- Philippa Carter
- Sandy Timms
- Peter Rance
- Brian Leach
- Pauline Plant
- Liz Leffman
- Jake Acock
- Angela Barnes
Members of the Public
- Ms Sue Richards
2. Minutes of the Last Meeting
The Minutes recorded from the July meeting, held on Monday 10 June 2019 were approved as a true record, duly signed, dated and filed.
3. Declarations of interest
Cllr Carter declared that she would decline to comment on any discussions on AMET.
Cllr Timms declared that she would decline to comment on any discussions regarding The Swan Pub.
4. Financial Report
Bank Balances per reconciliation: £69,118.44
7th June Interest £31.67
17th June Penningtons – Legal Fees re playing field refunded
29/6/19 200053 A Barnes Salary £227.96
30/6/19 200054 HMRC PAYE £57.00
200055 A Barnes Expenses £18.94
200056 Ubico Dog Bin Heritage Lane £268.60
200057 WODC Election expenses 2018 £81.32
200058 Patrick Edwards repairs £67.41
200059 OCC Traffic Calming Consult. £500.00
5. Reports from County and District Councillors
CCllr Liz Leffman reported on the suggestion of a 20 mile speed limit, this would need a consultation and OCC would need to monitor speed throughout the village.
DCllr Jake Acock reported on:
Witney to Oxford Rail link – this had been voted down.
Climate change emergency – a working party and a national Citizens Assembly
Economic & Social Committee – an OCCG member had attended the meeting
Lyneham speed watch – now set up with 10 volunteers.
DCllr Acock reported that he would be hosting a coffee morning in August on a Sunday 10 am to 12 noon at the Wychwood Inn and The Swan .
6. Public Time
Cllr Carter welcomed Ms Richards and invited her to address the meeting. Ms Richards said she had nothing in particular to discuss and wanted to support the Parish Council.
No new planning applications received.
8. Matters Arising
(a) Gigaclear – Cllr Carter has had a series of meetings and conversations about the final stages of the Fibre Broadband installation. Cable has been laid to all parts of the village apart from Shipton Rd properties from Vine House to the station and the 3 properties at Sunset House. These should be done imminently. The properties on the Chipping Norton side of the railway line will not be done until Gigaclear work on the Churchill/Lyneham part of their contract. No date yet. Remedial work has been done to replace temporary tarmac and Lite Access are in contact with individual residents about repair/replacement because of damage caused to property by workmen or work not up to scratch. Residents have recently reported several occasions when the workmen have been helpful and polite and Cllr Carter has passed this back to Lite Access/Gigaclear. Communication with both companies has been much improved in recent weeks although their planning is still very haphazard. Gigaclear has started marketing but the deal they now offer does not match earlier promises and this has been queried by Sue Richards.
(b) OCC Grasscutting Contract – Ongoing
(c) Footpaths – Ongoing – Cllr Carter agreed to meet with Sue Richards and Cllr Plant in August.
(d) Ascott Martyrs Educational Trust (AMET) – Nothing to report
(e) Dropped kerbs – Dawls Close -Ongoing
(f) Public access to meetings – Cllr Carter recommended that notices should be posted to all households advising that all meetings would be held on the ground floor in the main Tiddy Hall. Cllrs felt that this was unnecessary as it would be obvious when visitors arrived at the meeting.
(g) Tiddy Hall – There has been a delay in obtaining a grant from the Lottery. Trustees are hopeful that all is now ironed out and that an offer of a grant will be made soon. Trustees are still hoping that the project can be done during the summer school holidays.
(h) Inconsiderate Parking –
Another report has been sent with photographs showing how many cars still park on the pavement opposite the pub. They are impeding pedestrians, some of whom have walking aids or pushchairs, and they are impeding the grass cutting. Suggested solutions to be discussed are –
Ask PC Webb to pass by and serve warning notices (Liz)
Put bollards on the pavement (Peter)
Put polite notices from the PC on windscreens (Philippa)
However, Cllr Leach is concerned that, if the cars park fully on the road, then it would make everything more dangerous.
(i) Vandalism – Holy Trinity Church / Playing Field / High Street
Very regrettably the Church has had a continuing spate of petty vandalism by youngsters, including the need for to replace the damaged lock to the belfry tower. Smoking, drinking and general wanton scattering of papers and booklets etc, and a gravestone being stood upon and displaced, justified Revd Mark Abrey’s decision that daily opening for all comers has ceased. The police have been advised, visited, sent letters to houses facing the church, and spoken to a family. Rev Mark intends to write to every householder explaining this situation caused by unacceptable behaviour of a minority of youngsters.
To add to this sad situation, damage has been inflicted on the Recreational Playing field picnic table, which Cllr Rance recommends is removed without replacement, and at the Cornbury Hay Barns in High Street. For the latter, the Police have again been involved. The last picnic bench in the playground has been completely broken and white paint from the football line marking has been thrown around. Cllr Carter recommends that picnic benches should be vandal proof from now on and that every item that needs to be stored (including grit and topsoil) should be kept locked up. The broken picnic bench has been removed.
9. Risk Assessment & Ground Maintenance
Notice boards – advice has been taken and plans made for the boards to be replaced in August.
Pavilion exterior – thanks to Nick Carter for strimming around the Pavilion. Preparations are being made to move the salt so that the car park is clear. There is no progress on the storage unit. The front downpipe needs new brackets and the soakaway below is blocked (PMC).
Rail behind Pavilion Kitchen – Cllr Carter met with Jacob Davies and he stated that at the moment he is extremely busy with Townsends and his own business. He recommended that Mike Townsend was the man to purchase the rail and we agreed that the installation could wait until later in the year when construction work is quieter.
Playing Field – Both Car Parks – Cllr Carter has approached 4 companies for quotes – she had a very helpful and practical meeting with Jim Basson, a less positive meeting with another, no response from 2, despite chasing, and only 1 quotation. Cllr Carter proposes to accept the quote of £7,650 + VAT from Mr Basson because:
- this is under the PC budget of £8,000
- Mr Basson’s work has come highly recommended
- it is work that requires a range of heavy equipment
- it will allow the work to be done within the financial year and before the season for new grass seed to be sown in the lower car park
- all debris will be disposed of
The work proposed is to –
- weedkill the upper car park
- excavate to a depth of 200mm the 2 sides to make the area larger and remove from site
- lay membrane, then 200 mm of Type 1 and compact
- spread gravel if required (cost of gravel extra). Mr Basson stated that Type 1 on its own would be sufficient and does not move like gravel
- For the lower grass car park he proposed weedkilling and removing the dead turf, levelling and compacting (The first contractor to visit the site highly recommended levelling the grass site as key to a successful job. However, he ultimately declined to quote)
- and finally, pinning the mesh down and spreading seed/soil over the mesh. (Mesh etc to be supplied by PC and this has been budgeted at £3,000).
It was agreed that the actual roadway was in reasonable order and that it kept a rural appearance. Mr Basson would fill the potholes with Type 1 left over from the job.
The cost of tarmacking the ‘apron’ by the front gates is prohibitive and Cllr Carter proposes not to consider this, especially as there is much less ‘run off’ water from the pitch these days. After consideration, this was proposed by Cllr Plant and seconded by Cllr Rance and was agreed unanimously.
Play Equipment – Cllr Carter has met with 3 play equipment companies and received a quote from a supplier of vandal-proof picnic benches made of recycled material. The slide and current carousel need to be refurbished/replaced due to age and failing successive RoSPA reports. The original suppliers (Wickstead) cannot refurbish the carousel but can refurbish the slide. To refurbish the carousel would be too difficult for others and spare parts are not available. The picnic benches have all been destroyed by vandalism and there is continued petty vandalism around the Pavilion. Cllr Carter proposed asking:
- Wickstead to refurbish the slide at a cost of £620 + VAT this was seconded by Cllr Rance and agreed unanimously.
- Playdale to supply and install ‘Rota Bounce’ at a cost of £3,212 + VAT + delivery, installation and removal of old Witches Hat Carousel (approx. 1,194) – total £4406 + VAT this was proposed by Cllr Carter and seconded by Cllr Timms and agreed unanimously.
- After research Plaswood could supply a plastic bench (cost £390 each + soft surface fixing kit £45 + delivery £70, all + VAT). This was proposed by Cllr Plant and seconded by Cllr Rance and agreed unanimously.
- CCTV – Cllr Carter recommends that installing CCTV takes precedence this year over adult fitness equipment and that it should include all sides of the Pavilion. The budget for CCTV is £2,400 for 1 camera which sweeps the whole playing field but not all sides of the pavilion. She also recommends that all new storage should be lockable with nothing left in the open. This proposal was proposed by Cllr Carter and seconded by Cllr Timms and agreed unanimously.
10. Community Emergency Plan
Cllr Carter attended a meeting at WODC on Community Resilience. The meeting was run by OCC who are one of the lead organisations when it comes to a major incident or emergency and their role is very much one of co-ordination of all services. They wanted to highlight the ways in which the local communities could help out – particularly in the time that it takes to scramble agencies from outside the community. Various scenarios were discussed and attendees were invited to suggest necessary preparations and responses. There was a lot of discussion about looking out for the most vulnerable residents. Attendees were offered a variety of leaflets and the Parish Council will decide what is appropriate to make available in Ascott-u-W and how.
Nothing to report
We await the publication of the new, very changed, timetable that will operate this winter. I will not speculate on what those changes may impose! After advising a Network Rail maintenance gang last year, I discovered that a week or so ago, the badly displaced safety barrier for passengers exiting on the village side of the station, has been repaired to its proper, upright stance. Patience is a virtue?
For some time now residents have complained about speeding and number of cars and have called for a change to the speed limit within the village or at least for the 30 mph signs to be moved on London Lane and the Chipping Norton Rd. Highways have maintained that there must be proof that these roads are dangerous and that there is speeding. Last year the PC asked all households if residents were interested in forming a SpeedWatch group but only 2 people answered. 2 more people have since come forward and Cllr Carter believes that they will be enthusiastic enough to develop the group. However, events took over when a Range Rover took the bend at the Vicarage, London Lane too fast, completely demolished the wall of No 27 and became impaled on an inner fence. All emergency services attended.
There are now renewed calls for changes to speed limits and for the 30mph sign to be moved further up the hill. Cllr Carter proposes that the PC should organise a petition calling for the village speed limit to be 20mph and for extra 40mph signs to be installed 1 – higher up the London Lane and 2 – north of the Chipping Norton bridge. The ‘rat run’ between Witney and Chippy is becoming busier and there is concern that things will become worse if the Burford bridge is limited in use in the future, as has been reported.
13. Reports from Organisations
(a) Ascott-under-Wychwood Sports Club
The first year of the extra annual maintenance programme to the Playing Field (following the drainage installation) will be completed in September after which time Cllr Carter will be able to present final annual costs. Cllr Carter and Simon Gidman have been referring to recommendations from the drainage project consultant and contractors but also adjusting the necessary work according to observation and the conditions at the time. It is expected that costs will come under budget. Before the drainage project was agreed given the ‘green light’ the Parish Council and Sports Club agreed that these costs would be shared between the PC and the Sports Club (initial budget £1,500 each pa).
The football season has now finished but the Kids’ Training on Sundays is continuing until the end of term. The Pre-School and WVS held successful Fun, Charity and Sports Days and there have been enquiries about hiring the Pavilion. The kitchen is now renovated. Equipment has been checked and re-stocked where necessary (at the cost to the Sports Club).Cllr Carter visited the ground while the kids club was in session and observed no one with dogs. Checks will have to be repeated when the season re-starts in the autumn.
(b) Wychwood Library – Nothing to report.
(c) Helpers of Ascott-under-Wychwood – Nothing to report. Cllr Carter asked the Clerk to remove this item as most of the volunteer ‘helping’ is reported within the Risk Assessment heading.
OALC AGM & Draft Minutes
OALC June update
Community Transport Newsletter from John Charlton
Email and attached photographs from resident re inconsiderate parking
OCC Highways invitation to Drayton Depot open day
No post received.
15. Any Other Business
Cllr Carter reminded Councillors that the deadline for the next copy of the Grapevine was 31 July.
There being no further business, Cllr Carter declared the meeting closed at 10.00pm.
Cllr Philippa Carter (Chairman)
Date: Monday 9 September 2019