PC Meeting Report 1 March 2016
PC Meeting Report 1 March 2016
Councillor Southgate asked the council to note that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) had been signed between WCC and Southampton International Airport, which places the onus on the airport operator to comply with best Civil Aviation Authority practice and to consult the city council on any variations to flight paths. He thanked the chairman of the Winchester Air Group, Robin Tice, for his advice and efforts in helping to draft the MoU.
He was pleased to confirm that South West Trains (SWT) had installed the cycle storage facility at Shawford Station. He also acknowledged the work of some parishioners in helping to cut back overgrown vegetation, particularly on the path from Southdown to the station, and the collection of litter. He had offered them support in the provision of equipment, black bags, gloves etc.
He also noted that, having withdrawn its proposal to construct an additional court on the green area of the MPF, the Compton & Shawford Lawn Tennis Club (CASLTC) had not yet notified the council on plans for an alternative site for the fourth tennis court. In response to a question from a member of the public, Councillor Southgate confirmed that the Parish Council would continue to keep parishioners abreast of any significant developments on this issue.
District Councillors’ Report
Councillor Southgate briefed the council on a number of Winchester City Council issues, including a meeting between Steve Brine MP, District Councillor Jan Warwick and representatives of the Shawford Village Residents’ Association (SVRA), to discuss the parking problems caused by rail commuters. Since the rail service is an important asset to the community as a whole, there was some concern that the Parish Council had not received a formal invitation to attend the meeting. It was agreed that the council’s policy, outlined in the clerk’s letter to the South Western Consultation Co-ordinator of 5 February 2016, should be made freely available to all parishioners. [A copy can be found on the parish web site as an attachment to the draft minutes.] Councillor Southgate added that he had recently met the Stagecoach Rail bid manager and advised him about the SVRA’s proposal to use the Walcon yard for additional parking. He had also provided the association’s representative with direct access to the bid manager.
He was disappointed that little progress had been made on the proposed cycle route through Compton, Shawford and Otterbourne. SUSTRANS had indicated that it could undertake a detailed study of the route for a fee of £5000. However, with budgets so tight, WCC was reluctant to commit to such a sum. He agreed to continue to pursue this issue.
Councillor Southgate noted that WCC had approved its first increase in council tax for six years. When added to that of Hampshire County Council (HCC), police, fire etc., the average Band D property could expect a bill of £1504.81.
Hampshire & Isle of Wight Devolution
Councillor Walmsley reported on a meeting that he had attended earlier in the day. The leader of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Roy Perry, is not impressed with government plans to consider the creation of a combined authority, with an elected mayor, in the Solent area. This is a different proposal to the Hampshire and Isle of Wight devolution project, which covers the whole of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Councillor Perry believes that the most important economic axis for the Solent area is north to the rest of Hampshire, and then diminishing to Surrey, London, the M4 and the Midlands. But whatever the eventual outcome, devolution will mean changes to the way parish and town councils operate.
Councillor Cordery raised the issue of cars parked at the end of Compton Street, near the junction with the main road. She asked whether it was possible to get additional yellow lines painted on the road. Councillor Southgate agreed to ask WCC Traffic Officers to look into the issue. She also reported that a new bench had been installed in Compton Street and that instructions for the installation of a further bench, in the bus shelter at the top Shawford Hill, had been issued.
Councillor Cordery had also received a request for the street lights to be dimmed in Martins Fields. She had advised the parishioner that the council had recently participated in an HCC consultation, which could result in the street lights being switched off between midnight and 5am.
Councillor Stevens confirmed that she was continuing to monitor closely the proposed developments at Warner’s Farm, Smallwood and Cross Way
Playing Fields Management
Councillor Wilkinson noted that an oak tree, to replace the one wrongly strimmed by contractors, had been planted at the QEII Field. A photograph of the planting ceremony could be found on the WCC web site. A recent play inspection report had rated all of the council’s play equipment as either ‘low’ or ‘very low’ risk but some of the timber structures required attention. Plans were in hand to have any rough edges sanded down. Moss and algae had also been removed from the wet pour surfaces at both play areas. Scrub clearing on Shawford Down was continuing as planned and it was gradually reverting to its natural state.
Councillor Wilkinson reported on CASCA’s recent committee meeting. Finances were healthy and there was the prospect of extra bookings on Fridays. The front of the hall would be painted this summer. Concern was expressed about access problems caused by cars being parked too close to the entrance to the hall car park. Councillor Southgate agreed to consult WCC about the possibility of painting white lines on the road in Pearson Lane, either side of the entrance.
Finance, Administration & Web Site
Councillor Walmsley advised that new web site was now in operation. It was agreed that the council should change to the new web address in mid-March. Councillor Southgate thanked Councillor Walmsley for his excellent work on this project.
The council noted the clerk’s comments that a balanced budget was the most likely outcome for the current financial year and, depending upon whether, or not, invoices were received from HCC by 31 March 2016, there was even a possibility of a small surplus.
The council noted that Annual Parish Meeting would take place on 21 April 2016 in Shawford Parish Hall. It agreed that the chairman’s letter would be distributed electronically to all residents’ associations. It would also be posted on the parish web site and Facebook page. A draft letter would be circulated to councillors by 15 March 2016 with the intention of it being published in the April edition of the parish magazine.
Since this would be the last council meeting before the parish council election on 5 May 2016, Councillor Southgate thanked everyone for their support and hard work over the past year.
Parish Council Election
Several councillors have indicated that they will not be standing for re-election on 5 May 2016. Should anyone be interested in standing for the council, they should contact the clerk by 2 April 2016, since the deadline for submitting nomination papers is 1600 Thursday 7 April 2016.
Date and Venue of Next Meeting
7.30pm Tuesday 10 May 2016 in the Main Room, Shawford Parish Hall