HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF HOOK NORTON PARISH COUNCIL HELD IN HOOK NORTON WAR MEMORIAL HALL ON THURSDAY 13 FEBRUARY 2020

Present:      Councillors: Hicks, Brotherston, Wilson, Porter, Duggan, Shepherd, Noviss, County Cllr Reynolds, District Cllr Brown and Mrs Watts (Parish Clerk).  There were four members of the public in attendance.

20/019 Apologies for Absence – Cllrs Watkins, Muller and Matthews.  
20/020 Declarations of Interest: Cllr Shepherd declared an interest in a request from the Victoria County History of Oxfordshire Group for a grant.  Cllr Noviss declared an interest in allotment Plot 5A.  
20/021   Vice- Chairman’s Announcements: there were no matters arising.
20/022 20/022/1     Minutes of the Meeting of the Parish Council held on 9 January 2020 Cllr Hicks proposed that the Minutes of the Meeting of the Parish Council held on 9 January 2020 be resolved as a true and accurate record of the meeting.  This was seconded by Cllr Duggan and passed unanimously.  
20/023 20/023/1       20/023/2   20/023/3     20/023/4 20/023/5 20/023/6 Co-Option: The Parish Clerk had placed advertisements on the village noticeboards notifying villagers that there was a vacancy on the Parish Council following the uncontested election in May.  She had received an application from Caroline Gregory, details of which had been circulated to Councillors before the meeting. Cllr Hicks proposed that Caroline Gregory be co-opted as Councillor to the Parish Council.  This was seconded by Cllr Porter and passed unanimously. Ms Gregory was welcomed to the Council table and asked to complete a Declarations of Acceptance of Office.  She was also asked to complete the Register of Members’ Interests form and return it to the Parish Clerk within seven days. The Parish Clerk will email the Parish Council’s Code of Conduct and Standing Orders to her. Cllr Brotherston will set up a PC email address for Cllr Gregory. Cllr Hicks asked Cllr Gregory to join the Cemetery and Allotments Working Group.  
20/024 20/024/1   20/024/2 20/024/3 20/024/4           20/024/5   20/024/6     20/024/7   Report of the Planning Co-ordinator on Planning Applications – (Annex 1) Eight planning/TCA applications had been received since the last meeting.  There were no objections. Cherwell District Council had granted five applications. 19/02562/F – 19/02563/LB – East End Farmhouse; application withdrawn by the applicant. Councillors and a member of the public considered application 20/00172/F – 20/00215/LB, Stapenhill House, Scotland End, received 13 February: – demolition of stone boundary wall. Single storey building and adjacent outbuilding.  Construction of 5 No. dwellings and garages. Improve existing vehicular access.  Construction of new access drive and parking court.  Six Councillors had no objection to the application.  Cllrs Hicks and Gregory objected to the application. APP/C3105/W/19/323490 – Brockford Farm, Tadmarton Heath Rd. An Appeal has been submitted by the applicant to the Secretary of State. Cllr Hicks proposed that in future, additional planning meetings will be convened in the Memorial Hall to allow Councillors time to discuss major planning applications or planning applications of concern.  This was seconded by Cllr Duggan and agreed unanimously. Councillors are asked to respond ‘objection/no objection’ to Cllr Hicks’ emails when asked to consider planning applications.  
20/025 To Invite Members of the Public to Comment on Planning Applications: there were no matters arising.  
20/0026 Reports of Working Groups
20/026/1 Recreation The new inclusive orbit and a shelter have been installed in the play area by Playdale. A cheque in the sum of £9,533.04 for the 50% balance has been raised.Cllr Wilson is obtaining quotations for replacement bark.A tree branch fell in the play area during storm Ciara.  Tim Burchell has removed it.The latch to the small gate in the play area is broken.  Cllr Wilson will arrange a repair.  
20/026/2 Cemetery and Allotments The Parish Clerk has asked Acremans Arboriculture to fell three trees in the cemetery deemed as being in need of urgent attention on the 2020 tree survey. This is being done under a 5-Day Notice to CDC, now approved.A tree fell down in the cemetery during storm Ciara.  It caused no damage.  The Parish Clerk has asked Acremans Arboriculture to remove it.Invoices for allotment rents 2020/2021 will be sent out at the end of February, payable by 1 April. A £10 administration fee is added for all reminders.An inspection of allotment plots will take place in the Spring, date to be confirmed.The tenants of Plot 5A have asked for permission to erect a 6’ x 2.5’ x 5’ garden shed on the plot.  Cllr Duggan proposed that this be agreed.  Cllr Hicks seconded the motion and it was agreed unanimously.  The Parish Clerk will write to the tenants advising them of this decision.There are six people on the allotment waiting list.  
20/026/3 Environment Four fruit trees (3 apples and 1 pear) have been planted in the play area.Cllr Muller will get a price for a mature ornamental cherry tree for the play area.The Parish Warden will be asked to check the hedgerow along Station Rd for rubbish.  
20/026/4 Hook Norton War Memorial Hall Cllr Brotherston is arranging for an outside down-lighter to be put over the War Memorial engraved stone at the front of the building.Chubb Fire and Security carried out an inspection/service of fire extinguishers/the fire blanket this week.PAT testing of appliances is being arranged by Cllr Brotherston.A meeting of Friends of the HN War Memorial Hall will take place in the hall on 29 April 2020 at 7.00pm A User Group meeting will be held in the hall on 8 April 2020 at 7.00pm.100 white and ‘red’ hedging rose bushes have been purchased by the Parish Council for the hall garden.  Tim Burchell will plant them in the next couple of weeks.  
20/026/5 Environmental Action Group Cllr Muller had not submitted a report.  
20/027 20/027/1       2/027/2 Finance/Schedule of Receipts and Payments for Authorisation by the Council: The Parish Clerk presented the schedules of receipts and payments for February totalling £13,478.06 for the Parish Council and £630.04 for the Memorial Hall (Annex 2/3).  Cllr Hicks moved acceptance of the payments detailed.  This was seconded by Cllr Wilson and agreed unanimously. The Parish Clerk had sent Councillors spend against budget figures before the meeting (Annex 4).  
20/028 VCH Grant Application:  Cllr Watkins had received a letter from Victoria County History of Oxfordshire requesting a £10k grant towards publishing a full history for every town, parish and village in the county.  Members of VCH were in attendance and following a long discussion with them, Councillors agreed that no decision could be made until they had had the chance to fully discuss the matter.  This will take place at a confidential meeting following the Parish Council meeting on 12 March.  
20/029 Tree Survey – the 3-Year survey of Parish Council owned trees was carried out by Sacha Barnes Ltd in January 2020.  Their report was sent to Councillors before the meeting.  Cllr Shepherd offered to project-manage the report.  Three urgent matters are currently being dealt with by Acremans Arboriculture.  Cllr Shepherd will seek three quotations for High Risk trees which need attention this coming financial year.  Medium and Low Risk trees will be dealt with in financial years 2 and 3.  Jeremy Sacha has offered to attend the March meeting to answer any questions Councillors may have.  
20/030   Planters for Four Entrances to the Village:  Cllr Noviss has obtained one verbal quotation for a stone planter.  Three written quotations are required to enable Councillors to consider the proposal further.  Cllr Noviss will make site visits to establish appropriate sizes and then source written quotations for both stone planters and planters made of wooden sleepers.  It is envisaged that eight planters would be required.  
20/031 Request for Bus Shelter – Ironstone Hollow:  This proposal was made last month following the initial suggestion by Cllr Shepherd who had been approached by several members of the public.  The Parish Clerk confirmed that OCC had no objection to the proposal in principle.  However, OCC stipulated that a shelter must be set back on the grass verge away from the footpath, it must not obscure the view for road users and that the Parish Council must pay for, maintain and insure the structure.  Councillors were asked to consider 1) these stipulations, 2) what type of shelter might be appropriate for the area, 3) vandalism of the structure.  To be discussed at the next meeting.  
20/032 VE Day 75th Anniversary – May 2020:  The Parish Council will mark this anniversary in the Memorial Hall on 8/9 May. Cllr Wilson (representing the Parish Council) and representatives from the Sports and Social Club and the three village public houses met with James Clarke from Hook Norton Brewery on 20 January to discuss ideas and proposed events. Many organisations in the village have indicated that they want to take part in the weekend celebrations.  
20/033 20/033/1                       20/033/2     20/033/3                   20/033/4   Report on District Council Matters: District Cllr Hugo Brown had reported as follows: Executive Meeting 3 February 2020 Green Investment Budget – Proposed at Executive as part of progress for CDC to be carbon neutral by 2030.  Initiatives include: £69k to replace light bulbs in Council Buildings with LEDs £125k to install electric charging points and LED light bulbs in CDC-run car parks £80k in 2021/22, rising to £230k by 2023, to develop the Burneyhill Community Woodland project including archaeological surveys and tree planting £50k per year on land drainage and flood risk management £24k on new split recycling/normal litter bins £230k on re-developing area around Oxford Canal and River Cherwell in Banbury into a “vibrant, well-connected urban quarter supporting a natural green lung running through the area and beyond” Council Tax – It was resolved to recommend to Full Council an increase in the level of Council Tax for Cherwell District Council of £5 (3.89%) for 2020/21 on a Band D property with proportional variance for other Bands Local Discretionary Business Rate Relief Scheme 2020/2021 – It was resolved to recommend to Full Council the adoption of this Scheme for 2020/21.  The Scheme derives from the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s announcement of £300m of funding for Local Councils to help businesses facing an increase in their Business Rates as a result of the 2017 Revaluation. Government funds available to CDC were (i) £736,000 in 2017/18, (ii) £358,000 in 2018/19, (iii) £147,000 in 2019/20, (iv) £21,000 in 2020/21.  The Council will automatically award business rates relief to qualifying businesses but a new threshold is being introduced such that no relief will be applied if the sum is less than £50.  It is expected that 171 local businesses will qualify.  More details are available at www.cherwell.gov.uk Upcoming Full Council 24 February: Motion: Tree Planting – CDC to commit to doubling tree cover in Cherwell District, from 5.2% of land mass, by 2045.  This will be moved by me and is expected to be seconded by Cllr. Sean Woodcock, Leader of the Labour Group
20/034   Report on County Council Matters:  County Cllr George Reynolds reported that OCC Council Tax will increase by 4%.  OCC is ‘going green’.  OCC will be sending Topic Papers to Parish Councils for completion in order to ascertain opinions on matters such as highways.    
20/035 20/035/1   Correspondence: The Parish Clerk had forwarded all correspondence to Councillors during the month and there were no matters outstanding.    
20/036   To Invite Questions and Comments from Members of the Public:  there were no matters arising.  
20/037 20/037/1 AOB: An electric fence has been put across the public footpath, just beyond the gate from the field alongside Hook Norton Brewery and heading towards Fant Hill Farm.  OCC has written to the landowner.

The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Thursday, 12 March 2020 at 7.30pm in the War Memorial Hall.

There being no further business Councillor Hicks thanked everyone for attending and closed the public meeting at 8.47pm.

Signed ……………………………………..

Hook Norton Parish Council

Dated 12 March 2020