Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting of Clehonger Parish Council held on 12th December 2019 at 7.30pm at Innesfield Community Centre
Present: Cllrs J Rees, J Whittal, A Davies, C Protherough, W Watkins and K Langdon
In attendance: Mrs A Wright (Clerk), Ward Cllr David Hitchiner (from 8.42 pm), Lengthsman Paul Wright, PCSO Fiona Witcher and five members of the public
1. Introduction and welcome by the Chair
The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.
2. To receive Apologies for Absence
There were apologies for absence received from Cllr Savory (6 month dispensation for absence was agreed by the members following her request) and from Cllr Harris plus Tree Warden Alan Morgan.
3. Co-option of councillor and signing of forms
There was no new co-option.
4. To note Declarations of Interest
There were no declarations of interest.
5. Open Session
The yellow speed awareness signs were mentioned. Could there be more of these placed further out possibly? Request was made for more speed gun deployment to discourage speeding through the village lanes. The footpath/walkway down by the Persimmon site and Seven Stars was deep in slurry, which needed to be scraped off.
PCSO Fiona Witcher advised that there had been a lot more scam reports and fraud targeting mostly the elderly. Posters had been supplied and these were put up in the Community Centre to try to raise awareness. PCSO Fiona Witcher left the meeting at this point.
6. Brief Verbal Reports:
6.1 Ward Councillor. Ward Cllr Hitchiner arrived at the meeting at 8.42 pm. There was a discussion regarding parking in Croft Road near the bus stop which was causing issues for vehicles rounding the corner. This may need to be considered for a traffic regulation order for yellow lines to deter parking at the location. Details of parking likely to cause an issue would be sent to the Police if registration details and circumstances were advised.
6.2 Friends of Clehonger Parish: No further update
6.3 Clehonger Primary School: Newsletter received. The PC commented that it would be good to have attendance at PC meetings from a school representative, if possible.
6.4 Locality Steward: Not present. Bulletins circulated.
6.5 Lengthsman: The Lengthsman was present at the meeting. The Vallets Farm, Ruckhall Lane flooding issues were ongoing. There were blocked drains reported at Oak Crescent junction and Gosmore Road.
7. To approve Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 14/11/19
It was resolved that the Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting, held on 14th November 2019, were approved by the Council and then signed by the Chairman. The Clerk thanked Cllr Watkins for stepping in to take the minutes during her absence on leave from the November Meeting.
8. Clerk update and correspondence
The Clerk updated the meeting on actions, correspondence etc. including:
• Core Strategy and Neighbourhood Planning review meeting – Additional date.
• Salt for parishes
• Review of Polling Districts, Polling Places and Polling Stations
• Invitations to councillors – The Great Collaboration (Climate Emergency initiative)
• Marches Renewable Energy Grant Scheme
• Current development in the River Lugg catchment area
• Budget 2020/21 and Corporate Plan consultation: 7 November to 4 December 2019
• Papers from HALC Conference & AGM held on 23/11/19
• Information Corner and Legal Topic Note – giving to churches
Attenuation Pond on Persimmon Site.
Details had been sent to the Enforcement Team at Herefordshire Council regarding flooding at the Attenuation Pond on the Persimmon Site and concerns had been raised about capacity and safety issues.
9. Finance and Policies
9.1 Resolved: The following list of payments were approved, proposed by Cllr Davies and seconded by Cllr Whittal:
Mrs A Wright (salary paid in accordance with contract)
HMRC (Tax) £2.40
Longfield Services (Lengthsman/Bins) £187.50
Herefordshire Housing Ltd (room hire) £44.00
DJN Planning Ltd (NDP) £1300.00
Eyelid Productions Ltd (web site) £30.00
9.2 To consider donation for Dore Community Transport
The Parish Council discussed the request for a donation to the work of Dore Community Transport and resolved to award a donation of £650.00.
9.3 To consider donation for Clehonger churchyard mowing/upkeep
The Parish Council discussed the request for a donation to the churchyard mowing/upkeep and resolved to award a donation of £650.00.
9.4 Resolved: The bank balance was noted at £43149.71.
10.1 To consider response to Planning Applications, as notified, and then determined by Herefordshire Council:
APPLICATION NO & SITE ADDRESS: Planning Consultation – 193853 – Land off, Madley Road, Clehonger, Herefordshire
DESCRIPTION: Application for approval of reserved matters (Appearance, Landscaping, Layout and scale) following outline approval 141964 (residential development of up to 90 dwellings with access, parking, public open space with play facilities and landscaping
GRID REF: OS 344626, 237646
APPLICATION TYPE: Approval of Reserved Matters
Also Planning Consultation 193878 for the same topic
The Parish Council heard representation from members of the public present. The Parish Council would be undertaking a site visit on 16/12/19. The Parish Council discussed the proposals in the reserved matters applications 193853 and 193878 and resolved to comment as follows:
The Clehonger Parish Council has looked at both applications for reserved matters, at the site in Clehonger, and whilst acknowledging the differences in the proposals will comment universally on the applications, in tandem, as follows:
The comments and observations are based on the plans now being considered for reserved matters although there was still considerable concern raised as to the overall viability of the site for the building of the proposed number of homes. A question was asked as to whether an archaeological survey may be required to rule out any possible elimination of historical heritage? There were also concerns raised as to the requirement for a full independent ecological impact assessment to seek to protect the natural environment and indigenous wildlife.
Further topics raised were:
How does the development fit into the recently declared Climate Change Emergency policies?
• Because of the location there will necessarily be a high degree of car dependency – as current public transport provision is limited in the evenings and at weekends.
• There are questions around the measures of the use of green energy provision such as solar power generation, insulation and rain water harvesting. The Parish Council would like to see a commitment made to the use of as many green initiatives as practicable.
• The Secondary School and the Doctors Surgery are going to be largely dependent on vehicular usage for access.
• Is there a possibility for there to be charging points for electric vehicles, especially at the parking court for the apartments?
• Is the attenuation pond going to be effective and safe? How deep will it be? What happens when it reaches capacity? Has account been taken of the potential impact of hard surface gardens in calculations of potential flooding?
Impact on and availability of local services
Current provision of services is alleged to be sufficient, but there are capacity issues at Kingstone Surgery.
Management and adequacy of estate ground
Concerns were raised as to who will maintain the green spaces – will this be a Management Committee responsibility? How will standards be maintained? The Parish Council takes the view that it is vital that the site is properly managed and would seek assurance that this will be formally addressed by the owner of the development site.
The proposed play facilities do not look adequate for all age groups? Wooden equipment can perish quickly and may be more susceptible to damage.
Housing mix- range and suitability of accommodation
Following discussion it was agreed that it would be desirable to see an increased number of one bedroom homes on the development.
Concerns were raised about accessibility for disabled people? Is all of the accommodation “designed for life”
Is there scope for appropriately designed accommodation to be owner occupied?
Has sufficient account been taken of preserving existing species? For example hedgehogs – close boarded fencing without gaps is not recommended.
The hedging at the front of the site is to be removed? What will replace this?
There are serious concerns about the possible use of herbicides and the potential leaching into Cagebrook SSSI. How will this be managed to safeguard the water courses? The Parish Council has considerable concern regarding the management of contamination so that it does not affect the water courses of the Cagebrook SSSI.
There are other species known to be on site, including the presence of a badgers’ sett. There are also Oak Trees of some age that need to be considered.
The Attenuation Pond and Sewerage disposal
Recent local flooding events have highlighted the pitfalls in relying on attenuation ponds to cope with the storage of floodwater. The site is steep in nature and there are concerns as to how the pond will be designed to cope with the water collected. There are also concerns for people’s safety as the ponds are necessarily deep, steep sided and difficult to escape from. Will there be adequate fencing around the attenuation pond?
There have been neighbouring site issues regarding disposal of sewerage and waste with on site storage and tanker removal of waste being a daily necessity. The Parish Council would wish to see the necessary connections made to the disposal mechanism, before occupation of finished units commences, to avoid any repetition of what has proved to be an undesirable practice in terms of vehicle movements and odour nuisance.
It would be useful to have a greater understanding of how the pond will actually fit into the topography of the site as there are concerns as to how this will work, given the gradient.
Making site ready for construction to commence
It has been noted that there have been issues, at other sites, where the lack of off road delivery hard standing, with wheel washing, has caused considerable contamination of the highway, by mud, and the blocking of transport links by delivery vehicles and contractor vehicles. The Parish Council are minded to insist that the off road standing, for getting delivery traffic etc. off the main road, is constructed ahead of any attempt to start the actual house building on site. The road that the site is on is a main arterial road for the outlying villages going to and from the City and for this to be compromised is believed to be unacceptable. The Parish Council would also seek assurance that any necessary upgrade works to enable sewerage disposal are carried out ahead of any occupancy of the new homes. This being to prevent any storage of waste on site with tanker removal required.
There is also the overarching concern that any regulatory conditions, that are appended to the granting of reserved matters planning permission, should be monitored and enforced, if a breach should occur, to safeguard the community and the environment. The Parish Council would also seek assurance that the conservation area, as described in the reserved matters application, is indeed retained, as such, for posterity and does not provide the opportunity for further building at a later date. There is also a request for there to be a mixed tenure development with a mix of affordable, shared ownership and open market properties being available.
APPLICATION NO & SITE ADDRESS: Planning Consultation – 193822 – Rocheberie, Church Road, Clehonger, Hereford, Herefordshire HR2 9SE
DESCRIPTION: Single storey side and rear extensions.
GRID REF: OS 346736, 237864
APPLICATION TYPE: Full Householder
The Parish Council considered the proposals for extensions in application 193822 and resolved to support the application.
APPLICATION NO & SITE ADDRESS: Planning Consultation – 193979 – Glasnant House, Clehonger, Herefordshire HR2 9SL
DESCRIPTION: Proposed erection of a pair of semi-detached 2-bed dwellings in substitution for approved 4-bed detached dwelling
GRID REF: OS 345284, 237729
APPLICATION TYPE: Planning Permission
The Parish Council considered the proposals for the erection of a pair of semi detached two bed dwellings in application 193979 and resolved to support the application.
11. Neighbourhood Plan
11.1 Update on Clehonger Plan and next steps
The Parish Council had considered the documents as circulated following the public consultation and it was resolved that the Neighbourhood Plan should progress to the next stage of the process.
12. Playing Field
The hedge cutting had been arranged. Further cuts would be commissioned once the first cut had been undertaken.
13. Brief Reports from Footpath Warden, HALC Rep and Tree Warden (if available)
Footpath Warden: The Footpath Warden was not present.
HALC Rep: No report this time – it was decided that a HALC bulletins would be noted, in place of an appointed representative, at present.
Tree Warden: Cllr Morgan had sent his apologies. Tree preservation order applications were ongoing.
14. Items for next Agenda (no discussion)
All of the usual items would be on the Agenda. Also:
• Letter received from the Directors of Woodfield Gardens concerning possible extension of the cycle way from Belmont to Ruckhall
• To discuss sponsorship request from Belmont Haywood Country Park
• To consider adoption of Policy for dealing with planning applications between parish council meetings (to delegate powers to Clerk to respond on behalf of the PC (PC comments) in case of non ability to discuss at a meeting)
15. Reminder of dates of future meetings
There was a reminder of the date of the next Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council to be held on Thursday 16th January 2020, from 7.30pm, at Innesfield.
The Meeting closed at 9.45 pm.