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Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting
on Tuesday 11th October 2016
at 19:00
in Committee Room 2 of Sedlescombe Village Hall

Present: Cllr. Glew (Vice-Chairman) Cllrs. Brister, Chapman, Fraser and Page
Clerk/RFO: Mrs Carol Hodgson

Also Present: County Cllr. Angharad Davies,

C16/95 Apologies
Cllr. Vine-Hall (Chairman)
In the absence of the Chairman, the Vice-Chairman presided the meeting.

C16/96 Interests in accordance with 2012 Code of Conduct

  1. To receive new written requests for dispensation.
    No new written requests were received.
  2. To receive councillors' declarations of interest regarding matters on the agenda.
    None received.

C16/97 Public participation session re matters on the Agenda at the Chairman's discretion.
There were no members of the public present.

C16/98 To approve the minutes of the Council Meeting on 27-Sep-16
Cllr. Page objected to the signing of the minutes as his comments and objection to item C16/91 had not been recorded.
RESOLVED: The Chairman deferred signing of the minutes pending clarification of the omission of Cllr. Page's comments and objections on item C16/91.

Cllr. Davies joined the meeting. The Chairman invited Cllr. Davies to speak.

Cllr. Davies reported that County Council had launched a new funding scheme to tackle fuel poverty. One in ten households in the county are living in fuel poverty, where they can’t afford to heat their home to the standard recommended to help maintain good health and wellbeing. ESCC is working with East Sussex Stay Well This Winter Fund who will raise awareness of services to tackle fuel poverty, offer practical assistance, advice and support or run activities to help people stay warm and well.
Employers in East Sussex are being encouraged to take part in a scheme aimed at helping young people find their path in life and boosting their career prospects. The Open Doors project, run by ESCC on behalf of Skills East Sussex will see year nine pupils across the county visiting a variety of local businesses to learn about the world of work. Organisers hope the scheme will help pupils find out about the skills employers need and decide which subjects to study at GCSE to help them in their chosen career path.
There is another scam with Blue Badges. Websites are offering Blue Badges for £49 online. The county council, which is responsible for issuing Blue Badges, charges £10 for a badge, but payment is only taken if an application is successful.
The charity ESDA which has helped thousands of disabled people had folded earlier this year after 78 years due to funding cuts. The service offered by the charity’s Daily Living Centre, which provided advice and information on aids and equipment to help people live independently, is now being provided by ESCC’s newly-formed Occupational Therapy Clinics. The specialist disability information and advice service previously provided by ESDA’s Centre for Independent Living is now being provided by Sussex disabled people’s user-led organisation Possability People from its offices in Hastings.
The Adult Social Care budget was overspent by £7m this year and ESCC were reviewing ways of offering services differently. Children Services budget was overspent by £4m.

C16/99 Planning

  1. To consider response to planning applications.

    a RR/2016/2496/P - 45 Gorselands, Sedlescombe TN33 0PT
    Proposed alterations to roof design and new dormer. Proposed new conservatory and decking to the rear. Proposed enlargement of side porch. Conversion of garage. Proposed alterations to vehicular driveway and front garden.
    Cllr. Page reported.
    RESOLVED: Parish Council has no objections to this planning proposal.

C16/100 To consider a request from Balcombe Green residents to manage the hedge between Balcombe Green and Red Barn field on the Balcombe Green side.
The hedge between Balcombe Green and Red Barn field was very overgrown and causing some minor damage to cars. Residents in Balcombe Green wished to cut back the hedge to 1m depth and 10ft height at their own expense and reinstate some of the grass verge. The trees would not be touched.
RESOLVED: Parish Council has no objections to the residents in Balcombe Green cutting back the hedge - with no alteration to the trees - to around 3ft depth and 10ft height and reinstating some of the grass verge at their own expense.

C16/101 To receive an update on Rother DC's offer to devolve Sedlescombe Car Park and Public Conveniences in Brede Lane to Parish Council.
Cllrs. Anson and Brister reported on their current progress and investigations. Members would be circulated full details of the information for consideration at the next meeting.

C16/102 To consider a response to the Salehurst and Robertsbridge Pre-submission Neighbourhood Development Plan under Regulation 14
Members had received a link to the Salehurst and Robertsbridge Pre-submission Neighbourhood Development Plan prior to the meeting.
RESOLVED: Parish Council to submit a response in support of the Salehurst and Robertsbridge Pre-submission Neighbourhood Development Plan.

C16/103 To consider introducing a 'Vexatious Complaints' Policy
Members had received a copy of the proposed Vexatious Complaints Policy prior to the meeting for review.
RESOLVED: Parish Council to adopt the Vexatious Complaints Policy with immediate effect.

C16/104 Reports & Questions

  1. Red Barn Field
    Cllr. Glew will be attending the Sussex Lund Foundation event to celebrate the first round of funding from this new grant scheme. Red Barn Field was one of the 35 projects to receive a grant to support practical projects that will improve the ecology, natural beauty and landscapes of the High Weald.

    Cllr. Chapman and his team of Volunteers were thanked for the lovely job they had done on the RBF footpath.

    Mrs. Cole's sheep would soon be heading into RBF as part of the annual grazing arrangement to aid the meadow.

  2. To receive any other reports and questions from Members in brief, including items for the next agenda.
    There was increasing concerns regarding the vehicles parked outside Bulmer House which were restricting the access and exit to The Green. It was understood that this had now been referred to 'Operation Crackdown'.

    The overgrown verges along Hawkhurst Road had been referred to East Sussex Highways who advised that they had been cut back in August. Verges are now only cut twice a year by Highways. A request for an additional cut would be made to the Highways Steward.

    Parish Council noted with concern comments received in relation to the Rother DC Planning Committee site visit to Street Farm that day in preparation for the planning application being heard on Thursday. Clarification that the site was being promoted for development within the Planning Committee could not be confirmed at this time.

    Parish Council had been invited to comment on the proposed street names and numbering on the Roselands site as submitted to Rother DC.