Minutes for May 2015

Of the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council
to be held in the Vale Room on Wednesday 13th May 2015 at 7.30 p.m

Councillors present: Mr C Lakeland (Chairman)(CL), Ms V Fox (VF), Mr M Shayler (MS), Ms Lydia Inglis (LI), Ms Charlotte Cameron (CC), Ms Miriam Jacobs (MJ), Mr M Blythe (MB). Also present: Mrs Elaine de Ridder (clerk), District councillors, Shelley and Waite, County Councillor Lilly and 1 member of the public

Matters resolved:

  1. Chris Lakeland was appointed chairman and Jane Gibson vice-chairman of the Parish Council.
  2. The renewal quote for £134.62 for the insurance of the tractor and trailer was accepted.
  3. All payments were approved.


Actions arising from the meeting Target date
1.      Clerk to circulate list of committees to councillors. By next meeting
2.      Councillors to complete registers of interests. Clerk to submit registers of interests to the Vale. As soon as possible
3.      Clerk to circulate Thames Water letter and reply to new councillors By next meeting
4.      CL to meet with the BVCIC By next meeting
5.      Clerk to contact James Barrett re BVCIC/cricket club side of store As soon as possible
6.      Clerk to finalise and circulate the accounts for 2014-15. By next meeting
Actions brought forward
1.      RF to meet with independent financial adviser re clerk’s pension As soon as possible


  1. To receive apologies for absence. Apologies from Mr M Blythe for late arrival, Ms J Gibson (JG), Mr M Penington (MP), Mr D Hollick (Lengthman).
  2. To sign declaration of acceptance of office. At the recent election the following councillors were elected: Mark Blythe, Charlotte Cameron, Vanessa Fox, Jane Gibson, Lydia Inglis, Miriam Jacobs, Chris Lakeland, Michael Penington and Mark Shayler. All councillors present signed their declaration of acceptance of office. MP signed his declaration prior to the meeting. JG would sign her declaration as soon as possible after her return from holiday.
  3. To elect a chairman and vice chairman. Chris Lakeland was elected chairman and Jane Gibson vice-chairman.
  4. To appoint of members to committees. Some appointments were made but will be considered again at the next meeting when all councillors are present. Action: Clerk to circulate list of committees to councillors.
  5. To complete registers of interest. Councillors were asked to complete their registers of interests. Action: Councillors to complete registers of interests. Clerk to submit registers of interests to the Vale.
  6. To record declarations of interest. No declarations were made.
  7. To approve the minutes of the Parish Council meeting on 8th April 2015. The minutes were accepted and signed as a true record.
  8. To receive the County Councillor’s report. County Councillor reported that the transport consultation was published and the new bus timetables were due to published. He reported that the first part of the Harwell relief road from the Kingswell has received planning permission. The north facing slips at Chilton have started. The Abingdon North slip roads to the south will also go ahead. The county council are facing further budgetary constraints. More park and rides are planned for Oxford. An east-west fast railway link from Bristol to Cambridge is planned. A flood relief channel for Oxford will go ahead. It was reported that there are some problems with Chilton school as they had insufficient capacity to deal with the new development. It was reported that S106 contributions due to Chilton were not paid as swiftly as they should be. Drainage problems and insufficient capacity to deal with foul water from the number of new houses at Great Western Park were also discussed. The county councillor reminded the PC that over 500 children are in care in Oxfordshire and asked residents to consider fostering or adopting.
  9. To receive the District Councillor’s report. Cllr Shelley explained that the number of district councillors was reduced to 38 but due to the Blewbury and Upton wards merger with parts of Harwell, the number of residents in the new ward required two district councillors. It was reported that in June and July there would be a 10% reduction in the cost of a garden waste bin for new bins. It was also reported that most of the staff who were based at Abbey House following the fire at the SODC buildings in Crowmarsh Gifford will move to Milton Park. The telephone number will remain the same. It was reported that the Vale was made aware of the fact that Wyldecrest homes were due to install another unit on the Ladycroft Park site.
  10. To receive the Lengthman’s report. A written report was sent. See Annex A. Most importantly it was reported that a day was scheduled to install gates in front of the equipment store to stop ram raids. Some essential maintenance tasks will also be carried out at the Play Space. Help would be appreciated on the day.
  11. Open Forum.

Nothing was discussed.

  1. Neighbourhood Plan (NP). There was a request that the Parish Council nominate councillors to join the NP working party. LI, CC and MJ volunteered.
  2. Matters arising.
    • 12/11/14 To receive an update on the installation of the new Playclose bin. The bin has been installed. Item closed.
    • 11/02/14 To receive an update on the replacement of the picnic benches in the play area. The concrete bases will be done with the other work at the Recreation Ground.
    • 06/05/15 To receive an update on recent correspondence with Thames Water. Following the meeting with Thames Water, a follow up letter was sent to Thames Water to raise further concerns about imminent speculative development in the village which could see more than 100 houses added to the village. The Parish Council asked if it would be possible to put a block on future development until such time as the drainage system could cope. The initial reply was that a “Didcot Drainage Network Strategy” will be published soon. Action: Clerk to circulate Thames Water letter and reply to new councillors.
  3. Village hall redevelopment
    • The planning application has not yet been submitted.
  4. Recreation Ground.
    • 12/11/14 To receive an update from the PC representative on the BVCIC. CL is due to meet with the BVCIC. Action: CL to meet with the BVCIC.
    • 08/10/14 To receive an update on plant room maintenance and remedial works. Nothing to report. Item closed.
    • 12/11/14 To receive an update on equipment store repairs and work needed to make it secure. Gates will be installed. Action: Clerk to contact James Barrett re BVCIC/cricket club side of store.
    • 08/10/14 To receive an update on skate ramp maintenance. The clerk reported back on the question raised about artistic graffiti. The installer of the new boards advised against it as the surface would not be suitable at the moment. Item closed.
  5. Risk Management.
    • 11/03/15 To receive the BVGA risk assessment. Received. Item closed.
    • 11/03/15 To receive the Village Hall risk assessment. Received. Item closed.
  6. Planning & Housing.
    • 12/11/14 To receive an update on speculative approaches. There has been nothing further to report about the speculative approaches. The importance of having a Neighbourhood Plan was stressed. It was also pointed out that residents should complain to Thames Water as soon as they have any problems with drainage as this will be used by them to inform their opinion when responding to applications.
    • 02/02/06 To receive the Planning Committee Report. See Annex B.
    • 08/11/12 To approve responses to Current applications.

P15/V0939/FUL        Land rear of Westbury, Westbrook Street Change of use from commercial (B1 use) to residential (C3 use), to allow the demolition of existing commercial buildings and the erection of a detached dwelling with detached garage.

As the immediate neighbours are not objecting, the PC also has no objection.

P15/V0681/HH           The Cottage (May Cottage), London Road Rear conservatory extension and replacement windows

PC has no objection

P15/V0800/HH           Dornie Lodge, Bessels Way  Single storey oak framed garden room extension.

PC has no objection.


  1. Finance & Administration
    • To receive an update on the setting up of the Clerk’s pension. Ongoing.
    • To receive an update on the Malthus Trust. The situation around trustees for the Malthus Trust was briefly explained. Item closed.
    • To receive an update about the 2015 audit. Proposal and acceptance of annual accounts. The clerk will meet the internal auditor to finalise the accounts and to carry out the internal audit. The accounts will be presented to the Parish Council at the June meeting. Action: Clerk to finalise and circulate the accounts for 2014-15.
    • Renewal of Parish Council motor insurance. The renewal quote for £134.62 for the insurance of the tractor and trailer was accepted. Item closed.
    • To approve payments to be made under ancillary powers and within budgeted amounts


Description Amount
E de Ridder (salary £884.25 and expenses) £945.73
D Hollick (salary (£374.10 and expenses) £1,092.86
BT Payment Services Ltd (direct debit) £22.80
White Horse Horticulture £270.00
Biffa Waste Services Ltd £56.83
ORCC £65.00
Lister Wilder Limited £54.52
BVCIC £1,000.00
Mr A Allen £300.00
The Broker Network (tractor insurance) £134.62
M D Marshall & Co (Nottm) Ltd £870.00
GA Electrical & Mechanical £136.80
SmartWater Technology Ltd. £14.40
Pear Technology Services Ltd £930.00
Southern Construction & Surfacing Ltd £2,268.00
Post Office Ltd (for Southern Electric) £21.38
Payments on behalf of the Neighbourhood Plan
·         BVCIC £40.00
TOTAL                            £8,222.94


All payments were approved.


  1. Village Hall Management Committee. Nothing to report.
  2. To receive an update on any issues relating to Footways, Footpaths and rights of way. A meeting has been set up with Beeswax farming on 27th May to discuss the rights of way issue.
  3. To receive an update on any issues relating to roads, road safety and public transport. See County Councillor’s report. Nothing further to report.
  4. Correspondence
    • Items requesting a reply & consultations
      • Harwell site stakeholder group meeting. Noted.
    • Items for information that have been circulated
      • OALC update. Noted.
  1. Any other business. New councillors were reminded that most of the day-to-day communications of the Parish Council was done through email and it is therefore very important that emails are checked and answered regularly.
  2. To set the date of the next meeting

The next meeting will be held on 10th June in the Vale Room. The Annual Parish Meeting will be held on 20th May, also in the Vale Room.


Meeting closed 21h27


Annex A – Lengthman’s report



All footpaths in good condition. Work done on Coffin Way by contractor.


TFF, Car Park & Play Area

Generally all in good condition.

A working party is being organised for weekend of  23/24th May to put in concrete pads for new picnic tables, replace tyres on the Zip Wire with a new spring brake, remove second platform from the APE rope swing and put drainage into the Double Swing pit which fills with water ( time permitting )


Village Hall Play Area

All in good order.


Storage Buildings

This month we had a ram raid of the Tractor shed. Break-in at the Scout Hut and the Melland  Room with considerable damage caused for only nominal theft!!

The roller shutter doors on the tractor shed have been replaced with a heavier duty type with extra locking. During the weekend working party, strong farm gates are to be installed across both shutter doors to hopefully prevent them being rammed.

New purpose made steel doors with multi locks have been installed at the Scout Hut.



Grass cutting and strimming have started in earnest.


Annex B


Planning report for Parish Council  – May 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:

P15/V0800/HH – Dornie Lodge – Single storey oak-framed garden room extension.  BPC has no objection.

P15/V0681/HH – The Cottage, London Road – Rear conservatory extension and replacement windows – BPC has no objection.

P15/V0471/FUL – Chailey House – A development of 30 dwellings.  BPC objects as before.


Decisions from the District Council:

P15/V0068/HH – 2 Downside Westbrook Street.  Demolition of existing rear and side extensions. Erection of rear and side extensions.  GRANTED.

P15/V422/HH – Westbrook Farm, Westbrook Street –  Extensions and interior alterations, new car park. GRANTED.

P15/V0557/HH –Whiteshoot Bungalow – First floor extension and change of fenestration.  GRANTED.

P15/V0650/LB – Hall Barn Close.  Replace roof tiles on existing single storey rear extension.  GRANTED.