3 November 2020 – Barlaston Parish Council Minutes

posted in: Minutes 2020 | 0


Cllr G Jones,
Cllr P Fisher
Cllr S Tudor
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 – It was noted Staffordshire County Council (SCC) had been out and cleared the drains with high pressure jets on Old Road.  The surface water was now running freely.  A week later a landowner processed the maze harvest and covered the road and pavements in mud. Although the roads were cleared the pavements were left which was deemed dangerous. It was noted SCC provided the Parish Council with details of riparian responsibilities for landowners. Item to be added to the December agenda.

Whilst attending a recent Speed Watch monitoring event, a large quantity of HGV vehicles were noted coming through the village to Layfield Park in breach of the weight restrictions in place. The issue to be raised with the Police.

89        Apologies – No apologies were received.

90        Appointment to Barlaston East Position – The Parish Council (PC) welcomed Mr Adam Hemming who was co-opted as Councillor to Barlaston East and duly signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office.

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

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

93        Minutes of the full Council Meeting of 6 October 2020 – It was noted at the Planning Meeting in October bats were mentioned during the discussion on Land behind Brookhouse Drive. A request was made to include this in the main PC minutes, it was resolved to update the minutes. Clerk to amend accordingly.

94        Matters arising from the meeting of 6 October 2020 and not otherwise on the agenda

            117       Crossing Patrol update and determine follow on actions

The Clerk forwarded a copy of a letter distributed to residents on Longton Road from the School.  Having subsequently spoken to a number of the residents, it was clear they believed the Parish Council were being difficult and putting children at risk by closing the gate.  Once it was explained that the decision was based on an original request from the School to provide a Crossing Patrol Officer, as a result SCC advised a prerequisite of this was the closure of the gate; the Village Hall Insurance Company advised they would not cover the PC for the liability, the PC had no option but to take this course of action.

The School were asked to notify only the parents who walked their children to school that the lane above the Village Hall would be open, it is not for general use and the car park would still not be available for parking.  We are also deterring parents from parking on the village green verges as there are no pavements to Broughton Crescent or Longton Road and puts them at risk.

The option of a ‘walking bus’ from St John’s which would alleviate the necessity for parents to park on Longton Road or Broughton Crescent is still seen as the best option, however this is not supported by the School, they also advised parents were asked the question and they refused.

The Clerk has approached the Head Teacher with regards to the provision of Hi-Viz PPE for the Children and is waiting for a response.

It has also been noted that a vacancy had been advertised for a Crossing Patrol Officer, the County Council confirmed this was standard practice and the service was not going to be withdrawn.

The PC has done as much as it can by arranging an alternative car park, a Crossing Patrol Officer, the offer of Hi-Viz clothing for the children and making arrangements for the lane on Longton Road to be opened.

The situation will be monitored. Concerns were raised parents will continue to use the car park to access the lane, a quotation for swing gates will be sought, regular users of the Hall and residents with the relevant wayleave will have a key. Clerk to action.

4          Vacancies Barlaston West and Barlaston Park – an applicant from the Barlaston West Ward will be seen prior to the December meeting. The position for the Barlaston Park Ward is still with the Borough Council, closing date for the application is 4 November, if no application is received the PC can co-opt.

            The Clerk advised the latest copy of the Good Councillor Guide is available at £3.75; total cost would be £45 plus P&P.  It was resolved to purchase these.

The latest courses available for Councillor Fundamentals, Planning and Chairmanship are full, new courses will be available in the new year.  Evening courses have been requested.

7          Covid-19 presentation – Cllr O’Dunne advised that the volunteers would not be undertaking blanket prescription deliveries as before, instead delivery would be available on request. Kitsons would deliver for £2; the Voluntary Transport Scheme would deliver for £1.35 and emergency prescriptions would be delivered by Michala Black, Cllr O’Dunne or her sister, Lydia Arnold.

It was resolved to re-look at the Cllr contact / ward information sheet as details had changed.  The Clerk would draft the information for sign off. These would be distributed to key shops and the health centre and included in prescription bags.  The information will also be uploaded on social media.

 22        Neighbourhood Watch schemes – The Clerk had a meeting with Staffordshire Police, they will look to put a presentation together and host a Zoom virtual meeting inviting residents.  The Clerk will publicise the event when details are known.

The Clerk had publicised a Neighbourhood Alert Scheme on social media.

35/36    Village Drainage Strategy Group – An initial meeting was held with Cllr Ian Parry, Cllr Moran and residents from around Old Road / Meadow Road area.  The blocked culvert between Old Road and Meadow Road was discussed. Cllr Parry subsequently submitted a document indicating riparian responsibilities which indicates homeowners on both sides of the culvert are equally liable for the cost of upkeep.

Cllr O’Dunne checked her title deeds and the culvert is not mentioned, the boundary line is clearly outside the culvert area. Under the GOV.UK site it confirms if the upkeep of the culvert is not documented within your deeds, it is not your responsibility.

The Clerk is to liaise with the Environment Agency to clarify the position of responsibility.

The Clerk liaised with SARH regarding their responsibility, they advised they would look to undertake any repair works where land is not adopted, however it was the private landowners responsibility for the culvert between Old Road and Meadow Road.  SARH are responsible for land around Orchard Place.

The Clerk contacted a number of drainage companies to survey the site for root cutting, the only company to respond was Superrod, they will be in attendance on Tuesday.  Details to be submitted at the December meeting.

            The Clerk will liaise with Severn Trent Water to investigate where hand wipes are coming from through the surface water drains.

Fiskars have agreed to investigate any flooding issues around Barlaston Park.

39        Bridge 104, Trent & Mersey Canal update – No response to date, Clerk to continue to chase.

63        Memorial Bench for Mr Stan Phillips update – A collection is going ahead in the village, we can determine the type of bench to be purchased when we are aware of the total money collected.  A section 115e agreement is required.

            64        Former Wedgwood Memorial College – Cllr Jones would attempt to arrange a meeting with Stafford Borough Council to discuss the implications of the Neighbourhood Plan and adoption of the Lichfield Plan for this site. It was noted the expression of interest expires in January 2021.

79        Kissing Gate posters – Posters have been designed and printed, these need to be installed. It was resolved to remove this from the agenda.

80        Remembrance Sunday – The Vicar has advised the formal remembrance service has been cancelled due to the latest Covid-19 restrictions, the Clerk has informed Stafford Borough Council accordingly. He will however be undertaking a small service.

Cllr Jones will be placing a wreath on behalf of Stafford Borough Council, and Cllr Fisher will be placing wreaths on behalf of the Parish Council before Sunday.

A notice has been published on Social Media asking residents to mark the event by standing on their doorstep at 11am for the 2 minutes silence.

82        Planning White Paper consultation plan – Due to the tight deadline for submission, the Clerk submitted the response on behalf of the Parish Council based on the LPA and Urban Vision guidance notes, also encompassing the NP where feasible as it was important to reiterate local planning requirements. It was disappointing the Government site did not issue a copy of the submission for our records.

Cllr Moran noted the White Paper recommended a million new houses to be built in the next 4 years; future developments will be more environmentally friendly and not reliant on gas.

95        Climate Change Crisis – Following the SLCC conference, all Parish Councils are encouraged to declare a Climate Change Crisis, if we all take action, we can facilitate change.  Items can include changing Financial Regulations to encourage purchasing locally, not only does this reduce our carbon footprint, it keeps public money local.  They also encourage the planting of trees. Our Neighbourhood Plan is designed to maintain hedges and trees and fits this model.

Clerk to apply for the Climate Change pack to see how we can apply policies.  Cllr Moran has undertaken a summary of projects already undertaken by the PC which fits this criterion and will forward to the Clerk for distribution.

96        Chairman’s comments – covered within the agenda.

97        Fly tipping issues around Barlaston & Cocknage – This is a problem throughout all villages, towns and rural areas.  The Parish Council would like to thank the Womblers and Street Scene for the job they do.  If an area is particularly problematic, we will request Street Scene to install CCTV cameras and monitor.

The fly tipping situation at Lakeside was noted, however this was private land and outside our jurisdiction.

The Clerk will liaise with other Parish Councils to see if they have undertaken a successful campaign which has seen fly tipping reduced.

98        Play area design visit update – A Company visited the site off Meadow Road on 27 October, they have asked us to submit a preliminary design based on their brochure, Cllr O’Dunne will highlight some equipment and pass to Cllr Philpott, this will then be submitted to the Company for a formal quotation. Once we have an idea of budget involved the Clerk can approach further Companies to submit design briefs for comparison.

99        Dog bag theft update – It was noted bags are disappearing on the day the dispensers are being re-filled including the Cricket Club and Downs Car Park.  The bags are expensive as they are biodegradable, however we could be using a year’s supply in a matter of months if this continues.  Cllr Moran agreed to produce a flyer to request residents monitor the boxes and report any odd behaviour to the Clerk.

100      Christmas tree lighting on Village Green – new lighting was purchased last year, however due to the fragile nature of the tree and the surrounding area, we require a cherry picker located on the back of a vehicle to undertake the installation to minimise damage.  We received a quotation from a local tree surgeon for £550, this will include the installation of the lights and pruning of the tree.  As this set up is difficult to source, it was resolved to suspend standing orders and award the works. It was noted Cllr Hemming provided the power for the lighting over the last few years and was thanked for his past and continued contribution.

101      The Good Neighbourhood Scheme update – Support Staffordshire produced a flyer promoting the Good Neighbourhood Scheme, the Clerk will publish to Social Media.

102      Covid19 Impact Survey – a summary report was issued for reference. It was resolved to remove this item from the agenda.

103      Pavement Parking: Options for Change Consultation.  It was resolved to add this to the agenda for December.

104      Rural Services Network Membership – a support network for rural villages. It was resolved to approve this membership at £150.

105      Damage to bollard on Orchard Place – The Clerk reported this to SARH, they have acknowledged the repair and will take the necessary action.

106      Additional grass cut end 2020 / early 2021 recommended by SCC – Perennial are happy to undertake additional cuts. It was resolved to approve the additional expenditure. The Clerk to issue a PO to SCC to secure funding.

107       Lengthsman’s schedule of works @ £900 – it was resolved to approve these works.

  • Trim back overhanging tree branches on Station Road
  • Undertake footpath clearance works on Station Road
  • Undertake footpath clearance works on Park Drive
  • Undertake footpath clearance works on path between Plume and Dry Cleaners
  • Undertake footpath clearance works on Old Road up to and including Nursery Gardens
  • Leaf clearance wild seed planting on Downs Car Park
  • Weeding of hedge bank at the Downs Car Park

108      Speed Watch update – It was noted with the latest COVID-19 restrictions, Speed Watch had been suspended.

109       To note financial matters:

            (a) bank reconciliation reports – it was resolved to accept these

(b) schedule of payments report October 2020 – it was resolved to accept these. *It was noted three items were paid on behalf of the Village Hall, the Clerk has invoiced the Village Hall Committee accordingly.

  NET VAT Cheque
Stafford Borough Council, Inv 7070270473 lease of land 10.00 0.00 002666
Altplan Inv 4166 replacement ceiling tiles Village Hall *2654.25 530.85 002667
UK Security Shutters Ltd Inv 8852 new security shutter Village Hall *914.00 182.80 002668
SLCC Inv BK14036 – SLCC Conference 25.00 5.00 002669
Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal Grant 300.00 0.00 002670
Chairman’s Allowance 250.00 0.00 002671
K St Leger Salary & Expenses 1090.17 0.00 002672
Stafford Pension Fund 310.76 0.00 002673
SD Renovations – Painting & Decorating Village Hall *2350.00 0.00 002674
Canprint Inv 30513  – 6 x A4 posters for kissing gates 45.00 9.99 002675
Perennial Landscapes Inv 3327 570.00 114.00 002676

110      Risk Assessment Actions following RoSPA reports – It was resolved to arrange printing of signs for the play areas specifying ‘Follow COVID-19 Guidelines’. It was also resolved to keep the Downs car park open to enable residents to continue to walk on the Downs.

111      Grant application(s)

  • St John’s Church requested a donation of £500 for the December/January publication to be distributed to the Village. It was resolved to accept this.
  • Douglas Macmillan have requested a donation due to difficulties obtaining funds through their usual means. It was resolved to grant £500.

112      Planning Committee Recommendations

  • Possible development at back of Brookhouse Drive update – The Clerk wrote to the Management Company detailing the protocols within the Neighbourhood Plan under Policy H1: Site Allocation and objecting to the proposed development of this site. To date we have not received a response.
  • Planning application Reference 20/33196/HOU at Craig Lee 384 Old Road Barlaston. The Parish Council have no objections to this Planning Application.
  • Planning application Reference 20/33005/HOU – 19 Old Road, Barlaston Re-consultation. Revised plans submitted. It was resolved to approve the planning application subject to policy D1: 6, 7 and 8 being observed.
  • Planning application Reference 19/31683/FUL appeal at Land at Penfold Farm Trentham Road Stoke on Trent. Planning Inspectorate Ref APP/Y3425/W/20/3258727. Urban Vision have been appointed to submit an objection on behalf of the Parish Council.

113      Items for inclusion in next month’s agenda

Public Forum items – Riparian Rights for Landowners / HGV Vehicles breaking weight restrictions

114      Date of next meeting – 1 December 2020