Minutes 17th November 2016

 Minutes of Clehonger Parish Council Meeting held on 17th November 2016 at 7.30pm at Innesfield Community Centre

Present: Cllrs P Jeffree (Chairman), J Rees, J Harris, C Protherough (Vice Chair), G Walker, A Morgan, G Savory, J Whittall and A Davies

In attendance:  Mrs A Wright (Clerk), Ward Councillor Steve Williams (for part), The Lengthsman, The Footpath Warden and 6 members of the public.

  1. Introduction and welcome by the Chairman

The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting.

  1. Apologies for Absence

There were no apologies received.

  1. Declarations of Interest

There was one declaration made. Cllr J Whittal declared an interest in Planning Application Number 163391 Bowling Green Farm – proposed erection of four poultry units etc.

  1. Open Session

The footpath from No. 8 The Bines down to Bines Cottage, opposite Lilac Cottage, had overgrown tree branches obstructing it. The Footpath Officer would check this.

The playing field was reported to be “infested” with moles. Cllr Protherough would speak to Mr Marshall about this. Cllr Whittal may also have a contact that may be able to assist with the issue, if required.

The Clerk would chase up the maps, for the Footpath area, from the Locality Steward.

The positioning of the Neighbourhood Watch Signs in Church Road, that the Locality Steward had agreed to assist with, would also be chased up.

The Open Session closed at 7.40pm.

  1. Brief Verbal Reports:

5.1 Ward Councillor.  Ward Cllr Williams arrived later in the meeting and updated when he arrived.  He had spoken with the Case Officer regarding the Gladmans Appeal and had also attended the opportunity to visit the site at Bowling Green Farm. He also advised that the Locality Steward was checking the area regarding night vision of signs and white lines.

5.2 Friends of Clehonger Parish: Cllr Walker reported no further update.

5.3 Clehonger Primary School: Cllr Whittal advised that the School was trying to raise its profile in the Village and the Governors would wish to liaise with the Parish Council about how communications could assist with this. Cllrs Protherough and Davies agreed to join up for a school visit and it was clear that the school was keen to get everyone involved.

5.4 Locality Steward details in the bulletins.

5.5 Lengthsman: The Lengthsman advised regarding blocked drains in Church Road and that the bus shelter seat would be fitted within the next few weeks.

  1. To approve Minutes of the Meeting held on 20/10/16

Resolved: – It was resolved that the Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 20th  October 2016, were approved by the Council and then signed by the Chairman. Minutes were proposed by Cllr Davies and seconded by Cllr Protherough.

  1. Clerk update and correspondence

The Clerk updated the meeting on actions etc. taken. The bus shelter seat and defibrillator pads had been received. The pads were passed to Cllr Davies who would hand them to Jane Matthews for retention as required. Training on the use of the defibrillator was being arranged through the Wednesday Club. Volunteers were needed.

The question of expenses for councillors was discussed and no decision to claim was made, however in the event that a councillor may require an allowance for caring responsibilities, for a child or other dependent, then the position may be revisited.

Donation Requests for the Church and Dore Community Transport had been received.

  1. Finance

8.1 Resolved: The following list of payments were approved unanimously:

Mrs A Wright (salary £495.00, mileage £22.77, phone £18.77)                                           £536.54

The Post Office Ltd. (tax)                                                                      £21.80

Longfield Services (Lengthsman)                                                            £56.00

Herefordshire Council (Parish Freighter)                                                £395.00

Herefordshire Housing (Room hire)                                                        £16.00

Grant Thornton (external audit)                                                           £360.00

Imperative Training (defib pads)                                                            £61.19

Total       £ 1446.53    

8.2 Resolved: The bank balance was noted at £29503.64.

  1. Planning. To receive report from Planning Working Group Leader

9.1) To receive report from Planning Working Group Leader

One new application had been received.

Cllr Whittal, who had declared an interest in the application, left the room at 7.48pm.

APPLICATION NO & SITE ADDRESS:163391 – Bowling Green Farm, Clehonger, Herefordshire,
DESCRIPTION: Proposed erection of four poultry units, feed bins, service building, alterations to existing access and associated development.
APPLICANT(S): Mr P Whittal
GRID REF: OS 346390, 237252
APPLICATION TYPE: Planning Permission

The Parish Council heard representation from the public, including the Allensmore and Clehonger Action Group (ACAG) on the subject of the application. Information regarding access, highways and concerns regarding water run off and contamination were all presented.

In conclusion it was resolved that the Parish Council would again be writing to object to the Planning Application as follows:

The Clehonger Parish Council have heard representation from the public on the planning application 163391 for broiler rearing buildings at Bowling Green Farm.

The Parish Council wish to object to the application because of the following, non exhaustive, factors:

1) An increase in large Heavy Goods Vehicle movements on relatively narrow and busy country lanes and roads without pavements. The road concerns were raised about the recent history of accidents between Bowling Green farm and Dunan, and potential for increased risk of collisions between these with HGVs turning right towards Hereford into fast approaching traffic from the Clehonger direction with limited viewing ability.  The Parish Council has noted the reporting of a higher than average propensity for accidents to occur, on the particular stretch of road in question, and, whilst the mitigating splay proposal is acknowledged, it is not believed that this will assist greatly in minimising the potential risks to road users.

2) Issue of odour and toxic content of air ejected from the units containing spores, faecal matter, bacteria, pathogens and dust particles (list not exhaustive), on a continuous basis, and with periods of high level nuisance likely due to strong effluent smells when the buildings are cleared. Concern over increased levels of odour nuisance from the broiler shed clear out process and consequent effects to human health in terms of breathing and lung conditions.

3) Impact of odour, noise and heavy goods vehicle movements on local businesses. Impact on quality of life for local residents. Issues for tourism, walking and enjoyment of the countryside due to noxious and unpleasant smells eminating from the units.

4) Concern regarding potential leach out and overspill from attenuation pond, and during wash down processes, leading to increased levels of contamination and phosphates in the water course and local river tributaries. Broiler units are a known and proven generator of high levels of phosphates from foul water run off.

5) Concern over flooding issues from larger building footprint in an area prone to flooding leaving less available drainage capacity. It is noted that there had been a change of orientation of the units, to attempt to facilitate better concealment, but the fact that the area covers the same acreage as two football pitches and will still be visible from a nearby bridle path, and a footpath, plus other vantage points mean that the objection via landscape amenity stands.The presence of the units is likely to  reduce amenity for residents, walkers and tourists. The area where the watercourse meets the footpath by Goosepool to the A465 floods even though the culvert has been cleared, with waters backing up both sides of this main road.  Any additional water, plus reduced soak-away, could likely exacerbate the flood risk.

Following the discussion, Cllr Whittal rejoined the Meeting.

9.2)  Southern Link Road 151314 – update

Cllr Protherough updated that letters had now been sent to those whose land was to be required for the road build, and may be compulsorily purchased. The Council were reportedly pushing to get the road to go further and the future plans were being promoted as a “solution to the Motorway M5 issue”.

9.3)  Planning Appeal – Gladmans & Madley Road Site – update

Cllr Protherough advised the meeting that the Gladmans appeal, against the decision by Herefordshire Council Planning Department not to grant planning permission for 90 houses on Madley Road in the Village, had been won by Gladmans. There were, however, conditions attached to this, regarding the sewerage provision, and these must be resolved before any building can proceed. The arguments made, concerning the highways and landscape, were not accepted. The emphasis was made regarding the importance of getting a Neighbourhood Plan in place for the parish.

  1. Village Matters

10.1) Consideration of Community Assets

This item would be considered at the December Meeting. Cllrs Walker and Savory were looking at the situation and had discovered that there was more complexity than had first been thought. A paper would be circulated.

Cllr Morgan advised that the hedge outside Number 34 Poplar Road was out into the road by about three feet.

  1. To determine budget and precept setting for 2017/2018 including Lengthsman and Footpath Funding

A proposal of scenarios for the precept and budget forecast had been prepared and was circulated. The Chair described the different options. The final decision on the amount to be requested would be postponed until December to give councillors a chance to consider the options and make representation if desired.

  1. Neighbourhood Plan – update

         The Neighbourhood Plan was progressing. Some further tweaks would be made to the Questionnaire. There would be a Steering Group Meeting on the 23rd November at Innesfield and an Open Drop-In Session on the 5th December, again at Innesfield, between 7.00 and 9.00pm. This event had been advertised in the “Tracking the News”.

  1. Playing Field – update

A paper with information on equipment to be ordered was circulated. The fencing project would commence the following week. The posts would be painted black, some posts would be removed and timber would be bolted to the retained posts. A generator would be required to power the tools and the Playing Field Committee would be paying for the project.

The Parish Council would use the remaining ring fenced funds to purchase two pieces of equipment. An evaluation of the equipment available had been made and following consideration of value, quality and play value the recommendation was for the equipment to be sourced from Kompan. Rob Heard, the representative who had previously worked for Wickstead, was now with Kompan and had provided a good value price to the Playing Field Committee. The Playing Field Ring Fenced Fund stood at £5947.64. The cost of the equipment was £5930.00 plus VAT. It was agreed that the Parish Council would purchase the equipment and pay the VAT up front in the sum of £1186.00. This would be reclaimed once the invoice had been paid. The installation, delivery, site fencing and any other disbursements would be paid for by the Playing Field Committee. Two invoices would be required from Kompan accordingly. The proposal to proceed with the order, on the basis presented, was unanimously agreed.

Cllr Davies would approach the previously appointed Playing Field Co-ordinator, Mr Alderman, to see if he would be willing to oversee the project.

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

Footpath Warden: No update

HALC Rep:  No update

Tree Warden: The Tree Warden reported that he was looking at some specimen trees, with a view to consideration of tree preservation orders, to help safeguard them in the event of planning applications etc. It was agreed that the Parish Council would fund a high visibility vest for the Tree Warden. It was also agreed that some form of ID was required for the Tree Warden, and possibly the Footpath Officer, to help identify them in the event of a challenge while going about their work.

  1. Items for next Agenda (no discussion)

All of the usual items would be on the Agenda plus the consideration of the budget and precept and also ideas for Community Assets consideration

  1. Reminder of dates of future meetings

There was a reminder of the date of the next Meeting to be held on Thursday 15th December 2016 from 7.30pm at Innesfield.

The Meeting closed at 9.20pm