Minutes of the Shipton Bellinger Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 1st July 2013 in the Fletcher Room, Village Centre at 7.30pm.
Present : Cllr Miss A Reynolds - Chairman
Cllr Mr D Davies - Vice Chairman
Cllr Mr P Stinton
Cllr Mr T Bowden
Cllr Mr M Bladen
Cllr Mr S Bluff
Cllr Mrs S Turner
Richard Waterman - Parish Clerk
Borough Councillor Mr P Lashbrook
County Councillor Mrs P West
Mr D Sperry - Village Centre Chairman
Mr Julian Higgins - Hampshire Street Lighting
Member of the Public - 2
Apologies : Borough Councillor E Charnley
Absent– Cllr Mr M Udale.
DECLARATION OF INTERESTS -There were no Declarations of Interest recorded.
Mr Julian Higgins from Hampshire County Council Street Lighting gave an up-date on the Street Lighting PFI scheme. New higher columns will be installed with new more energy efficient lights. The lights will omit a white light and will shine downwards to further cut down on light pollution.
The lights will run on 75% less power until midnight when they will be reduced further to 50%.The new lights will have GPS technology installed and will be monitored from a central control centre. This should see a reduction in CO2 emissions and reduce the energy costs for the Parish Council in the future. The lights sited on telegraph poles will be replaced but stay at their current position. Work will begin with in the next six months and should take no more than two to three weeks to complete.
Cllr Mr S Bluff spoke about installing additional wiring to facilitate future use of Broadband. Mr J Higgins stated that this was not in the specification but would be happy to discuss the matter further with Cllr Mr S Bluff.
MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETINGS.
The Chairman signed the minutes of the June meeting as a true record. Matters arising from those minutes :-
FOOTPATH 14 - Peter Watson has reported that he has been told by his Line Manager that Hampshire County Council can not quote to do the job of replacing the bridge, this will be seen as prioritizing work to the highest bidder.
The Clerk reported that he has made contact direct with the HCC recommended contractor to quote for the job, the specification supplied by Peter Watson has been forwarded on. Cllr Mrs P West was dismayed to hear this as HCC departments are being encouraged to look for additional business.
CRICKET NETS - The Clerk reported that a quote of £2600 have been received to put down a concrete base for the cricket mat, this is a large area of concrete. The Clerk reported that Cllr Mr T Bowden suggested that turf be laid and mown to cricket square specification, this would be more cost effective and look better. The Parish Council thought this a better option. Cllr Mr T Bowden will provide a detailed quote and suggested that this in done in the autumn.
BENCHES - The Clerk reported that he had collected the plaques for the Jubilee benches but had mislaid them between the shop and the car park, he had retraced his steps but there was no sign of them. The Clerk will order new plaques.
Cllr Mrs S Turner reported that the benches were officially opened at the fete by Mr D Sperry and thanked him for doing the task.
FOOTPATH FROM SHIPTON BELLINGER TO TIDWORTH - Cllr Mr P Stinton reported that he had met and has been in further correspondence with Cllr Mark Connolly, but had no further news to report.
Cllr Mr P Lashbrook reported that Wiltshire County Council are concerned on the financial burden the proposed footpath will have on their budget as most of the footpath is in their county. To take this forward Cllr Mr P Lashbrook is waiting for the Parish Council to formally adopt the proposal to install a footpath from Shipton Bellinger to Tidworth.
The Chairman proposed the motion, this was seconded by Cllr Mr P Stinton and all agreed.
PLAY AREA - The 106 development money was discussed. Cllr Bladen provided the information collected at a presentation held for the children by himself and Cllr Bowden a couple of years ago. The Clerk provided a costing for additional swings and outdoor gym equipment. Cllr Mr M Bladen reported that he has submitted the Lottery grant forms. Mr D Sperry spoke about plans for additional storage containers in the corner of the field, positioning them further back in to the corner, the Parish Council had no objection to this. A site meeting to look at the area was held after the meeting.
FLOODING - Cllr Mr S Bluff reported that the meeting with the Environment Agency to discuss individual Property Level Protection has been pencilled in for the 30th July 2013.
The households affected will receive an invite.
A338 - The Chairman reported that she has been in correspondence with Mandy Ware
Team Leader, Traffic Management West, Hampshire County Council on the issue of the speed limit on the A338. The Chairman read out the latest email :-
The introduction of reduced speed limits in Shipton Bellinger is a priority scheme within the 2013/2014 Traffic Management Programme. The proposals are agreed in principle but now require a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) to be progressed. The making of the TRO is currently in the early stages with up to date survey information being obtained and the proposal plan being developed prior to advertisement. The further up to date survey information is required to enable the proposal to be properly considered for advertising purposes and also to ensure that current data is available to assist in identifying whether measures, such as gateway enhancement for example, may be required to support the reduced speed limit and encourage compliance. The historic information that we hold is unfortunately some 4-5 years old in the main.
The making of a TRO is a process that must be followed so that the speed limits it applies are properly made and can be enforced. There are several process steps where some form of consultation is required before the next process step can commence. The next stage in the process is to complete the proposal plan, once the traffic survey results are known, and then to confirm the support of Councillor Mrs West and the Police prior to arranging the drafting of the notices, draft TRO and formal advertising. Formal advertising includes a 21 day period of public consultation where objections may be made, but written support is also helpful. The whole process of making a TRO can take between 6-9 months in general but is to some degree dependant on the outcomes of consultation. I will keep you updated as the scheme progresses.
The Chairman stated that she was annoyed that the whole process is starting again and questions why yet more traffic survey data is required and why there is not already a plan in place if TVBC were ready to introduce the speed limits earlier in the year?
Cllr Mr P Lashbrook and Cllr P West stated that there are other proposals being considered in relation to the speed limit reduction and extension, but would not elaborate . This was new to the Parish Council who were more than a little surprised and felt that there is a hidden agenda.
FLOODING - The Chairman reported that she has emailed HCC for a progress report on the soak away planned for Hedges Close. Cllr Mrs P West confirmed the soak away is on the works schedule.
Mr D Sperry reported that the application for funding from TVBC has been submitted. The Hampshire County Council data base has been down and he had not been able to submit the application on line. The lottery have sent a conditional acceptance notice. Mr Sperry hopes to have the funding in place so that work can begin in September. The heating needs to be installed before the winter.
13/01267/FULLN - Alterations to facilitate the conversion of the garage and part render the
external walls - The Old Vicarage, High Street, Shipton Bellinger.
The Parish Council had NO OBJECTIONS to this planning application.
The Parish Council discussed a request from the Fete Committee to hold a Gun Dog Demonstration on the Playing Field at next years fete. After some discussion it was agreed that permission would be granted for the Gun Dog Demonstration to go ahead and the situation monitored, it was noted that the public attending the fete would not be allowed on the field with their dogs. Cllr Mr T Bowden wished it to be minuted that he was not in favour of allowing any dogs on the field.
Mr D Sperry reported that there is a problem with dogs entering the Playing Field via the gate on Footpath 1 which was installed for users of the BMX track. After some discussion it was agreed that fencing in the BMX track would be the most sensible option and will also mean the riders will have to use that route. Cost will be investigated and the Clerk will enquire if the 106 Open Space money could be used for fencing. Cllr Mrs P West stated that she may also be able to help with funding from her devolved budget.
CLLR MRS P WEST’S REPORT
Cllr Mrs P West spoke about the extension to the speed limit and highways issues.
CLLR MR P LASHBROOK’S REPORT
Cllr Mr P Lashbrook wished to congratulate the Fete Committee for an excellent fete and was pleased to note how well supported it is by the village, several of our neighbouring parishes are not having a fete due to lack of support. TVBC carried out a survey at the fete, the results were quite illuminating.
Cllr Mr P Lashbrook reported that the application for outline planning permission to develop a fast food outlet at Parkhouse Mews has gone to appeal.
PC Don Stubbington is our new beat officer and he hopes to attend future Parish Council meeting to discuss the policing. Cllr Mr P Lashbrook reported that PCSO David Trowbridge is organising a meeting to be held in the Village Centre to discuss the problems with parking in Bulford Road, a leaflet drop has been done in Bulford Road informing residents.
Cllr Mr P Lashbrook stated that Hampshire County Council and Test Valley Borough Council are getting involved with the parking issue as they have a duty of care. Illegal parking and obstruction is a Police matter. A motion has been proposed to investigate engineering works to improve the parking in the mean time reducing the length of the advisory white lines is being investigated which will provide additional parking.
CLLR MR S BLUFF - Reported that temporary road signs are still up on the A338 for the Solar Farm. A sign has also been left in Kingfishers after the work was carried out on the road surface.
Cllr Mr S Bluff spoke about the Neighbourhood Watch in the village and the regular reports that he emails to the contact list.
CLLR MR P STINTON - Reported that Jonathan Harris has difficulty getting his wheelchair up the dropped kerb recently installed by HCC at Threadgill Way and has asked if the Parish Council could report this to HCC.
CLLR MR M BLADEN - Reported that tennis net has been retrieved from storage and has been erected, but unfortunately is beyond repair, the same can be said for the basketball nets. New nets are available from Courtstall. The Parish Council agreed to new nets being purchased, the Clerk will order them from Courtstall.
CLLR MR D DAVIES - Reported that that for some reason the grass cutter has stopped mid cut when cutting the grassed verge at the High Street/Bulford Road junction, this now looks a mess. The Clerk will report this to Highways. Cllr Mr D Davies reported that the overhanging tree in Watery Lane reported at the previous meeting is now down.
CLLR MISS A REYNOLDS - Reported that there are still a few outstanding pot hole repairs, an email has been sent to Steve Spender and she is waiting for a reply from him when he returns to work from leave.
Cllr Miss Reynolds has been in correspondence with Mr Iain Curry regarding the solar farm and reported the following points :-
Mr Curry informed me that three years ago he was approached by the Environment Agency who informed him that unless the input of Nitrogen fertiliser was reduced by 40% on an area of 500 acres at this end of his farm then they would close him down! He farms in the same way as every other arable farmer, but there was one problem the farm is next door to the boreholes belonging to Henry Edmunds that supply the village with water. The EA informed him that if nothing changed then in a few years time the Nitrate levels would be too excessive and they would close Mr Edmunds down and Shipton would have no water. Obviously there are other polluters such as the sewage works at Shipton and Tidworth and of course other farms further up the valley. However the EA have extraordinary powers and something radical had to happen and hence the solar farms.
Once the solar parks were actually being built Mr Curry found that the screening was not good enough. The Solar Park operators have obligations to plant certain areas (they have not done this yet and he will make sure they do this during the next planting season.) Mr Curry decided that this would not be enough and therefore embarked on his own additional planting.
A hazel belt and semi mature trees have been planted against the site of the East section to block out the view from Snoddington Lane. This will also screen the approach from the village driving south along the A338. Mr Curry anticipates that it will take about three years to have a proper effect. He has also planted a new hedge along Snoddington Lane , this will block it off completely from the lane as he will let the hedge grow up to the same height as on the other side of the lane. The two houses at Althorne can also see through the trees during the winter and a block of semi mature trees has already planted; these will be looked at again this winter to see if any improvements are necessary. No other house can see the parks. On the West Park a substantial belt of Hazel has been planted and this will grow quickly and in four/five years time this will have a great improvement for the view from the A303.
The ground in the Solar park areas (about 55 acres in total) will be planted by the operators in the Autumn to environmental grasses. The areas outside the Parks but in the same fields (amounting to about 25 acres) will be planted by Mr Curry to wild flower and grassland mixes. In addition he has added peas to his crop rotation as they do not require Nitrogen.
Mr Curry acknowledges the disruption that the building work has caused and apologises to the village.
CLLR MR T BOWDEN - reported that the footpath from Kingfishers to Footpath 5 is nearly impassable due to the overgrown hedge. Cllr Mr D Davies will speak to the house holder as it is his responsibility to keep his hedge under control.
Cllr Mr T Bowden asked if there was any news on the minor repairs needed to Footpath 5, he understood that the contractor was returning to carry them out. The Clerk reported that the contractor has them on his list but is busy on other jobs at present and will return to do the minor repairs before the winter.
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC
The continuation of the pavement up Bulford Road was raised.
Mr B Pearce Grass Cutting £60.00
T Services BMX Grass Cutting £24.00
SBVC Hire of Room £40.00
R.N. Waterman Wages – July £400.00
Aviva Insurance – July £97.02
Balance after above payments have been made £10,252.99
Mr Brian Boxall has sent a letter thanking the Parish Council for the Garden Voucher that was sent in recognition of his cutting of the Village Green.
CLOSE OF THE MEETING
The Chairman thanked everyone for coming and closed the meeting.
DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING
2nd September 2013 in the Fletcher Room, Village Centre at 7.30pm