Parish Councillors Present:
Stuart Fox (Chairman)
Elaine Byles (Vice Chairman)
Members of the Public:
Pippa Carter and Andrew Timms
Apologies were received from County Cllr Rodney Rose and Cllr Laurence Mellor.
2. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST:
Cllr Stuart Fox and Cllr Elaine Byles declared an interest in Item No. 13 Correspondence. A letter had been received from Wendy Pearse with regard to the Parish Council’s donation to the Grapevine.
3. MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING:
The Minutes from the February meeting held on Monday 8 February were agreed and duly dated, signed and filed.
4. COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORT:
5. DISTRICT COUNCILLORS REPORT:
District Cllr Hilary Hibbert-Biles reported on the Council Tax increase of 3.99% which still remained the second lowest in the Country. She reported on Chipping Norton Hospital and a letter received from ORH (Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals) noting that the new hospital had secured two beds in the maternity department, as opposed to six. District Cllr Hilary Hibbert-Biles had written to ORH requesting a meeting. She reported on the economic situation and how this was affecting grant funding and finally on the waste contract going out to tender.
6. CONTINGENCY PLAN:
Pippa Carter gave an update and reported that there was some anger that the last flood was only “floodwatch” and not “flood alert” and was stepped down.
An advertisement inviting tenders had been placed on the notice boards throughout the Village and in Chipping Norton. After no responses being received it was agreed to revert to the original plan to offer the contract for a further twelve months to Mr S Barnes.
8. WODC PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE CONSULTATION DOCUMENT (Core Strategy Preferred Approach)
This document was circulated at the February meeting for subsequent discussion at this the March meeting. In the absence of Cllr Laurence Mellor, the Clerk read out to the meeting Cllr Laurence Mellor’s response. It was agreed unanimously that the Village should remain in Category C and Cllr Rob Morgan agreed to respond to WODC accordingly.
9. ELECTIONS 2010:
The Clerk reported that she had nomination papers should councillors and members of the public wish to take one. The Clerk had circulated the WODC timetable for the General Election, which would affect the Parish Council’s Annual General Meeting.
10. ANNUAL PARISH MEETING:
It was agreed that the ordinary meeting of the Parish Council would be held on Monday 12 April and the Annual Parish Meeting would be held on Monday 26 April. The Clerk agreed to write to the appropriate organisations and invite them to submit their reports for inclusion in the 2010 Annual Parish Minutes.
11. MATTERS ARISING:
• Water accumulating on the corner of High Street and London Lane: It was agreed that OCC Highways would arrange for the drain to be lowered in order to allow the water to escape.
• Water accumulation outside Sunset House: It was agreed that in the short term OCC Highways will arrange for their contractors to clear the leaves and silt to allow water to drain more freely into Network Rail’s ditch and in the longer term the Parish Council will need to discuss this with Cornbury Estate.
• Beyond the Level Crossing: It was agreed that you will replace the screen where the ditch enters the culvert under the road with one that will not get blocked with leaves and debris. It was noted that this cannot be done until after April when the department budget will be in place.
• Ditch on the Charity Land: It was agreed that the ditch was in good condition and well maintained, but there was a problem because the pipes feeding from the culvert into the ditch were too low and the water and the level of the ditch needs to be lowered so that the pipes are above the water level. This would improve water flow and help to prevent the culvert becoming full of silt.
• Manor Farm entrance: It was agreed to clear the drainage pipes on the righthand side of the road from the Manor Farm entrance to the river bridge.
• Curb stone on the corner of London Lane: The clerk has informed OCC Highways that the loose curb stone has now disappeared.
• Potholes on London Lane: The Clerk has informed OCC that the potholes were now 3″ to 4″ in depth.
• Shipton Road: A parishioner had asked the PC about the possibility of white lines in the middle of the road and road signs advising road users to slow down. Ongoing County Cllr Rodney Rose will arrange to carry out a site visit with an OCC engineer.
Ditch opposite Sunset House
Cllr Rob Morgan reported that he had spoken with Graeme Tandy at Network Rail (NR) – ongoing.
The Clerk was asked to chase Roger Shepherd with regard to taking down the sight screens.
It was reported that trade was slow and that the design for the website was ongoing.
The Clerk reported that all tenants had been written to requesting their allotment rents.
Natural History Project
The Clerk was asked to contact Cynth Napper at NERC and enquire if bird boxes could be erected at 5 Shilling Corner and possibly the Playing Field.
The Wychwood Day Centre
The letter from the Wychwood Day Centre was discussed and Cllr Stuart Fox proposed that the Parish Council give a £100 donation. This was seconded by Cllr Bridgette Crundwell.
There are two Ash Trees in the Playing Field which have been brought to the attention of the Parish Council within their Risk Assessment. A contractor Splitwood have provided a comprehensive report suggesting that one tree be taken down to ground level to adhere to Health & Safety. The other tree was reported to have deadwood and it was recommended this be taken down and a replacement tree planted. Please refer to Item Number 17 Public Questions; Andrew Timms recommended that the Parish Council approach Tyacks in the Village to enquire if they would carry out these works and take the wood away in payment.
The Clerk reported that she had written to Paul Cunningham with regard to recording how many “hits” the website received and ensuring that the old version of the website was closed so as to ease the navigation of the site – Ongoing.
WODC Notice of Council Tax for 2010/11 – these have been displayed in the Tiddy Hall on the Notice Board
BDO LLP – An audit briefing from BDO LLP for Winter 2010 and advising of their change of name from BDO Stoy Hayward LLP
OCC – Letter noting the review of subsidised bus services in the Witney, Eynsham and Carterton area
A letter from Wendy Pearse with regard to the PC’s annual grant to the Grapevine – please see Agenda Item No. 16 Any Other Business
Email circulated to all from PCC with regard to a donation to their pollarding 25 Lime Trees in the Churchyard
10/0199/P/S73 Non-compliance with condition 4 of planning permission 07/0930/P/FP to allow inward opening doors and flush balustrade at Bay Tree Cottage, The Green Ascott-under-Wychwood.
10/0281/P/FP Erection of single storey side extension at 14 Shipton Road, Ascott-under-Wychwood
15. FINANCIAL REPORT:
Stuart Fox £7.50
Mike Pearce £22.50
P Piper £7.50
A G Woods £7.50
P. Plant £15.00
Bill Prewett £7.50
16. ANY OTHER BUSINESS:
A letter was received from the PCC enquiring if the PC could make a donation to the pollarding of 25 Lime Trees in the Churchyard. This was discussed and it was agreed that the PC would source another quotation and ask the PCC for a firm time and schedule of works and to then make a formal approach to the PC who would then look at this request sympathetically.
The letter received from Wendy Pearse with regard to the Grapevine was read out to the meeting by the Clerk. Due to there not being a quorum the Clerk was asked to add this as an item on the Agenda for the April meeting.
Cllr Stuart Fox reported that the annual litter pick was due in March and the suggested date of Saturday 27 March was confirmed. The Clerk was asked to contact WODC and organise bin bags, litter pickers and gloves etc to be delivered to the Village Shop.
17. PUBLIC QUESTIONS:
Q: Andrew Timms asked if the PC had considered approaching Tyacks with regard to pollarding and taking down the Ash Trees?
A: Cllr Stuart Fox agreed to speak with Tyacks and enquire if they would be prepared to do this.
There being no further business, Cllr Fox closed the meeting at 9.40pm and confirmed the next meeting would be Monday 12 April 2010.