PC Meeting Report 5 March 2019
Table of Contents
Report of the Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 5 March 2019 in the Compton Room, Shawford Parish Hall.
Report of the Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 5 March 2019 in the Compton Room Shawford Parish Hall.
County & District Councillors’ Reports
County and District Councillor, Jan Warwick, reported that Hampshire County Council (HCC) had agreed its revenue budget and capital budgets for the coming financial year, with proposals for significant investment in Hampshire’s economy, jobs and the quality of the environment, with projects totalling just under £500million over the next three years. This will see improvements to roads, bridges, walking and cycling infrastructure and school buildings. To cover the expenditure there will be a 2.99% increase in Council Tax. (Hampshire has, apparently, the second lowest County Council tax in England.) Winchester City Council (WCC) has agreed to freeze council tax for the coming year.
Councillor Warwick added that she had attended a meeting, of interested parties, to consider ways of mitigating anti-social behaviour at Compton Lock. Bin collections have now been increased and, following further meetings with key stakeholders including the South Down National Park, Twyford PC has agreed to circulate a management plan for the Lock. She confirmed that there had been little progress towards declaring the footpath, beside the railway, a bridleway but added that HCC was broadly in favour of the proposal. The HCC Leader of the Council was also taking a personal interest in internet problems in Martins Fields.
Highways and Public Transport
Councillor Bell expressed concern about the implications of the decision, by HCC traffic engineers, to lift the embargo on housing development on Compton Down. There was likely to be a flood of applications that could result in a negative impact on the area. In response to a question from a member of the public, about how the impact might be mitigated, Councillor Strange read an extract from the record of the meeting between representatives of the Parish Council, Compton Down Society and HCC and WCC officials, in which the WCC planning team leader, Lorna Hutchings, confirmed that her team would ensure that they would fully explore the impact on the area before reaching any conclusions.
The position on why the embargo had been lifted was also clarified. The original decision would have been assessed, having regard to the prevailing policy of the time, the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges, which was introduced in 1992. When considering the current situation, the Highway Authority had been obliged to consider both the national and local position: The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), which was introduced in 2012 and contains a presumption in favour of sustainable development, and HCC Technical Guidance TG3 Stopping Sight Distances and Visibility splays, which reflects national policy.
Councillor Bell reported that the Council had received further correspondence about inconsiderate parking, primarily by contractors’ vehicles, in Otterbourne Road. It had been suggested by Hampshire Police that the Council should consider circulating a note to householders reminding them of their obligations and the law. In the subsequent discussion, it was noted that recent planning approvals did not include a reference to a need for contractors’ vehicles to be parked on site. Councillor Strange agreed to take up this matter with the WCC Planning Department.
Councillor Southgate expressed concern about the number of bollards appearing in Southdown. The Council noted that many parishioners had placed obstructions on grass verges in Southdown to discourage parking. Councillor Warwick explained that the verges belonged to HCC and that, should an accident/any damage occur as a result of the obstructions, responsibility would lie with the person that placed them on the verge.
Councillor Strange reported that, at the meeting to discuss the Lerner Review, WCC planners had indicated a desire to work closely with parish councils on planning matters. The draft of the revised Village Design Statement had been circulated to residents’ associations and interested parties. She would revise the document in time for the next meeting in May. Councillor Bell advised the Council on the background to the Compton Down Local Area Design Statement. It was commissioned and paid for by WCC and helps in the determination of planning applications. Local residents and the Compton Down Society, which is considering an updated version, had been involved in its production.
During the public session, Mr Beckett had hoped that the Council would consider placing the provision of affordable housing on the agenda for its next meeting. As it happens, Councillor Strange had produced a discussion paper on this subject, which had identified two potential sites: bungalows at the end of Attwoods Drove and semi-detached houses at the far end of Martins Fields. The Council noted that it was important for the community to be involved in the discussion and that a number of issues needed to be addressed, including parking, loss of views and congestion in Compton Street. Councillor Strange agreed to consult the Compton Village and Compton Tenants Associations and to consider other affordable housing options in the parish prior to producing an updated report in May.
Finance and Administration
The Council noted that the Annual Parish Meeting (APM) would be held on Thursday 16 May 2019 and that a representative of Southampton International Airport (SIA) would make a presentation on the airport’s expansion plans. Contributions to the Annual Report were to be submitted to the chairman by the end of March.
The Annual Council Meeting (ACM) will take place on 7 May 2019 and the first item on the agenda will be the election of a chairman. Councillor Goulding indicated that he would be content to be nominated for another year. He asked portfolio holders to inform him in advance of the ACM whether they would be content to serve for a further year.
Councillor Webster agreed to provide the Council with an estimate of the costs of installing baby changing facilities at the pavilion, at the next meeting in May.
Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and Grants
The Council agreed to a request, from Councillor Strange, that next year’s CIL grant, to cover village agent duties, should be increased by £50 to £300. This was to cover two days of benefits training. Councillor Southgate, in his capacity as a trustee, explained that the Sparrowgrove and Oakwood Copse Conservation Trust (SOCCT) could not survive on voluntary donations alone. Since the copse is a community asset, the Council approved the application for a grant of £500. Councillors also agreed to provide the Compton Pre-school with a grant of £500, which will enable the school to offer a diverse range of activities to local families.
Councillor Webster advised the Council that the Clerk had contacted the Big Lottery Fund (BLF) about returning the balance of the grant towards the adoption of the BT telephone kiosks and the installation of defibrillators. The BLF is content for the sum of £1116.80 be spent on a suitable community project, provided that it is not sport related. He asked councillors to provide him with suggestions in time for discussion at the next Council meeting in May.
Tree Warden and Lengthsman
Councillor Hunt reported that the Lengthsman had cleared the footpath from the eastern end of Hurdle Way to the northbound bus stop at the end of Compton Street. Work had also been commissioned to check on two trees at the MPF, which are leaning towards Compton Heights: both had been declared safe but need to be checked again in eighteen months. Chris Sparkes had been engaged to undertake some pruning/reshaping work on MPF trees.
Date and Venue of Next Meeting
7.30pm Tuesday 7 May 2019, Compton Room, Shawford Parish Hall
David Drake, Clerk
- See the Minutes page for minutes of the 5 March 2019 meeting (available as a draft until approved by the Council).