June 2010 MeetingReport

Report of the meeting held on Tuesday 1 June 2010 in the Compton Room, Shawford Village Hall.

Compton School was very high on the agenda for this month’s meeting. It was agreed that, as chairman of the Parish Council, Councillor Stevens would chair the public meeting on Thursday 17 June and that it should begin with a presentation from Hampshire County Council traffic engineers on the proposed road safety measures. The school and representatives of the Compton Village association would then be invited to comment, followed by a general invitation to members of the public. It was accepted that the meeting could be no more than an ‘airing of views’ and that no decisions could be expected, on the night.

The resignation of Jeremy Dolphin as the Parish Council’s representative on Compton School’s Board of Governors prompted considerable discussion. The council agreed that it would be preferable for a parish councillor to represent its interests on the board of governors. Three councillors expressed an interest but two were unsure about the level of commitment required. In the circumstances, Councillor Beckett proposed that a decision should be deferred until the next meeting; this would allow councillors time to obtain information on the responsibilities of a school governor. All agreed.

County & District Councillors’ Reports

County Councillor Charlotte Bailey confirmed that three Hampshire County Council (HCC) officers, led by Nick Sackley, Highways Engineer, would attend the public meeting at Compton School. She also added that members of the School Travel Plan group had invited the Compton Village Association to nominate a representative to join the group. A similar invitation would be extended to the Parish Council’s representative, once appointed.

District Councillor Eleanor Bell announced that she had been nominated as the Winchester City Council (WCC) cabinet representative on environment and transport issues, including Southampton airport and the Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE). Councillor Beckett advised that, despite a change in the national government, all national planning policy guidance remains in force but weight will be given to village plans. He hoped that the Parish Council would continue to support the Church Commissioners’ plans for Bushfield Camp.

Four Dell Farm

There was considerable discussion about the requests for variations in the planning conditions at Four Dell Farm. Councillor Martin Bell confirmed that he had thanked the WCC enforcement officer, Neil March, for his prompt attention to initial concerns raised by the Parish Council. But he remained concerned that, following the clearance of the wooded areas, new areas of hard standing were being created, which might in the future be used for the storage of materials, parking of lorries or the dumping of aggregate waste from the industrial estate. Based upon recent history, councillors agreed that his concerns were well founded. The council needed to keep a very close eye on developments and to maintain pressure, on both HCC & WCC officers, to ensure that local concerns are taken into consideration, during the Four Dell Farm planning process.

Police Report

PCSO Gavin Cooper reported that the police had investigated two reports of suspicious persons ‘going door to door’. There had also been one theft of a pair of wellington boots from a property in Compton Street and two dwelling burglaries, involving properties in Field Way and Cliff Way. In the latter a large number of workmen’s tools were stolen.

Highways & Byways

Councillor Campbell-White announced that Councillor John Broomfield had taken over responsibility for the deployment of the flashing speed lights, which should shortly appear in the parish. The council also agreed that Councillor Mike Southgate would represent the Parish Council in matters concerning the Sparrowgrove & Oakwood Copse Conservation Trust.

John Wilkinson’s first footpath’s report was much appreciated by councillors. The clerk was asked to remind him that, in order to ensure retention of the rights of way, all footpaths within the parish need to be walked within a twelve month period and that each time a path is walked it should be noted in the monthly report.

Councillor Campbell-White also reported that several parishioners had expressed concern about the low level of water in the Itchen Navigation System. The clerk had contacted the Environment Agency and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. Both organisations had responded, indicating that “the Agency’s ecologists are happy with the lower levels but faster flows”.

Social & Affordable Housing

Councillor Evans confirmed that a representative of Hampshire Alliance for Rural Affordable Housing (HARAH) had visited the parish to look at potential sites. The report on the visit to the parish by John Lancaster, Community Action Hampshire, had yet to be received.

Playing Fields

Councillor Millar advised the council that she had met the Playdale inspector/maintenance man, Andrew Parkinson, on Wednesday 19 May and the problem with the orbital roundabout at the Compton Street play area had been resolved. She would be meeting Mr Parkinson again, in the week commencing 7 June, to discuss outstanding work at the Memorial Playing Fields play area.

Finance & Administration

The council authorised the Playing Fields Committee to consider, and if thought fit, approve the appointment of Digley Associates to value the playground equipment and to carry out the annual inspection. It also approved the posting on the Parish Council website of a photograph and brief background details on each councillor, and the clerk. (These should appear on the website in July.) Councillor Walmsley advised the council that the clerk had instructed the Parish Council’s solicitors to draw up a revised Sports Club lease, as agreed at the meeting on 4 May 2010.

Date of the next meeting

7.30pm Tuesday 6 July 2010 in the Compton Room, Shawford Village Hall.

David Drake