MEETING ON TUESDAY 12 NOVEMBER 2013 19:00 TO 20:55 IN COMMITTEE ROOM 2 OF SEDLESCOMBE VILLAGE HALL
SEDLESCOMBE PARISH COUNCIL PRESENT:
Chairman - Cllr J Vine-Hall
Vice-Chairman - Cllr P Glew
Other councillors - P Anson, R Chapman, R Eldridge, L Fraser, J Parsons, J Reynolds
Clerk/RFO - Mrs Pauline J Raymond
County Councillor Angharad Davies (for early part of the meeting)
District Councillor Tony Ganly (all meeting)
Mrs Sue Walton, Chief Executive, Pestalozzi International Village (all meeting)
Mrs Marian Ham, Headteacher, Sedlescombe CE School (at start of meeting)
PCSO Demetrius Georghiou (at end of meeting)
The Chairman invited the following to speak:
Mrs Walton - Very successful Indian cultural evening. Next event Mulled wine and mince pies on 07/12/13. Very successful fund-raising evening held. Sussex Coast College will no longer be running the International Baccalaureate after this year's intake have finished their two-year course which is a real disappointment to Pestalozzi as the course admirably suits its students.
Cllr Ganly - Rother now has a 5-year housing supply. The Scrap Metal and Dealers Act is being implemented. Cabinet has set a £230 licence fee for dealers and site holders. Rye's Neighbourhood Plan area has been designated.
Mrs Ham - Recent focus on road safety with the help of Demi. Parish Cllrs Glew, Eldridge and Parsons were thanked for their assistance during the Road Safety Week. Three road safety meetings for parents were held and attended by representatives from 64 families. Some press coverage is expected. Cllr Eldridge has written to Inspector Scott to tell him that the week had been worthwhile. There are now 212 children on the roll. There will be a future focus on anti-bullying and e-safety. Mince pies and carols for the Village in the School on 20/12/13 0945 to 1100. School prayer book produced to raise funds for the Church heating. School newsletter provided.
Demi (reported at the end of the meeting) - Main concern is the possibility of burglaries. He will be doing night patrols next week. He thanked the speedwatch team for their valuable assistance during Road Safety Week and commented that traffic can run smoothly in Brede Lane if people keep to the rules, do not park on the corners or drive up onto the paths. He reported anti-social behaviour of two mothers at the School which was being taken seriously.
72 APOLOGY FOR ABSENCE. Cllr S Lawrence.
73 INTERESTS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE 2012 CODE OF CONDUCT
- Requests received in writing from parish councillors for dispensation to speak regarding their pecuniary interests. No additional requests have been received. It was noted that Cllrs Vine-Hall, Glew, Chapman, Eldridge and Fraser have been granted dispensation in connection with the Neighbourhood Plan.
- Declarations of interests. None declared.
74 PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION RE MATTERS ON THE AGENDA AT THE CHAIRMAN'S DISCRETION. No general public present.
75 MINUTES. It was RESOLVED: That the Chairman is authorised to sign the Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 10/09/13.
76 MINUTES OF COMMITTEE MEETINGS
- PLANNING COMMITTEE. It was RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the Meetings of the Planning Committee held on 24/09/13 and 29/10/13 are received.
- NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN COMMITTEE. It was RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the Meetings of the Neighbourhood Plan Committee held on 24/09/13 and 22/10/13 are received.
- FINANCE COMMITTEE. It was RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the Meeting of the Finance Committee held on 15/10/13 are received.
77 RED BARN FIELD
- Neighbouring resident's request to purchase land to extend her property. The neighbour had not been able to attend the meeting. However, members considered the subject and RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That no land at Red Barn Field should be sold for extension of gardens because the Council wishes to retain the land and, if this application was approved, a precedent would be set and other applications would probably arise which would be difficult to resist.
- Result of site consultation for possible development at Red Barn Field. It was noted that the Neighbourhood Plan Committee had decided to exclude Red Barn Field from house building for the time being in accordance with the view of the majority of respondents to the Site Survey in September/October 2013.
78 NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN. The majority of councillors had met with Neil Homer the previous day and the following had been noted:
- Where a NH Plan is "silent", Local Plan policies apply.
- The Churchland Lane development is not relevant to the SNP.
- The Committee should start to prepare draft policies for inclusion in the Pre-Submission Report. Policies other than housing could be included: greenspace allocation, traffic issues, protection of village amenities, allotments, timing of developments including provision of community benefits and even a Village Design Statement.
- It is very likely that SPC will have to produce a Strategic Environmental Assessment.
- General conformity will be discussed with Rother next week.
- Policies could be considered at the Meeting of the Neighbourhood Plan Committee on 17/12/13.
- Aim to have the SNP ready for Examination mid to end April. Could display at Assembly.
- Meetings with landowners need to be arranged probably in December.
- Bank Reconciliation. RESOLVED: That the bank reconciliation at the end of October 2013 is approved.
- Cheques. RESOLVED: That payment of the October 2013 cheque list is ratified and the November 2013 cheque list is approved.
- Police precept. The Council considered whether the Parish Council should support a 3.6% increase in the Police precept (first increase for 5 years) which, according to the Police & Crime Commissioner, is required to tackle the following:
- Serious sexual offending/child exploitation.
- Cyber crime.
- Frontline Policing.
80 EAST SUSSEX PARISH & TOWN COUNCIL CONFERENCE, 18/10/13, ATTENDED BY CLLRS GLEW AND ELDRIDGE. The Clerk had sent the Powerpoint Presentation of the speeches to members. Cllr Eldridge reported that it was a very interesting day with good speakers from the Police and East Sussex County Council. He was pleased and surprised to hear that road death and casualty figures have been falling in East Sussex. Campaigns such as Operation Crackdown are well supported. Police are working with the parishes.
81 TRAFFIC SITUATION IN SEDLESCOMBE.
- The Clerk's Briefing Note No.8-13 lists measures that might be implemented in Sedlescombe to improve the traffic and parking situation. These were suggested by Cllr Eldridge earlier in the year in his Traffic Report. As it is approaching budget time, councillors were invited to allocate funding for traffic management.
It was agreed that members would e-mail Cllr Eldridge with their favoured measures and he would draw up a list of ten actions that he believes could be deliverable by the Council. The blight of additional signage that could be produced if certain measures are implemented needs to be considered.
The Clerk/RFO will obtain information regarding the cost of implementing traffic measures. It was suggested that if the problem is lack of funding when it comes to setting speed limits etc, local residents would most likely be willing to contribute. White lining was previously priced at £45. Cllr Eldridge spoke about the popularity of a white line being painted on the edge of the carriageway on the bend in Brede Lane.
Members discussed the difficulty in hiring the speed camera from the Police and suggested that even someone standing in a high viz jacket in Brede Lane during school arrival times has a calming effect on the traffic situation as proved during the recent road safety week at the School.
Cllr Glew reported that the School is working on trying to find additional parking spaces for parents dropping off and collecting children. The pub car park is being used and, if a walking bus can be started from the bottom of the Village, temporary parking near the antiques centre might be possible.
- The Clerk had been informed in an e-mail from another Clerk that Greg Barker MP had attended a meeting at Hurst Green on 07/10/13 where "agreement" was reached to survey the A21 from Ticehurst Road to Silver Hill with a view to providing a roundabout at the junction of the A21/A229 and traffic lights at the junction of A21/A265. A response is to be presented by the Highways Agency in March 2014. The Clerk reminded the Council that SPC had met with Greg Barker a few years ago and had discussed the problem of the A21/B2244 junction and that, therefore, it was a surprise that Sedlescombe's problems had not been included in the discussions. It was agreed that the Clerk should contact Greg Barker to see whether Sedlescombe could be included in the Highways Agency's future plans.
- Last week's Roadworks' list shows that A21 nightwork would continue from 05/11 to 14/11/13 for a "Scheme - A21 B2244 Jct to Marley Lane Pavement". There was speculation as to what this referred to.
82 EAST SUSSEX JOINT WASTE STRATEGY 2014-2025. ESCC has launched a consultation on a new draft Waste Strategy for East Sussex. The consultation ends on 11/12/13. Cllr Ganly commented that ESCC is not very ambitious in its target setting and should be setting higher recycling rates.
83 VILLAGE GREEN
- Proposed pond. The landlord of the Queen's Head had spoken to the Chairman about his proposal to make a pond on the Green for the geese who will not have any water available when he sorts out the drainage in the Queen's Head yard. The Clerk had obtained advice from Ian Davison of Hedleys Solicitors. RESOLVED: That, because the Green is governed by laws which only allow development that contributes towards the better use of the land for public sports and pastimes, the landlord's request for permission to make a pond on the Village Green cannot be agreed to.
84 PUBLIC PLAYING FIELD & RECREATION GROUND
- Playground Reports
- Weekly playground inspections by councillors continue.
- Materials (ballast and cement) purchased for work on other equipment at Riverside playground. Cllr Chapman and other councillors will do the work.
- Obtained noticeboard for installation on fence.
- MUGA let to tennis coach and netball club but most use is likely to be generated in the spring.
- Meeting of Playing Field Trust arranged for 26/11/13 from 18:30.
85 EAST VIEW TERRACE KICKABOUT AREA
- Weekly inspections by councillors continue.
- A neighbour has complained that users of the kickabout area are parking cars in his family's parking area and are not being co-operative when asked to move. The Clerk had suggested he asks Orbit HA to paint "residents' parking only" on the space.
- Cllr Anson had attended the Sports Association AGM the previous evening and reported that only one replacement trustee was required who would be Derek Wright. The Parish Council had no objection to this appointment. Cllr Anson had reminded the Committee that this would need to be registered at the Land Registry through a Solicitor. The Sports Association's new Constitution now includes appointment of trustees.
- Gating off the disabled area. The Sports Association had agreed to pay half the cost of providing the gates across the disabled area which the Clerk will arrange with D&B Fencing. The gates will then be kept locked while the sportsfield is not in use.
- The Sports Association is to provide proper signage at the field and to undertake clearance of the ditch.
- The Sports Association plans to move the blue container up against the portacabin and is keen to come up with definite proposals to make the portacabin usable for the children playing football at the car park end of the field. Whether toilets are to be provided is under discussion. Although planning permission will probably not be required if the building comes under the Parish Council's development powers, building regulation approval will be needed. it is planned that a works specification will be passed to Cllr Anson by December and the Football Club would like to see the work done in February 2014. Unfortunately, this means that the Garden Society's equipment will have to be removed from the portacabin.
- The Sports Association's plan to make some alterations to the decking at the pavilion had been provided to members. RESOLVED: That the Parish Council does not object to work being carried out to extend the decking around the pavilion as long as the result is in keeping with the remainder of the building.
- No news on separation of waste collected at the field by the Sports Association.
- Cllr Chapman is to carry out an inspection of the pavilion on 02/12/13.
- Ladybird Lane is being top dressed this week. The Parish Council is contributing towards the cost in accordance with the covenant on the sportsfield.
87 PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT IN CHURCHLAND LANE. Owners of two holiday chalets in Churchland Lane want to demolish them and build one permanent dwelling. This is supported by virtually all the other permanent residents of the Lane. However, in accordance with Local Plan policies, Rother District Council wants to retain the holiday accommodation. A Planning Officer at Rother DC had advised the applicant that development in Churchland Lane could be part of the Sedlescombe Neighbourhood Plan. RESOLVED: That the Clerk should inform the applicants that the Churchland Lane development is not appropriate for inclusion in the Sedlescombe Neighbourhood Plan and that they should submit the planning application in the normal way. The Parish Council will be able to comment as usual at that time.
88 OVERGROWN TREES AND HEDGES/POTHOLES. The Clerk reported improved contact with the Highway Steward.
- Complaints about overgrown trees and hedges in Church Hill from Village Hall to the Parish Church on both sides of the road. The Parish Council had received two separate complaints from local residents which had been passed on to ESCC. Notices had been served on owners by ESCC to remove any trees that are in danger of falling onto the highway and cut hedges. According to councillors, if electricity cables are involved, the tree work will be done free of charge by the Electricity Company if they are contacted.
- Park Shaw hedges. Notices had been served by ESCC on local owners. Some hedges have been cut but some problems persist.
- Crazy Lane potholes. Following the Clerk's report of the poor state of Crazy Lane, this road was added to the ESCC work schedule. It was agreed that the way to report potholes, fly tipping and footpath problems would be highlighted in a future Bulletin. If a phone number can be found, it will be included.
- Village Hall entrance polholes. These have been added to the ESCC schedule.
89 FOOTPATH 33, NEW ENGLAND LANE, RICKETY STILES AND OVERGROWN PATH reported by users. Cllr Vine-Hall to investigate.
90 HELP FOR LOCAL BUSINESS TO LINK WITH SEDLESCOMBE RESIDENTS WHO ARE LOOKING FOR WORK. RESOLVED: That the Parish Council will support a Facebook page run by Michelle Bristow and Debbie Martin to advertise local jobs.
91 REQUESTING AN INTERNET LINK AT THE VILLAGE HALL. The Clerk had been asked to support a request for installation of an internet link at the Village Hall and, although she was inclined to support the request, thought that the Parish Council should be asked for comments. No comments were forthcoming and Cllr Glew, Chairman of the Village Hall Committee, informed the Council that the subject would be on the next agenda of the VHMC on 05/12/13.
92 MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION. Up to now, in accordance with a Parish Council decision, the e-mail addresses of parish councillors have not been publicised. It was agreed that this should continue with only the telephone numbers of members published. Council correspondence should take place through the Clerk.
93 2014 ANNUAL ASSEMBLY OF THE PARISH MEETING, Tuesday 29/04/14. Members were asked to consider arrangements for the next Assembly so that details can be included in the January Bulletin and the Annual Report, work on which will start in January. Members suggested basically repeating last year's successful Assembly including:
- Something interesting as people arrive.
- Two prize draws for volunteers and for those attending.
- Councillors to sit in the audience.
- School and Pestalozzi reports to be included.
94 ITEM FOR NEXT AGENDA. Cllr Anson asked that the future of the Village Fayre should be added to the next agenda of the Council, depending on the outcome of next Monday's Societies Association meeting.