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Parish Council Minutes - Feb & Mar 2007

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Parish Council 7th Feb & 7th March 2007

Matters Arising

- State of road at South View, no further progress. Clerk & Mr Rosamond to chase the matter up. - Wall by the War Memorial has been knocked down again. After consultation with MDDC it has been decided to ask D W Hart to repair the wall and to ensure the mortar blends with the original colour.

- County Council has again refused to change the time of the last bus from Taunton to one quarter of an hour later.

- Committee has met to look at the Emergency Plan for the village and is formulating a draft plan. Packs of information from District Council had been helpful.

- Re request for bus shelter, Mr Radford reported that they are not provided free of charge. Cost usually shared between County, District & P Council.

- Re possibility of reducing street lighting at night: expensive to have street lights converted to be able to dim them. Alternative would be to have them switched off between midnight and say 5.30am. All householders in each estate/area would have to be consulted and sign agreement to it. Consultation could be carried out when work is done on the Parish Plan. NB street lights on the main highway through the village cannot be turned off and neither can the brightness of the Longmead 'Keep Left' sign be dimmed.

District Council Report

- New chief executive now in his post - has a strong financial background.

- Elections coming up on May 3rd for District & Parish Councils.

- Concern expressed about the demolition of the farmhouse on Millhayes Farm site. It is understood that the decision was made by one planning officer under delegated authority and the farmhouse was demolished as soon as the permission was granted.

County Council Report

- Recycling - Devon is above the national average at 45.7%.
- Exeter airport has been sold for £60 million.
- Mr Radford has £1,000 available for local projects. Suggested that we ask for finance towards a bridge for the walkway around Longmead field.

Longmead Field

- Longmead Management Committee finally successful in obtaining a grant of £162,700 from the Football Foundation.

- Mr Purssell is going out to tender for the pavilion construction. Tenders to be opened on March 22nd. Portacabin to be used as a site base for toilets etc while pavilion under construction. Foul water line and electric cable trench to connect to portacabin. Plan to use a bore hole with water extraction to heat the Pavilion.

- Re Playpark - ROSPA have visited and given a risk assessment. A few minor things to be sorted but hoped the play area will be open for Easter.

Millhayes Hall

- Committee now waiting till April to learn if initial bid for £286,000 lottery funding will go through to the next stage. Lottery person who interviewed Mrs Stallard & Mr Vowles said it was a good application but pointed out there are many applications.

- Three architects have been approached and committee members are visiting other community halls for ideas.

- Committee may also put in a bid for a Rural Renaissance grant.

Parish Website

New site has been worked on by Matt Clements with Mr Steed. The site will only succeed if local clubs take an interest and use it to give up-to-date information about their activities. Will cost clubs £10 per year to have the facility to update their part of the site. Clubs to be contacted by Mr Steed.

Planning Matters

Applications approved by MDDC Planning Dept:

- Ashculm Cottage
- Springside, Castle Hill
- Millhayes Farm
- Sunnymead, Cumbridge Rd
- Land at former Halls Engineering site.
- Land to East of Lyndensign (Castle Hill)
- Littlehayes, Culmbridge Rd
- Hemyock Baptist Church
- 23 Parklands

Plans Inspected by Parish Council:

- Erection of shed for poultry & general farm use - land at Grays Hill.
- Extension & installation of wind turbine at Oakside, Culmstock Rd.
- Revised garage at Velo Cottage, Ashculm Hill.

After due consideration, Council recommended approval of the above.

Kissing Gate

Petition with 562 signatures has been passed to clerk asking for the kissing gate to be left where it is. In view of strength of opinion P Council felt it should be retained in situ if possible. There is an alternative route via the staggered barrier in Castle Park for people with buggies. However, the provision of a staggered barrier to replace the kissing gate was part of the "Red Safe Route to School"
and included the refurbishment of the path from the kissing gate to Culmstock Rd which is badly in need of work. Mrs Stallard to contact Devon Highways department to see if the refurbishment can still go ahead if we retain the kissing gate.

Chairmans Business etc

- Litter Picking - MDDC has sent Mr Alec Smith details of another organised day for a village litter pick, but the pickers have decided not to take part. Their litter picking as an ongoing activity - not just once or twice a year. New volunteers always welcome.

- Clerk had received a complaint about recent flooding to north side of the bridge over the Culm. The drainage has been improved recently and whilst flooding does occur it drains away more quickly now. Problem to be monitored once the building at Millhayes finished as it appears to be caused by sediment washing down from the building site.