MINUTES Parish Council meeting Monday 7th March 2022

Minutes of a Meeting of Stewkley Parish Council held on Monday 7th March 2022 at 7.30pm at the Stewkley Village Hall

Cllr Higgins (Chair), Cllr Morgan (Vice-Chair), Cllr Bottomley, Cllr Burgess, Cllr Delafield, Cllr Hunt,
Cllr Pryke, Cllr Simeone, Joanna Simonds, Clerk & RFO and Unitary Cllr Gomm.
Two members of the public were present during Open Forum

1. Apologies for absence Cllr Andrew Arthur

2. Declarations of interest None

3. Open Forum

  • John Flewin confirmed the mowing team will do their first cut this month and have acquired a mini strimmer for around street furniture. If successful, one will be purchased for each group.
  • A hedge trim was carried out on HSS, south of the bus stop, at the same time as Tiger Island.
  • There are problems with access to the Burial Ground car park on the last section where the new Ivy Lane tarmac ends. With all the rain of late, the area became completely flooded, the drain blocked and the potholes that were repaired last year are back to how they were. Also, where people have been driving over the grass verge to avoid the potholes, this has destroyed the grass verge. The PC will check whose responsibility the drain is, and encourage users of the car park, not to park or drive on the grass verge so that it can be reseeded.
  • A question arose regarding the Annual Parish minute book which dates back to 1880 and where it should be stored. Cllrs agreed it should be archived with Buckinghamshire Council.

4. Update from Buckinghamshire Unitary Councillor, Phil Gomm

  • BC have approved their Budget for 2022/23
  • Community Board finances are now closed until April
  • The Boundary Commission are reviewing Ward boundaries ahead of the 2025 elections and any local organisation or community group can input into the process. It is unlikely any changes will be made to Stewkley.
  • A big thank you to the residents of Stewkley who have donated to the Ukraine appeal.
  • Cllr Pryke asked whether Cllr Gomm had any information on how BC are dealing with National Design Codes. Cllr Gomm said he’d ask the Cabinet Member responsible. Action Gomm
  • Looking to put a plan together for the Drayton Parslow crossroads following the increased number of accidents.

5. To approve the minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 7th February 2022

6. Planning applications

22/00008/APP – STEWKLEY – Stewkley Pavilion Recreation Ground, Stewkley LU7 0HW Cllrs resolved to SUPPORT this application
Proposed: Cllr Morgan / Seconded: Cllr Hunt / Agreed unanimously

22/00541/APP – STEWKLEY – 173 High Street North, Stewkley LU7 0EX
Part of the Neighbourhood Plan process focused on the fact that when houses increase in bedroom size, the PC would be looking to see additional parking spaces. Although content with the design of this application, Cllrs resolved to OPPOSE until they saw evidence that a minimum of 3 car parking spaces could be accommodated.
Proposed: Cllr Pryke / Seconded: Cllr Morgan / Agreed unanimously

22/00357/APP – STEWKLEY – The Croft, 22 Wing Road, Stewkley LU7 0JB
After lengthy discussion, based on the documents available on the planning portal, Cllrs concluded they had insufficient information to make a decision, and were particularly concerned that the facilities proposed understate what will actually be required on top of what is already there. The Clerk to apply for an extension so that further investigation can take place. Action Clerk

22/00655/APP – STEWKLEY – 3 Orkney Close, Stewkley LU7 0JF Cllrs resolved to SUPPORT this application
Proposed: Cllr Delafield / Seconded: Cllr Burgess / Agreed unanimously

7. Enforcement Issues
For sensitivity reasons, this section was kept out of the minutes

8. Finance
To approve the March payment run as circulated

Stewkley Parish Council Paymenrs march 2022

Proposed: Cllr Morgan
Seconded: Cllr Delafield
Agreed unanimously

To approve the Accounts to 31st January 2022
Proposed: Cllr Bottomley / Seconded: Cllr Delafield / Agreed unanimously

9. Annual review of the Parish Council Financial and Management Risk Assessment

The Clerk will review the current risk assessment on Dropbox, make any necessary changes and circulate to Cllrs for email approval before 31st March. Action Clerk/Cllrs

10. Queen’s Platinum Jubilee June 2022

  • Good progress is being made with the latest draft programme published in the recent GV.
  • The charity that owns the School garden have today confirmed they are happy in principal with the idea of creating a commemorative garden, however, they have suggested a licence to occupy, for a peppercorn fee, and the potential for them to give 6 months’ notice if in the unlikely event the site is required again for the school. Further discussions/investigation will continue.
  • On the Queen’s green canopy project, from suggestions that came out of the meeting with Simon Wilkinson, the one that looks most feasible is supporting landowners on the roads coming in to Stewkley, to reinstate the gaps in the trees where they are missing. Cllr Hunt agreed to take this forward and approach landowners and identify appropriate roads. Action Cllr Hunt
  • Cllr Bottomley said he and the Chairman had a good meeting with Charles Hill to consider designs for the school area. Charles was enthusiastic to get involved and will work on designs. He also confirmed he has sourced two pallets of Stewkley brick that are available to us.

11. Best Kept Village

Buckinghamshire Council are re-launching the Best Kept Village Competition this year after having to cancel in 2020 and 2021 for Covid-related reasons. This will be headed up as usual by John

Flewin, who in advance of this evening’s meeting had prepared a report for Cllrs review. The judging period will be from 1st June until the 14th July.

12. Airport Spinney: 50th Anniversary on 27th March 2022

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Airport Spinney, councillors, volunteers and interested parties are invited to share a glass of sherry between 11am and 12.30pm on 27th March. Sherry was the traditional drink served at WARA Sunday morning committee meetings during the campaign. For those who are able and would like to help, feel free to turn up a bit earlier to assist in a special Spring Tidy Up of the mess of twigs and small branches left by the recent storms.

13. Tennis Club Hut

Following confirmation at the last Rec Committee meeting that Members were happy with the Tennis Club’s proposal for a new hut, Cllrs in turn voted, and it was unanimously agreed that formal permission be granted. Action Clerk to notify Kris Pratt

14. Stewkley Business Club

Cllr Delafield had previously circulated a proposal to Cllrs, and it was agreed the PC would fund an initial £100 for an “Interest Meeting”, to determine whether there is appetite for such a Club.

15. NP thank you drinks on 15th March

We currently have 22 confirmed attendees, and the Clerk will send a reminder to those she’s not heard from a few days before. Action Clerk

16. Recreation Ground

Nothing to report

17. Highways, Footpaths, and Lighting

Cllr Delafield shared his notes from the 9th Feb Traffic sub-committee meeting, highlighting the 20s Plenty campaign which will kick off at the start of the summer term. Five posters have been designed by children at St Michael’s School.

It has been brought to Cllr Bottomley’s attention that where Dove Street almost meets Soulbury Road, apparently it is being used as a cut through by a food delivery group, who are using it as a driveway to get from that place to Soulbury Road and the other way. Cllr Hunt said he would take a look to see if knocking in a post might stop this. Action Cllr Hunt

18. Stewkley Wildlife Reserve

Nothing to report

19. To report on meetings attended

Cllr Morgan confirmed she is now unable to attend the S106 training on 15th March. No other Cllrs coming forward, the Chairman said he would participate along with the Clerk.

The Chairman listened in on Community Board Mtg on 24th Feb, highlighting the following points:

  • Leone Dale is moving to a new role with Buckingham so we will get a new co-ordinator.
  • The plan is for 98 Cllr roles in future, with the Ward boundaries consultation open until 4th April.
  • There was promotion of the Buckinghamshire Online Directory (BOD).
  • Jubilee road closures will be free, but we need to make applications by 6th May.
  • TVP have lost a PCSO who has joined Beds Police as a PC so they are under resourced again.
  • Interesting presentation from Trading Standards, promoting True Call Blocker for chronic victims of phone scams, particularly the elderly and vulnerable, and if we know of anybody, they can be fitted free. They also provide doorbell cameras for those who are victims of doorstep crimes, but a smart phone and Wi-Fi would be needed. PC’s can request suitable articles to promote so we will reach out for material to publish in the Grapevine. Action Clerk

Cllr Delafield attended the Wing and Parishes meeting last week, highlighting the following points:

  • Parishes currently using Sparkx were quite encouraged by them but when it comes to having a contract or not, it was a mixed bag. The Wing Clerk was asked to share a contract for info.
  • The Wing Clerk is also organising a talk with Utility Aid, a company that are collaborating with NALC to support 10,000 councils in the UK with all things energy related.
  • At the Wing School, the children want to set up a Youth Council and Wing PC are encouraging this with a financial contribution of £1,000. Their plan is to come up with a structure that in due course could be replicated in other parishes. Their next mtg is 19th May.

Just before closing, the Chairman informed Cllrs that the co-ordinator of the Medical Transport Volunteer Scheme would no longer be available, so has stepped down from the post. In terms of the scheme’s future, as only two requests have been received in the past 7 months, and no new drivers have come forward, Cllrs agreed for the time being to not actively seek to fill this vacancy.

20. Date of next meeting

Monday 4th April 2022 at 7.30pm at The Village Hall
The Chairman confirmed the meeting closed at 21:40