there are 20 objections and they can only be viewed by making an appointment in Dorchester. The Clerk will go to Dorchester over the next few months to view the objections. The Clerk received an email from V Penny of the Regulation Team Leader stating there is currently a backlog of cases and it is likely to be some time before they are in a position to write a report and send it to Legal Services (DCC). It is believed to be another two years before it proceeds to a public inquiry. Action: Clerk
Today a few of the Councillors and the Clerk met with a resident of Saxon Maybank to walk the route of the proposed footpath that Is currently not open to the public until the Modification Order is confirmed. The resident stated if the order is confirmed they will move forward to extinguish the footpath which can be costly. The Councillors resolved to, at this time, to continue with the lengthy process to get the order confirmed.
County Councillor M Penfold has offered to help, the Clerk will forward the order and her contacts. Action: Clerk
District Cllr R Legg noted he is very surprised to hear the residents were not informed from Charter Oak and their searches did not flag the Modification Order when purchasing the properties.
- Affordable Housing
Cllr I Houston and Cllr D Hayward will a draft of a flyer to seek views and support for affordable housing in the village. Cllr D Hayward will speak to Mr N Dyke of the Sports and Social Club for an update and to see if they are proceeding with a planning application and if it would include affordable housing as their preapplication advice was negative if the application did not include affordable housing. Action: Cllrs D Hayward and I Houston (Cllr R Legg left the meeting)
The Clerk did not have the war memorial on the agenda. It was decided to discuss the war memorial as Cllr D Hayward had an action from the last meeting to meet with Mr Bide. Cllr D Hayward reported Mr Bide’s estimate included the areas discussed at the previous meeting. It was resolved to move forward as previously agreed with Mr Bide’s estimate of £630 for repairs needed. The Clerk will write to Mr Bide. Cllr T Hunt noted some of the names are missing and suggested the Parish Council will look into a grant in order to rectify this and have them added to the memorial. Action: Clerk
- Matters Arising / Action Taken
- Design Statement
Cllr I Houston met with Cllr T Hunt to discuss the design statement on the website. Cllr I Houston will edit the statement to make it public for residents of the village to review and comment. They have renamed the Design Statement to the Village Plan. The Clerk suggested this could be on the agenda for the Annual Parish Meeting in March. Action: Cllr I Houston
- Community Defibrillator
Training will take place at the Club 7pm on Wednesday 21st February. Mr N Dyke is checking the electrical power to the case to make sure it is not the lack of power that is causing the problems. The Clerk will keep the Parish Council updated. Action: Clerk
- Safe Cycle and Walking Route to Yeovil
Nothing to report at this time. Project ongoing.
- Design Statement
- Report from the Wriggle Valley Transportation Group
A January meeting was not held. Cllr D Hayward reported that he understood the Monday trial bus to Sherborne was not very popular, although this may be due to the Tesco bus running through many of the villages.
- County Councillor, District Councillor and Officer Reports
Footpaths: Cllr S Longdon reported they are all muddy but walkable. The Clerk noted she received a few complaints concerning the condition of the path along Mill Farm, specifically the area that runs along the side of the house. The Clerk contacted Mr D Ackerley Senior Countryside Ranger to ask him to take a look at the area. Cllr D Hayward, coincidentally, was in the area of Mill Farm when Mr Ackerley surveyed the footpath. He felt it is passible and has seen worse recently due to the high level of rainfall. The landowner is in contact with Mr Ackerley to ask for advice in order to make the area less waterlogged.
Village Hall: Cllr T Hunt was unable to attend the most recent meeting. Cllr D Hayward was in attendance representing the History Society. He reported a new booking system was discussed as well as finances.
District Cllr M Lawrence discussed a West Dorset District Council Leisure Development Fund. Grants are available for projects costing £1,000 or up to a maximum of £5,000. There will be two application deadlines in 2018 - 1 April 2018 and 1 August 2018. To be eligible for a grant your project must be completed by 31 March 2019. The fund will not be available from April 2019 onwards.
County Cllr M Penfold noted there is no word concerning the unitary authority. She has not received any complaints recently concerning the roads in the village to report. (District Cllr M Lawrence and County Cllr M Penfold left the meeting)
Cllr D Hayward noted he had a conversation with Paul Thatcher (DCC) concerning a drain outside a cottage on The Cross. Paul Thatcher requested Cllr D Hayward report this drain online. Although DCC cleared the drain it was determined it is a private drain, not DCC.
The Councillors discussed the increase traffic along Bradford Road and the increased risk of accidents at the junction of Bradford Road and Church Road due to the restricted visibility at the bend. The Clerk will contact Paul Thatcher to discuss the possibility of rumble strips to slow drivers down before the bend at the junction. Action: Clerk
The Clerk will report the dropped kerb outside The Grange. Action: Clerk
Cllr D Hayward will speak to the owners of the two cars obstructing the bollards on Churchwell Street and North Street as at times it is difficult pass through. Action: Cllr D Hayward
The Clerk noted a complaint concerning the street cleaning on Church Road. The complaint mainly noted vegetation and mud, the Primary School only collects litter. If a street cleaner does still pass through the village it would be unable to access the area due to the parked cars. The Clerk will offer to add it to the litter pick in March if they wish her to do so. Action: Clerk
- Playing Field
- Inspection reports from Volunteers
All notations mentioned in reports have been repaired or are on the list to be repaired.
- Repairs Needed to the Equipment
Mr Hopkins replaced the poles to the climbing frame and the zip wire. The rot on the zip wire platform was not estimated for. The clerk will speak to Mr Hopkins to get an estimate.
It was resolved to purchase two wooden picnic tables at a cost of £99 per table. The location of the tables will be near the toddler area and sets of swings. The Clerk will meet with Mr Hopkins to discuss the seat refurbishment and securing the picnic tables. Action: Clerk
- Inspection reports from Volunteers
- Financial Accounts
- Grants & Donation
- Accounts for Payment
The Clerk request approval for two payments:
£ 209.34 – Clerk’s wage month 11
£ 472.00 – M Hopkins repairs at estimated
The above payments were approved and will be made via online transfer.
- Report form the New External Auditor and the New Limited Assurance Regime.
The Clerk reported she attended the training session provided by DAPTC with the new external auditor chosen by SAAA (Smaller Authorities Audit Appointments), LPK Littlejohn LLP. The Clerk noted the Parish Council is exempt for filing as the spending and precept is below £25,000.
The Clerk presented two internal auditors. One was approximately £100 and is currently recommended by the Thornhackett Parish Clerk and is also used by Yetiminster. The Clerk also recommended Mrs R Harding Clerk to several parishes in Dorset also provides internal audits for other parishes. She is £15 per hour and expects the first audits will be less than 4 hours. It was resolved to use Mrs R Harding this year. Action: Clerk
- Grants & Donation
- Residents on Compton Road reported problems with cars parking on a grassy verge causing damage. At the moment the contact was to keep the parish council informed . It was resolved the Clerk will forward the email to County Cllr M Penfold and thank the residents for all they have done. Action: Clerk
- The Clerk had an email from a resident in the village concerning keeping Chickens in their garden and if the Parish Council knew of any regulations. No one at the meeting was aware of any, the Clerk will contact WDDC Environmental Health. Action: Clerk
- the Declaration of Pecurinery Interests of each Councillor is now on the Bradford Abbas website as well the checklist for the playing fields when inspecting the grounds.
- Cllr I Houston reported the Parish Council now complies with DCC's request to add Councillors’ DPI forms to the website which is in addition to our requirements of the Transparency Code of the 2014 Localism Act by adding an additional field to our “Councillors’ Responsibilities” page on the Parish Council website. (https://bradford-abbas.uk/councillors-responsibilities)
Dorset CC acknowledged what we had done and said that had made a link to our page from their website
- Items for the Pennant
- Annual Meeting including the Village Plan
- Thank the residents attending the February Meeting
- Any Other Information/ Date of Next Meeting
Tuesday 6th March 2018 7:30pm Bradford Abbas Village Hall
Cllr D Hayward requested the potential listing of the telephone box and war memorial on the next agenda.