March 2013 PC Meeting Report
Report of the Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 5 March 2013 at Shawford Village Hall
Please note that the Queen Elizabeth II Field (previously known as the Compton Street playing field) will be formerly opened at 1100 on Saturday 6 April 2013 and that the Annual Parish Meeting will take place at 7.30pm Thursday 25 April 2013 in Shawford village hall.
During the fifteen minutes allocated for members of the public to address the council, several parishioners expressed concern about proposals for affordable housing in the parish; the validity of the data contained in the HARAH report and the need for the council to continue its search for alternatives sites.
The chairman read from a prepared statement in which she noted that, over the past year, the council had made considerable progress in its efforts to address an issue that had exercised successive councils for many years. Having studied the HARAH report and noted the comments received from members of the public, she had concluded that the council had two options:
i) To ignore its duty of care and responsibility to represent all sections of the community and to decide not to proceed with any of the proposals in the HARAH report. But, such action would mean that it is highly unlikely that any affordable homes would be built in Compton and Shawford in the foreseeable future. Or,
ii) Without any commitment, to ask HARAH to produce outline plans for the development of affordable homes on those sites, for which the council had received the fewest concerns i.e. 11, 5 and 4. Should the council adopt this position, she recommended that HARAH officials be asked to include proposals, which would help to alleviate the current parking problems in Attwoods Drove and Martins Fields.[A copy of the full statement can found on the parish website here]
Following a detailed discussion, to which every councillor contributed, the council agreed unanimously that it should proceed with ‘option two’, while continuing to look for other potential sites within the parish.”
PCSO Wilkinson presented the crime statistics. There had been two reported incidents in the past month: both in Compton Street. A mountain bike had been stolen from a house and police officers had spoken to male, who had been walking towards the main road in a state of inebriation.
County and District Councillors’ Reports
County Councillor Bailey drew the council’s attention to the Have Your Say Grant Fund (HSYGF), which is able to provide grants of up to £1000 for any grass roots community group. She noted that most of the residents in Park View were very pleased with the resurfacing of the footpath.
District Councillor Southgate reported that he had attended the Hockley Viaduct opening ceremony. The project had been an excellent example of co-operation between a number of organisations, the Winchester City and Hampshire Councils, Sustrans, The Friends of Hockley Viaduct and former parish councillor George Beckett, who had brought these elements together. He also drew the council’s attention to ‘Winchester in Bloom’, which is part of the national initiative to brighten up communities with floral displays. Councillor Stevens agreed to approach HYSGF to see if it would be able to provide funds for ‘Compton & Shawford in Bloom’.
Councillor Jeffrey drew councillors’ attention to the Winchester District Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA). It is an ‘evidence based’ document, which will inform on the development of WCC Local Plan Parts 1 & 2 and identifies three sites in Compton & Shawford: 285 (potential development between 2017 -2022), 2293 (2017-22) and 2439 (2012-2017). She also briefed councillors on the Winchester District Local Plan – Joint Core strategy, the Waste and Materials Plan and the planning process for agricultural buildings.
Following a question from a member of the public at the last council meeting, inquiries had been made with the WCC Planning Department about the status of the Village Design Statement and Parish Plan. A Village Design Statement is adopted by the planning authorities as planning policy guidance, in relation to the design of development, whereas the Parish Plan has no weight in the planning process.
Highways & Transport
The council agreed to Councillor Southgate’s recommendation that the council should apply to South Downs National Park for a grant for the installation of an additional ten cycle racks at Shawford station. The council also noted that parking restrictions in Shawford Road and the Hockley Viaduct should be implemented in time for the summer and that Hampshire Countryside will attempt to fill in the pot holes in the road leading to the Malms, as well as tarmacing the short stretch of the path at the top FP31, which runs from Southdown Road to the station.
The council noted that Councillors Stevens and Southgate were due to attend a meeting with the Transport Minister on 13 March 2013 to lobby for a quiet surface on the M3. Following discussion, the council concluded that, since both councillors would be lobbying on behalf of the community as a whole, it would not be necessary to provide them with dispensations under the Code of Conduct. [The meeting was subsequently postponed at the minister’s request.]
Councillor Jeffrey reported that HCC had agreed to clear overgrown vegetation from some of the footpaths in the vicinity of Hurdle Way.
Councillor Wilkinson announced that the Queen Elizabeth II Field (formerly known as the Compton Street playing field) will be formerly opened at 1100 on Saturday 6 April 2013. The fencing to the left of the main gate, where the plaque is to be installed, is complete and a new hedgerow will be planted alongside the fence, to the south and west of the site, in late March. All parishioners are invited to attend this final event in the parish celebrations of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Councillor Wilkinson reported that a Leylandii tree on the edge of the MPF was impacting on an overhead power cable and could become a potential hazard. Since there were funds in her budget to cover the £500 cost of removal, she considered that it would be sensible to do so. All agreed.
The council noted that it had received a letter from WCC indicating that the Open Spaces Fund would be replaced with a Community Infrastructure levy in April 2015. It was agreed that Councillor Wilkinson should produce an outline of how the funds currently allocated to Compton and Shawford could be spent within the parish, ideally in time for discussion at the next meeting on 2 April 2013.
Having declared a personal interest, Councillor Southgate made a short presentation, on behalf of SOCCT, requesting that the council consider offering a grant to the organisation to help with the management of Sparrow Grove and Oakwood Copse. He subsequently left the room while councillors considered his request. Following a short discussion, the council agreed to provide SOCCT with a grant of £400.
Finance & Administration
Councillor Walmsley reported that the chair of Hursley Parish Council had informed him that Hursley wished to be included in the arrangements for this year’s civic service and had offered to host it. The council also discussed the request from the school’s chair of governor’s, Simon Theobalds, for the council to be represented on the board of governors. It was agreed that Councillor Walmsley should speak to Mr Theobalds and the head teacher, Allison Driver, about the role that would be fulfilled by the council’s representative.
Councillor Wilkinson advised the council that, since it had provided a venue for some of the rehearsals, CASCA had decided to allocate a portion of the profits from the pantomime to the school.
The council noted Councillor Walmsley’s schedule for the production of the Annual Review, which will be distributed to all households in early April.
Lost and Found
While walking in Compton, a member of Winchester Ramblers found a ring in one of the paddock areas. Should you have lost one, please contact PCSO Michelle Wilkinson.
Date of the next meeting
7.30pm Tuesday 2 April 2013 in the Reeves Scout Hall, Compton.
David Drake, Clerk