MINUTES Parish Council Meeting 6th September 2021

Minutes of a Meeting of Stewkley Parish Council held on
Monday 6th September 2021 at 7.30pm at the Stewkley Village Hall

Present: Cllr Higgins (Chair), Cllr Morgan (Vice-Chair), Cllr Arthur, Cllr Bottomley, Cllr Burgess, Cllr Delafield, Joanna Simonds, Clerk & RFO, Unitary Cllr Phil Gomm and 7 members of the public.

Apologies for absence
Cllr Henry Hunt, Andrew Pryke and Cllr Virgilio Simeone

Declarations of interest

Village Foundations
Following consultation with their highways consultant, Village Foundations (VF) gave an update on the three main takeaway points from the last meeting, those being:

1. The position of the pedestrian crossing and whether it can be moved further south
VF propose to move the crossing 5m to the south

2. Whether the yellow lines at the site access could be replaced with white lines?
Yes, the white lines around the site entrance are acceptable, so this will be changed

3. Will there be a requirement for a no parking zone to be enforced adjacent to the proposed crossing?
No, there won’t be a need to have an enforced no parking zone either side of the crossing.

Discussions continued at length focussing on the crossing, parking and biodiversity strip.

Open Forum
The Chairman opened the floor to members of the public to raise any items they may have, kindly requesting that any matters be raised now rather than interrupting the meeting later on.

On behalf of 5 residents that live on Ivy Lane, a parishioner expressed concern over the height of the hedge immediately outside the Village Hall. As the PC representative of the Village Hall Committee, Cllr Burgess agreed to pick this action up and Cllr Bottomley said he would assist in identifying ownership. Action Cllrs Burgess/Bottomley

Another resident of Ivy Lane referenced the wonderful tarmacking job, which sadly is now becoming a racetrack with vans roaring up and down the lane. Cllr Delafield requested that if residents see particular vehicles and are able to take a photo or get registration details, he would be able to pass this to the traffic sub-committee.

The Chairman said he’d been approached by a resident asking whether the PC will be doing anything for the Queens Platinum Jubilee next June. Cllrs agreed the PC should plan something and asked that this be an agenda item at next month’s meeting where we would be looking for somebody to take the lead and set up an organising committee to take this forward. Action Clerk

Update from Buckinghamshire Unitary Councillor, Phil Gomm
A community bus project is moving forward with the Community Board and Cllr Gomm said he hoped to give an update at the next meeting.
The recent issue with the school busses has been resolved and Cllr Gomm gave thanks to the four local residents who assisted him. Cllr Delafield thanked Cllr Gomm for his intervention here.

To approve the minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 2nd August 2021
Proposed: Cllr Arthur
Seconded: Cllr Delafield
Agreed unanimously

Planning applications
21/02762/APP – Land East of Wing Road, Stewkley LU7 0JB
Following lengthy discussion and input from Village Foundations responding to the various concerns, Cllrs resolved to SUPPORT the application subject to the developer specifically seeking to optimise the position of the crossing to minimise the impact it has on parking for the wing road residents
Proposed: Cllr Higgins
Seconded: Cllr Bottomley
Agreed unanimously

21/02282/ALB – Windsor’s Farmhouse, Stewkley
Councillors resolved to OPPOSE this application until such time as more detailed drawing and block paving information is available.
Proposed: Cllr Morgan
Seconded: Cllr Bottomley
Agreed unanimously

21/03176/APP – 10 Bletchley Road, Stewkley
Councillors resolved to OPPOSE this application on the basis of overdevelopment and it being out of scale with its surroundings.
Proposed: Cllr Morgan
Seconded: Cllr Delafield
Agreed unanimously

21/03374/COUAF – Penton Farm, Stewkley
Councillors resolved to OPPOSE until more information about the overall development is provided.
Proposed: Cllr Delafield
Seconded: Cllr Bottomley
Agreed unanimously

21/03183/APP – The Long House, Potash Nursery
Cllrs resolved to SUPPORT this application.
Proposed: Cllr Higgins
Seconded: Cllr Morgan
Agreed unanimously

To agree the September payment run as circulated

Stewkley parish council payments September 2021

Proposed: Cllr Bottomley
Seconded: Cllr Morgan
Agreed unanimously

Remembrance Sunday
The Chairman confirmed that he and the Clerk were in touch with Steve Nicholl following the Royal British Legion’s offer of assistance to help with the organisation of this year’s remembrance service. Cllrs were in full agreement to support the traditional procession and act of remembrance at the war memorial, and on that basis, support the Royal British Legion in whatever they need to do. The Clerk has already reached out to David Smith from Bucks Transport in regards to road closures.

Neighbourhood Plan
The Referendum date has been confirmed for 14th Oct, and Cllr Morgan was congratulated on her excellent work in getting us to this stage in the process. A key component here is to make sure everyone knows there is a referendum and the importance of coming out to vote. Following discussion, Cllrs agreed to hold an open meeting at 7.30pm in the Village Hall on Tues 28th Sept to give parishioners the opportunity to hear a short presentation on the Plan, ask any questions they may have, and review hard copies of the plan, in order to fully understand how having its own NP will help to protect Stewkley with future planning applications. A further opportunity to read the Plan in hardcopy will be on 7th October in the pavilion from 5.30-8pm.

With regards to promotion activities ahead of the Referendum, Cllr Morgan suggested a maximum budget of £1,500 to cover associated costs such as printing, hall hire, banners, leaflets etc.

Proposed: Cllr Bottomley
Seconded: Cllr Higgins
Agreed unanimously

Councillors also confirmed their agreement to an additional change to the Neighbourhood Plan requested by our independent examiner.  In August the council agreed to the changes that had been proposed by the Examiner.  Since that time an additional change has been requested and has been supported by the NP steering group.  

This additional change is to clarify that materials approved for developments are decided by the Local Planning Authority not by the Parish Council, therefore in our site allocation policy, he has requested the following amendment to our policy wording:

For both allocated sites, and in relation to the palette of building materials, insert “Buckinghamshire Council in consultation with” before “the Parish Council”. (Page 23).

Councillors voted in favour to agree this change.

Proposed: Cllr Morgan
Seconded: Cllr Arthur
Agreed unanimously

St Michael’s Park
The Chairman confirmed the purpose of this agenda item was to discuss the Open Spaces on St Michael’s Park, around the east and the south, away from the housing, where they are proposing hedging, trees, shrubs, an attenuation basin and play area, and that part of the s106 agreement was that it would be offered to the PC in full ownership and full maintenance in respect of which they would pay a sum of money to the PC to take on all of that responsibility and maintenance.

Cllrs agreed that further discussions and more detailed information was necessary before a decision could be made, and it was agreed that with input from Cllr Arthur, the Chairman would reach out to Dandara for clarification on certain matters. Action Cllr Arthur/Chairman

Proposer: Cllr Higgins
Seconder: Cllr Morgan
Agreed unanimously

Recreation Ground
Cllr Bottomley put forward a parishioner suggestion for outdoor table tennis. In order to put something forward to the Rec Committee, it was agreed Cllr Bottomley would put together a formal proposal for consideration. Action Cllr Bottomley

Cllr Higgins said he would fully support something that is non-moveable and very robust, and in terms of funding, the Chairman asked Cllr Gomm whether there may be some funding within the health and wellbeing budget. Cllr Gomm said he would connect with Cllr Bottomley to assist in this regard. Action Cllr Bottomley/Cllr Gomm

Highways, Footpaths, and Lighting
Cllrs reviewed the actions and recommendations in John Flewin’s excellent report on the future direction of the Stewkley Environment Agency and rewilding plans, and gave thanks to him, Cllr Bottomley and David Lett for getting to the point we’re at, adding that we’re looking in good shape in almost every respect for next year. Cllrs resolved to support these recommendations.

Proposed: Cllr Higgins
Seconded: Cllr Morgan
Agreed unanimously

The Chairman advised he would be meeting with the headmaster of the School on Friday to see what opportunities there might be for community involvement in maintaining their garden.

There was discussion around devolved services and the fact that on the maps that Cllr Gomm kindly emailed across, the Stewkley hedges are not identified as hedges on the map. Cllrs agreed they needed to review the maps with David Lett.

Cllr Delafield updated that the traffic sub-committee have identified two new locations for the SID and/or the MVAS. One is halfway down High Street South on the east side of the road, and the other is halfway up on the bend on High Street North which will grab the traffic as its coming down into the village. The problem is that there are very few places to hang the SIDs and MVAS’s because there are very few lampposts. The plan is to purchase two new screws so the posts can be put up and left in situ, giving an additional two positions to hang the SIDs and the MVAS in the quest to give us more control to move them round the village. The total cost to get the screws and a contractor to fit them (as you need a special kit), will be within the £1K budget set aside.

On the replacement lighting project, it was suggested that Cllr Arthur progress this to tender process. Action Cllr Arthur
Cllr Andrew mentioned that halfway down Dove Street there is an oak tree on the grass verge which is very overgrown. The Chairman suggested that if Cllr Arthur could identify specifically where it is, the Clerk can get it reported. Cllr Arthur/Clerk

Our local PC from Thames Valley Police has asked that we remind residents, if they see any issues of vandalism or anti-social behaviour whatsoever, please report this direct to 101.

With regards to the ongoing Dandara issues and construction concerns for residents, it was agreed that Cllrs Arthur and Burgess would submit a summary of the current concerns to the Chairman by 13th Sept. Action Cllrs Arthur/Burgess On receipt of this summary document, the Chairman and Cllr Gomm will request an onsite meeting with Tony Jackson of Dandara, who is generally in the area on a Monday. Action Chairman/Cllr Gomm

Stewkley Wildlife Reserve
Nothing to report

To report on meetings
Cllr Morgan updated the PC that the next North Bucks Parishes Planning Committee meeting has been re-scheduled to 2nd October so sadly she will be unable to attend as this clashes with the next PC meeting. She will however participate in the NBPPC meeting with BEAG on the 15th September.

Date of next meeting
Monday 4th October 2021 at 7.30pm
The Chairman thanked everyone for their contribution and declared the meeting closed at 22:21