Minutes of Council Meeting of the 18th July 2011
Birdham Parish Council
Minutes of the Meeting of the Council
held on Monday 18th July 2011
at 7pm in Birdham Village Hall
Present: Cllr Parks (Chairman), Cllr Tilbury, Cllr Cobbold, Cllr Finch, Cllr Barker,
Cllr Grafham, Cllr Crossley, Cllr Bolton, Cllr Leach.
Apologies: PCSO Bainbridge.
In attendance: The Clerk, Cllr Montyn (WSCC & CDC), Cllr Marshall (CDC) PCSO Bromley and ten members of the public.
31-11 Urgent/additional items notified to the Chairman or the Clerk prior to the meeting
There were none.
32-11 Public Question Time in accordance with SO’s 1d -1l
There were none.
33-11 Declaration of Interests.
There were none.
34-11 Approve and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on the 20th June 2011
It was resolved that the minutes of the 20th June 2011 be signed as a true and accurate record
35-11 Harbour Conservancy Design Guide
Linda Park and Alison Fowler gave a very in-depth and informative briefing on the Harbour Conservancy Design Guide and the way that the guide would be used in future planning applications. Questions and concerns were raised about the recent planning application for two wind turbines which the Conservancy had yet to respond and the number of boatyards being converted or moving inland.
36-11 Land Bequeathed to the council
The Clerk reported that the Councils Solicitor had discovered that by placing a timeline on the executors of the late Mr Adams will it was possible to request that in view of the inaction of the current executors that a change be made. The method for implementing this change is to notify the Executors they have two weeks’ notice to complete the transfers. If they then fail a further two weeks is granted before an application is made for the appointment of replacement executors. This application is made through the Courts and, if the Council is minded to proceed on that route, could result in an increase of several thousands of pounds to bring to completion. Our Solicitors have said that in their experience where an application of that nature is threatened the other party are normally swift to respond positively.
It was resolved that the Clerk be authorised to instruct the Councils Solicitor to start the action above.
37-11 Clerks’ Report:
i) WSCC – The Clerk reported on the Chichester South Community Action Pilot moving into phase two with requests from Parish Councils to put forward community based projects by the 31st July this year which, if being awarded the finance, could be completed by 31st March 2012. He further suggested that a project that might be undertaken was the pathway of the Church Lane triangle to Claytons Corner with Cllr Crossley as lead Councillor. It was resolved that Cllr Crossley be authorised to produce a project and report back at the meeting in September.
ii) CDC – The Clerk had received a letter from Cllr Janet Duncton – Portfolio Holder for Planning at CDC. a copy of which had been given to all Councillors, outlining the situation regarding Neighbourhood Plans.
iii) Other related matters –
There were none
iv) Reports from Members of WSCC/CDC
Cllr Montyn (WSCC & CDC) spoke of the imminent decision of the County Council concerning the grant funding of Stagecoach Buses on some routes in our area and suggested that funding was likely to be removed.
He then went on to speak about the Core Strategy/LDF work that was being undertaken by CDC and stressed the importance of all residents and the Council responding to the public consultation during August and September.
Cllr Marshall (CDC) also stressed the importance of the LDF Consultation and then voiced his disappointment of the funding situation regarding the buses but stated that he would be having an on-going dialogue with Stagecoach to try and salvage some benefit from the funding reductions.
Cllr Cobbold said that she was confused about the options in the LDF Consultation document and the stated number of 650 homes in and on the Peninsula. Why had no thought been given to the environmental, social and economic impact that this number would have on the various communities. Cllr Montyn said that the answers to her questions and concerns were in the impact assessment document that would be available on the web site.
Cllr Crossley expressed both concern and displeasure over the time frame of the consultation saying that there was insufficient time for the Council to carry out consultation with the residents of Birdham.
At this point in the Agenda Cllr Tilbury was called away. The Chairman then suggested that the Council be minded to delay the Planning Matters until Cllr Tilbury returned in a short while. This was agreed.
38-11 Sportsmanship First (SF)
Cllr Crossley reported that he was the President of this organization whose aim was to promote competition as a way of life and sportsmanship as a core social value. He asked if the Council would support him in his proposal that local villages compete against each other in a 'Village Games' to mark the 2012 Olympics.
It was resolved that Cllr Crossley be encouraged in arranging this event for 2012.
39-11 Correspondence – In addition to that already circulated.
A letter of thanks had been received from the Manhood Mobility Volunteer Service in recognition of the Councils grant of £300.
i) Play area and playing field – The Clerk reported that the surface by the round-about had now been re-surfaced and had already withstood an attack to damage or destroy it.
Coles Fair are due to move onto the sports field on the 21st July and remain until 27th and off by the 28th in time for the Car Boot sale on the 30th July.
The Clerk reported that the new goal nets had now been received and that the nets would be re-installed once the goal posts had been painted.
ii) Village Green and Pond – The Clerk reported that all of the required GCN surveys had now been carried out on the pond and none had been found. In the process it was noted the deterioration of the pond possibly indicated that the water voles had moved on. EPR recommended that a further water vole survey be carried out and should this confirm the indications that no voles are present then this would make it easier for the Council to carry out the work required in de-silting the pond and other remedial work.
It was resolved to instruct the Clerk to have the additional vole survey carried out.
In addition the Clerk reported that the damaged spars and posts to the small fence surrounding the pond had been replaced.
iii) Police and Neighbourhood Watch – PCSO Bromley reported that there had been a rise in the level of crime. The most serious of which occurred on the border of Birdham and Apuldram at Pump Bottom Farm during the ‘Blues on the Farm’ music festival, with burglaries from tents and caravans that were on site at the time. 13 Incidents had been reported to the police with one criminal damage report.
There had been an incident in Church Road and a theft from Birdham Stores.
During the ‘Day of Action’ campaign which had been carried out in Birdham and the Witterings, 165 cars had been stopped for offences ranging from not wearing a seat belt to having no insurance. One arrest was made of a driver who was found to have a considerable amount of cannabis with intent to supply.
iv) Communications/Parish Newsletter – Cllr Finch reported that the first newsletter of the new Council had been printed and delivered with the exception of one small area.
Cllr Grafham reported that work to redesign the Councils web site was on-going and that several companies had been contacted. He would also be arranging to train Councillors in the use on the potential use of ‘Computer Forums’.
v) Meeting with Mr P Johnson – Head of Birdham CE Primary School – An onsite meeting was held at the Church to discuss the problems associated with parking and the speed of vehicles passing the Church car park. Mr Johnson also highlighted the possible increase in car usage and thus the increase in danger if and when the Nursery School moved onto the main School Campus. He asked for, and was given assurances that the Council would work with the School in an attempt to resolve any potential problems.
At this point Cllr Tilbury returned to the meeting.
vi) Other – The Longmeadow development was still causing extreme concern for our residents. The Panning permission that had been granted was subject to a number of conditions. Conditions are not normally the subject of further action by consultees or residents however, in this case the residents have managed to ‘persuade’ both CDC and the Developer to include them in consultations concerning the drainage situation. It is now likely that the developer may switch from attenuation tanks to soak-a-ways which has raised further concerns for the neighbours of the site. Doubt does exist as to how this may work and answers have been requested from CDC.
The Clerk reported that he had been contacted by the developer reference a further meeting which was to take place on-site to discuss this new suggestion. The Clerk, together with Cllr Tilbury, had been asked to attend along with two members of the neighbouring residents.
Cllr Montyn said that the discharge of any conditions that had been applied to the original decision was not within the remit of the ADC (South). As he understood it the design of the drainage system was now in the hands of design engineers - Archibald Shaw - who had raised concerns about the original design and its potential problems.
41-11 Planning matters including CDC decisions:
D/11/02461/FUL Southend Farm, Donnington
This is an application to erect two wind turbines at Southend Farm, Donnington, in an area which lies adjacent to the boundary with Birdham Parish. The site lies outside the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty but the turbines may be visible from it.
The issues are intrusion into the landscape, loss of amenity, danger to birds and precedent.
A comprehensive report is attached to the application and concludes that the intrusion, though it will exist, is not a major concern. Photographs are provided showing the view of the turbines from Birdham Straight, which is the edge of the AONB, and much of the site is masked by trees.
The turbines will be approximately 350 metres from Southend Farm to which they will supply power. The next nearest dwelling would appear to be Cowdry Farm (and the adjacent converted barns) which are at least 900 metres away. In terms of noise, flicker or loss of visual amenity to the property owners, even in open land, this would not appear to be a problem.
The report on the flying patterns of the birds in the area concludes that the danger to birds will not be a problem.
There remains the question of precedent. It is likely that there will be an increasing number of applications for wind turbines and photo-voltaic cell arrays as providers of green energy. The Local Plan, First Review, 1999 contained a policy (RE24) on this matter but it was not saved. The assumption was that single or groups of wind turbines will be permitted, subject to 9 provisos which are largely covered above.
Birdham Parish Council does not feel that there are sufficient grounds to object to this particular application because there is a lack of policy background on which to base such a judgement, but suggests that the matter should go before the Development Control Committee who would then have the opportunity to consider setting out a clear policy (as required under PPS22) to form part of the new LDF Core Strategy, bearing in mind the precedent which this application may set.
BI/11/02522/EXT Cornerways House, 15 Greenacres, Birdham
This is an application to extend the time limit on the implementation of permission granted to application BI/08/02109/DOM. Permission having been granted and the circumstances being unchanged, the Council knows of no reason why the LPA should not PERMIT this extension.
BI/11/02670/DOM24 Greenacres, Birdham
This is an application to replace an existing garage with a new building to match the replacement dwelling house erected on this site and to include first floor games room and balconies on the north and south elevations.
The existing garage appears from the plans provided to be 3.2 metres high to the ridge and 9 metres wide on the north and south elevations. The proposed replacement appears to be 5.7 metres to the ridge and 9.7 metres wide and thus adds considerably to the height and bulk of the building. In addition to this, the proposal is move the footprint 1.1 metres north and 1 metre east. A darker palette of colours (as with the main dwelling) would help to mitigate the intrusion into the landscape under Policy C1.
We are also concerned about the screening from the Harbour. We appreciate that one reason for moving the footprint 1 metre to the east is to give room for increased planting to screen from the neighbours to the east – and this is shown in green on the plan. Sensitivity to the needs of the neighbours is shown by the lack of windows on this elevation. There is mention of some additional planting on the north (Harbour) side of the structure but this is not shown and would negate the view from the upper storey window and balcony. Any planting would have to be evergreen to maintain the screening throughout the year and preferably of indigenous species.
Birdham Parish Council raises NO OBJECTION to this application. If the LPA is minded to permit this development a condition should be attached precluding conversion of the building to residential accommodation.
It was resolved to instruct the Clerk to notify Chichester District Council of the decisions made.
BI/11/01724/DOM Mrs R Douglas 15 Walwyn Close Birdham
Single storey rear extension. PERMIT
BI/11/02064/TPA Mrs M E Marshall The Snipe Lock Lane Birdham
Crown thin by 30% on 1 no. Oak tree (T1) within Group 'A' subject to BI/98/00035/TPO.
BI/11/02077/PLD Ben Emrys-Roberts Hollybank Martins Lane Birdham Single storey rear extensions. REFUSE
BI/11/02115/DOM Mr And Mrs Porti Land South Of Manhood End Farm Birdham Road Proposed conservatory. PERMIT
It was resolved to note the decisions made by Chichester District Council
The Clerk presented the financial report which had been circulated to members which showed the figures;
Balances held at Bank: £43474.51
Designated Funds: £25557.04
Available Funds: £17917.47
Creditors: £ 4603.83
It was resolved to accept the financial report.
43-11 Reports from Councillors attending meetings
Cllr Tilbury reported that he had attended WSCC South Local Committee at which much of the discussion centred on TRO’s. 42 had been issued during the year over 14 areas.
Since 2003 Birdham Council has been pressing for a 20mph speed limit. At one point it had been 3rd on the list of priorities but had slipped back to eighth on the list as higher priorities had been recorded in the Chichester City area.
Cllr Tilbury when on to explain that the Minister for Roads – Norman Baker MP - had made a statement that appeared to say that the current restriction on obtaining such a TRO should be done without the current level of bureaucracy needed.
It was suggested by Cllr Cobbold that Cllr Crossley might include the suggestion of a 20mph speed limit in his School Parking Project.
Cllr Finch said that she had attended meetings of West Wittering Parish Council and Itchenor Parish Council.
There being no further business to discuss the meeting closed at 2130 hours.
Signed ___________________________ Dated ____________________