1 December 2020 – Barlaston Parish Council Minutes

posted in: Minutes 2020 | 0


Cllr G Jones, Cllr P Fisher, Cllr C Hurst, Cllr D Bentley, Cllr V O’Dunne, Cllr E Philpott, Cllr I Moran, Cllr A Hemming 

Also In attendance:

Mrs K St Leger (Clerk), A member of the public 

7:15 – 7:30    Public Open Forum – three items were raised:

  • The box (believed to be BT or SKY) located outside Orchard Place is grey, this needs to be painted green to be in keeping with the area.
  • The Canal towpath is in a poor state of disrepair; issues have been encountered with people tripping over the mooring rings due to their colour.
  • Planning Permission has been granted for the Old Road Garages, Old Road.

115      Apologies – It was noted Cllr Tudor logged on to the meeting and her internet connection subsequently failed. It was resolved to accept her apology.

116      Appointment to Barlaston West Position – The Clerk attempted to contact the applicant from the Ward to attend the meeting, however this was unsuccessful.

117      Declarations of Interest – There were no declarations of interest.

118      Written applications for dispensations under the Localism Act 2011 – There were no applications for dispensation.

119      Minutes of the full Council Meeting of 3 November 2020. It was resolved to accept these as a true record.

120      Matters arising from the meeting of 3 November 2020 and not otherwise on the agenda

117 Crossing Patrol Update

    • The School advised they did not require Hi-Viz equipment for the children.
    • It was noted parents were still parking on the Village Hall car park to access the lane. The Clerk had sourced three quotations for swing gates to be installed at the entrance and exit of the car park, keys to be provided to regular hirers and the residents with a paid Wayleave agreement.

Quotations received were (a) £1840; (b) £1658.33 and (c) £1600.  It was resolved to accept quotation (c) on price and appoint R Sutton (Engineering) Ltd.  Gates to be galvanised and powder coated.  Clerk to raise the Purchase Order.

4        Barlaston Park Vacancy update – It was noted no applications were received and the role can now be fulfilled via co-option.  An advertisement to be posted.

7        Covid-19 preparations update – the presentation is still on hold.  The Clerk submitted the proposed leaflet indicating updated Councillor Ward Data, it was resolved for an updated Chairman’s Blog be included on the reverse, including the Judges Award for the Covid-19 Barlaston Community Group at the recent Stafford Borough Council Community Awards Evening.

22      Neighbourhood Watch Scheme (deferred)

35/36 Village Drainage Strategy Group update – The Environment Agency confirmed properties either side of a culvert are responsible for the maintenance under riparian responsibilities. The Clerk published a video on social media explaining who is responsible for which riparian scenario.

Superrod visited the site and submitted a quotation for works:

Location 11a Meadow Road, access point at No. 1 Meadow Croft (under sun dial), outfall access 40 Barlaston Old Road.

Task 1 – High pressure water jet and silt removed from Section 1 (No. 40 to No. 1)

From chamber at No. 40 remove debris and silt via a vactor unit, once chamber is clear high pressure jet from No. 40 upstream in 10 meter sections to remove all the silt and debris, debris to be removed.  They need to remove silt to Cherry Hill Waste, (turnaround 1hr).  Estimate 2 days to complete @ £830.00 + VAT per day

Task 2 – High pressure water jet and silt removal from Section 2 (No. 1 upstream through 11a)

The chamber at No. 1 Meadow Croft shall be removed of all debris and silt via a vactor unit, high pressure jet upstream in 10 meter sections. Disposal as above. Estimated 2 days @ £830 + VAT per day

Task 3 – CCTV Survey of two sections

Whilst works being undertaken (if feasible due to drain size) full report to follow. If feasible this to be included in above.

If a crawler unit is required £730 + VAT per day.

It was noted that there was the possibility of tree root obstruction from a property on Old Road could be causing an obstruction.  ‘Where tree roots cause damage to a neighbouring property, the owner of the tree can be liable, under the law of nuisance, for such damage. Claims for damage resulting from tree roots are brought in nuisance rather than trespass, even though the tree roots will be encroaching on the neighbouring land.’

It was resolved to hold a further strategy meeting to determine a way forward.

Cllr Jones advised he had called in the Planning Application for Pine Lea due to concerns regarding surface water.  The Environment Agency refused to comment due to lack of resources. This is going to Committee on 16 December to be determined.

Cllr Hurst has started to collate the details of landowners and their tenants around Barlaston, information regarding Riparian and Highway Act 1980 responsibilities with regards to clearance of gullies/culverts/ditches and mud on the road will be issued.  To assist in the identification, it was resolved to purchase OS Maps of Barlaston.

39        Bridge 104 update – The barrier has now been installed. It was resolved to remove this item from the agenda.

63        Memorial Bench for Mr Stan Philips update – The collection currently stands at around £450. It was important that the bench purchased was in keeping with the village. It was noted the bench in front of the new Orchard Place sign had been removed due to decay. If funding was not adequate, the Parish Council could procure a suitable bench utilising the contribution from the collection. It would be known as Stan’s Bench. Clerk to look at designs / prices. The bench to be of recycled material to meet the Climate Change agenda and would be situated on the green at the entrance to Orchard Place.

64        Former Wedgwood Memorial College update – Cllr Jones updated the PC following a meeting with Mr John Holmes from Stafford Borough Council, Hannah Barter the PC’s Planning Consultant, Cllr Fisher and the Clerk.

We have not heard from the prospective purchasers from Altringham. It was also noted the two previous Companies who were interested in the site in 2016 are not visible on Companies House.

There was a requirement for the two football pitches to be replicated in the village. This asset was well used until Stoke City Council withdrew the resource in 2016.  Sport England could ensure this formed part of the planning permission on the site.  Cllr Jones agreed to arrange a meeting with Cllr Jeremy Pert from Stafford Borough Council and Cllr Fisher to discuss this element.

95        Climate Change Crisis update – Cllr Jones advised Stafford Borough are looking at a Climate Change agenda, one recommendation was to leave the grass long and minimise the number of cuts.

Cllr Moran had produced a summary of projects and initiatives for Barlaston, Cllr Jones thanked her for the work undertaken. It was important to recognise the work undertaken by the Womblers who regularly cleared the village of rubbish.

Although we had planted 3 pear trees to replace decayed trees on the Green, it was felt further planting around Barlaston could be undertaken.  Cllr Hurst to investigate sites.

97        Fly tipping update Barlaston & Cocknage – Posters with eyes on have been installed around Cocknage in conjunction with the Womblers and Stafford Borough, which appears to have had a positive impact.  This initiatives could be introduced around Barlaston, Clerk to liaise with Street Scene.

98        Play Area Update – The Clerk has been liaising with a Play Equipment Company who supply timber products, there are various reference sites around Stafford. Visits will be scheduled in the new year.

99        Dog Bag theft update

100      Christmas Tree update – This will be installed on Friday.

103      Pavement Parking consultation update – this has been concluded.  Clerk to feed back results when known.

106      Additional Grass Cut end 2020 / early 2021 – It was resolved to postpone additional cuts due to saturated grounds.

121      Public Rights of Way Footpath No. 9 A landowner removed a kissing gate and installed an electric fence; it is noted deliberately removing or blacking access contravenes the Highways Act 1980 s137 Penalty for wilful obstruction.

Staffordshire County Councill are working with the landowner to rectify the position.

The PC expressed sympathy with the landowners, small paths have been widened due to walkers varying from the path due to damp ground, this is causing significant damage to the land.

122      Change in Brown Bin service – this has been publicised on Social media. Comments received have been negative including threats to fly tip. A suggestion was for the Borough to provide compost bins at a discounted rate, something which has been done in other areas.

123      Avion Flue Outbreak – it was resolved to communicate the information from DEFRA to the Womblers and the Community Group.

124      Lengthsman’s Update – Works scheduled will be completed within the next few days. New works requested by residents are as follows:

  • Clear leaves and power sweep the MUGA, edge up the grass @ £145
  • Left the canopies of the trees on the green @ £95 (uneven since lifting branches over the path)
  • Clear areas of moss of footpaths around Barlaston Park @ £200
  • Clear Footpath of moss in front of Duke of York, price to be determined.

            It was resolved to accept these works.

125      Speed Watch Update – No meetings have been scheduled due to Covid-19.  A virtual meeting has been scheduled on 8 December with Cllr Ian Parry, Mr David Norman and representatives of the Police and Highways.  Cllr Bentley asked to be included.

126      To note Financial matters:

(a) The External Audit was passed without issue.  Cllr Jones thanked the Clerk for the work undertaken.

(b) & (c) The reconciliation reports and payment schedule were accepted

The Clerk noted the payment to Graham Burdett was for works undertaken at Orchard Place under Health and Safety Grounds to replace broken / lifted paving slabs.

An additional payment was made to cover flooring works at the Village Hall @ £3315.60, the Village Hall have been invoiced accordingly.

  NET VAT Cheque
SPCA Inv 20/394 – 12 copies Good Councillor Guide 58.75 0.00 002677
Mr J Poultney – Inv 143 – Replenish Planters 136.60 0.00 002678
Ms K St Leger – Salary / Expenses 952.04 0.00 002679
SCC Pension Contribution 310.76 0.00 002680
Buxus Green – Lengthsman Works 900.00 0.00 002681
St John’s Church Grant – Printing of Church Booklet 500.00 0.00 002682
Douglas MacMillan – Grant 500.00 0.00 002683
Graham Burdett – Repair of Pavement Orchard Place 125.00 0.00 002684

127      Risk Assessment update

  • Pavement works Orchard Place – Resolved
  • Rope Bridge wild play area – the slats on the rope bridge were lifting. The Company have been back to replace the fixing. This is now resolved. The Covid-19 signs have arrived.

128       Grant application(s) – None received

129      Planning Committee Recommendations = Planning application 20/32990/HOU at 10 Lakewood Drive Barlaston Park. It was resolved to approve this planning application. Issues relating to surface water to be noted as a condition.

130      Items for inclusion in next month’s agenda

  • Provision of a hosted phone system for the Parish Council
  • Change of address for Parish Council mail
  • Canal towpath works
  • Communication box outside Orchard Place

131      Date of next meeting – 5 January 2021