Minutes of the Stewkley Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 6 th June 2022 at 7.30pm at the Stewkley Village Hall
Cllr Higgins (Chair), Cllr Arthur, Cllr Burgess, Cllr Delafield, Cllr Simeone, Joanna Simonds, Clerk &
RFO and Unitary Cllr Gomm. There were no members of the public in attendance.
1. Apologies for absence
Apologies were received and accepted from Cllrs Bottomley, Hunt, Morgan and Pryke
2. Open Forum
No members of the public were present
3. Declarations of interest
4. Update from Buckinghamshire Unitary Councillor, Phil Gomm
• Not having been present at the last meeting, Cllr Gomm commented on the previous minutes and
asked that it be minuted that the appointment with the residents of Sycamore Close had only
been a tentative arrangement and not a confirmed meeting, and that the purpose of the meeting
was to discuss blue badge parking rather than the state of the road. He added that a productive
meeting has since taken place with the residents and some ideas are being looked into.
• There have been a few changes within Cabinet, but Cllr Gomm continues to remain on the same
committees, with the additional role of Bucks Champion for Carers.
• The Community Board re-opens soon with lots of £1k mini grants. The biggest grant this year is
£15K but would need to be match funded and would not extend to highways issues. The
Chairman referred to a long-standing existing application Stewkley had in for a footpath extension
and kerbing on the corner of Dean Road. Cllr Gomm said he’d look into this. Action Cllr Gomm
• Following the Department of Transport’s letter confirming a licence has been granted to the
Operating Centre at Forge Farm, Cllr Gomm said this would be monitored closely to ensure
adherence to the rules.
The Chairman asked if there were any questions for Cllr Gomm
• Cllr Burgess asked whether Cllr Gomm was aware of the recently moved manhole cover which
is currently being covered up with bins to prevent people falling down the hole. Cllr Gomm wasn’t
aware so the Chairman said he’d take a photograph and report on FixMyStreet. Action Chair
• Cllr Simeone thanked Cllr Gomm for arranging the recent Fishweir drain clearance but sadly the
team weren’t able to dislodge the blockage. Cllr Simeone has since identified exactly where the
blockage is and asked if the team could come back out as it remains a big issue. Cllr Gomm
asked that Cllr Simeone send him an email and he would pick this up. Action Cllr Gomm
• Following the earlier discussions, Cllr Delafield asked whether blue badge holders are allocated
dedicated parking spots. Cllr Gomm confirmed that was not the case, however, there is a scheme
just launched at County that if parking bays are available, a resident can pay £50 per year for a
parking pay which is then allocated to them. The Chairman said he’d not heard of this scheme
but would like to have more information as there is a very elderly resident in the village who
doesn’t drive but is disabled and needs a parking space for her carer. Cllr Gomm said he would
look into this Action Cllr Gomm
5. To approve the minutes of the Annual Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 9th May 2022
The draft minutes were approved and signed as a true record by the Chairman.
Proposed: Cllr Delafield / Seconded: Cllr Simeone / Agreed unanimously
6. Planning applications
No planning applications were received for consideration this month.
7. Enforcement Issues
• The Chairman confirmed Enforcement have promised a response to our 24/2 letter by 8th June.
• On 74 HSS, Cllr Gomm confirmed the resident was given 12 weeks, which takes it to July.
• Some covert cameras are going to be put up in the Dunton Road area to do with fly tipping.
• To approve the June payment run as circulated
To approve the Accounts to 30th April 2022 – Agreed unanimously
9. Queen’s Platinum Jubilee – June 2022
• To update on the event
The Chairman gave huge thanks to an amazing 4 days of events. Everything was so well
attended and supported, and the PC paid particular thanks to the local donors, the National
Lottery grant, and all the volunteers that made the entire long weekend the success it was. Most
importantly though, and without whom none of this would have been possible, appreciation
beyond words to Janette Eustace, who has been simply incredible. A thank you bouquet was
delivered to Janette this afternoon.
• Jubilee Garden Update
The Diocese is now in touch with the Headmaster and a legal agreement is being drawn up. We
have a draft design, and a plaque which will eventually go up in the garden once we have planning
permission. In that regard, Cllrs Higgins and Bottomley are both in touch with Heritage and the
PC will almost certainly need to submit an application, so these discussions right now are helpful
in looking to fine tune the design so we stay within the boundaries of what might be acceptable.
10. Best Kept Village
Johh Flewin organised the street sweeper to go through last week, and a lot of people have been out
weeding around the village. Cllr Simeone has done some work on the front garden of The Swan,
and Cllr Bottomley has been tidying up the bus shelters. We have a competition running for red,
white and blue hanging baskets, and we are now entering the judging season until mid-July so it’s
just a question of keeping an eye on everything, and if anyone sees anything out of date on the
noticeboards, please feel free to remove obsolete items.
11. Recreation Ground
• The Rec now has planning permission for the protective netting along Soulbury Road. During the
Summer we need to discuss with them whether we use part of the S106 money from St Michael’s
Park as all of the money needs to be spent on the Recreation Ground one way or another.
• The Rec Committee AGM is this coming Wednesday 8th June at The Pavilion.
• Following a recent incident with three dogs and a cat, Cllr Delafield asked about rules for dog walkers
on the rec ground. The Chairman confirmed there are big signs on all entrances and a reminder by
the children’s play area that dogs should be kept under control at all times and should not be let off
the lead on the playing surfaces. In terms of dangerous dogs, if a dog is dangerously out of control
in a public place, the owner and any person in charge of the dog at the time, commits a criminal
offence under the Dangerous Dogs Act and should be reported to 101.
• Cllr Simeone said that the Adult gym will be painted in the next couple of weeks and any offers of
help would be gratefully received.
12. Highways, Footpaths, and Lighting
• On lighting, Cllr Arthur referenced some new potential contractors that have reached out to the
Clerk looking to quote for our lighting repairs. He will follow up on these. Action Cllr Arthur
• Cllr Delafield mentioned that the light by the War Memorial is flashing again. Action Clerk
• Cllr Delafied said he’d suggested to Dandara that they might consider supplying a solar SID.
• Part of the S106 for St Michael’s Park was to provide a new gateway but we only have the speed
sign on one side. This to be picked up with Dandara as the speed limit should be displayed on
both sides. Action Cllrs Higgins & Arthur
• Cllr Gomm gave an update on the Wing Road East traffic calming, advising that he’d had a mtg
with highways enforcement team who had disagreed with the traffic calming buffer. He explained
that he couldn’t understand why when a developer was offering to pay to put the traffic calming
in, BC would have an issue. Highways explained their main issue was the lack of any data, hence
Cllr Gomm’s request to Cllr Delafield for some new and old data which Cllr Gomm will now submit
to Village Foundations. With the crossing, some new plans are being drawn up.
13. Stewkley Wildlife Reserve
The Chairman commented on how fantastic the wildlife meadows are looking with the wild orchids.
14. To report on meetings attended
The Chairman said he listened in on a recent national planning meeting and a key point was that
Neighbourhood Plans remain an important part of planning, therefore all of Stewkley’s investment
and effort is worth it as long as the planning authority reads the document and respects it.
15. Date of next meeting
Monday 4th July 2022 at The Village Hall.
Before closing the meeting, the Chairman referred to a rumour circulating that the Swan has been
sold to someone that wants to keep it as a pub. As a result of earlier contacts with the owners,
Stonegate, the Chairman contacted the estate manager who confirmed they do have another
interested party who has made an offer. The offer is apparently below what they had previously
approved as a company so this needs to go back around their internal approval process which
includes being heard by their private equity owners. They anticipate having approval or otherwise in
the next few weeks.
The Chairman confirmed the meeting closed at 21:18