Report on the October Meeting
Tuesday 1st October Shawford Parish Hall
New Pavilion Project
Table of Contents
Mr. Paul Murray reported upon his continuing activities in respect of the New Pavilion Building Project. Following the unexpectedly high costs quoted by the contractors who had submitted tenders, negotiations on making some savings had been undertaken. This has resulted in significantly reduced quotations, but still in excess of the original anticipated project costs. Discussions with the Lottery Fund indicate that the major part of the shortfall between anticipated costs and the latest quoted costs would be covered by additional funding from that source. A small additional amount would have to be found by fund raising from within the community.
Discussions with the Sports Club concerning a new Lease/Licence, to be operative once the new Pavilion is built, continues. Requirements of the Parish Council have been put to the Sports Club and a response is awaited. It was emphasised that this matter needs to be resolved as soon as possible as contracts with the building contractors cannot be entered into without the appropriate legal agreements with the ultimate users being in place.
Cllr. Nick Campbell-White reported on yet another spate of vandalism on the Stone War Memorial on Shawford Down. This third act of desecration is abhorred by the Parish Council and all Parishioners. Further publicising of this mindless vandalism needs to be undertaken, in the hope that the perpetrators will be shamed into ceasing their activities. Repairs to the memorial are hoped to be completed before Remembrance Sunday in November.
Finance and Admin
Recently circulated directives concerning the “Freedom of Information Act – Publication Schemes” have yet again imposed more bureaucratic paperwork upon the Parish Council. This is over and above the recently imposed “Code of Conduct” issue and the “New Lighter Touch Audit Regime”, both of which in themselves caused excessive and ongoing work by the Clerk and Councillors. This latest initiative is being reviewed by the Finance and Administration Committee to establish the Parish Council’s response.
Cllr. Mrs. Mary Shaw expressed her disappointment that graffiti has appeared all over the new Children’s Play equipment in the Play Area in Compton Street. It is very disappointing that having spent such a large amount of money, most of which was generously donated to the Parish, the results of all the hard work can be so vandalised, spoiling the Play Area for other Parishioners. Fortunately, the graffiti is written with Chalk, which, it is hoped, will be washed off when it rains.
The provision of a Bus Shelter at the end of Attwoods Drove has been investigated by Cllr. Mrs Celia Simmons and Cllr. Mrs. Jude Vallis. It is accepted that there is a need and research into obtaining a suitable Bus Shelter, together with the issue of funding, is being undertaken.
Cllr Mr. Tom Threlfall reported that the Chairman of Twyford Parish Council continues to consider the moving of the Parish Boundary between the two Parishes. As far as Compton and Shawford are concerned, the Ordinance Survey clearly and correctly shows the Parish Boundary and this Parish considers that it should remain as stated.
Cllr. Mrs. Jude Vallis reported upon the closure of Compton Post Office together with the reduction of opening hours of the associated Shop. Whilst the Parish Council considers that this is most undesirable, there is very little that the Parish Council can do to prevent the loss of such an amenity.
Cllr. Mr. George Beckett reported on correspondence received from the Countryside Service, Hampshire County Council. This was primarily to do with Shawford Down, which is owned by the Countryside Service. The Parish Council has been advised that “Dog Bins” are to be installed in appropriate places on the Down to encourage dog owners to clean up any mess. Also, it is proposed to install Height Barriers at the entrance to the car park at the top of Shawford Down, this to deter any further re-occurrence of the Travellers camping in that car park. This met with mixed views, the main concern being that such prevention may move the problem elsewhere, possibly to an area where the result will be far more detrimental.
In addition, the Countryside Service intends to fell the Sycamore Trees along Station Road in Shawford. It is thought that most residents will welcome this and to this end all affected households are to be advised by the Shawford Village Residents Association.
M LANGFORD, CLERK