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MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF SPARKFORD PARISH COUNCIL
HELD ON MONDAY 15th April 2015 AT 8.00 PM
IN SPARKFORD PARISH HALL

Present:
Mr J Crawford – Chairman
Mr T Tuck – Vice Chairman
Mr A Bourke
Mr D Braithwaite
Mr L Piper
Mr P Downton.
Mr K Davis
Mr M Lewis – County & District Councillor – Camelot Ward
Also present: 13 member of the public
1 representative from the press.
In attendance: Mrs A Voysey – Clerk

Parish Councillors agreed to hear comments from the public regarding Item 8(a) of the Agenda. After this opportunity for members of the public to address the Council the Chairman opened the meeting at 8.20 pm.

1 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE Kevin Davis, Thelma Mead PCSO

2 DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST None

3 APPROVAL OF LAST MONTH’S MINUTES
The Minutes were approved and signed by the Chairman as a true and accurate record of last month’s meeting.

4 CRIME/NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH
a)
The Clerk reported that the abandoned car in Church Rd was being dealt with.
b) The Clerk reported that an enquiry regarding excessive speed in the village, particularly at the Parish Hall end, resulted in a response regarding the mobile speed camera being sited outside the pub. As this did not address the issue raised it was agreed that the matter continues to be pursued

Neighbourhood Watch reported that there were people camping in the Copse and that the ‘no camping’ sign had been removed. There had been incidents of fighting and burglaries at the Sparkford Inn. Street light No. 17, opposite the Inn is on all day which needs to be reported

5 COUNTY/DISTRICT COUNCILLOR
ML reported that the Rights of Way Improvement Scheme had been approved and would be reviewed in ten years’ time

6 HIGHWAYS
a)
Small Improvement Scheme (SIS), the scheme has been approved and a program of work is being drawn up. It is hoped that the work will be done in May.
b) The mound of spoil has been dispersed. Thanks go to LP, KD and Mr R Piper. It was noted that the grass verge surrounding the village Jubilee stone had not been mown. It was agreed that ML would request for this to be done by Streetscenes.
c) Slotted channel at Orchard Close/Church Rd junction has been cleaned
d) Notice of Speed limit extension as previously circulated. Consultation period had expired, no further information had been received. Councillors noted that as the speed limit area is to be extended where new development has occurred then the same could apply regarding an extension of the speed limit at the Parish Hall/Cam Cottages end of the village.
It was also noted that the junction of The Avenue and the A359 Cary Rd continues to deteriorate. To be certain of the issues TT and the Clerk to visit the site and draw the matter to the attention of highways. ML would also raise the issue.

7 PLANNING DECISIONS
a)
14/04902/COU Change of Use of Sparkford Hall from a C3 dwelling to mixed use of Class C3, C1 and C2. Sparkford Hall, Sparkford Road, Sparkford, C Beddows and J D March-Smith PERMITTED WITH CONDITIONS
b) 14/05052/FUL Residential development of 11 dwellings. Land OS 3432 (rear Of The Burrows), HighStreet, Sparkford, Yeovil, Somerset, Mr & Mrs Nigel Tucker. REFUSED
c) 14/05524/FUL Erection of a light steel framed building to house a soft play area. Haynes International Motor Museum, Cary Road, Sparkford, Yeovil,Somerset,BA22 7LH, Mr M Penn PERMITTED WITH CONDITIONS
d) 15/0099/NMA from the last meeting, the Clerk established that there is no decision notice for a Notification of a Minor Amendment

8 PLANNING APPLICATIONS
a)
15/01276/OUT Outline application for the erection of a dwelling house and garaging using existing access. Land adj Mill Cottage, Church Road, Sparkford. Mr Hopkins
13 members of the public attended, 6 spoke and one letter was read from in the absence of the author. The objections to the proposal are summarised below.

The site is outside the village limits.
The character of this end of Church Road would be changed.
The proposed dwelling would dominate the corner of the field.
The outstanding historical views out of and into the village, including the Grade II listed 15th Century Church, would be disrupted especially for footpath users
The site is in a field which was the location of the original village and therefore has archaeological and historical interest.
Sparkford has seen considerable residential development in recent years including the Old Coal yard site. Permission was granted for Pipers Field (26 houses) and refused for 11 in the High Street on the grounds that there is no further development requirement in Sparkford
There is an occupied badger set, also slow-worms, foxes and owls can all be observed in the field. The development will have a negative environmental impact.
The site of the proposed house is six foot/ two metres above that of the adjacent cottages on Church Road As such it will be dominant in the landscape and be oppressive and intrusive to neighbouring residents.
The footpath is often unusable and blocked by the animal feeders located close to the field entrance.
If permission were granted the scale of the proposal would escalate from a three bedroom house to something much larger.
5 people reported difficulty in using the SSDC web site, notably the absence of objections posted using on line facilities, letters sent and not posted on the web site and difficulty in viewing comments and documents.

Having heard comments from the public at the beginning of the meeting Councillors discussed the application. It was agreed that JC should contact the Planning Officer to ascertain whether the adoption Local Plan had any policy implications for the application and comments be drafted accordingly. A proposal that we the Parish Council object to the application was made by TT and seconded by DB. All were in favour

b) 15/01182/FUL Erection of new livestock building. Windsor Farm, Sutton Montis Road, Queen Camel. This application is in Queen Camel Parish, Sparkford PC is notified as it is near the boundary.

9 MATTERS ARISING
a)
Foot path revue – as reported under Item 5 above.

10 PAYMENT OF ACCOUNT
a)
The Clerk’s salary of 598.60 and expenses of 40.11 for January, February and March 2015 were approved
b) The Clerk had received an invoice from Greenslade Taylor Hunt for the half yearly rent of 125.00, for the Playing Field. This was agreed.
c) The Clerk had received a retrospective request from St Mary Magdalene Church, Sparkford PCC for their Annual Grant of 100 for 2014/15. It was agreed.
d) A request from Sparkford Copse Trust for their Annual Grant of 150 for 2015/16 was received. It was agreed.
e) A request from Sparkford PCC for their Annual Grant of 150 for 2015/16 was received. This was agreed.
f) The end of year accounts for 2014/15 which had been previously circulated to all councillors were proposed to be accepted by PD and seconded by DB. All were in favour.
g) The Clerk reported that Mr L Stevens had been approached with regard to carrying out the internal audit which had been previously circulated. The internal and external audits were approved.
g) It was agreed that the no changes be made to the Assets Register from last year.

11 CORRESPONDENCE
a)
A letter from Barclays bank had been received advising that the details of the signatories had now been changed as a result of the change in clerks.
b) The Clerk read from the letter from Somerset Local Authorities Civil Contingencies Unit regarding points of contact in emergency situations. It was agreed to bring this item to the next meeting.
c) An email had been received from Mr and Mrs Walton regarding Long Hazel Park which was previously circulated. The contents were noted and the Clerk is to acknowledge the message.

12 QUESTIONS/COMMENTS FROM COUNCILLORS
As this was the last meeting of the current Parish Council JC expressed his thanks for all the time and effort that the Parish Councillors and retiring Clerk had put in over the last four years.
ML then added that as JC would not be standing for re-election he would like to take the opportunity to thank JC for all his hard work particularly with South Somerset D C and Somerset C C over the past four years - not forgetting the previous 16 years that Justin has been on the Parish Council.
JC added his thanks to ML for all the time and work he had put into his roles as District and County Councillor

It was asked how, when the council had agreed to the Parish Precept for 2015/16 to be kept at the same level as 2014/15, there had been in an increase on the Council Tax Bill. Clerk to seek an answer to this from SSDC and place this in the Parish News.
Concern was expressed at the high and unsightly fence that is being erected at the Old Coal Yard site. ML and Clerk to raise this issue with South Somerset DC
Dog litter was reported to be a problem along Church Road, it was agreed that a reminder of the need to clean up after dogs be placed in The Village Magazine.

The subject of footpaths being blocked and stiles being broken had been raised during the course of the meeting. Clerk to follow up and contact SSDC.
Attention was drawn to a road sign on the A359 approach to Sparkford being obscured by vegetation. Clerk to clarify which sign and report to SSDC/Highways.

13 ITEMS FOR FUTURE AGENDA
a) Old Coal yard site
b) Resurfacing of area to front of Parish Hall (car park)
c) SLA Civil Contingencies Unit

14 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Annual Parish Meeting Monday, 11th May 2015, 7.30pm
Parish council Meeting Monday 11th May 2015, 8.00pm
There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.35pm
AV/13.04.15

 

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