Minutes December 2015

Of the Meeting of the Parish Council
held in the Vale Room on Wednesday 9th December 2015 at 7.40 p.m


Councillors present: Mr C Lakeland (Chairman)(CL), Ms J Gibson (JG), Mr M Penington (MP), Ms Charlotte Cameron (CC), Mr M Shayler (MS), Mr M Blythe (MB), Ms M Jacobs (MJ), Ms Lydia Inglis (LI). Also present: Mrs Elaine de Ridder (clerk), David Hollick (Lengthman), District Councillor Waite.

Matters resolved:

  1. The Parish Council approved the Village Hall Refurbishment Project to proceed to detailed design and competitive tender stage at a cost in architect’s fees of £12,250 and in professional engineering fees of £3000.
  2. The Transparency Code was adopted.
  3. The quote for £1,718.40 for a replacement mower was approved.
  4. All payments were approved.


Actions arising from the meeting Target date
1.      Clerk to send Santander a signed copy of the minutes. As soon as possible
2.      Clerk to enquire with the Vale  if repair of private road following construction could be a planning condition As soon as possible
3.      Clerk to ask for summary of the history and decisions re the village hall refurbishment. Clerk to circulate village hall refurbishment spend to date By January meeting
4.      Clerk to circulate social media code. By January meeting
5.      MB to draft a note about shared lifts for the February Bulletin By January meeting
6.      Clerk to scan DMMO form. As soon as possible
7.      Clerk to forward Mrs Middleton’s letter to County Councillor As soon as possible
8.      Clerk to respond to Mrs Middleton As soon as possible
9.      Clerk to respond to the Lord-Lieutenant As soon as possible
Actions brought forward  
1.      CL to review tree register As soon as possible


  1. To receive apologies for absence. Apologies from Ms V Fox (VF), County Councillor Lilly, District Councillor Shelley, Ms L Inglis for late arrival.
  2. To record declarations of interest. No declarations were made.
  3. To approve the minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 11th November and the special meeting held on 9th December 2015. The minutes were accepted and signed as a true record. Action: Clerk to send Santander a signed copy of the minutes.
  4. To receive the County Councillor’s report. No County Councillor present.
  5. To receive the District Councillor’s report. The District Councillor’s written report was circulated prior to the meeting. See Annex A. Cllr Waite reported that he met Pat Mattimore at the Community Awards and commented on the amount of work volunteers put in to make villages a good place to live.
  6. To receive the Lengthman’s report. Report was circulated. See Annex B. The lengthman was thanked for his hard work on Village Clean Up Day. Numbers of volunteers were down on previous years but it is hoped that things will go back to normal next year. It was mentioned that footpaths will need continued attention as the mild weather meant vegetation is still growing. It was reported that the signs have gone up on the Beeswax footpaths and that a meeting will be set up to introduce their work to the village.
  7. Open Forum.

Nothing was discussed during Open Forum.


  1. Planning & Housing
    • 12/11/14 To receive an update on speculative approaches. It was reported that the decision date for the Woodway application has been put back till the end of January 2016.
    • 02/02/06 To receive the planning committee report. No responses since the previous meeting. See Annex C.
    • 08/11/12 To approve responses to current applications:

P15/V2721/FUL  Land adjacent to Upperton, Pilgrims Way. Erection of 3-Bedroom Dwelling. Blewbury PC will object as before. Action: Clerk to enquire with the Vale  if repair of private road following construction could be a planning condition

          P15/V2751/HH Codrington Pilgrims Way. Two dormers. Blewbury PC has no objection.

Application received after agenda was finalised:

          P15/V2798/HH The Dial House, Church Road. Proposed insertion of first floor dormer window. Proposed ground floor front extension. Blewbury PC has no objection.

  1. Village Hall refurbishment. To approve the Village Hall Refurbishment Project proceeding to

detailed design and competitive tender stage at a cost in architect’s fees of £12,250 and in professional engineering fees of £3000. The Parish Council decided to approve the cost and proceed with the next step. Action: Clerk to ask for summary of the history and decisions re the village hall refurbishment. Clerk to circulate village hall refurbishment spend to date.

  1. Finance & Administration
    • To agree a format and plan of action for the Parish Council’s webpages to comply with the Transparency Code. To adopt the Transparency code for Blewbury Parish Council. The Transparency Code was adopted. Action: Clerk to circulate Social Media Code.
    • To approve the quote and proceed with buying a replacement mower. The increased quote for £1,718.40 for a replacement industrial mower was approved.
    • To receive a budget report and request for funds to be included in the 2016-17 budget. The interim report was given at the previous PC meeting. The updated report will be circulated to the finance committee prior to the budget meeting. Replacement play equipment and a ladder will be included in the budget unless the inspector feels that they need to be replaced urgently. It was mentioned that the PWLB interest rates are very favourable and the finance committee will consider if the repayment of a loan should be included in the precept for the next financial year. The budget meeting date was set for January 6th.
    • To approve payments to be made under ancillary powers and within budgeted amounts



E de Ridder (salary and expenses) £894.05
D Hollick (salary and expenses) £219.50
BT Payment Services Ltd (direct debit) £23.98
Biffa Waste Services Ltd £56.83
SLCC £149.00
Vale of White Horse DC (election costs) £1,346.61
West Garden Machinery £106.44
West Garden Machinery £1,718.40
Payments relating to the Neighbourhood Plan  
Urban Vision £3,896.40
BVCIC (for Melland Room) £60.00
TOTAL                           £ 8,471.21


All payments were approved.


  1. Risk Management
    • 09/12/15 To report back on all outstanding risk management items and actions from previous meetings. The cemetery map was updated and returned to Pear Technologies. The council document register was updated. Item closed.
  2. Transport and bus service. To consider alternatives to bus services. MB reflected on the number of trips into Didcot, Wallingford and further afield residents make every hour and wondered itf it would be possible to use technology to find lifts for people in the village. Action: MB to draft a note about shared lifts for the February Bulletin.



  1. Correspondence
    • Items requesting a reply & consultations
      • Correspondence re permissive path. The clerk thanked Beeswax for redirecting the light on the Downs and for the signs. Action: Clerk to scan DMMO form.
      • Letter re 94/95 buses. A complaint was received about the possible loss of the 94/95 bus. The complainant erroneously thought it was due to a decision of the Parish Council. Action: Clerk to respond to the letter re buses and pass the complaint on to the County Councillor.
      • Request from the Lord-Lieutenant of Oxfordshire. Action: Clerk to respond.
    • Items for information that have been circulated
      • OALC update
  1. Any other business. Exceptionally to deal with business received too late for inclusion in agenda. It was reported that during a recent visit to the Earth Trust, Sustainable Blewbury learnt that funding is still available for community orchards. The Parish Council will be asked to consider having an orchard on Tickers Folly. More details of proposed location and on-going maintenance will be needed.

The clerk asked that a note be put in the Bulletin that all incidents of criminal damage or theft should be reported to the Police.

MJ reported that the Cleve plans have not yet moved forward and that silt removal is still of utmost importance.

  1. To set the date of the next meeting

Finance committee meeting 6th January 2015, 19h30

Parish Council meeting 13th January 2015, 19h30


Meeting closed 20h50


Annex A


Blewbury Parish Council

Notes for Parish Councillors on Wednesday, 9th December 2015

from Cllr Janet Shelley & Cllr Reg Waite






Cllr Janet Shelley tenders her apologies for absence as she is attending a Planning Committee Meeting at The Beacon, Wantage.




Speculative Development Planning Applications:


P15/V1944/O – Outline planning permission for up to 40 dwellings on land off

Woodway Road, Blewbury

Received: 14th August 2015

Registered: 17th August 2015

Consultation: 17th August to 16th September 2015

Target decision date:  was 16th November 2015, but

this has now been moved to 31st January 2016 pending receipt

of revised application.



Introducing Didcot Garden Town:

The Housing and Planning Minister, Brandon Lewis MP announced on Monday, 7th December that Didcot is to become a Garden Town, which will help with the delivery of 15,000 houses and 20,000 high-tech jobs.

This news comes just days after the Chancellor announced that the Vale of White Horse and South Oxfordshire are getting a second enterprise zone, which in itself will help the area attract significant government spending. It will also mean the district councils can retain business rates, all of which will lead to £120 million of funding towards roads and infrastructure around Didcot.

The announcements pave the way for funding for major infrastructure improvements like a northern perimeter road for Didcot, the Science Bridge over the railway line into Milton Park, and improvements to existing areas of Didcot.

The Garden Town will bring forward new mixed neighbourhoods of between 200 and 3,000 homes, which will have a strong focus on sustainability and green space and be linked through a series of green connections.  The vision for the Garden Town is to create a place renowned for world class innovation, enterprise and vibrant communities, in harmony with an exceptional environment.

Housing growth and employment growth in the garden town will be intimately linked with 20,000 new high-tech jobs created over the next 15 years on the Harwell, Milton Park and Didcot Growth Accelerator Enterprise Zones and other smaller sites.

Significant investment in public transport infrastructure, for example four tracking of the railway line between Didcot and Oxford will enable more sustainable travel both across and to and from the garden town.

Didcot is amongst the first towns in the country to receive Garden Town status – others include Ebbsfleet and Bicester, which received the title of Garden Towns last year.

South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse District Councils worked in partnership with Oxfordshire County Council and the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership to put together a bid for Garden Town status.

Cllr John Cotton, leader of South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Didcot is our main growth area in South Oxfordshire and we want to ensure that we do everything possible to support the quality of life for the people who will live there. By successfully applying for Garden Town status, we’re helping to support the new families moving to Didcot, but we’re also making sure the people already there continue to benefit from investment in the town.”

Cllr Matthew Barber, leader of Vale of White Horse District Council, said: “People right across our district will benefit from Didcot becoming a Garden Town. This will encourage jobs, better transport links, improved facilities and infrastructure for everyone.”

Nigel Tipple, CEO of the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said “The Garden Town is exactly the sort of initiative the LEP is looking for – only by properly resourcing housing and infrastructure, can we continue to attract the high end, knowledge economy jobs that Oxfordshire is famed for.”



Motion proposed and seconded for the Vale’s full Council Meeting on Wednesday, 16th December by Cllr Gervase Duffield and Cllr Reg Waite:


Bearing in mind the substantial development of houses in neighbouring villages to the south east of the Vale and the recent announcements, Cllrs Gervase Duffield (District Councillor for Sutton Courtenay Ward) and Reg Waite (Blewbury & Harwell Ward) are highlighting their ongoing concerns by raising the following motion at this month’s full Council Meeting – “This Council welcomes the recent announcements of the second Vale Enterprise Zone and the Garden Town initiative and calls on all parts of the Council to have regard to protecting and respecting as far as possible the rural character of the villages affected and to work to avoid an urbanised ‘greater Didcot’ ”.




Waste matters: South & Vale top the recycling charts yet again:

Following the recent introduction of additional recyclable items – small electrical items and textiles – let us firstly apologise to local residents if their bags or boxes have not been collected promptly in recent weeks.


The appropriate cartons on the waste vehicles have been filled on occasions meaning these two waste items have been left behind and collected later. Measures have been taken by the Vale and Biffa to ensure these problems are not repeated henceforth but please keep Reg and Janet informed if further problems arise.


Secondly, congratulations to all families in Blewbury for your superb support with recyclable waste.

Yes, it’s now official – residents of South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse continue to be the best in the country at recycling.

According to official Defra figures, South Oxfordshire sits at the top of the chart for 2014/15 with a 67.3 per cent recycling rate, with the Vale just below in second place with 65.6 per cent.

This continues the districts’ domination of the recycling charts which has seen them in the top three for the last three years.

The results are even more impressive given the improvement in recycling rates nationally.  The 2014/15 table, marks the first time that all councils in the top ten have achieved an overall recycling rate of 60 per cent or more.

The news also comes just weeks after the successful launch of South and Vale’s new recycling services that allow residents to recycle small electrical items and textiles from the kerbsideAfter less than two months people had already put out more than 13 tonnes of electrical items and over 11 tonnes of textiles.

There’s a note of caution however to go with the good news – recently the councils have been dealing with a lot of recycling bins being contaminated with things that can’t be recycled – including food waste from dirty food containers, and nappies. Recent changes in legislation about how contaminated recycling can be dealt with means that whole loads of recycling can end up being incinerated due to contamination.  The two councils are working on ways of preventing the wrong waste going in the wrong bin.


Finally, Janet and Reg thank Blewbury Parish Councillors and Elaine for all your hard work during the year and we send our best wishes to each of you and your families for a very happy and enjoyable Christmas and a successful New Year.



Annex B – Lengthman’s report








In good condition, generally. Leaf clearing work party on Sat 28th cleared approx. 80 bags of leaves, which mostly went to the allotment compost bins. Big thank you to all who turned out.




No issues


TFF, Car Park & TFF Play Area


Some turf damage to TFF entrance when tractors taking wood for bonfire night, which should recover OK.


Car park is getting quite “pot holey”. Possibly need a bit more surfacing material.


Recreation Ground


No issues


Village Hall KAP Area


No issues


Storage Buildings


No issues




We have obtained a very good quote from Julian West for a new Orec Bushcutter mower model SH61H. Approx £200 below RRP.

No other issues.


Annex C


Planning report for Parish Council  – December 2015

 Planning Applications

All Blewbury planning applications, decisions  and Parish Council responses, including items under consideration, can be found in the ‘Parish’ section of the Blewbury website (http://blewbury.co.uk/parish/planning/), which is updated once a week. Links are also provided to the main Vale Planning site, where full details can be obtained.


Responses from the Parish Council: None this month.


Decisions from the District Council:
P15/V2356/FUL – Hunts Grave Farm, London Road –  
Demolition of existing structures, erection of two dwellings. GRANTED.


Enquiries regarding planning in the parish may be sent to blewburypc@gmail.com