Minutes 15th January 2015

Minutes of Clehonger Parish Council Meeting held on 15th    January 2015 at 7.30pm at Innesfield Community Centre

Present: Cllrs C Tomlinson (Chairman), J Thorne, P Jeffree and C Protherough

In attendance:   Mrs A Wright (Clerk), Ward Councillor David Taylor, The Lengthsman Paul Wright, PCSO Katie Middleton, Balfour Beatty Locality Steward, Linzy Outtrim, (for part) and 6 members of the public.

  1. Introduction and welcome by the Chairman

The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting. It was with regret that he announced the recent passing of a previous Parish Councillor of many years standing, Mr Cyril Olds. A minute’s silence was observed in memory of Mr Olds.

He also advised the meeting that Cllr Ryder was still recovering from a fall in which she had sustained several broken bones, namely her wrist and shoulder. A “Get Well” Card, from the PC, had been sent and all wished her a full and speedy recovery. Unfortunately, Cllrs Morgan and Hammond were also unwell and they too were wished a speedy recovery. The total absence of five councillors left only four present. The quorum for the Parish Council of Clehonger was set at 3 councillors so the meeting was quorate with the four councillors present.


  1. Apologies for Absence

There were apologies received from Cllrs Whittal, Morgan, Hammond, Walker and Rider


  1. Declarations of Interest

Resolved: Cllrs C Protherough, declared a prejudicial interest in matters relating to the Village Hall and Councillor Tomlinson declared similar in relation to Dore Community Transport.


  1. Open Session

Linda Bishop reported the intention to press on with the “Clean up Clehonger” Campaign. A date had been set for the 25th April. A Team from Tescos and the Police Cadets had been called together and posters would be going up, in notice boards and in publications to publicise the event and gain further support.

There were reports that the street light in the entrance to the Village Hall was out and that the drain at the end of Gosmore Road/Birch Hill Road required jetting again as it was blocked up once more. It was commented that the “Guzzler” (drain cleaner) had been seen “sitting in Elm Grove for a period of time but nothing seemed to have happened”.

It was also reported that the wire litter bin at the top of Church Road had no lid and litter was being scattered once placed in the bin. The Lengthsman would try to fashion a new lid for the bin.

A resident expressed ongoing concern about flood water lying at the front of his and neighbouring properties, in Church Road, Old Clehonger, following heavy rainfall episodes. Photographs of previous incidence of flooding at the properties were viewed. The Locality Steward has visited the site and noted the issues, as reported including the lack of a sump and inadequate drainage pipe-works. She would be requesting remedial drainage works, as applicable. The Locality Steward joined the meeting, at a later point, and was able to discuss an action plan with the concerned resident.

The Adverse Weather Group was still in existence and there were bags of salt available for use on driveways etc. held in stock at several addresses.

An issue of a hedgerow possibly being removed in the Gardiner’s Oak area was reported. The full details would be investigated. The Ward Councillor commented that a hedgerow run of less than 20 metres in length did not require planning permission for removal.

  1. Brief Verbal Reports:

5.1 Local Policing Team. PCSO Middleton updated the meeting regarding recent activities. There had been a reduction in crimes over the Christmas and New Year period overall. There had been some reports of a caller going to houses and asking for people to sign up to giving arrangements for the Red Cross. There had been concerns over the legitimacy of the visits. It was commented that it was not a good time to be calling on households, after dark and in the evening as many people would be afraid and would not wish to engage a caller at that time. The PCSO said that the Police were looking into ways to increase awareness of how to deal with callers with a view to safeguarding the interests of the householder. She also commented that nothing of note had been found on the Playing Field in recent weeks. This would be PCSO Middleton’s final meeting as a PCSO as she was heading off for formal training and when returning would be a PC in Hereford. A new PCSO would be joining the patch, a gentleman who was currently a PCSO in Redditch and he had previously been a military police officer from the Pontrilas Camp. He would commence in post on 1stFebruary. There had been two sites ongoing for fly-tipping in Ruckhall Lane. If any rubbish was deposited then the Enforcement Officers at Herefordshire Council would need to be informed, currently it may be possible for the PCSO’s to take care of this if the incident was reported to them first. The Chair then asked for a vote of thanks to be recorded for all of PCSO Katie Middleton’s contribution to policing in the parish and every good wish for her future in the Police Force. This was reinforced by a round of applause, from all those present, for Katie.


5.2 Ward Councillor. The Ward Councillor highlighted that there were some current disputes occurring over the recently published Lengthsman Scheme. Some meeting had been arranged to communicate with parishes on the subject. The Core Strategy was in the final stages of determination via interrogation by an inspector. There would be a public meeting following on form this.

5.3 Dore Community Transport. Cllr Tomlinson updated the meeting in regard to new promotional leaflets that had been produced to help inform people about, and promote the service. These had been funded by the Herefordshire Council.

5.4 Friends of Clehonger Parish: Not present

5.5 Broadband Champion: Not present but the meeting were advised that a new “box” had been installed.

5.6 Church: Card had been sent to welcome the new Rector with an invitation to attend meetings and she would come along if able to do so.

5.7 Clehonger Primary SchoolNot present   

5.8 Village Hall: There was a forthcoming meeting arranged.

5.9 Lengthsman: The Lengthsman updated the meeting regarding actions taking including actions regarding bins. The question of the private road off Church Road was raised. The residents would need to approach the Lengthsman direct for works down this road, if required, as it fell outside the PC remit area.


  1. To approve minutes of the Meeting held on 27/11/14

Resolved: – The Minutes of the meeting, held on 27th November 2014 were approved by the Council and then signed by the Chairman


  1. Clerk Update on Action Items

The Clerk updated the meeting on actions taken including bus shelter update, bins and the ongoing problematic contractual changes that had left bags sitting awaiting collection until special arrangements could be made to collect them. Linzy Outtrim the Locality Steward arrived at this point 8.00pm and updated the meeting on gullies, jetting and longer term arrangements for the flooding issues in Church Road. The issue of the blocked drain in Gosmore/Birch Hill Road was noted. Issues on the bowling Green Hill were also noted and the potholes in the back road going towards Allensmore. A tree had come down between Monks Wood and Ruckhall Lane. This would be for the landowner to move or, if not owned, then Balfour Beatty would deal with it. The brickwork and repairs at Ruckhall Bridge were celebrated as a success and the field had been reinstated.



  1. To note correspondence

The Clerk advised re some of the correspondence received from HALC, Herefordshire Council and others including information about a seminar aimed at dealing with the issues of loneliness and correspondence concerning the Neighbourhood Plan, including a Service Level Agreement to be signed.

  1. Finance

9.1 Resolved: The following list of payments were approved:

Mrs A Wright   (salary £646.20 mileage £14.58, stationery £9.00)                                                                                £669.78

Longfield Services (Lengthsman)                                                                    £84.00

Herefordshire Housing (Room hire)                                                                 £24.00

Total            £777.78

9.2 Resolved: The bank balance was noted. The increase in precept was ratified following notification of a national pay award affecting the rate of Clerk’s salary.

(At this point the meeting was interrupted by a resident asking for people in the Hall to move their vehicles to allow access for an ambulance. Cllr Taylor left the meeting at this point 8.30pm).


  1. Planning

There was one new planning application to consider:


 APPLICATION NO & SITE ADDRESS: P143679/O – Land at 33 Gosmore Road, Clehonger, Herefordshire,
DESCRIPTION: Proposed dwelling
APPLICANT(S): Mr Allan Davies
GRID REF: OS 344884, 237502
APPLICATION TYPE: WEBSITE LINK: Outline http://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/searchplanningapplications


Clehonger Parish Council commented as follows:


The plan is supported subject to the following points:


  1. As in all developments in Clehonger, issues of  sewage disposal remain an issue and waste processing is believed to be at complete capacity.
  2. Detailed proposals should include instating a proper wheelchair accessible  footpath outside the property on Gosmore Road.
  3. The Plan is consistent with local preference for small development and infilling and is acceptable to the nearest neighbour on Gosmore Road . However we have concerns that owners of a property affected at the rear – 13 Croft Road – had no knowledge of development due to  lack of readily accessible information and are concerned about a reduction of privacy overlooking their back garden – a bungalow would have been acceptable. If plan is accepted this needs to be taken into account in a detailed submission.


  1. Village Matters

None were raised at this point


  1. Neighbourhood Plan and Parish Plan – to receive any updates

The final Parish Plan draft had been sent to the Printers on 15/1/15. When printed it would need to be distributed and an Information Evening arranged. Monies spent would need to be reclaimed and action points raised by the plan would need to be considered as to how to take them forward. The information meeting could be used as a springboard to talk about implementing the Plan findings. There was an election coming up and would need to look at the structure of the PC and how to implement actions. There would be some “Quick Wins” and some longer term objectives.


  1. Playing Field update on fundraising and development

An explanation of the current funding held was given. The Veolia Grant had been for £40,000.00. This had then been reduced effectively by a deposit required of £4089.00. Finally only £26,000.00 had been forwarded “up front”. The remainder of funding would be paid following proof of spend and other conditions. There were still concerns regarding the VAT and whether it could be reclaimed and retained by the Parish Council. The Clerk would telephone Veolia and request written confirmation regarding this.

There were discussions around the possible requirement for there to be an interim PC Meeting if decisions needed to be made around ordering equipment etc. This was not ruled out as an option, if required.

Cllr Protherough gave a detailed update of the planting project and the funding obtained to facilitate this. Conditions around bio-diversity and sustainability needed to be met. A timetable of planting of bulbs and seeds and propagation, involving the school children, were all to be arranged. Some of the activities would fit in with the National Curriculum. There would hopefully be a competition for the children to help gain ideas for planting designs and these would be presented at a future PC Meeting along with the final suggested planting scheme. Sadly, previous experience of flowerbeds on the field had not turned out as hoped and the long term care had been neglected. It was hoped that the old flowerbed would be included in the ongoing care arrangements. The PC may wish to make a site visit to look at options and any potential ideas for tree planting would involve the County Arborist. Fundraising was ongoing with an Indoor Car Boot raising funds, coffee mornings were going well and there were further “Race Nights” coming up. The Christmas Party had made a £200.00 profit also.


  1. Brief Reports from Footpath Warden, HALC Rep, Village Hall Rep and Tree Warden

Footpath Warden: The Footpath Warden reported that the Pumping Station project was underway despite the “horrendous” conditions down near to it. The invoice would be presented before the next meeting and the Chair sought permission to pay this between meetings. This was proposed by Cllr Jeffree and seconded by Cllr Thorne. Resolved

HALC Rep, Village Hall Rep: neither was present

Tree Warden: No update at present


  1. Items for next Agenda (no discussion)

Items as usual plus Lengthsman Contract, outcome of design competition for children to consider planting options for the Playing Field


  1. Reminder of dates of future meetings

The next Meeting will be held on Thursday 19th February 2015, at 7.30pm, at the Innesfield Community Centre.


The Meeting closed at 9.25pm