MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF BARLEY PARISH COUNCIL
HELD AT THE TOWN HOUSE ON MONDAY 1st NOVEMBER 2010 AT 8PM
Cllr Richard Elliott; Cllr Tony Slater; Cllr Philip Smith; Mrs Laura Childs (Clerk); Mr Timothy Martin (Financial Officer)
In Attendance: 3 members of the public
The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. Proposed by Cllr V Martin and seconded by Cllr I Turner
The Clerk has made contact with Dave Standon at Hertfordshire Highways regarding the required relocation of the safety barrier outside the school. He has put a request in to his works team to sort out the problem and the Clerk agreed to contact him again to ensure he meets or at least speaks with one of the councillors to ensure it is put back in the right place.
The Clerk confirmed that she had spoken to Jamie Sells at the Waste & Recycling department NHDC regarding replacing the broken paving stones damaged by their lorries. He informed her that their Insurance Manager, Fiona Timms, had attended site and was questioning what other vehicles used the rear car park. He requested that the clerk write with full details of how the Parish Council felt the damage had been caused.
The Clerk agreed to continue email correspondence with Punch Taverns. Whilst the Fox & Hounds is currently Under Offer it was felt prudent to continue to request that action be taken to repair the loose copping stones on the wall bordering the pub car park.
The pot holes, uneven road surface and gully/drain clearance have all been reported to Hertfordshire Highways and acknowledgements have been received. The Clerk agreed to continue requesting dates for their repair.
Tim Martin agreed to arrange a Finance Meeting to discuss the Precept Payment and other finance issues. We have expenditure on the allotments coming up which needs to be accommodated and the Town House insurance needs to be paid shortly.
Laura Childs Parish Clerk (October)
JD King Placement & repair of bins to Plaistow
MD Landscapes Grass cutting (August & September)
Malcolm George July, August & September
It was proposed by Cllr V Martin and seconded by Cllr P Smith that the payments should be made.
C Robinson Cleaning October
V Martin Letting officers fee October
It was proposed by Cllr R Elliott and seconded by Cllr T Slater that the payments should be made.
Cllr Turner confirmed that as previously discussed he was finalising a questionnaire and covering letter which he hoped would be available to distribute around the village by the end of the month.
It was noted that a petition was being conducted throughout the village by the Liberal Democrats on the issue of speeding and it was generally felt that we needed to press ahead with the Parish Councils questionnaire as soon as possible.
10/02415/1 - Mary Penny Close, Shaftenhoe End Road, Barley, Royston,
Cllr R Elliott declared an interest in this application as he lives near to the property.
3 members of the public were present, all with interests in this planning application.
The Chairman advised the meeting that this application was for a new 2 storey building to replace the existing bungalow and also for retrospective planning consent for a building constructed on the site approx.12/18 months ago for use as an Annexe.
The Parish Council resolved to advise NHDC that they objected to the application. It was the Councils' unanimous view that the proposed development, which lies outside the Barley Selected Village Policy Area, is fundamentally contrary to the provisions of Planning Policy 30 which the Council understands is the principle policy that applies in this case (Replacement or extension of Dwellings in the Countryside) in that the scale of the proposed development is excessive in terms of its size and bulk. The proposed new 2-storey dwelling has a building footprint over 250% bigger than the existing bungalow and is also some 150% taller. The proposed development would therefore have a very significant and materially greater impact on the site and the surrounding area than the existing buildings and would also have a major and detrimental impact on the character of Shaftenhoe End itself. The existing buildings on the site, which is elevated from the surrounding area, are well screened by the existing boundary hedges but the proposed new dwelling which is 2-storeys and some 50% taller than the existing bungalow could well result in the new dwelling being clearly visible from and dominate the surrounding area and the approach from Shaftenhoe End Road (the site abuts the junction of Shaftenhoe End Road and Bogmore Road) particularly if the hedges around the site were to be cut.
With regard to the Annexe for which retrospective consent is being sought the Parish Council would like clarification of the proposed use. At the present time this building is being used as a dwelling by the applicants who are living in it and not in the existing bungalow. The plans forming part of this application show this building as "office" accommodation. Is it intended that this building be used in future as an "office" or for residential purposes or indeed really as an annexe? The Parish Council also notes that this Annexe has a building footprint of almost exactly the same size as the existing bungalow but a volume in excess of the existing bungalow and as such appears wholly contrary to the provisions of Policy 33 relating to Relatives and Staff Accommodation which requires the size of such accommodation to be small and physically related to the existing dwelling normally by the adaptation or extension of existing accommodation. Only by considering the Annexe in relation to the proposed new dwelling does its size become potentially more acceptable but even then will have a building footprint of almost 40% of the new building.
If despite the Parish Councils serious objections to this application NHDC were nevertheless to approve the application then the Parish Council would ask that a number of conditions be included in any consent restricting the use and occupation of the annexe as ancillary to the principle dwelling and for no other purpose whatsoever, that all permitted development rights be withdrawn, and that the height of the existing boundary hedges be maintained at their current height.
Cllr Turner said that Busy Bee had completed PAT testing on all portable appliances within the Town House. He also confirmed that a written report had been requested from Busy Bee regarding all the recommended works to the Town House and actions required regarding future expenditure and this would be passed on to Carol Turner on completion.
Cllr Turner confirmed that a chair had collapsed at a recent event and this had led to a safety check on all other chairs. Some others were also found to be faulty and so had to be discarded. There are now only a total of 143 chairs and therefore others would need to be purchased.
It was agreed that other Town House issues, including a suggestion that all the locks to the building should be changed because of concerns that the security of the building is compromised due to there being some doubt about exactly who has keys to the building, should be discussed at the next Town House Committee meeting.
The metal inserts to the new rubbish bins have now been found and installed and the contractor has undertaken the necessary remedial/repair works.
Nothing further to report.
The contractor has confirmed a start date of 15th November.
Cllr Elliott gave more detail of his meeting with Drew & Barltrop last month. They have informed him that a new staff Health & Safety induction should be carried out and that a Display Screen Equipment self assessment should be carried out by the new Clerk. They will send a form.
They are also looking into the issue of whether the fridges, which are required to be left empty after each hiring of the property, should be left switched on or off when the building is not being used and will report back with a definite conclusion. Another of the issues raised at the meeting was the possible need for a village Emergency Plan. Drew & Barltrop had been requested to write to the Council with their advice on the matter.
A risk assessment was carried out of the Town House and it was found that the warning strips on the stairs need replacing. Drew & Barltrop also reminded the Council that the Councilís Health & Safety Policy should be reviewed to ensure that it remains up to date.
Correspondence received was to be circulated to Councillors.
Cllr Elliott advised that Hertfordshire Highways need to be contacted to be informed that the Gabions placed to hold the bank side up in Bogmoor Road had been cut and the granite boulders within them were being stolen. Repairs are required and the Clerk agreed to inform Hertfordshire Highways.
Cllr Turner advised the meeting that the hedges on the corner of Cambridge Rd and Royston Rd at the crossroad junction with Picknage Rd had now been cut back to improve visibility and hence road safety at this busy crossroad. The Chairman expressed thanks on behalf of the council to Cllr Turner and to all those who had helped to carry out the work.
The meeting closed at 10.30pm