November 2013 PC MeetingReport
Report of the Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 5 November 2013 in the Compton Room Shawford Parish Hall.
District Councillors’ Report
Councillor Southgate presented a joint report, prepared in association with District Councillor Jan Warwick. Winchester City Council (WCC) has agreed to allow the South Winchester Park and Ride to be used on most Sundays for day time cycling activities. The city council is also considering a range of options and plans for the River Park Leisure Centre and, contrary to recent press reports, no decision has been made and nothing will be considered that will prevent the annual fireworks display taking place, or impact upon the rugby field. The autumn leaf clearance programme has started but will be dependent upon weather conditions.
Mr North wondered whether SUSTRANS would expect to make money from the recently signed lease for the Hockley viaduct. Councillor Southgate assured him that this was unlikely to be the case.
The council noted PCSO Wilkinson’s report, which included several instances of suspicious behaviour (including possible poaching/hare coursing near the Malms); criminal damage to the telephone box in Shawford; burglaries at Compton Nursery and a property in Cliff Way and a theft from a parked vehicle at Shawford Down. The police continue to encourage parishioners to report suspicious behaviour via the 101 telephone number and not to leave valuables in parked cars. (Opportunist thieves will often sit and watch the public hide their belongings in the car boot.)
Councillor Southgate advised the council that repairs to the southbound bus shelter, near Southdown Road, and the northbound shelter, near the junction with Shawford Road, had been completed. Hampshire County Council (HCC) had awarded the 63/63A bus service contract to Stagecoach on the existing timetable but it will only run on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. His appeal to officials, that the service was not just a ‘shoppers’ service’ but also a vital link for visits to the doctor, dentist, hospitals etc., had been unsuccessful. However, the summer Sunday hourly service introduced by South West Trains this year had been a success and will be repeated in 2014, when it will run from the middle of May until early September. The chairman thanked Councillor Southgate for his efforts on both issues.
Councillor Southgate noted that that most of the fallen trees, caused by the recent severe storm, had been removed. He added that he had also requested that HCC engineers give greater attention to the usual areas of flooding within the parish and, finally, he had been advised, by the Itchen Navigation Project, that vegetation waste, left on the bank, was fouling the water. He would speak to the local residents’ association.
Footpaths and Environment
The chairman reported that the council had been awarded a ‘Silver-Gilt’ for its efforts in the South and South East in Bloom competition. But it had involved her in a considerable amount of work and she wondered whether the council should continue to enter such competitions without more support from the community. Following discussion, it was agreed that the Finance & Administration Committee should consider how best to involve the community in specific projects and whether this should be included in a review of the consultation process.
Councillor Wilkinson confirmed that the council had received a certificate of lawful development from WCC for the MUGA and briefed councillors on a few small tweaks to its design, which will enable disabled access and increase the parking provision at the MPF. The total cost of the project, for which funding will be provided by the WCC Open Spaces Fund, will be £46,071.
Mr Bell expressed concern that the Parish Council may be accidentally trivializing the additional traffic that may occur as a result of additional sports facilities at the MPF. Mr Jordan added that he remained concerned about the lack of consultation with the public over the new facilities. He believed that there was a significant demand for golf nets and had recently submitted proposals to the clerk. The chairman noted their concerns, which will be recorded in the official minutes.
Councillor Wilkinson also reported on the meeting with representatives of Otterbourne Parish Council, where it had been agreed that each council should develop its own MUGAs, as stand alone projects. However, since Otterbourne PC has limited financial resources for play/sport equipment, a request had also been received for the transfer of £30,000 between CSPC’s and OPC’s Open Spaces Fund allocations. Following discussion, during which some councillors expressed concern about making a decision without having seen detailed plans, the council agreed on the following resolution:
“The council supports in principle the transfer of WCC OSF funds to Otterbourne Parish Council for the construction of a sports/play facility in that parish.”
As a result of an incident at the QE II Field, where a ball had been kicked over the fence and broken a window, Councillor Wilkinson recommended that the council consider increasing the height of the fence behind the Attwoods Drove goal. She also reported that people climbing over the fence bordering Compton Street had caused damage to one panel. It was agreed that Councillor Wilkinson should seek quotations for improved fencing at the QEII Field, for consideration by the council at its 7 January 2014 meeting.
First World War Commemoration
Councillor Walmsley briefed the council on the quotations received for the cleaning and upgrading of the parish war memorials on Shawford Down. An application had been submitted to the War Memorial Trust for a grant of 50% towards the cost. The council agreed that it should allocate £3000 for renovating the war memorials but noted that, should the grant application be successful, the amount involved could be much less.
Finance and Administration
Councillor Walmsley also briefed the council on the recent inspection of the Jubilee Pavilion, where some damp incursion and uneven paving slabs had been identified, and recent discussions with John Griffith, CASCA, about damp in the caretaker’s cottage. The council agreed that John Dowling, who had been commissioned in 2006/7 to prepare an estimate of long term maintenance plans for the parish hall and Jubilee Pavilion, should be invited to update his report.
Review of the Civic Service
The council noted Councillor Walmsley’s report on the Civic Service that had been hosted by Hursley PC on 13 October 2013. The chairman suggested that, since Compton and Shawford was due to host the service next year, a working party should be formed to consider whether the Council should seek alternative ways of acknowledging the individual efforts of members of the community, some of whom were not church goers. It was subsequently agreed that the working party should consist of Councillors Stevens, Goulding, Southgate, Walmsley and Wilkinson but that all councillors should feel free to contribute towards the debate. The working party should aim to submit proposals for consideration at the 7 January 2014 council meeting.
Councillor Jeffrey noted that there were no major issues and no decisions required. She briefed the council on the WCC Community Infrastructure Levy and introduced her report on ‘Investigations into Affordable Housing in Compton and Shawford’. She would welcome comments upon the report in due course. The chairman formally thanked her for her efforts in producing this very useful document.
Mrs Shipster requested an assurance that HARAH will not impose affordable housing on the parish, without the consent of the Parish Council. Councillor Evans assured her that the organisation would not proceed in such a manner.
Councillor Wilkinson noted that the CASCA AGM would take place on 14 November 2013. The CASCA Christmas Party will be on Friday 13 December 2013.
HALC Annual General Meeting
The chairman reported on her attendance at the HALC AGM. She was pleased to announce that the clerk had been a joint runner-up in the ‘Clerk of the Year’ competition and that the council had also been joint runner-up in the ‘Best Local Council Website’ competition. She congratulated the clerk and Councillor Walmsley on their individual successes, which reflected well on the council as a whole.
Date of the next meeting
7.30pm Tuesday 7 January 2014 in the Compton Room, Shawford Parish Hall.
David Drake, Clerk