The Meeting of the Parish Council of Withypool and Hawkridge

Withypool Village Hall, Tuesday 11th September 2018 at

Attendees: Parish Cllrs: A Howard (AH - Chairman), A Collins (AC), J Davies (JD), K Branfield (KB), P Williams PW), R Lock (RL)

The chairman requested the councillors to attend before the main meeting to discuss the clerk’s salary without the clerk present. It was agreed to bring it in to line with the National Association of Local councils pay recommendations which are two and a half hours per week at a rate of £9.705 per hour, and it was also discussed that the clerk should use a laptop owned by the parish council. A few quotes were discussed and one was chosen as suitable for the clerk and parish councillors needs. Both of these issues were later raised in the finance report of the main parish council meeting.


The Meeting of the Parish Council of Withypool and Hawkridge

Withypool Village Hall, Tuesday 11th September 2018 at 7.30pm

Attendees: Parish Cllrs: A Howard (AH - Chairman), A Collins (AC), J Davies (JD), K Branfield (KB), P Williams PW), R Lock (RL) C Cllr F Nicholson (FN), D Cllr S Pugsley (SP) Clerk C Hornsby (CH) and 15 members of the public

18/38                  Apologies for Absence                                              TL

18/39                  Declarations of notifiable interest                         None

18/40                  Approval of the Minutes of the previous meeting on 03/07/2018. These were                                          approved and the chairman signed as a true and correct record.

18/41                  Sue Southwell talk on Housing Needs Survey – postponed - see point 18/55

18/42                  Matters arising from the minutes of 03/07/2018 PW raised the issue that nothing                     seemed to have been done at Chibbet Ford.  AH to email chair of Exford PC

18/43                  Withypool Bridge Common Land. Time was allocated to the members of the public                        who wished to speak for or against the erection of a fence between King’s Farm and                            the Common Access Land that was once the village ford, leading to the river.
                             The councillors then discussed the matter and it was established that the owner of                   the fence would not take it down. The councillors resolved to act in the best interest                          of the village and several options were raised. The matter will be discussed at the                              next meeting in November 2018


18/44                  Mobile phone masts. Time was allocated to the members of the public who wished                           to raise concerns over the sighting and coverage of mobile phone masts. SP raised                the point that there was to be a Consultative Forum  meeting at Withypool Village                      Hall on Thursday 13th September at 7.00pm where all the questions raised could be                put to the main phone company that would be attending. All agreed it would be                                          very worthwhile attending. It was commented that many areas had been looked at                         for the emergency mast and that Kitridge was the best site for the greatest                                           coverage.

18/45                  Report from District councillor Apologies to SP as the previous minutes stated                                           incorrectly his comments about the internet coverage on Exmoor. What SP actually                          said was that Exmoor was better than most rural areas and that it was the time to                              encourage business to locate here before other rural areas have their coverage                                  improved. He reported that progress of the new authority was slow and that the                         new warding pattern had been agreed by most parishes with a few wishing to make                            changes.

18/46                  Report from County Councillor This was given by SP as FN had to leave for another                            meeting after point 18/44. He stated that due to the proposed cuts with in the                                           Somerset County Council, Exmoor and other rural areas within Somerset will be                                          affected due to cuts to pre salting routes during the winter. Snow will still be cleared                         but the salt bags that are delivered around the area will be cut. 70% of the money                              for Somerset goes on young vulnerable people and also the elderly and so the                                        council is having to make cuts in many areas affecting both rural and urban to                                   provide for these much needed services. It was discussed about employing a                                           contractor to do the salting and SP suggested it could be a joint venture with other                             parishes. SP will look in to this at other parish meetings that he will be attending.                              SP then read an email he had sent to the County Councillor on behalf of the parishes                            expressing his concerns over the cuts to vital winter services. Finally SP said that the                 new planning officer at ENPA is now in his role

18/47                  Finance Report                Received: Parish Rents of £120.00 and £250.00 and also a                cheque from Exmoor Parish council for the shared training that the clerk attended                 for GDPR in May 2018. Bank Reconciliation £4084.16 with no cheques outstanding.                     Invoices: Clerk expenses. Stamps, training fuel cost to Somerton (half shared with                           Exmoor Parish Council) Land registry documents, Website upgrade cost of £29.95                      and mileage cost to three meetings. This was agreed to be paid to the clerk. The                                subject of the Clerk’s pay was raised as payment for July, August and September                was due to be paid in October and needed to be authorised at the meeting. It was                           put to the clerk the pay of £9.705 per hour with effect from the meeting which was                            accepted. (NB this was amended to new a new start date of 1st July 2018, after a                    further discussion by the Cllrs after the meeting,) It was also mentioned that it will                 be reviewed annually. Clerk to organise contract with the chairman. The subject of                       the laptop was discussed by AH and details were given to the clerk to take to                                         Exmoor parish council to see if they would consider sharing the cost of the laptop                   and for it to be a duel ownership between the two parish councils. Clerk to take to                             the Exmoor meeting at the end of September

18/48                  Highways Lanacre Brdge had been hit again and the Portford bridge need an email                  explain about the correct mortar to use. Clerk to email Highways  The clerk reported                            on the road closure of Quarry head road to comers cross from 16th October for 10                              days. Clerk to email requesting that it be delayed till after half term and that the                 road can be open at after working hours.

18/49                  Parish Gardens – Awaiting final news about the sale of the Ditch from Mark                                           Saunders

18/50                  Planning - None

18/51                  Recycling at the tip – Cllr JD spoke about the new recycling collections that will be                 rolled out gradually. The range of plastics being collected for recycling is increasing,                          reducing the amount to be sent as general waste, therefore the general waste                                          collection will be reduced to once every 3 weeks. Properties exclusively used for                 holiday lets will count as trade waste and appropriate arrangements will need to be                     made for its collection. There are free rolls of food waste bags which you can pick up                              from the library. The issue over unfairness of peoples personal vehicles being                              classed as trade and there for unable to have a trailer too was raised but it seems                        this will be unavoidable. JD spoke that Micky Green at the presentation was very                   keen to listen to issues and make the policy fairer. The £2 policy at Dulverton will go                           by 2020.

 18/52                 Parish Maintenance – AH thanked Cllr JD for his maintenance of the village signs by                        strimming the grass back and also about the touching up of paintwork on the finger                         signs

18/53                  Correspondence – all dealt with during the meeting

18/54                  Report from Representatives of other groups    Withypool Village Hall – trial chair                was tested and all thought it would be an improvement. Hawkridge village hall – car                        park being done now. Henry Leigh Trust – Cllr KB said that many young people had                         benefited from the money from the Henry Leigh Trust. They can apply 3 times a year                      for different things and they are not means tested. Last year was their 10 year                                       anniversary and they worked out that they had done over £60,000 in applications                           varying from driving lessons and tests, to music lessons to even a contribution for a                          trip to New Zealand. Exmoor panel – already discussed in recycling. Consultative                       and Parish Forum - is on Thursday 13th September at Withypool Village Hall at 7pm.

18/55                  Items for November Agenda Clerk to ask Sue Southwell if she would be kind enough                         to give her talk that was postponed at 6.30pm before the council meeting in                                           November. This would give plenty of time for discussions. The venue to be changed               to Withypool as it concerns that part of the parish –clerk to email Sue Southwell                 and also to change venue

18/56                  Date and Time of next meeting

Tuesday 13th November 2018 Withypool Village Hall 7.30pm (tbc)

There being no further business the chairman closed the meeting at 9.25pm