Minutes of Whitestone Parish Council meeting held at Whitestone Parish Hall at 7.30pm on Thursday, 10th April 2014
Chairman − Councillor P Nierop
Councillors Mrs M Belt, Mrs B Bramhall, Mrs P Fisher,
S Heathcote (left at 9pm), L Hickman, D Munro, M Quinn, A Reed.
District Councillor P Bromell (left at 9pm)
County Councillor J Brook (to give his report)
Mrs P Vaughan, Clerk to the Council
Mr P Rich (in attendance for Planning Application), Mrs S Greenfield.
Apologies: Councillor R Phillips.
The April Draw for the 100 Club in support of the Parish Hall Development Fund was conducted at the end of the meeting. The lucky number was 85 belonging to Tricia Ewing.
22. The Chairman opened the meeting and made special welcome to Councillor Quinn who is still recovering from illness. The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 13th March 2014 having been circulated were taken as read and signed as a true copy by the Chairman.
The Council examined the following applications and Mr Rich was allowed to answer queries in support of his application at Ham Farm, Tedburn Road. The following are the Council’s decisions:−
23.1 14/00579/FUL Closure of existing access, change of use of agricultural land to domestic use including formation of new access and driveway and erection of double garage at Ham Farm, Tedburn Road. No objections.
23.2 Cllr Belt declared an interest in the following application for Bondhouse Lane
14/00950/FUL Demolition of existing building and erection of four stables, fodder store and tackroom on land off Bondhouse Lane. No objections but a proviso that the building should not at some future date be converted for living accommodation.
23.3 14/00668/AGR Erection of an agricultural building at Attwells Farm, Rowhorne Road. It was noted that this application has already been granted.
Planning Application Granted
23.4 14/00144/FUL Single storey front extension at Pound View Farm.
24. MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION
24.1 Tenancy Agreements
As reported at the March meeting the new Tenancy Agreements have now been forwarded by Devon Sales and Lettings and the Chairman was authorised to sign and the Clerk witnessed these documents.
24.2 Report from Asset Group
Cllr Reed reported that an electrical inspection had recently been carried out at No 2 School Houses and it was discovered that some of the installation is defective to the point of being unsafe. There was a very strong recommendation that remedial work is carried out as a matter of urgency. The price quoted for this is £467 plus vat. It was resolved that this should be carried out.
24.3 As reported at the March meeting replacement of the fan oven at No 1 School Houses has now been organised by Devon Sales & Lettings at a cost of £325 + £65 VAT = total cost is £390.
24.4 An inspection of the roof timbers of both houses for woodworm has been arranged by Devon Sales & Lettings and procured at no cost to the Council. The inspection found that there is evidence of woodworm in the roof beams but it is not sure that it is currently active. To carry out treatment it would be £210 per property, however, the following would need to be done in order for this to be completed:−
No 1 − The attic cleared, as currently lots of boxes etc (assumed that this is the tenants belongings)
No 2 − A hatch installed as there is currently no access to the roof space. The eave voids have been checked but the workman was unable to gain access to the roof − he could install a hatch for £100.
It was also commented that there is no insulation in No 1 and the Council may wish to consider having some laid at the same time if you go ahead with the treatments.
Discussion took place regarding this and it was proposed by Cllr Heathcote that any remedial treatment for woodworm should be left until the ceiling repair work in No 1 School Houses, which had already been budgeted for, is carried out. The proposal was seconded with all in favour.
24.5 Report from Working Group
A report had been circulated to the Councillors recommending that School Houses should be sold as they will require additional investment over the life of the next Parish Council that is beyond our current resources to finance. Lengthy discussion took place regarding the contents and financial implications. It was decided that an Open Meeting should take place at 7.30pm on Wednesday 21st May in the Parish Hall and that the report should be publicised in the Parish Magazine and published on the Parish website to give parishioners the opportunity of gaining insight into any proposals which might arise from the report. Copies of the report would also be available at the Annual Parish Meeting. The matter would be further discussed and voted upon at a future Council meeting.
Cllr Nierop thanked the Working Group for their work in compiling this document.
24.6 Rebuild cost survey for Insurance purposes
Cllr Nierop had arranged for this survey at a cost of £100 for both houses
24.7 Rural Aid Funding Application for Whitestone Parish Hall
As minuted in March the application form for Rural Aid Grant of £1,100 for the Parish Hall was duly signed by the Chairman.
Crossways Park Trim Trail
24.8 Repair work for this has been quoted at £520 and it was resolved that this is accepted.
24.9 The Clerk reported receiving notification of the yearly Playground Inspection which would be £59.95 excl VAT which is the same as last year. It was resolved that this should be arranged but ask Playinspections to carry this out in June so that the repair work has been completed.
Proposed changes to roles and responsibilities of Committees/Groups
24.10 Cllr Nierop requested that the responsibility for any work needed at Crossway Park be the placed within the remit of the Asset Group. Cllr Fisher indicated that she was willing to continue with the weekly inspection needed for insurance purposes and would liaise with them with any problems. This will be ratified at the AGM meeting on the 8th May.
Discussion also took place regarding scrutiny of Planning Applications but no changes were agreed.
24.11. Annual Parish Meeting to be held on Thursday 24th April 2013 at 7.30pm
Notification of this has been published and Cllr Belt and Cllr Nierop volunteered to deliver some letters to the parishioners who give reports at this meeting.
24.12. Rural Skip confirmed for Saturday 10th May 2014
25. MATTERS RAISED BY THE CHAIRMAN
Cllr Nierop thanked all those who had assisted in the Litter Pick. He reported that he had attended the Teignbridge Association of Local Councils meeting in March and a great deal of discussion had focussed on the quality of road patching and potholes.
26.1 The Clerk reported completion of the accounts/balance sheet for the year ended 31st March 2014 and the balance sheet showing a balance at the year end as follows:
Business Reserve Account
Business Reserve Account
*This balance includes £100.64
P3 Grant money
26.2 The Clerk reported receipt of notification that the Whitestone Parish Council Annual Audit will be completed by the Audit Commission on the 2nd June 2014. Notices advertising the Audit, together with a balance sheet will be displayed within the Parish and the Annual Return will be presented to the meeting on the 8th May for approval and signing. Mr Ken Abrahams will be visiting her on the 29th May to conduct the Internal Audit.
26.3 School Houses rents for April £1,425 − Letting Agency fees £136.80 (including £22.80 VAT) = £1,288.20
26.4 HM Revenue & Customs − VAT £,3,050.41
26.5 Whitestone Parish Hall Management Committee (April) £125
26.6 Clerk’s expenses £30.15
26.7 Devon Association of Local Councils £140.99 + £20.54 VAT = £161.53
26.8 ACS Electrical £325 + £65 VAT = £390
27.1 Nadderwater Signs −Negotiations have now been completed with Devon County regarding these signs and they should be installed in the near future. Cllr Brook has indicated that he is willing to allocate the cost of £469.59 from his Locality Budget and this will be done direct with the appropriate Department.
27.2 Road closure Halsfordwood Lane − Notification has been received that this will take place at Halsfordwood Lane, Nadderwater from 28th April to 16th May.
27.3 Dartline Bus Service − Response received from Devon County Council that the 1853 service from Tedburn St Mary does not actually do through Whitestone as after leaving Tedburn it goes along the old A30 via Pathfinder Village and into Exeter via Dunsford Hill. Dartline have informed Devon County that there would be a cost involved in re−routing the service via Whitestone as it would mean the bus arriving in Exeter up to 10 minutes later and given that the driver finishes his duty then he would have to be paid more. This response was discussed and Councillors indicated that they have actually seen this service coming through Whitestone and the Clerk was instructed to write giving this information and asking what the actual cost involvement would be.
27.4 A complaint has been received from a resident in Crossways regarding “bags of dog poo” being hung on the fences adjoining the public footpath which runs through Crossway Park. Cllr Munro, who is our Footpath Warden, will be investigating this as it is a littering offence subject to a fine and disposal bins are provided.
Cllr Bramhall reported attending the New Councillors Training Day and thanked the Parish Council for funding this as it had proved to be very informative.
Mrs Sheila Greenfield gave a report on the Parish Plan Steering Group and said, “In view of the lengthy report made at the last meeting regarding progress on the Parish Plan and the proximity of the Annual Parish meeting on the 24th April our report for this month is deferred to the Annual Parish Meeting to avoid repetition”
Mrs Greenfield suggested that the Report from the Working Group on School Houses should be delivered to everyone.
The meeting closed at 10pm.