PC Meeting Report 10 January 2017
Table of Contents
Report of the Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 10 January 2017 in the Compton Room Shawford Parish Hall.
Reeves Scout Hall Renovations
The chairman, Councillor Mike Southgate, presented a cheque for £5000 to the 5th Winchester Scouts leader, Will Bradshaw, to assist with the renovations to the Reeves Scout Hall, Compton.
Funding was provided by the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), a levy that local authorities can choose to charge on new developments in their areas. Funds obtained through the levy can be used by parish councils for the provision, improvement, replacement, operation or maintenance of infrastructure; or any other projects that are concerned with addressing the demands that development places on the community.
Highways and Public Transport
Following a recent accident, concern was raised by a member of the public about the speed limit on Otterbourne Road and the failure of drivers to observe the current speed limit. Councillor Bell reported that he had been in contact with the Hampshire County Council (HCC)’s Team Leader, Traffic Management (East), and been advised that, in the current 5-year period for which data is available (up to 31.10.16) there had been four other injury-accidents reported on the section of Otterbourne Road between Poles Lane and Southdown Road, three of which were in fairly close proximity to the recent accident.
However, none of these incidents had excess speed noted as a contributory factor and there were no particular patterns or similarities to the reported causes that would be treatable with any engineering measures. Three of the incidents had occurred in 2013 with the latest in March 2015. This suggested an improving trend in safety on the route and, based on the current injury-accident record, Otterbourne Road was not being considered for inclusion on the HCC safety programmes. However, he [Councillor Bell] had assured the traffic management team would continue to monitor the accident database and any deterioration in the safety record would be investigated. Having this assurance, the council decided that it would take no further action on a suggestion that the speed limit on Otterbourne Road should be lowered to 30mph.
Following a discussion on parking in Shawford, the council agreed that, while recognising HCC has primacy on highways issues, it would not, in principle, support the introduction of additional parking restrictions in the village without prior consultation with local resident associations, neighbouring parish councils and rail user groups.
The council considered the problem of logs/rocks being placed on grass verges throughout the parish. Councillor Bell reported that he had spoken to HCC highways and had been informed that if such items were placed on HCC land, prior permission was required, on private land, it was a private matter. The council agreed that parishioners, who place obstructions on grass verges, should be reminded that they may be liable for any damage/accidents caused by such obstructions.
Councillor Stevens mentioned the difficulties caused by cars parked close to the junction of Hurdle Way and Otterbourne Road. The line of sight was particularly difficult for vehicles trying to exit Hurdle Way. She hoped that some restrictions could be imposed on cars parking close to the junction. It was agreed that Councillor Bell would liaise with District Councillor Warwick, about the painting of white lines on Hurdle Way at the junction with Otterbourne Road.
Several members of the public raised concerns about the proposed development on the site of Parsonage Barn, Compton Street, which did not appear to comply with the Village Design Statement (VDS), nor take into consideration that Compton Street was designated as a conservation area. Councillor Stevens reported that the application to construct two four-bedroom room dwellings and one three-bedroom (self-build) dwelling, garaging, parking and new access on the site would be considered by the WCC Planning Committee on 12th January. She would attend the meeting and, if allowed to speak, would express concern over the nature of the proposed development. A representative from the Compton Village Association and District Councillor Warwick would also be in attendance: they would express similar concerns.
Councillor Stevens added that she had also been involved in regular discussions with the neighbours over an application for formal permission for a lawful development certificate (LDC) for the “use of a building as a private residential dwelling” at Winton, Shawford Road. The applicant had converted a summerhouse and adjacent garage into a separate dwelling that includes a kitchen and bathroom with access onto Pearson Lane. The application will be decided by a member of WCC’s Legal Team, not by the Planning Department. She advised that, on behalf of the council, she would object to this application most vigorously.
Playing Fields Management
The council noted that three tenders for the three-year grass cutting contract at the MPF and QEII had been received. It agreed that the contract should be awarded to the company that had provided the lowest bid (£10,530), Grass and Grounds Ltd. The council also agreed that tenders should be invited for the re-staining of the Jubilee Pavilion and its shed and that a slate commemorative plaque should be installed alongside the oak tree at the MPF, planted in honour of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Finance and Administration
Following a short discussion, the council approved the draft budget. The chairman noted that the required WCC funding figure had remained at its current level of £27,170, since 2010/11, without any reduction in services provided by the council.
The chairman advised the council that only one person had expressed an interest in becoming a councillor. That individual had subsequently withdrawn when it became apparent that personal details would be published on the website. The council noted that, since 2011, when the current legislation on publishing the register of interest on council websites had been introduced, identity fraud had become a major concern for many people. Since both the clerk and WCC Democratic Services kept a register of councillors’ interests, which can be consulted by members of the public, upon request, it was agreed that the chairman should write to WCC’s senior legal officer questioning whether the requirement to publish on the website was sensible, particularly since it was becoming an obstruction to the recruitment of councillors.
Annual Parish Meeting (APM)
The council discussed a paper, produced by Councillor Bell, which suggested that it should consider reverting to the previous format for the APM, where convenors/portfolio holders produce a short summary of their activities for publication in a document that is delivered throughout the parish. At the meeting, the convenors could then make short presentation, or answer questions, on the contents of the published document. A guest speaker on a subject of interest to the community (e.g. the development of Bushfield Camp) could also be invited to the meeting. It was agreed that Councillors Goulding and Bell would produce a recommendation on the format of the next APM, including the date upon which it should be held, in time for the next council meeting on 7 March 2017.
BT Telephone Boxes
The council agreed that Councillor Webster should work with local groups to provide a proposal for the use of the BT telephone boxes in Martins Fields and Shawford village. The proposal to be presented to the council on 7 March 2017. In the meantime, the would advise Winchester City Council that the Parish Council would like to begin the process of adopting the two telephone boxes.
Footpaths and Environment
The chairman noted that the lengthsman was due to visit the parish in the week beginning 13 February 2017. He asked councillors to email Councillor Wilkinson with suggestions for his work schedule by 31 January 2017.
Date and Venue of Next Meeting
7.30pm Tuesday 7 March 2017 in the Compton Room, Shawford Parish Hall.
David Drake, Clerk