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Minutes of the Meeting of the Westleigh Parish Council held at the Village Hall on Wednesday 2nd, March, 2016 at 7.30pm to consider the following business:

Present: Cllr. K. Griffin (Chairman), Cllr. L. Burgess, Cllr K. Farrell – Roberts, Cllr B. Moores

In attendance: M. Harris (Parish Clerk)

MH02/16.1: Apologies: Cllr J. Edwards, Cllr L. Gear, Cllr S.Ettling

MH02/16.2: Declaration of Interest and Dispensations

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

None received.


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

MH02/16.4 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.

Police, County and District Council Ward Members Reports:

a) Police Report – No crimes since the last meeting

b) Devon County Council (DCC) – No report

c) North Devon Council (NDC) – Cllr B. Moores reported that the NDC budget had now been agreed for 2017/18. The balanced budget included an amount of £250,000 additional rural settlement. He reported that Council tax is set to rise by 1.99%, together with a small increase in car parking charges, with a further reduction in external grants.

In addition, the development of the land continues at Anchorwood Bank, the use of the Oliver building remains unresolved, and proposals for the development of Severn Brethren will be brought forward in 2016/17. The joint Torridge & North Devon Local Plan is set to be submitted in early spring.

The Chairman moved to end the adjournment.

MH02/16.5: Minutes of the Meeting held on the 3rd, February, 2016.

Resolved: that the minutes of the meeting held on the 3rd, February, 2016, be approved as a true and accurate record, with one amendment. Minute MH01/16.7 f) to read: Cllr L. Burgess to e-mail notes to all Councillors, relating to the above.

Proposed by Cllr K. Griffin, and seconded by Cllr K. Farrell – Roberts that the minutes of the meeting held on the 3rd, February, 2016, be agreed are approved as a true and accurate record. The minutes were duly signed by the Chairman. (all in favour)

MH02/16.6: Matters Arising/Review of actions.

Cllr L. Burgess requested that a note be made in respect of item MH01/16.8 Co –option of new Councillor, that her concerns were about the process of co-option not the proposal to co-opt Kris Wood.

MH02/16.7: Review of Parish Action Plan:

a) Westleigh Footpath – Cllr K. Farrell- Roberts confirmed that the £200 grant allocated for the footpath, should be spent on footpath covering fabric and pegs. Action Point: Clerk to arrange for the purchase of the materials.

b) Website – Cllr K . Griffin informed the meeting, that he had undertaken some research into options for the improvement of the parish website. He confirmed a meeting will take place on Tuesday, 8th, March with a local provider to discuss the potential for a new website. The Clerk confirmed that funding for the cost of improvements to the website is available via the Transparency Code Fund. Action Point: Subject to the outcome of the meeting with the local provider, the Clerk to submit a Transparency Code application.

c) Parish Noticeboards – Cllr K. Griffin – Agreed to hold any actions on the parish noticeboards until after the development of the website has been resolved.

d) Progress report on Local Green Space between Northam & Appledore – Cllr L. Burgess had circulated notes from the above prior to the meeting. The Chairman thanked Cllr L. Burgess for producing the notes, and attending the various associated meetings.

e) Draft Risk Assessment Parish Council – The Clerk introduced the draft Risk Assessment, and highlighted two areas for action. The first is the need to set up finance sub group meetings twice a year to check budget reconciliation, and the second, the need to introduce a visual check, and record any defects, on the condition of the Parrish Council assets. Resolved: that the Draft Risk Assessment be approved. Proposed: Cllr K. Farrell – Roberts, Seconded: Cllr. B Moores (all in favour) Action Point: Clerk to draw up inspection sheets, and arrange an inspection of assets in early spring.

MH02/16.8: Correspondence received:

The Clerk informed the meeting of the following correspondence:

• NDC Planning Enforcement Review – Action Point: Clerk to respond, and highlight two outstanding planning issues at White Lodge, and Myrtle Cottage.

• Instow, Westleigh and East Yelland Parish News – request for grant. To be considered under finance section.

• Taw & Torridge Estuary Forum – request for payment of annual subscription. To be considered in finance section.

• Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) – request for the Parish Council to consider making comments on the Second Consultation on “North Devon and Torridge Local Plan: Proposed Policy – Wind Energy Development. After a discussion it was agreed to produce a notice to make parishioners aware that comments can be made to Torridge or North Devon Council by the 24th March, 2016. Action Point: Clerk to produce a suitable notice for the parish noticeboards.

MH02/16.9: Finance

a) Financial summary

The Clerk introduced the budget monitoring form. He confirmed a current balance of £4,039.42 held in the parish account.

b) Payments

The following payments/ grant request were put forward for consideration:

• Instow, Westleigh & West Yelland Parish News – request for a grant to assist with production costs.

• Taw & Torridge Estuary Forum – annual subscription for 2016/17 – £20

• Westleigh Village Hall – hire of Village hall for parish meetings 2015/16 – £150

Resolved: that a grant of £80 be approved for the Parish News, payable after April 2016. Those cheques are approved for payments of £20, and £150.

Proposed: Cllr K. Farrell – Roberts, Seconded: by Cllr K. Griffin

c) Income received

None received

MH02/16.10: Planning

a) New applications – None received.

b) Planning decisions – None received.

C) Other planning issues – The Clerk reported that a response had been received from the NDC Planning Enforcement Officer in respect of White Lodge to confirm the matters raised by the Parish Council are currently under consideration.

MH02/16.11: Meeting dates – 2016/17.

Discussion took place on the proposed meeting dates for 2016/17. Dates as set out were agreed by all. Agreed to consider the number of parish meetings as an agenda item for the next meeting.

MH02/16.12: – Agenda items for the next meeting

Number of Parish Council meetings.

MH02/16.13: – Other items at the discretion of the Chairman:

Sticks Field Footpath – The Clerk confirmed that a response had been received from DCC, following the report of very muddy conditions at the access point to the footpath. The Clerk also confirmed that a response has been received from Christie Estates, and they had agreed to undertake a site visit to assess the situation, and report back.

Cllr. L. Burgess raise an issue relating to the blocked drains on the roads through Westleigh Village.

Action Point: The Clerk to e-mail Cllr. F. Biederman to request that DCC undertake an inspection of the drains.

Cllr. K. Farrell – Roberts raised an issue relating to the poor state of the path from the memorial gardens to the centre of the Village. Action Point: Cllr K. Griffin agreed to approach the land owner to request some maintenance on the hedge along the footpath.

The meeting concluded at 9.55pm.

The next meeting of the Parish Council will take place on a Wednesday, 6th, April, 2016. Commencing at 7.30pm. Venue: Westleigh Village Hall. AGM and Parish Meeting, Wednesday 25th May, 2016.