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Minutes of the Meeting of the Westleigh Parish Council held at the Village Hall on Wednesday 7th, September, 2016 at 7.30pm to consider the following business:

Present:   Cllr. K. Griffin (Chairman), Cllr. L. Burgess, Cllr K. Farrell – Roberts, Cllr B. Moores, Cllr S. Ettling, Cllr J. Edwards, Cllr. F. Biederman.

In attendance:   Mr.M. Harris (Parish Clerk).

MH09/16.1: Apologies:   Cllr L. Gear

MH09/16.2: Declaration of Interest and Dispensations

To receive declarations of personal and disclosable pecuniary interests in respect of items on this agenda.

None received.

It was agreed by all to take item 4b at this juncture in the meeting.


Chairman to move:   for the meeting to be adjourned and go into Open Forum.

MH09/16.4 b Police, County and District Council Ward Members Reports

Police – no report.


North Devon District Council – Cllr. B. Moores reported the following:


NDC have voted in favour of charging residents for green waste collection, this would come into operation from April 2017.  A pilot scheme will take place for two areas to trial a weekly food waste collection, and to have black bins collected every three weeks.


A business plan has been produced for the Pannier Market. It is hoped this will help to secure the long term success of the market.


A new Flood Defence Improvement Study has been produced, and is available on the District Council website.


Devon County Council – Cllr F. Biederman reported that a School Transport Review was looking to stop services for the 16 – 18 years’ age band.  Details of the review are available by contacting DCC.


It was noted that the North Devon Community Safety Partnership is now back up and running.


4a Open Forum

Residents are invited to give their views and questions for the Parish Council on issues on the agenda, or raise issues for future consideration.

No residents were present at the meeting.

Guest speaker – Nick Arnold – Subject: Local Green Space for Northam, Appledore and Westward Ho!

Summary of presentation:

The presentation focused on a site on land between Northam and Appledore, where a battle is thought to have taken place in 1069 between the Irish Army, and the Anglo French Army.

The battlefield is significant given the international nature of the battle, and the size of both armies.

Nick Arnold has undertaken extensive research on the possibilities of the battle taking place on the site.  The research has been shared with eminent academic’s, who confirm that a battle is likely to have taken place in that location, or very nearby.

In light of the significance of the site, Nick Arnold has begun a campaign to gain local support to protect the historical site, by designating the area a Local Green Space.


There followed a series of questions from Councillors relating to the key themes highlighted in the presentation.  It was suggested by Councillors that an open meeting for residents of the parish and surrounding areas, would be beneficial in raising the profile of this issue.  Nick Arnold can be contacted by e-mail: nickjohnarnold@gmail.com



The Chairman moved to end the adjournment.


MH05/16.5:  Minutes of the Meeting held on the 7th, July, 2016, and minutes of the Special Meeting held on the 3rd August, 2016.

Cllr K. Griffin proposed an amended to the minutes.  Minute MH07/16.7 c) to read:  After a discussion it was agreed that the draft policy be brought back to the next meeting for approval.

Resolved:  that the minutes of the meeting held on the 7th, July, 2016, with the proposed amendment, be approved as a true and accurate record, and that the minutes of the Special Meeting held on the 3td August be approved as a true and accurate record.

Proposed by Cllr K. Griffin, and seconded by Cllr L. Burgess that the minutes of the meeting held on the 7th, July, 2016, and the minutes of the Special Meeting held on the 3rd August be agreed and approved as a true and accurate record.  The minutes were duly signed by the Chairman. (all in favour)


MH06/16.6:  Matters Arising/Review of actions.


MH07/16.7:  Review of Parish Action Plan:


a) Westleigh Footpath – Cllr K. Farrell Roberts reported that the footpath required a cut.  It was agreed to arrange for one more cut before the end of the growing season.  It was also agreed to draw up a specification for the range of maintenance for the parish, and invite quotation’s for the work.  Action Point: Clerk to draw up a specification and present to the next meeting.  Clerk to arrange a final cut for the footpath.

b)  Website/Transparency Code application – Cllr K . Griffin reported that the new website was now ready to go live, but required some local photographs for the site. He asked if any Councillors had any suitable local photographs to please forward to him. The domain name for the new website is westleighparish.org.   The Clerk confirmed that the Transparency Code application had now been submitted and approved by DALC.  The payment of the grant should be made in June.

c)  Draft Environmental Policy – A draft has now been circulated for any final comments.  The policy to be approved at the next meeting.

d)  Councillor register of interest – The Clerk had circulated information relating to Councillor register of interests to all Councillors.  A reminder that all Councillors should inform the Clerk of any changes to their original submissions.

MH08/16.8:  Correspondence received:

The Clerk informed the meeting of the following correspondence:

Lesley Bruce – e-mail re the disappearance of the bench at Eastleigh.  Response sent by the Clerk.   Discussed at the meeting.

Paul Fronteras – raised an issue relating to the collection times for the main post-box in the Village, (Westleigh) 9.00am and the post-box outside the Village (Old School) 5.00pm.  Councillors had discussed the current collection times with a number of parishioners, and their views were that the current arrangements are satisfactory.  Councillors agreed not to request any changes to the collection times.  Action Point:  Clerk to communicate the decision to Paul Fronteras.


MH09/16.9:  Finance

a)  Financial summary

The Clerk informed the meeting that the balance held in the parish account as at the 26th August, 2016 is £5,865.  This include a Transparency Grant of £1,832.  The Clerk informed the meeting that a half yearly reconciliation would be presented to the Council at the October meeting.

b)  Payments

The Transparency Code Grant includes an amount of £495 to cover the additional hours of the Clerk up to the 31/03/2017, to establish, and manage the website, undertake training, and put in operation new equipment.  Action: Clerk to contact NDC to agree initial payment of £237.

c) Income received

Transparency Code Grant of £1,832.

MH010/16.10:  Planning

a) New applications – None received.

b)  Planning decisions – Application 61444 – Erection of dwelling 6, Langmead – refusal to grant planning permission.  Application 61339 – Prior approval for change of use agricultural building to dwelling at Barn West, Ashridge – refusal to grant planning permission.

C)   Other planning issues – Cllr J. Edwards raise an issue relating to planning consultation letters sent to the District Council by the Parish Council.  He suggested that the contents of the letter should reflect the resolution wording agreed by the Parish Council. After a discussion it was agreed that future resolutions on planning applications should be more detailed, and be used as the basis for the response to the District Council.

MH11/16.12: – Agenda items for the next meeting


Inclusion – Eastleigh and other outlying areas – October meeting

Assets of Community Value – October meeting.

Draft Environmental Policy – October meeting.

Compliance with planning and highway regulations – December meeting.


MH12/16.13: – Other items at the discretion of the Chairman:




The meeting concluded at 9.50pm.


The next meeting of the Parish Council will take place on a Thursday, 5th, October, 2016. Commencing at 7.30pm.  Venue:  Westleigh Village Hall.