A Meeting of Llangarron Parish Council was held on Tuesday, 25th October, 2016 at Llangarron Village Hall at 8.00 p.m. with Miss S. Cooper in the Chair.
Present at the Meeting were Councillors Bailey, Cooper, Fisher, Hitchen, Jones, Morehead, Thomas, Turner and Wright together with Herefordshire Ward Councillor for Llangarron, Miss Elissa Swinglehurst. There were 4 members of the public present.
Apologies of absence were received from Councillors Bainbridge and Joseph.
Miss Hilary Boughton – re Bollards at Symonds Trewen Farm.
Declaration of Interest
Mr. P. Bailey – Petty Cash payment to Clerk.
Mr. A. Hitchen – Planning Application 163202 – Llangarron House.
Minutes of the last Meeting
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 27th September, 2016 having been previously circulated, were taken as read, confirmed and signed as a true and correct record by the Chair.
162385 – Application for removal of condition 3 of planning permission 150911 at land adj. To Hazelnut Cottage, Llangrove, Ross on Wye, Hfds. for Messrs Freemans. Planning Permission Granted.
162386 – Application for removal of conditions 3 and 4 of planning permission 161195 at land adj. To Hazelnut Cottage, Llangrove, Ross on Wye, Hfds. for Messrs Freemans. Planning Permission Granted.
The Parish Councillors expressed their disappointment at the granting of the above two applications particularly as Welsh Water appeared to have changed their opinions from previous applications submitted. It was agreed Clerk should write to WWA and ask for clear explanation on their decision and to clarify the capacity of the system in Llangrove.
Other Matters: Casual Vacancy – At the proposal of Miss Turner and seconded by Mrs. Wright, Mr. Terry Thomas of Llancloudy was formally co-opted to the Parish Council. Mr. Thomas would complete documentation and Clerk would forward to Hfds. Council. Parish Freighter – The Freighter had visited Llangrove on 8th October and had been extremely busy.
Highways ‑ Old Matters:
Up Dates – Trewen Floods and Flood issues at Tre Essey Farm – Agreed to leave in abeyance.
Parish Lengthsman – Mr. Griffiths not in attendance to give report. However, he had submitted report which had been circulated to Councillors. Clerk had liaised with Mr. Griffiths to clarify that the Salt Bins would be filled by Balfour Beatty and that the issues he raised as outstanding with Balfour Beatty had been taken up with them who confirmed lack of money was prohibiting progress. She had also discussed the future of the scheme with Mr. Griffiths who had indicated that he would be prepared to continue working for Llangarron PC providing that funds could be raised via Precept. He appreciated that budget would be reduced and he indicated that he would not be replacing any of his larger equipment as the jobs requiring this would not be there as a result of drop in funding. The Clerk reported that reclaim of grant in sum of £1657.20 had been received. This left £5,034.80 left to spend prior to 31st March, 2017. Agreed Clerk to request Mr. Griffiths to put together a wish list with costings for the Parish Council to consider. Confirming the future of the Scheme, Clerk reported that there would be one more year of funding from Hfds. Council whereby on the 39.1 km of roads they would give £30 per kilometre = £1,173 providing Parish Council put in £60 per kilometre = £2,346, this would give a total of £3,519. This would be significantly lower than current budget of £6,692. Agreed Parish Council definitely wanted to continue to have a Parish Lengthsman and that as much as possible would be raised through Precept. Clerk to submit expression of interest form.
Highways New Matters
Bollards at Symonds Trewen Farm – the Clerk detailed the letter received from Hillary Boughton complaining that the bollards should be removed. It was agreed that the Parish Council had taken this matter up previously with David Atkinson who had confirmed that the bollards were not encroaching on the highway. Clerk to raise again with David Atkinson.
Balfour Beatty Budget Consultation – Balfour Beatty had reported that they had three options on saving money – cutting out gully clearing, reduced amenity grass cutting and enforcing riparian ownership to clear ditches. Following discussion agreed to request that amenity grass cutting reduction would be preferred option of saving money.
Report from B. Fisher – She explained no further work had been done recently apart from volunteer path clearing. She reported that only Mr. Jones and she had turned up for Parish Walk and no members of the public. Agreed to try again in spring with more advertising. The Councillors thanked Mrs. Fisher for her efforts.
Grant update and future funding – Clerk confirmed £584 reclaimed which left balance to spend of £656 prior to 31st March, 2017. The grant available for both 2017/18 and 2018/19 was based on 24.8 kilometres of footpaths and Hfds. Council would grant £50 per kilometre = £1240 providing Parish Council funded at £15 per kilometre = £372, making a total of £1,612 an increase on previous years. Again agreed to continue with scheme and include in Precept request.
163202 – Proposed internal alterations and re-roof utility. Fenestration to lounge and bedroom 1 altered at Llangarron House, Llangarron, Ross on Wye, Hfds. for Mr. and Mrs. N. Saunders. The Parish Council have no objections to this Planning Application.
SID and Freemans
The Clerk confirmed that this was making steady progress with more obstacles being presented by Balfour Beatty. It was hoped that this would be resolved by end of week. However if not, Clerk to request David Atkinson to try and move matters along.
It was noted that Julie Joseph had now completed redraft which had been circulated to Councillors who had perused same. It was agreed that subject to typo corrections and editing, the draft should be accepted and Julie Joseph instructed to proceed as soon as possible. Agreed that Councillors should submit their final comments to Julie Joseph by Friday, 28th October, after which date Julie Joseph would proceed.
Payments – At proposal of Mrs. Fisher and seconded by Mr. Jones agreed to pay Clerk sum of £15 in respect of Petty Cash.
Budget – noted that Budget and Precept request would need to be formalised at November meeting. Councillors were asked to raise any issues they wished to be considered.
Replacement of Clerk
The Clerk had liaised with Mrs. L. Wilcox at HALC who had indicated that for fee of £200 they would advertise, prepare shortlists, help to interview, obtain references and set up contract. It was agreed this would be beneficial step to follow. Agreed Clerk to instruct HALC to proceed to get advert ready to go early January 2017 and also agreed to advertise on Notice Boards, Borders News, Llangrove Links and Llangarron Info. Miss Cooper and Mr. Joseph would interview.
Clerk also advised that Pension had to be in place by April 2017 – Clerk together with Chairman would investigate.
Llangrove Bus Shelter
Leave in abeyance – awaiting progress report from Scouts.
Llangarron BT Payphone
Consultation papers had been received from BT advising that as the Payphone had not been used once during last 12 month period they intended to remove. The option of adopting Payphone was on offer. Agreed Clerk to prepare communication to be circulated in Llangarron advising of intended removal and to ascertain whether there was a desire in Llangarron to have the Payphone adopted. If this was the case, then local residents would need to decide what they would do with Payphone and carry out changes required as had happened in Llangrove.
Appraisal of budget cuts
The Clerk had raised this with HALC who had advised that as unpaid Councillors this fell outside remit of Parish Councillors. However it was agreed that as a result of continuing cuts the Parish Council would be forced to raise Precept request in order to keep Parish Lengthsman and Parish Paths scheme going. The cuts were also having significant impact on transport services to rural communities. It should be noted that with more powers being handed down to Parish Councils in future, the Council would be taking on more work and having to raise higher Precept.
Nothing to report as all circulated to Councillors.
Any Other Business
Elissa Swinglehurst reports – Mr. Jones proposed a vote of thanks to Elissa, who was doing excellent job of keeping residents informed.
There being no further business, the Meeting was closed by the Chair at 9.05 p.m.
The date of the next Meeting to be Tuesday, 29th November, 2016 at 8.00 p.m. at Llangrove Academy.