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PARISH COUNCILLORS PRESENT: Cllr Jonathan Vine-Hall (Chairman), Cllr Pauline Glew (Vice-Chairman of the Council), Cllrs Chapman Eldridge, Mitchell, Parsons, Reynolds


OTHER ATTENDEES: 10 (for various parts of the meeting)



  At the Chairman's invitation, the following gave reports, keeping them to a maximum of three minutes each in length:

District Councillor Tony Ganly:

  1. No pay increase for Rother District Council staff next year.
  2. Total of £13,500 awarded to Sedlescombe Parish Council through the Rother DC Community Grants Scheme for a MUGA.
  3. £9,500 Community Grant awarded to Churches Together in Bexhill to provide 3-day emergency food parcels for people in need.
  4. Up to £4,000 Community Grant awarded to the Friends of St Mary's in Rye towards a display case regarding their unusual clock.
  5. Rother DC has obtained a Government grant to give out green points to residents for increasing their recycling.
  6. Last Friday, the Joint Waste Committee agreed to award a joint contract for Waste Collection and Street Cleaning over 20 years. In Rother, it will start on 01/04/2014. Savings of £30 million across the county are predicted over 10 years for what is thought to be a improved service.
  7. LWA paint shop. Enforcement action is expected in the near future giving two months for the building to be removed.

Mrs Sue Walton (Chief Executive, Pestalozzi International Village):

    1. 45 out of the 50 students have now arrived in Sedlescombe. The remaining five from Uganda, Belize and Nepal are sorting out various problems in order to get here.
    2. Students are travelling by bus to South Coast Hastings College. The last bus back from Hastings has been altered to 18:10 and Mrs Walton thanked Cllr Glew for her efforts to achieve this.
    3. The winter Sunday bus service has been withdrawn to the detriment of students. (See C12/ below for Cllr Glew's report on this matter.)
    4. Pestalozzi is having a Mulled Wine and Mince Pie afternoon on 01/12/12.
    5. A very successful Rural Pastimes event took place on the Pestalozzi Estate in August. Pestalozzi will be pleased to welcome Rural Pastimes back next summer.
3 Mrs Marian Ham (Sedlescombe School headteacher):
  1. Very good end 2011-12 academic year test results, some above the East Sussex and national averages.
  2. 209 children on school roll at the start of the school term. The highest number so far recorded at the School.
  3. Various work undertaken during the holidays including new School playground security fencing and maintenance work at the swimming pool.
  4. Attempts to be made to find grants for improvements to the swimming pool to make it more usable by the community.
  5. Breakfast and After School Clubs continue.
  6. The next Travel Plan meeting will be in October. Cllr Glew to attend.
  7. The Walking Bus scheme from the Village Hall Car Park needs to be refreshed with the new School term. A new Walking Bus is planned to start in October from a drop off point in front of the Bridge Garage Antiques with parents parking temporarily in Gregory Walk.
  8. The Families and Schools Together Project (FAST) is being planned. Six community helpers have offered to be involved. Training will begin for them in November with the Project taking place in the Spring Term.
  9. Several Sedlescombe Schoolchildren are performing in White Rock events leading up to Christmas.

PCSO Demetrius Georghiou

  1. Recent burglary of an empty house in Sedlescombe.
  2. Recent theft of a van from Sedlescombe
  3. Still trying to improve parking issues in Brede Lane relating to the School.
  4. Signs put up by Demi to discourage parking on the Brede Lane bend have been vandalised several times.
  5. Youth issues at East View Terrace have been dealt with.
  6. Meeting held with new Amicus Horizon Housing Officer. Demi and Housing Officer will have a Meet and Green at East View Terrace in October.
  7. Meet and Greet to be held on the Village Green on Thursday at 10:00.

The Chairman reported that Cllr Heap had resigned from the Council on moving from the Village. The vacancy will be advertised to allow ten residents 14 days to ask for an election. If no election is demanded, the Parish Council will fill the vacancy as soon as practicable in accordance with its Casual Vacancy policy.


John Parsons was welcomed to his first meeting of the full Council since his co-option in July.


To receive apologies for absence. Peter Anson sent his apology for absence as he had already made other arrangements before his co-option in July.


Interests. Declarations of existence and nature of councillor's interests in accordance with the adopted Code of Conduct.


All councillors - Public Playing Field & Recreation Ground Trust (see C12/13.71.2 below).

Cllr Glew - Sedlescombe Friendship Club (C12/13.85) - personal interest as member.


Guide for councillors dealing with Openness and Transparency on Personal Interests. Belatedly, the Department of Communities and Local Government issued guidance for councillors. Click here.


Requests for Dispensation

  1. One-off regarding a matter on this agenda. None.
  2. Ongoing - RESOLVED: That Dispensation is granted by Sedlescombe Parish Council to the councillors listed below to allow them to fully take part and vote in discussions regarding the Charity known as the Sedlescombe Public Playing Field & Recreation Ground of which the Parish Council is the sole trustee. It is in the interests of the inhabitants of Sedlescombe to allow these people to take part in deliberations and decisions regarding the Trust property. If these persons were to be prohibited from taking part in the meetings, the transaction of business would be impeded. Dispensation to last until the Council's Annual Meeting in May 2015:
  • Jonathan Vine-Hall
  • Pauline Glew
  • Jennifer Mitchell
  • Roy Chapman
  • John Reynolds
  • Roderick Eldridge
  • Peter Anson
  • John Parsons

Public Participation. At the Chairman's discretion, members of the public were given permission to make representation re Agenda item C12/18.83 Development proposals in accordance with letter from Armstrong Rigg Planning re land at Brede Lane, Sedlescombe

  • Kim Brockelhurst of Gorselands, Sedlescombe
  • John Evans of Street Farm, Sedlescombe

It was agreed that the agenda item should be brought forward and taken after approval of the Minutes.

Minutes. RESOLVED: That the Chairman of the Council is authorised to sign the Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 17/07/12.
C12/13.74 Minutes of Meetings of Committees
  1. Planning. RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the Meetings of the Planning Committee held on 31/07/12 and 14/08/12 are received.
  2. Parking & Traffic Advisory Committee. RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the Meeting of the Planning & Traffic Advisory Committee held on 20/08/12 are approved.

    It was further RESOLVED: That the following outline for a Parking & Traffic Management Study is adopted:
    1. Traffic Management Plan 2013 will be prepared by the Sedlescombe Parking & Traffic Advisory Committee and will be presented to the January 2013 Sedlescombe Parish Council meeting under the following headings:
      1. Scope of the study
      2. Results of residents' ideas and questions
      3. Consideration of main issues
      4. Conclusion and recommendations
    2. Residents will be involved as much as possible in defining the problems. All or some of the following methods will be used to get residents' views. Main contact to be Cllr Eldridge:
      1. Liaison with School Head teacher through the School Travel Meetings.
      2. School to send out letters to parents to ascertain their views.
      3. Liaison with Cllr Mitchell regarding local residents' parking and traffic issues at East View Terrace.
      4. Committee Chairman to meet with shop owners.
      5. Survey by councillors to take place outside the shop.
      6. Letter to residents asking for their views. Replies to be e-mailed to Cllr Eldridge.
      7. Public meeting attended by ESCC Highways representative with question and answer session to be arranged in the Hall.
      8. Issue of press releases through the Clerk/Council Chairman and inclusion in the Sedlescombe News and Sedlescombe Parish Council Bulletin.
    3. Problems on the ground to be defined by undertaking:
      1. An audit of signs, structures, road markings etc in the centre of the Village.
      2. A survey of daily traffic movements in and out of East View Terrace to check whether they conform to ESCC's standard.
      3. A survey of heavy traffic through the Village.
      4. A series of Speed Indicator Device sessions using trained Village volunteers to ascertain the speed of vehicles through the Village. (NB It is probable that these can only be used within 30mph speed limits.)
      5. Recommendations for action will follow.
    4. A meeting with the ESCC Highways Department to discuss findings.
  3. Core Strategy Advisory Committee. NOTED: That a meeting of the Core Strategy Advisory Committee was held on 07/09/12.

Development proposals in accordance with letter from Armstrong Rigg Planning re land at Brede Lane, Sedlescombe. A public exhibition is to be held in Sedlescombe Village Hall on Saturday 22/09/12, 10:00 to 17:00. Background information had been provided for councillors and the public which can be seen by referring to the Agenda.

As agreed at C12/13.72 above, two persons were allowed to make representation to the Council concerning the proposed development:

  1. Kim Brockelhurst, Chairperson of the Sedlescombe Pre-School, spoke in favour of the development. She listed the advantages, in her opinion, of the development as follows:
    1. Although the Village Hall Committee have been really accommodating regarding Pre-School use of the village hall, there is a need for the Pre-School to have a building of its own. This has been supported by recent Ofsted report that highlighted several problems with the current usage of the hall. A "good" Ofsted rating depends on having a dedicated building.
    2. A dedicated building would allow 2 year olds to be taken under the Early Years Education Funding (EYE) Scheme which would allow more local women to return to work, especially if the facility is available, all day, five days a week.
    3. More work would be provided in the Village with the enlarged nursery.
    4. At times other than when used by the Pre-School, the building could be let out for other village activities.
    5. The children would have an easier transition from Pre-School to Primary School.
    6. Despite the additional houses, there could be less out-of-Village traffic because the Pre-School and Primary School could provide the educational facilities for the local children so that children from other areas would not need to be accommodated. This would reduce the carbon footprint of the Pre-School and Primary School.
    7. The new facilities would be built with an eco-package of measures to reduce the carbon footprint.
    8. Off-road parking would reduce the current parking problems in Brede Lane.
    9. The legal requirements for accessing the site by fire engines will be met.
    10. Affordable housing will be provided which is lacking in Sedlescombe.
    11. Additional residents will bring new help to village organisations.
  2. John Evans, near neighbour of the site. Mr Evans spoke of the inaccuracies he believed had been included in the letter which had been widely distributed in the Village by the planning consultants acting on behalf of John Keeling:
    1. It is not correct to say that the Parish Council has welcomed the proposed educational improvements in Brede Lane. He had attended a Parish Council meeting where it had been suggested the Primary School should find another site.
    2. The amount of land set aside for the School is stated to be 4.55 ha which is sufficient for ten football pitches which is probably unlikely.
    3. Traffic problems will still be there with increased use of the land for Pre-School. All traffic to the site will have to journey along Brede Lane.
    4. The proposed new entrance is on an unsuitable steep hill.
    5. The number of vehicle journeys per day generated from fifty houses will considerably increase traffic in Brede Lane.
    6. The School currently has good accommodation.

The Chairman thanked the two people for their representations and suggested that it was important for facts to be established regarding the current number of vehicles using Brede Lane and suggested paying for an electronic vehicle count in Brede Lane. Cllr Eldridge had been speaking to officers of ESCC as part of the preparation for the Parking & Traffic Advisory Committee's Plan. He had been told that traffic counts had taken place at East View Terrace in 2003, 2008 and 2010 and he had asked to see the results. ESCC would be loaning him four clickers to do some manual vehicle counts.

RESOLVED: That payment of £330 plus VAT is authorised by the Parish Council for a week's vehicle count (also speed check) as soon as possible situated in Brede Lane between the Brickwall Hotel and Park Shaw.


Representatives. It was noted that a Councillors' Newsletter has been introduced by the Clerk where reports of meetings involving Sedlescombe parish councillors are detailed. Councillors welcomed the introduction of the Newsletter in an attempt to shorten the length of parish council meetings. See agenda for details.


A list of meetings expected to be held in the future was also included on the agenda. Members confirmed they hoped to attend as follows:

Rother District Council Annual Planning Event, Wednesday 03/10/12, 14:00 to 16:45, Bexhill Town Hall. Cllrs Eldridge, Reynolds and Mitchell to attend together with the Parish Clerk.

Police and Crime Commissioner - Hustings, Friday 05/10/12, 19:45, Battle Memorial Hall. Cllr Parsons to attend.


Clerk's Report

  1. Dutch Elm Disease. The Council has been informed that a tree on land at the old School has Dutch Elm Disease and is unlikely to survive. Noted.
  2. Proposed new School Walking Bus from southern part of the Village. The Council has been informed by the Headteacher that a new Walking Bus is proposed with cars dropping off children on the forecourt of the Antiques Centre. Reported earlier in the meeting by the headteacher.
  3. Junction of A21 and B2244. A resident connected to the Fire Service has complained about the dangers of this junction to East Sussex County Council and it has now been passed to the Highways Agency as responsible authority. The resident had sent the Clerk a copy of the reply he had received in which it was stated that the HA planned to look at the junction again with particular regard to when high-sided vehicles are in the right hand turn lane at the same time as traffic that may be emerging from Paygate Road to turn northwards on to the A21. Also that when the next resurfacing scheme for this part of the A21 is in operation, any white lining changes that are considered appropriate could be included. If the weather allows, this could be in December 2012. The HA is also considering extending the 50mph limit northward to include Whydown Hill and the junction with Paygate Road.
  4. Additional/changed meeting dates.
    1. Parking & Traffic Advisory Committee - Tuesday 06/11/12.
    2. Parish Council Meeting - changed from 13/11/12 to 20/11/12.
    3. 2013 Annual Assembly of the Parish Meeting of Sedlescombe - Tuesday 30/04/13.
  5. Reducing the length of meetings. Click here. Noted.
  6. Street naming process. Click here. Noted. A letter had been received from the Lead Corporate Data Officer of Rother District Council asking for suggestions from the Council for the names of the following new streets:
    1. East View Terrace - RESOLVED: That the Parish Council proposes the name of "Old Garage Close".
    2. New properties on the Pestalozzi Estate - RESOLVED: That the Parish Council proposes the name of "Brabazon Park".
  7. Public footpaths.
    1. Noted that part of Sedlescombe footpath 2c (east of Lower Jacobs Farm) has been diverted in accordance with previous consultations.
    2. Footpath 25a. Substantial structural damage to the bottom of the bridge adjacent to Powdermills over the River Line was reported to the emergency service of East Sussex County Council on Saturday evening 15/09/12. The Clerk had now heard from ESCC that repairs to the bridge are expected to start on 19/09/12 and the path is expected to be closed for a week.
    3. Footpath 6, overgrowth from the sides, path between Orchard Way and Gorselands. A volunteer has been found to do the cutting back. The Clerk had checked the current footpath clearance situation with ESCC and had been informed as follows:

      In respect of any vegetation emanating from private land/hedges, ESCC would attempt to contact the landowners concerned to request the necessary attention.  Any information regarding landowners in this respect would be helpful.  Even more helpful would be the prospect of the Parish Council perhaps attempting first contact, with referral to us for enforcement if necessary.  

      Any clearance needed to paths in general would be highlighted for attention by our maintenance teams.Where the volunteers have undertaken clearance to paths in the past it would be worth highlighting to us any particular priority clearances, as the Parish Council's attention to these in the past may otherwise mean that we potentially overlook them for attention within our annual clearance work. Please do notify us of any issues.  These are best sent to the rights of way in box. 

C12/13.77 Finance
  1. Bank Reconciliations. RESOLVED: That the bank reconciliation at the end of August 2012 is approved.
  2. Cheques. RESOLVED: That payment of cheque lists for August and September 2012 are approved.
  3. Annual Village Inspection Report. The first part of the inspection report which is available online includes proposals to reduce the amount of grass cutting and weedkilling to be approved by the Council in 2013/14. Members had been asked to consider the proposals carefully and to propose amendments.
    RESOLVED: That the Jobs as listed in the various Summary Sections of the Report are approved and that the Finance Committee, at is next meeting on 16/10/12, should make the necessary arrangements to ensure that sufficient funds are available either during the remainder of the 2012/13 or in the 2013/14 budget for the proposed work. The Clerk was authorised to discuss the proposed work with appropriate contractors in time for the Finance Committee meeting.
  4. Devolvement of public conveniences/car parks to parish councils. Click here for Minutes of Rother's Devolution Working Group Meeting of 13/08/12. For further background information, see Clerk's Briefing Note 06/01/2012. Awaiting further contact from Rother DC. The Chairman suggested that there should be a comparable reduction in the Rother Council Tax if a parish council has to increase its precept to take on work previously undertaken by Rother DC.
  5. Request for grant aid from Rural Rother Trust. The Trust makes grants to people or groups in need who live in Rother villages. It is administered by Rother District Council. No budget, no action.
  6. Payments by parish councils. It was noted that it is the Government's intention, probably by the end of 2012, to repeal s150(5) of the Local Government Act 1972 whereby orders for payment by a parish council have to be signed by two members of the Council. RESOLVED: That the Finance Committee should consider what internal financial controls need to be adopted by the Parish Council once s150(5) of the Local Government Act 1972 has been repealed.


  1. Report of Legal and Finance Training Day held on 11/09/12. The day was attended by Cllrs Vine-Hall, Glew, Mitchell, Anson and the Clerk. It was generally agreed that the morning sessions were good but that the afternoon session on Charities was too long and inappropriate for parish councils.
  2. Updated Sedlescombe Parish Council Training Strategy. RESOLVED: That the updated 2012 Sedlescombe Parish Council Training Strategy is adopted.
  3. Noted that the councillor training course which was to be held at Leeford Place on 22/09/12 had been cancelled due to lack of attendees. SALC will not be arranging further Saturday courses for councillors but will arrange 3-hour evening training sessions on request.

Sportsfield & Pestalozzi International Village

  1. Archaeological investigations at the Sportsfield Car Park and on Pestalozzi International Village Estate. Roman-based investigations are currently being undertaken by the Independent Historical Research Group on the Pestalozzi Estate at the invitation of the Pestalozzi International Village Trust.
  2. Sportsfield Car Park extension. In connection with the archaeological planning condition on the approval of the car park extension, the Independent Historical Research Group sunk two boreholes on the Sportsfield in the hope of finding evidence of the Sedlescombe Roman wharf which is thought to exist somewhere in the vicinity. Nothing was found although there is good evidence of an Roman ironworking slag heap not far uphill from the site. The Deputy County Archaeologist carried out a watching brief during the work agreed by the Sports Association and undertaken by Phil Dann to dig out the car park area. The Parish Council had paid for two rolls of Terram sheeting at the cost of £400 plus VAT as well as the cost of drawing up the plans and submitting the planning application. The extension work had subsequently been put on hold waiting for more free hardcore to arrive.

Public Playing Field & Recreation Ground

  1. MUGA. The Clerk reported that a Rother Community Grant totalling £13,500 had been awarded to cover 50% of the cost of the MUGA excluding VAT. The following decisions were made: RESOLVED:
    1. Fencing. That the fencing quote C is accepted for removal and disposal of the chainlink fencing and replacement with Zaun rebound sports fencing, including installation of one gate at the eastern end of the MUGA (other gate to be closed off). Work to be undertaken as soon as possible. Total cost £13,400 including VAT.

    2. Surfacing. That quote B is accepted for surfacing, colour spraying and lining work at the MUGA to be done as soon as the weather permits in the spring of 2013. Total cost £18,948 including VAT. (NB Owing to the lead time needed to order the Zaun fencing, which needs to be installed first, it will not be possible to do the whole project this autumn as had been hoped.)

    3. Loan. That, following grant of borrowing approval by the Department of Communities and Local Government on 13/08/12, a 10-year £9,000 loan is applied for as soon as possible from the Public Works Loan Board to meet the shortfall in income for the Parish Council's MUGA Project at the Sedlescombe Playing Field & Recreation Ground (current interest rate is a fixed 1.67% with annual repayments of £981 for the duration of the 10-year repayment period).
  2. Playground reports. Councillors continue to do their weekly inspections. The annual professional inspection by Digley Associates had been completed in August 2012 and the report e-mailed to all Sedlescombe parish councillors for their information and consideration. It was noted that the risk level of all identified faults, apart from one, was marked as "low" or "very low". Cllrs Chapman and Vine-Hall will check whether anything can be done to alter the gate so that it has a minimum dimension of 12mm in every position when opening and closing.

East View Terrace

  1. Kickabout Area reports. Following their weekly inspections, councillors had reported that the grass was too long and there were a lot of stinging nettles in the north eastern corner. There was very little litter. The signs were commented on ie the upper sign should be replaced and that the lower sign needs attention.
  2. Current development. No discussions.

Village Green

  1. Flagpole. Although the Council had agreed to take no further action unless more people became available to raise and lower the flag, the Clerk ihad also told the Chairman of the Sedlescombe Branch of the British Legion that the amount raised would be insufficient to cover the following costs on top of the provision of the pole and flag:
    1. High delivery cost if a one-piece pole is chosen.
    2. Planning permission needed if the flagpole is more than 4 metres tall. It was noted that the Pumphouse is 5.2 metres high. The cost of the application would be £80 if submitted by the Parish Council, or £160 otherwise, but plans will also be required which could cost about £180.
    3. The flag companies recommend a site inspection prior to installation to check for underground services, which would cost £150.
    4. Installation costs would be extra.
  2. Flower tubs
    1. Planting. The Council acknowledged that the tubs had been very attractive when they had first been planted up in the early summer, but that more recently, they had become unsightly with dead flowers. The past Chairman of the Council, Valerie Wright, was commended for her work to prepare the tubs for replanting by Blackbrooks Garden Centre.
    2. Maintenance. It was agreed that Cllr Parsons, who is Chairman of Sedlescombe Garden Society, together with Cllr Chapman, a Garden Society Committee member, will come to some agreement with Mark Winchester for future maintenance of the tubs.
    3. "Geese Crossing" sign. In January 2012, the Council agreed that Bob Harris could arrange for a sign to be put up in the Village and, at the time, it was expected that the sign would go on Brickwall Hotel land. Now, the sign has been produced and Mr Harris would like to insert the sign in one of the tubs on the Village Green. A vote was taken and it was RESOLVED: That the "Geese Crossing" sign should be allowed to be inserted in the tub, with Mr Winchester's agreement, but that it should be reviewed in due course. (4 in favour, 3 against)
  3. It was noted that, in accordance with delegated powers, the Clerk has given approval for the use of Green for a Spring Fayre on 04/05/2013 as long as the usual requirements are met. The Queen's Head garden is also expected to be used.
C12/13.83 Considered earlier

Public Transport

  1. Proposed new bus stop in The Street - Cllr Glew reported that a meeting is still to be arranged with the Bus Company to consider the site just north of the Clockhouse Beauty Salon.
  2. Amendments to bus timetables Service 349
    1. Timing of last bus from Hastings. The Bus Company's agreement was welcomed to re-time the weekday last bus back from Hastings to 18:10 to allow South Coast College Hastings students to catch it.
    2. Removal of winter Sunday service. Pestalozzi's Chief Executive had objected to the removal of the winter Sunday bus service to Hastings because season tickets had been purchased for the students before it was realised that there would be no Sunday service. Cllr Glew reported that, at the beginning of this year when there was no current Sunday service, the Bus Company had agreed that a pilot summer Sunday bus service scheme should be tried. Because of lack of use in the summer, it had been decided not to run the service in the winter. It was planned, however, to re-start the service next Easter.

Parish Council Bulletin and delivery of Friendship Club survey re Community Friends. Val Smith, who co-ordinates the Community Friends Scheme, had arrived at the meeting and was allowed by the Chairman to explain that she is currently working with the Sedlescombe Friendship Club and wants to distribute survey forms throughout the Village. She asked whether the Council would be prepared to deliver these forms at the same time as the next Bulletin? Members did not think that this would be appropriate and suggested that the Friendship Club members should make the deliveries themselves, possibly targeting certain areas. It was also RESOLVED: That, as a general rule and in order not to over-burden the people who do the deliveries, deliveries on behalf of the Parish Council should be restricted to Bulletins and Annual Reports and other Parish Council documents only and not extended to include any other documents.


The next Bulletin will be issued in October and will include information about the Parking & Traffic Management Plan.


Localism Act 2011 SS87-108 Community Right to Bid - Assets of Community Value. When the Regulations have been received by Rother District Council, they will open the list to allow parish council to submit the names of premises or land which they consider to be "Assets of Community Value". Once listed, on the proposed sale of a property, the parish council would be given the opportunity to express an interest in bidding for the property (6 weeks) and a further 6 months to raise the necessary finance. Members were asked to give this matter some consideration for future discussion.

After the meeting, several members commented on the untidy state of the ex-Budget Car Lot. As the matter was not on the agenda, no decision was made.


Chairman.......................................... Date.................................................................