Whitestone Road sign

Whitestone Parish Council

DRAFT Minutes of Parish Council Meeting held at Whitestone Parish Hall at 7.30pm on Thursday 9th September 2021 to be ratified on 14th October.

Attendance:-
Chair – Councillor T Miles.
Councillors M Belt, V Bryant, L Dyer, A Evans, L Fairley, S Llewelyn, M Smith
Mrs P Vaughan – Clerk to the Council
District Councillor A Swain
Mrs P Lee, Mr Philip Mingo
Apologies: Councillor G Galton

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

Mr Mingo said that he was in attendance regarding the speed camera which had been installed on the Tedburn side of the village as he had concerns regarding the positioning. Cllr Miles requested that Cllr Evans replied to the points which Mr Mingo raised as he had been instrumental in the installation in conjunction with Highways and it was agreed that this would be discussed further during matters for discussion.

  1. Cllr Miles then opened the meeting and the Minutes of the Council meeting held on Thursday 8th July 2021 having been circulated were taken as read and signed as a true copy by the Chairman.
  1. REPORT FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLOR

District Councillor Swain reported on the Teignbridge District Council project on Climate Change which is going forward. Cycling and walking routes are being investigated. Help from Teignbridge is being arranged for Afghan refugees. Councillors asked if there is any progress on the Crossway parking issues and were informed that there is no updating as yet.

  1. CO-OPTION OF PARISH COUNCILLOR

An application has been received from Mrs Pam Lee to rejoin as a Councillor and Cllr Miles welcomed her back onto the Council and she signed the necessary acceptance of office.

  1. PLANNING - These applications can be viewed on line by going into the public access system at Teignbridge Planning following the directions giving the application reference. The following applications having been received from Teignbridge District Council with a request for comments were examined and responses were sent which can be viewed on Teignbridge District Council Planning site:-

57.1   21/01530/NPA Application for Prior Approval under Part 3 Class Q (a) paragraph W of the GDPO for change of use of two agricultural buildings into two residential dwellings at Hackworthy Farm, Hackworthy Lane

Since the first failed application, the applicant realised that the original application for a conversion into 385sq metres had meant the 2nd conversion would have to be smaller and would require significant demolition which was also not permitted under Class Q criteria. A revised design has therefore been submitted for two reduced sized dwellings which seems to meet the criteria and the applicant has demonstrated his intention to convert these barns into two suitable sized family homes, an area of the proposed curtilage will be covered by the existing roof of each building incorporating under cover curtilage to provide a car port and external storage. It is important to retain the agricultural reference in the design of these homes.

The period of development would be defined and short term and this proposal would then result in two fairly identical dwellings on the site and additionally would ensure Hackworthy Farm can continue to be a viable enterprise as an independent farm in its own right fit for the future and aiding our local economy. It is felt that any new development must avoid light spill onto the surrounding landscape and considering the design includes large window openings, the increase in artificial light provides potential for light spill from the dwellings both from internal sources and from lighting from the exterior space (external sources), which must be demonstrated to avoid intrusive light pollution. It is recommended to install low level light with no PIR fittings to protect nocturnal habitat and illuminance should not pose a threat to the dark skies landscape of this rural area. The Council again notes the need to dispose of the asbestos roof sheets responsibly.

57.2   21/01581/NPA Application for Prior Approval under Part 3 Class Q (a) paragraph W of the GDPO for change of use of two agricultural buildings into two residential dwellings at Hackworthy Farm, Hackworthy Lane

Planning Application: 21/01530/NPA Hackworthy Farm, Hackworthy Lane, Nadderwater EX4 2LE

Since the first failed application, the applicant realised that the original application for a conversion into 385sq metres had meant the 2nd conversion would have to be smaller and would require significant demolition which was also not permitted under Class Q criteria. A revised design has therefore been submitted for two reduced sized dwellings which seems to meet the criteria and the applicant has demonstrated his intention to convert these barns into two suitable sized family homes, an area of the proposed curtilage will be covered by the existing roof of each building incorporating under cover curtilage to provide a car port and external storage. It is important to retain the agricultural reference in the design of these homes.

The period of development would be defined and short term and this proposal would then result in two fairly identical dwellings on the site and additionally would ensure Hackworthy Farm can continue to be a viable enterprise as an independent farm in its own right fit for the future and aiding our local economy. It is felt that any new development must avoid light spill onto the surrounding landscape and considering the design includes large window openings, the increase in artificial light provides potential for light spill from the dwellings both from internal sources and from lighting from the exterior space (external sources), which must be demonstrated to avoid intrusive light pollution. It is recommended to install low level light with no PIR fittings to protect nocturnal habitat and illuminance should not pose a threat to the dark skies landscape of this rural area. The Council again notes the need to dispose of the asbestos roof sheets responsibly.

57.3   21/01490/HOU Single storey side extension at Hindcross, Whitestone.

Response summary:- The application is for a single storey kitchen extension under a flat roof. The client proposes to demolish the small redundant porch projection to the east elevation which is adjacent to an existing conservatory. The existing conservatory roof would be replaced and finished with a new flat roof within a small parapet perimeter upstand wall to conceal the new flat roof.

Even though the proposal is to the side of the property and would be visible from the public highway, any impact is not considered to be detrimental to the residential amenity of neighbouring properties and is not considered to be dominant or overbearing. This is due to the proposal removing an existing porch structure and then incorporating the extension alongside the original conservatory providing a design that would provide better usable space inside the property.

Modern materials sympathetic to the existing location will be used, with double-glazed PVCu doors and windows.

It is noted, however, that no mention is made of energy efficient proposals, such as insulation and heating and it would be good to see energy efficiency incorporated into the plan. There may be some additional light spill to housing across the road, depending on the nature of the roof lantern, but this is unclear from the application and any potential light pollution should be mitigated. It appears from the plan that no trees or hedges would be affected by the extension. It seems to meet the criteria set out in the Teignbridge Local Plan 2013-2033 – Policies: S1A, S1, S2, S22, EN2A, and WE8. Whitestone Parish Council is minded to support this application, though it would welcome some indication that energy efficiency measures are included to support Whitestone’s declaration of a climate emergency.

57.4   21/01741/FUL Replace two outbuildings with a new double garage at Connetts, Halsfordwood Lane.

Response summary:- The applicants wish to replace two existing dilapidated outbuildings by a double garage. The proposed structure will be located in a countryside location within an AGLV.

Whitestone Parish Council have considered the application and would like to support it, since the proposed structure will be an improvement on the present structures, and the design and materials seem appropriate. It will be set back from
the road, and there would be no overlooking. Access to the lane would not change, and the splay is adequate. There would be no greater impact on traffic. It appears from the proposal that no trees or hedges would be affected.
The Parish Council would however like to suggest these conditions, if TDC is minded to approve the application

57.5   21/01899/FUL External staircase at The Travellers Rest, Tedburn Road.

Response summary:- The applicants wish to install an external fire escape from the first floor of the Traveller’s Rest Public House, exiting to the rear of the building. The application states that this is at the direction of the Fire Officer. The Parish Council would wish to support all appropriate initiatives that ensure public safety and the wellbeing of those working in local businesses. Although not likely to be overly intrusive from the road, the proposed construction is likely to be visible to neighbouring properties, so the use of approximately environmentally sensitive materials is to be encouraged where possible. The risk of light pollution with a potentially negative impact on wildlife would also be reduced if emergency external lighting only is installed. In summary Whitestone Parish Council supports this application but recommend Teignbridge District Council to encourage the use of ecologically appropriate construction materials.

57.6   21/01680/FUL Conversion of barn into one unit of accommodation for holiday use at Hurston Farm.

Response summary:- The application has been discussed and considered by Whitestone Parish Council. This application is for the conversion of a barn into one unit of accommodation for holiday use. The proposed barn to be converted we understand is at present redundant and the plans show that it is to be a two bedroomed property with allocation for two parking spaces (although there is some discrepancy between the application form and the plans submitted as to whether one or two spaces are proposed).

The proposed barn is sited in an Area of Great Landscape Value in open countryside and has no near neighbouring properties. The application is compliant with policies S22 and EC11 in that the barn in question is to be used for tourist accommodation only and the barn is considered to be an appropriate conversion or change of use of a soundly constructed building. However, Whitestone Parish Council feel that this application does need to meet the criteria set in policy EN8 and should use this opportunity to enhance and restore biodiversity in the area by introducing bird and bat boxes for example. In addition, the criteria in policy EN2A should also be adhered to ensuring the landscape will be protected, enhanced and that the conversion itself will be sympathetic in helping conserve and enhance the rural landscape in which it is sited. As Teignbridge District Council and Whitestone Parish Council have both declared a climate emergency, we should encourage energy efficient systems and materials to be used in this proposed conversion.

The applicants have previously been successful in changing the use of another barn to a dwelling 12/02886/COU now known as Hurston Barn Mews and is accessed from the Whitestone Road. In 2009 the applicant's address in application 09/00937/FUL was given as Hurston Farm, Tedburn Road. This dual address has raised questions as to which access is proposed to be used by holiday makers staying at this holiday let if permission is granted? We have been unsuccessful to date in obtaining an answer to this question from the applicants. The splay on to the highway on the Whitestone Road is adequate and is used by Hurston Farm and two other properties. Access onto the C50 on a bend is not so easy and potentially dangerous with traffic traveling up to 60mph. This isn't a particularly sustainable application as it does totally rely on the use of private transport but we do agree that one holiday unit with two bedrooms is unlikely to result in a great increase in traffic to the area.

The Whitestone Parish Council are concerned however, that the windows shown on the plans would potentially result in a big increase in light pollution in an area of the parish where traditionally dark skies have been the norm. It is noted that the parking spaces are located some distance from the front door and it is likely external lighting will therefore be required by visitors. We would recommend that low level lights with no PIR fittings be installed to protect the nocturnal habitats, and illuminance should not pose a threat to the dark skies landscape of this rural area.

The Whitestone Parish Council on the whole support this application but would recommend some conditions to be applied if Teignbridge District Council are minded to approve this application.

Grants of Conditional Planning Permission

57.7   21/00811/LBC Remove cemented and lime render to external walls and repair areas with lime putty and install new lime render with a lime paint and remove concrete slab and install French drains at Chants Cottage, Heath Cross

57.8   21/00895/FUL New dwelling replacing existing agricultural barn at Friars Ball Farm, Rowhorne Road.

57.9 19/00202/FUL Formation of a slurry pit to work with the approved shed at Upper Kingswell Farm, Longdown.

57.10   21/01271/HOU Detached garage at Ham Farm, Tedburn Road.

57.11   21/01177/FUL New dwelling replacing existing agricultural barn and outbuildings at Higher Hare.

57.12   21/00554/FUL Construction of one hardstanding area with excavation and drainage works, upgrade to existing access track with fencing at Oakhay, Tedburn Road.

57.13   21/00472/FUL Fodder, bedding and machinery store at Glebe Farm

57.14   21/01490/HOU Single storey side extension at Hindcross.

Grant of Request for Prior Approval

57.15   21/01452/NPA Application for a Prior Approval under Part 3 Class Q (a) and (b) and paragraph W of the GDPO change of use of agricultural building to a dwelling at Apple Orchard Barn, Styles Barton.

Prior Approval not required

57.16   21/01666/AGR & 21/01667/AGR Agricultural building at Woodhay Farm.

Refusal of request for prior approval

57.17   21/01530/NPA Application for Prior Approval under Part 3 Class Q (a) and (b) paragraph W of the GDPO for change of use of two agricultural buildings into two residential dwellings at Hackworthy Farm, Hackworthy Lane.

57.18   21/01581/NPA Application for Prior Approval under Part 3 Class Q (a) paragraph W of the GDPO for change of use of two agricultural buildings into two residential dwellings at Hackworthy Farm, Hackworthy Lane. (dated 31st August)

Application withdrawn

57.19   21/00905 Dwelling to replace existing agricultural building at Styles Barton Meadow.

  1. MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION

58.1 Refurbishment of No.1 School House

Cllr Belt reported that the painting and decorating were going ahead and this should be finished next week. The chimneys had been swept at a cost of £90 but only the one on the first floor could be used as a fireplace and the other two closed off. Three quotes for installation of carpets and vinyl flooring had been obtained and the quote for £885 from Market Carpets had been accepted and the work will be completed on Sunday, 26th September. Quotes for the installation of energy efficient Quantum Dimplex heaters at a cost of £3,917 from S J Electrical Services has been accepted and Cllr Belt will contact the firm regarding the installation. As soon as the necessary work has been completed Carter Geering will be contacted to arrange the necessary contracts for the letting of the house. Cllr Miles congratulated Cllr Belt for all her hard work in organising everything.

58.2 Toilet facilities for Crossway Park

Following a letter received from the Parish Hall Committee discussion followed regarding the outside toilet facilities at the rear of the Hall in which they ask the Council to consider relieving them of the responsibility and cost of maintaining this resource. After discussion it was agreed that the Council are in favour of keeping this facility open and are willing to take over the responsibility and will investigate cost saving ideas which could include an electric hand dryer would obviate the need for paper tissues.

58.3 Review of DCC Lower Hare Farm

Cllr Miles reported that the Council have withdrawn the application for a Judicial Review but are moving forward with engaging with the Environment Agency to request a public consultation should an application be submitted by a potential operator for a permit to create an operating landfill at Lower Hare Farm and to deal with the environmental issues that have not been adequately addressed by Devon County Council. 

58.4 Vehicle Activated Speed Signs

Following the representation made by Mr Mingo at the beginning of the meeting the positioning of the VAS signage was discussed and it was agreed that the sign should be temporarily moved to an alternative post at Nadderwater until further investigations had been completed regarding the current location and other flexible locations can be agreed with Highways..

58.5 Action on Climate Change

It was reported that the meeting held on Saturday last had proved a great success with approximately 50 people attending and had generated a great deal of local awareness of the issues. Cllr Llewelyn will be writing an account for the magazine and thanked all those who had helped with the event..

58.6 Reported Dumping activity on land at Pound Lane/Hill Lane

Cllr Miles had attempted to investigate this but had been unsuccessful in taking it further.

58.7 Teignbridge Consultation – Local Plan development sites – Attwells Farm

A response had been sent to Teignbridge District Council regarding the unsuitability this site.

58.8 Dog bin/litter bins in Parish and 2 waste bins for Crossway Park

These had now been delivered and bins had been sited including one at Heath Cross..

58.9 Dog waste bins and re-siting due to complaints

Cllr Dyer reported on feedback which she had received from parishioners regarding the siting of bins. The responses were noted by the Council and discussed but a decision was made that they remain in current positions for the time being.

58.10 Crossway Park

Cllr Fairley reported that Mr Blades had made some adjustments to the swings and they would be continually monitored Replacement lettering was being arranged for HMS Whitestone and then to be varnished. It was reported that Mitchell Tree Surgery will be trimming trees in the playground on the 1st October and notices will be displayed that the Park will be closed during this time. They will also be dealing with the trees on the green area near the bus stop with the total cost of £230.00.

  1. MATTERS RAISED BY THE CHAIRMAN

Cllr Miles read a letter of complaint she had received from the owners of Chants Cottage regarding the proposed glamping site. It was felt by the applicants that the Parish Council had not been welcoming and friendly, although they had the option to attend a meeting and discuss their application but it had been a retrospective planning application following an enforcement officer visit and considerable community objection. Cllr Miles said that she would respond but would be advising that the ultimate decision was made by Teignbridge against policy and the Parish were only asked for comments.

  1. FINANCE

60.1 Bank balances as at Nat West Bank as at 31st August 2021

Current A/c

£200.00

Business Reserve A/c 1

£40,095.08

Business Reserve A/c 2

£3,417.15

£43,712.23

60.2 Conclusion of Annual Audit by External Auditors PKF Littlejohn LLP

Notices regarding the satisfactory conclusion of the Annual Audit will be displayed on Parish noticeboards and on the Whitestone Website. The External Auditor concluded that that Parish should ensure that it has regard to the level of reserves held when considering future precept requests.

Income

60.3 2 School Houses rent/insurance to 1st September 2021 £825.00 - £109.20 (includes £18.20 VAT) = £715.80.

60.4 2 School Houses rent to 1st October 2021 £825.00 - £79.20 (includes £13.20 VAT) = £745.80

Expenditure

The following expenditure was proposed and seconded for payment. All in favour ad the cheques were signed by Councillors Miles and Belt.

60.5 Mr L Blades – July £348.75 (Cheque 589 dated 11/8/21)

60.6 Teignbridge District Council (Council Tax for 1 School Houses) £155.04 (Cheque 590 dated 11/8/21)

60.7 Richard & Son - Chimney sweep at No 1 School Houses £90.00 (cheque 591)

60.8 TWM Traffic Control Systems Ltd £6,845.52 (includes £1,140.92 VAT) (cheque 592)

60.9 Market Carpets £885.00 (cheque 593)

60.10 Mrs P Vaughan – Clerk’s expenses/quarterly salary £475.59 (cheque 594)

60.11 HM Revenue & Customs £81.80 (Clerk’s income tax on salary) (cheque 595)

60.12 Mr L Blades – August £356.91 (cheque 596)

60.13 PKF Littlejohn LLP (Annual Audit) £240.00 (includes £40 VAT) (cheque 597)

60.14 Mr H Netherway (noticeboard at Parish Hall) £435.00 (cheque 598)

60.15 Teignbridge District Council (Council Tax for 1 School Houses) £154.00 (cheque 599)

60.16 S Andrews Electrical (smoke alarms at 2 School House £65.00 (paid through Carter Geering

  1. REPORTS

61.1 Cllr Bryant reported that the grit bin at Church corner has been damaged and to be checked before winter.

61.2 Cllr Belt said that it is noted that the Whitestone sign near the bus stop needed painting and this was on the worklist for the Lengthsman but this will be left until the current flowers have died back and Mr Blades will then do this.

61.3 Cllr Dyer said that it is with regret that she wishes to retire from the Council owing to family pressures and Cllr Miles thanked her for all her work during her time with the Council..

The next Parish Council meeting will take place in the Parish Hall at 7.30pm on Thursday 14th October 2021.

The meeting closed at 10pm