Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting of the 18th March 2013
Birdham Parish Council
Minutes of the Meeting of the Council
held on Monday 18th March 2013
at 7pm in Birdham Village Hall
Present: Cllr Finch (Chairman), Cllr Barker, Cllr Cobbold, Cllr Graffham, Cllr Parks, Cllr Tilbury.
Apologies: The Clerk, Cllr Montyn (WSCC &CDC) and PCSO Bainbridge
In attendance: Cllr Marshall (CDC) and 23 members of the public.
139-12 In the absence of the Clerk through illness Cllr Tilbury agreed to act as Clerk for the business of the meeting.
140-12 Public Question Time in accordance with SO’s 1d -1l:
A resident asked about the position on the number of affordable houses to be built in Birdham in the next 15 years following the discussion in Council of the District Council’s Draft Local Plan Key Policies – Preferred Approach. Would it be true to say that 40% of the 50 houses proposed for Birdham would satisfy the demand in Birdham?
Cllr Tilbury replied that the question of affordable housing was complex. Affordable housing included as part of market housing developments could not be automatically allocated to those with a Birdham connection and under present rules could not be allocated in perpetuity. Allocation in perpetuity only applied to exception sites.
Asked about the numbers on the Birdham list at present, Cllr Tilbury replied that the current numbers were only a snapshot of the situation. His latest information was that of the 46 people on the list, 15 were in the higher A, B and C categories.
Cllr Marshall said that a group of District Councillors was looking at the CDC definition of local need and would report later in the Local Development Plan process.
Cllr Cobbold encouraged residents to read the CDC document when it is published on Friday which she had found very positive in its understanding of the issues on the Manhood.
Cllr Tilbury reminded residents that this was a draft for consultation and that changes might still take place before the end of the process of developing the Local Plan.
141-12 Declaration of Interests:
There were no declarations of interest.
142-12 Approve and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on the 18th February 2013:
It was resolved by the Council that the Minutes of the meeting of the 18th February 2103 be signed as a true and accurate record.
143-12Matters arising from the minutes of the 19th November 2012:
i) Minute 89-12 – Land Bequest. Land bequeathed to the Council. Cllr Tilbury reported that the Clerk had received a letter from the Council’s solicitor setting out a way forward to resolve problems of access to the land and he was pursuing these discussions.
ii) Minute 95-12v – Finger Posts. Cllr Finch reported that the broken finger post at the junction of Westlands Lane and Crooked Lane had now been repaired.
144-12 Clerks’ Report:
i) WSCC – Cllr Tilbury reported that that Cllr Montyn was following up the drainage problems in Church Lane and that a working group had been formed of interested parties to draw up a plan after which residents would be asked for their views. He confirmed that the pump would stay in position.
ii) CDC – Cllr Montyn had also reported that the application to build 46 houses in Church Lane would not be going to Committee in April. Cllr Tilbury said that his understanding was that the applicant was seeking to resolve matters to which there had been objection. A resident asked if there were a time limit on these delays. Cllr Tilbury said that his understanding was that at this stage the time limits only applied to the Planning Authority’s response, not to delays by the applicant.
iii) Other related matters – There were none.
iv) Reports from Members of WSCC/CDC – There was nothing further to add.
145-12 To receive and approve a financial report:
i) In the absence of the Clerk no financial report was received.
It was resolved by the Council that the payments submitted were approved.
ii) Cllr Tilbury reported that confirmation had been received from CDC of the dates on which the Council Tax precept would be paid to the Council.
iii) Co-option of Council Members
Cllr Tilbury reported that three full applications had been received and appealed to others to come forward. He reminded the meeting that the Staffing Committee of the Council would interview the applicants and make a recommendation to the Council on co-option.
iv) Annual Parish Meeting
Cllr Finch said that the meeting would take place on Saturday 18th May in the Village Hall at 7pm. It would be an opportunity to review the past year and presentations would be made by various local organisations.
146-12 Neighbourhood Planning – Chairman to report.
Mr K. Wright, Vice-Chairman of the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee, reported that there had been a very successful meeting on flooding on Saturday 16th May and about 100 people had attended. The message had been pressed that residents were responsible for their ditches.
The Steering Group had nearly completed the questionnaire, which is the next stage in the development of the Neighbourhood Plan. Mr Wright hoped it would be issued soon after Easter and there would be an open meeting to answer questions arising from the questionnaire. Once the data had been analysed the Plan would move forward.
147-12 Planning matters including applications and CDC delegated decisions:
i) Approve and sign the Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on the 11th March 2013:
It was resolved that the Planning Committee minutes of the 11th March 2013 be signed as a true and accurate record.
ii) Planning Applications to be Decided
BI/13/00680/FUL Moorings, Westlands, Birdham
This is an application to amend designs approved under previous applications for a replacement dwelling. The site lies outside the Birdham SPA, within the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, overlooking the Birdham Channel of Chichester Harbour.
The amendments are to remove a glazed gable end to the kitchen roof and replace with a hip end, to reposition folding doors on the north and west elevations to the kitchen, to remove four windows from the kitchen roof and to reposition the window on the east elevation of the kitchen.
One of this Council’s main concerns with this development has been the amount of glass overlooking the Harbour and the consequent risk of glare at certain positions of the sun. The Council therefore welcomes the removal of some of the glazing and has NO OBJECTION to this application.
BI/13/00762/TPA 18, Longmeadow Gardens, Birdham
This is an application to fell an Ash tree in the garden of this property which has a large cavity at its base and which causes concern to a qualified tree surgeon because it is at risk of becoming unstable and is suspected of Polyporus Squamosus infection.
The Council has NO OBJECTION to the felling of this tree but hopes that another will be planted to compensate for the loss.
It was resolved by the Council that these responses should be forwarded to CDC.
iii) Delegated Decisions to be noted
There were no delegated decisions
148-12 Correspondence – Not previously circulated:
i) Cllr Tilbury read out applications from Victim Support and from The Samaritans for grants towards their work in 2013/4. It was agreed to follow the Council’s usual procedure and consider all applications at the May meeting of the Council.
ii) A copy of the LCR (Local Council Review) had been received and was available to members.
i) Play Area and Playing Field.
Damage to a gate and to the swings had been reported. Cllr Parks said that she had been appalled at the damage to the field caused by those employed to carry out hedge-cutting and ditch clearance. Cllr Finch replied that there had been some time pressure to get the work done before the beginning of the nesting season on the 1st March but the instructions of the Clerk had not been followed and payment would not be made until the damage was repaired to the Clerk’s satisfaction.
ii) Village Green and Pond -Trees hanging over the pond had been cut back. There were some problems with the flagpole which would be investigated.
iii) Condition of Village Ditch/Drain Network.
It was reported that the process of producing definitive maps of the village’s running ditches, culverts and areas prone to flood was continuing and more information would be welcome. The Neighbourhood Plan meeting had also shown a plan of the sewerage network and highlighted the problems of fat in the system. Action on these matters now needed to revert to the Parish Council which was in a position to initiate action against those who neglected their responsibilities.
Cllr Cobbold said that Flood Action Groups were being set up and local people had the best knowledge of local conditions. They were able to monitor the situation and report on those who were uncooperative.
A resident wondered if we were expert enough to take responsibility in this matter.
Another resident suggested that the Council might purchase equipment which could be loaned to those who needed to carry out work.
Cllr Cobbold said that such demands should come from the Groups. The County Council is getting more people involved.
Cllr Finch said that the Community Resilience plan could well identify equipment
Cllr Cobbold said that it was now recognised that surface water penetration is a problem with the local sewerage system and efforts would be made to try to reduce it. If people had problems they should phone Southern Water and the District Council and this would help to provide an evidential base. All the knowledge that we could glean would be passed to WSCC to inform their surface water plan but that will take at least two years to produce. There were problems of ownership to be sorted out but the community must be more engaged.
A resident asked about the historic ponds in the village.
Cllrs Tilbury and Cobbold confirmed that many of these ponds had been lost over the years and they could perform a vital function in holding surface water in time of severe weather, until it could run away.
iv) Police and Neighbourhood Watch
A written report was received from PCSO Bainbridge. She had attended three or four incidents in the village which turned out not to be of a serious nature. She highlighted the need to lock vehicles and property at all times. She reminded residents to wear seat belts. On the spot fines of £60 are being imposed. A resident said that the report was very helpful.
v) Communication Working Groups
Cllr Finch drew the attention of the meeting to the website which is regularly updated.
There was none.
150-12 Reports from Councillors attending meetings:
i) Cllr Parks said she had attended a meeting on flooding at Bracklesham organised by the National Flood Forum, WSCC and the Environment Agency. It had reminded us that many of these flood problems cross Parish boundaries and some parts of the village may be more affected by flooding from other settlements.
ii) Cllr Cobbold said that Flood Groups were now active in Booker Lane, Earnley, in Bell Lane, in Sidlesham Lane/Almodington – and she hoped that the Birdham Neighbourhood Plan’s work would lead to a Birdham Group.
iii) Cllr Cobbold said that she had attended the Manhood Peninsula Forum where the police had reported on their position with regard to Travellers. There had been some criticism that the police take a less rigorous view than in Hampshire. They had explained that action has to be cleared by the Chief Constable who has to have regard to minority rights. The criterion was usually the degree of disturbance to the village community by the actions of Travellers on public land. On private land action was up to the landowner.
iv) There had also been some discussion about affordable housing and the new draft Plan calls for a reduction from 40% to 30% in the proportion of affordable housing on developments. Other matters raised had been discussed earlier in this meeting.
v) Cllr Finch said she had attended the County Council’s South Chichester Committee where there had been discussion on Traffic Regulation Orders and community funding. She had also attended a meeting of the Chichester Community Action Funding group which showed what funding was available for local projects.
vi) Cllrs Finch and Cobbold had also attended a meeting on the Local Plan. The figures for housing on the Manhood had been halved since the draft, considered last autumn. Because of the available capacity of the Sidlesham Waste Water Treatment Works, delivery of housing on the Manhood is likely to be earlier than on the Southbourne/Chichester/ Tangmere corridor where there are greater infrastructure problems. Materials would be made available to the Council to publicise the Local Plan.
151-12 Items for inclusion in the next meeting:
There were no suggestions.
138-12 Dates of Next Meeting:
15th April 2013 at 7pm in Birdham Village Hall
Signed ___________________________ Dated ____________________