5 February 2019 Ordinary Meeting : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council

Minutes of an ordinary meeting of Avebury Parish Council held on Tuesday 5 February 2019 at the Social Centre, Avebury SN8 1RF.

In these minutes ACC stands for Avebury Cricket Club, APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, ASSC for Avebury Sports and Social Club, ASSF for Avebury Sacred Sites Forum, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site, CATG for Community Area Transport Group, EH for English Heritage, LGA for Local Government Act, MAB for Marlborough Area Boards, NT for the National Trust, PC for Parish Council, TG for Transport Group, UKN for Upper Kennet News, WC for Wiltshire Council and WHS for World Heritage Site.

Present: Councillors Mr Stephen Stacey (Chairman), Dr Mike Bedford (Vice-Chairman), Mr Ben Butler, Mr Terence O’Connor (to item 10.a), Mrs Lynzey Paradise, Mr Paul Ryder-Morris (from mid-item 6), Ms Zandria Service and Mr Andrew Williamson.

In attendance: Miss Liz Moore (Clerk).

Time started: 19:31

  1. Public question time: there were three members of the public present for parts of the meeting: Jane Davies (Wiltshire Councillor: up to and including item 14), Mr Dominic Fry (Chairman, ACC: up to and including item 6) and Mr Harry Mottram (Reporter, Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: up to and including item 10). There were no questions asked.
  2. Apologies: Councillor Mrs Maggie Lewis (Vice-Chair).
  3. Declarations of interest: Mr Williamson declared an interest as the applicant of the planning application at item 7.b. Mr Stacey (Chairman) declared an interest on behalf of himself, Dr Bedford and Mrs Paradise in respect of item 6 as members of ASSC’s Fundraising Committee.
  4. Minutes of meeting held on 4 December 2018: Ms Service requested an amendment to item 8 to correct the date shown in the resolution on approval of the draft budget from 2019/2010 to 2019/2020 and the Clerk advised that in appendix 2 the footnote in the budget should be corrected to state defibrillator rental fees due in 2021. Proposed by Mrs Paradise, seconded by Mr Butler and carried unanimously. It was unanimously agreed that the corrected minutes be accepted as an accurate record of the meeting. Proposed by Mrs Paradise and seconded by Mr Williamson.
  5. Matters arising from the minutes:
    1. Min ref. 5.a. Removal of graffiti and re-painting Beckhampton bus shelter: the Chairman reported that he had written to thank Dave Brotheridge for repainting the bus shelter. Mr Brotheridge had since been hospitalized having suffered a stroke and a get well card with good wishes had been sent on behalf of the PC.
    2. Min ref. 5.b Repairs requested to road mirror in Beckhampton: members noted work was in progress by Mrs Lewis and an update would be given at the next meeting.
    3. Min ref. 5.c Refurbishment of benches and benches on footpath 22: the Chairman reported that refurbishment of five benches had been completed by John Giles. The replacement bench on footpath 22 had been installed on 11 January by Branson Leisure and thanks were expressed to Mrs Paradise and her husband for attaching the millennium plaque onto the new bench.
    4. Min ref. 11.a Replacement glazing panel for bus shelter on A4316 at Avebury Trusloe: members noted that the work had been completed by John Giles.
    5. Min ref. 6.e a question was asked about the NT’s progress on changing the estate postcode to different one to the High Street. The Chairman reported that he had been informed that the Trust was working on the issue and undertook to raise it at his next meeting with the NT.
  6. Presentation from Avebury Sports and Social Club and members to consider giving a donation towards the Avebury Pavilion Appeal. The Chairman invited Mr Dominic Fry (Chairman, ACC) to introduce his proposals for the new Community Pavilion on Avebury Sports Field contained in the presentation paper previously circulated to members and tabled (see appendix 1). Mr Fry explained that the original fund-raising target for the new Pavilion had been £73,000 and had assumed a connection to mains drainage on A4361, which was subsequently found not to exist. He said that the revised target was £101,746 mainly due to the additional costs involved with installing a soakaway and septic tank. He explained that three organisations were raising funds for the project (ACC, ASSC and ASFC) and utilizing three bank accounts in order to maximise available sources of funding. Mr Fry added that the location of the Pavilion had been changed from the position erroneously shown on the planning application and, since this was deemed to be a material change, a new planning application had had to be submitted to WC. The location map was tabled and it was noted that the Pavilion was still in the South West corner of the field, the difference in the two positions being that in the second it was looking diagonally towards the North East corner of the field. He confirmed that there would be a separate planning application for a septic tank and soakaway.                                                                                       The Chairman thanked Mr Fry for his presentation and asked if anyone had any questions. A question was asked about timescales as the envisaged finish date for the project had moved from early May to June / July 2019. Mrs Davies (Wiltshire Councillor) stated that Mike Wilmot (Head of Planning) had now taken personal charge of the project to ensure that the statutory consultation periods were kept to the minimum required and there was no unnecessary delay. The Chairman enquired about the status of applications to grant making bodies. Mr Fry explained that there were restrictions on what ‘not for profit’ and Friendly Society organisations could apply for and ACC did not fit all the criteria required to be a Charity Incorporated Organisation (CIO). He added that successful applications for money had however been made to North Wessex Downs sustainable development fund and MAB with £3,000 and £5,000 being committed from the organisations respectively. In discussion members noted that there was considerable local support for the project in the form of private donations and therefore it was agreed that the PC should offer financial support but additionally noted that a separate phase 2 of the project might also require funding assistance at a later date. It was resolved to donate £1,000 (from the remaining £750 left in the 2018/19 Community Fund and £250 from 2019/20 Community Fund) on approval of planning permission being granted for the new Pavilion. Proposed by Mr Williamson, seconded by Ms Service, and agreed. [The PC has the power to act under Section 19, LGA Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1976].                            Mr Fry expressed his thanks to PC members and Mrs Davies (Wiltshire Councillor) and thanks were reciprocated by the Chairman. Mr Fry agreed to provide an update on the Pavilion project for the Annual Parish Meeting in April.
  7. Planning applications:
    1. Application for variation of condition. Proposal:- variation of condition 2 of 18/08886/FUL to allow relocation of proposed cricket pavilion at Recreation Ground, Beckhampton Road, Avebury SN8 1RD. Ref: 18/12073/VAR. The plans were tabled and considered and it was resolved to support the application. Proposed by Mr Paul Ryder-Morris, seconded by Ms Service and agreed.
    2. Application for work to trees in a Conservation Area. Proposal:-  1 – Yew tree – pollard at 3m   2 – Holly tree – fell   3 – Conifer trees x 3 – fell 4 – Beech tree – remove lowest limb   5 – Group of Ash, Sycamore & Horse Chestnut trees – remove major deadwood   6 – Norway Maple tree – remove 3 branches 7 – Sycamore tree – remove 4 branches   8 – Sycamore tree – crown clean. At:     Ashdown House, High Street, Avebury, Marlborough, Wiltshire, SN8 1RF. Ref: 19/00414/TCA. The plans were considered and it was resolved to support the application. Proposed by Mrs Paradise, seconded by Dr Bedford and agreed.
    3. PC’s feedback submitted to WC in January for other applications: the Chairman reported:
      1. Application for Listed Building Consent to remove internal plasters to ground floor to dining room/bathroom/passageway, apply damp proofing materials, re-plaster with lime based plasters and redecorate at 110 High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF. Ref: 18/11953/LBC. Action: the Clerk had submitted ‘no objection’ on behalf of the PC.
      2. Application for work to trees in a Conservation Area. Proposal: G1 – 5 X Conifers – reduce to 2.5 metres in height. T1 Yew – reduce over extended branches back into crown. T2 – Cherry – Fell as dying.  T3 and T4 Ash and Sycamore – Hedgerow End Trees – reduce both back to height of hedge at The Rectory, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF. Ref: 18/12088/TCA. Action: the Clerk had submitted ‘no objection’ on behalf of PC and included an additional comment that the PC noted with regret that the dying or dead cherry tree was to be felled and not replaced. The Clerk reported WC had since raised no objection to the application.
      3. Application for Variation of Condition at Manor Farm, Winterbourne Monkton. Ref: 18/11456/VAR. Action: the PC objected to the application in 2016 and as there were only minor variations to the original plan, no further comments had been submitted to WC.
    4. South Street, Avebury – new dwelling with garage and access. Ref:18/09889/FUL. The Chairman stated that Nick Clark (Planning Officer) had emailed to advise that he was expecting revised drawings to be submitted to reduce the scale of the development.
  8. To review a draft statement of intent for handling applications to attend to trees. (Previously circulated to members including a link to the ten principles of the Tree Charter, see appendix 2). In discussion there was general agreement with the proposal and members indicated that they were in favour of encouraging tree planting but needed more time to read the documentation. It was suggested that if an applicant could not replant a tree on their own land then they might be offered the opportunity to plant one in the Community Orchard or another area within the Parish. The Chairman thanked the Clerk for preparing the paper and in particular for finding the link to the Tree Charter. Action: PC members to email Clerk with further ideas. Clerk to update draft document and circulate it in advance of the next meeting, at which it would be tabled for approval.
  9. To review and approve Avebury’s Emergency Plan for the Parish: the Chairman reported that he understood that the work had been undertaken and that he hoped a draft document would be tabled for the next meeting.
  10. Project Updates: the Chairman proposed to alter the order of business and begin item 10. in reverse order.
    1. Transport Group progress report
      1. A4 traffic calming project: Dr Bedford stated that the Transport Group would be meeting on 7 February. He said that Steve Hinds had advised that Atkins had progressed design work for Beckhampton, he had expected output from Atkins before Christmas but had not received it. No progress had been made for West Kennett because Atkins had lost a key member of staff. He explained that WC was reluctant to continue design work for West Kennett without support for the B4300 closure which it required. Mr Ryder-Morris stated that closing the B4003 on its own might increase the speed of traffic on the A4 as the junction of the two roads slowed vehicle speeds. Mrs Paradise asked if there were any figures on how much traffic would be slowed if the A4 was narrowed. Dr Bedford said that WC had advised that narrowing the A4 to improve safety and slow traffic meant that there could no longer be a turning from the A4 onto the B4003 for safety reasons.
      2. Project to improve road signage in Avebury: the Chairman said that the meetings with the WHS Coordination Unit, NT, and WC had been productive. He explained that the NT were keen to achieve better signage to their car park and that WC Highways were willing to carry out the work later in the year using the opportunity also to replace speed limit repeater signs on decayed wooden backing boards. In all eight directional signs were to be replaced and one redundant sign removed at a cost to the scheme promoter of +/- £3,000. The stakeholders now needed to agree how to fund the scheme.
      3. Repairs to B4003 West Kennett Avenue: the Chairman reported that he had attended a meeting on 25 January with the NT, the WHS Coordination Unit and WC. He said that the NT proposed to reduce the ‘informal’ layby (where currently up to 10 cars park) to accommodate a maximum of three cars. WC reported that a maintenance budget might be available in the autumn to that end. A member of the public suggested that reducing the layby to include only three cars would encourage illicit parking on the B4003 and elsewhere. The Chairman said that it seemed that the NT wished to limit parking on the B4003 but not ban it altogether. The meeting had also considered enforcement. The Chairman reported that WC had agreed to consider whether the gaps between the yellow lines might be filled so that the B4003 has yellow lines continuously on both sides and also if parking enforcement officers based in Chippenham could occasionally patrol the B4003 on their way to their regular ticketing activities in Marlborough. A proposal to refresh and extend the yellow lines will be put to a future CATG meeting. In discussion it was noted that parking was worse in summer.
      4. Registration for project A303 Stonehenge with the Planning Inspectorate. The Chairman reported that he had registered the PC with the Planning Inspectorate as an interested party on the application for development consent by Highways England for the proposed tunnel and roadworks.
        [Record of PC’s Representation:
        Avebury Parish Council (APC) has an interest in understanding possible risks to the site and village through the unintended diversion of would-be visitors to Stonehenge, discouraged as they may well be by extensive building works, and in working closely with Highways England to calibrate and manage those risks appropriately.

        APC has made representations along these lines in earlier consultations and wants to maintain a watching brief on works as they develop.

        Avebury is an open access site and receives upwards of 350,000 visitors per year. Exceeding that number without additional resources would place severe strain on both the site and the village].
    2. ASSF meeting 14 January: Mrs Lewis had attended the ASSF meeting and as she was not present at the meeting, the item was deferred to the next meeting agenda. It was noted that the pre-circulated camping dates were much the same as the previous year.
    3. Proposed permit scheme: In discussion Mrs Davies (Wiltshire Councillor) said that Mrs Paradise should contact Spencer Drinkwater (Principle Transport Planner, WC) for advice on a residents’ permit scheme. She said that the primary consideration of any permit scheme was enforcement and that permit schemes were typically expensive as traffic wardens were needed. Mrs Davies added that anyone could call the 101 Police line to report illegal parking.
    4. Superfast fibre broadband project and 4/5G: Mr O’Connor explained that he had published a survey on the Community Facebook page and PC website in the past week to explore what telecoms people were using and whether it was suitable for their lifestyle. He reported that he had received eight responses and that seven out of eight households had reported low speeds. Mr O’Connor said that existing 4G and 5G service in Avebury was patchy and that telephone masts were required to give a good service. He added that in 2021 all emergency services would be using a minimum of 4G and therefore it was important for Avebury to have the infrastructure in place. In discussion it was noted that the aim of the project was more than just enhancing services and that it was about future proofing Avebury. The Chairman added that the NT had also expressed interest in the project and he would invite them to take part in the survey. Action: Mr O’Connor to collate the results of the survey (deadline end of March), report back to the PC and send the data to BT for advice on next steps. It was also agreed that Mr O’Connor would provide an update on the telecoms project for the Annual Parish Meeting. Thanks were expressed to Mr O’Connor and the Chairman said that his work would be appreciated by the community.
    5. Play area refurbishment: Mrs Paradise reported that she had received 52 replies so far to an electronic survey she had set up on the Community Facebook page, the PC website and through an advert in UKN, to gather feedback on improving the quality of the Play Area and inform the PC’s decision on what equipment to install. In discussion members noted 60% of the responses had come from people living in Avebury, 23% elsewhere and 8% outside of the Parish and that 52% would use the Play Area if improvements were made. Ideas for new equipment included a zip wire and 72% said they would like a slide. It was noted that the survey was open until 22 February 2019 and Mrs Paradise would provide a full report on the results at the next meeting. Thanks were expressed to Mrs Paradise for her work on the survey. Action: Mrs Paradise to start putting together project costings with a view to inviting tenders for the project in March. Mr Harry Mottram (Reporter, Wiltshire Gazette and Herald) advised that the PC may wish to contact Shelley Parker (Clerk, Marlborough Town Council) as a play area next to Rabley Wood was going to be made redundant due to a new housing development and there might be equipment available to re-use.
  11. Local Issues:
    1. CPRE Best Kept Village Competition: in discussion it was agreed not to enter the competition on this occasion. Mrs Paradise said that she and Mrs Lewis would organize some community litter picks. Mrs Paradise reported that she was looking at different types of planters for the High Street as several needed replacing.
  12. Parish Steward Priority Sheet:
    1. Work completed in December 2018 and January 2019: [removal of leaf debris at entrance to Beckhampton off A361, removal of metal stand on grass verge near West Kennett Farmhouse, cleaning of bus shelter at Rawlins Park and Avebury Trusloe, checking culverts in High Street and filling of various potholes in road running towards Windmill Hill].
    2. Job requests for 13 February: other than filling of potholes, there was none. Mr Williamson requested removal of leaf mulch on Church Walk. Action: Clerk to log this on WC on-line system. The Chairman added that Martin Cook would like to encourage the PC to log any roads that needed white lines re-painting.
  13. Communications: the Chairman reported that the combined November and December 2018 Headlines had been submitted for the February Edition of UKN.
  14. Correspondence: the Clerk reported:
    1. Email (previously circulated to members) had been received from Tony Langridge who had been instructed by AHA to look at options for the nursery site. It was agreed that the Clerk ask Tony Langridge to arrange a meeting with all stakeholders without delay as there was no point in the PC upgrading the Play Area if the site location needed serious consideration.
    2. Thank you letter had been received from Victim Support for £50.00 donation and tabled.
    3. Thank you letter had been received from Citizens Advice Wiltshire for £50.00 donation and tabled.
    4. Letter (previously circulated to members) had been received from Miranda Gilmour (Assistant Recruitment Officer), Marlborough & District Link to request that the PC make a commitment in 2019 to find the organisation two people from the parish willing to volunteer to drive for Marlborough Link. In discussion it was agreed that the PC could only advertise the need and the Chairman undertook to include a request in the PC’s Headlines for UKN. Mrs Paradise agreed to put it on the Avebury Community Facebook page.
    5. Police report for December 2018 and January 2019: not received
    6. Head Teacher’s update from Kennet Valley School: Mrs Paradise reported that it had been exciting start to the term with a visit from Claire Perry MP and the arrival of some toy Math Monkeys. She said that Mrs Russell (Head Teacher) was always interested in working with Parish Councils. It was agreed Mrs Paradise would invite a School Governor to provide an update at the Annual Parish Meeting.
  15. Finance and admin including:
    1. Cheques for ratification: it was resolved to ratify the following cheques raised on 7 January 2019. Proposed by Ms Service, seconded by Mrs Paradise and carried unanimously.
      1. Wiltshire Council – Stonehenge and Avebury WHS Trust: contribution to HLF Project                                                               £250.00
      2. Miss E Moore: Clerk’s overtime and expenses 22 November – 21 December 2018                                                             £266.15
    2. New swing seat: the Clerk reported that the new baby seat was ready to be installed and it was agreed the Chairman and Mr Butler would re-attach the seat to the timber swing unit at the Play Area.
    3. Cheques for payment: it was resolved that the following cheques be paid. Proposed by Ms Service, seconded by Mr Ryder-Morris and carried unanimously.
      1. Social Centre: hire of hall first Tuesday in November 2019 and December 2019                                                                      £20.00
      2. Social Centre: hire of hall on January 25 2019, 12:30 – 2pm  £7.50
      3. Social Centre: hire of hall on 7 February 2019 for Transport Group meeting                                                                                   £10.00
      4. Elysium Woodworking Ltd: refurbishment of five benches (including VAT)                                                                                        £396.00
      5. Elysium Woodworking Ltd: supply and replace broken glass panel in Trusloe Bus Shelter with 6mm solid Polycarbonate (including VAT)                                                                        £144.00
      6. Branson Leisure Ltd: x1 Greenwich hardwood bench including delivery, installation and fixings (including VAT). N.B. part of insurance claim                                                                        £975.60
      7. Wicksteed Leisure Ltd: single tier rubber cradle seat (including VAT and 10% discount)                                                                    £147.76
      8. Miss E Moore: Clerk’s overtime and expenses 22 December 2018 – 21 January 2019                                                                            £89.15
  16. Date of next meeting: 7:30pm on Tuesday 5 March 2019
  17. Any other business: members noted:
    1. A school bus had slid into the wall of the Coach House toilets in the icy weather and the wall would need to be repaired.
    2. Mr Butler had agreed to host Avebury Rocks on Saturday 1 June 2019.
  18. The meeting closed at: 21:37

Appendices: (included in the book of Parish Council papers)

  1. Avebury Sports Field – Community Pavilion Proposal
  2. Draft Statement of Intent – Felling of Trees and the Ten Principles of the Tree Charter