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Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council held on Wednesday 8th November 2023 at 7.00 pm in the Melland Room at the Blewbury Clubhouse.

In attendance:- Chairman D Mathias (DM)
Councillors S Austin (SA), A Calder (AC), J Gibson (JG), J Saunders
(JS), M Shayler (MS), L Inglis (LI), L Robinson (LR)
Clerk E Cooper (EC)
Lengthman D Hollick (DH)
District Councillor H Gascoigne (HG)

1.     To receive apologies for absence

A Millman (AM), County Councillor S Povolotsky, District Councillor D Dewhurst


2. To record any declarations of interests relating to this meeting

MS – installation of bike rack at VH.


3. To receive the County Councillor’s report

Received in advance of the meeting & sent to Council.


4. To receive District Councillor’s report

Received in advance of the meeting & sent to Council.

In addition, HG stated the first parcel of homes for Valley Park were approved. The consultation for the Joint Local Plan (20250 was due in the new year. DM to provide details of correspondence regarding the doctor’s surgery. LI to provide a copy of a letter from MP Gove (from December 2022) to HG.


5. To receive the Lengthman’s report

  • DH reported no grass cutting now as it was too wet to do so.
  • A formal inspection of the play areas had been carried out by RoSPA. DH is working his way through the minor issues raised in the reports. The skate ramp is out of action due to a hole in one of the boards. More boards may need to be replaced at the next service. The skate ramp is now c25 years old & consideration should be given to its replacement in the next 2-3 years. Currently, this is likely to cost in the region of £30-40k. Council will look at grants & alternatives in due course.
  • DM raised a concern of frost affecting the unused showers/toilets in the Clubhouse. DH to contact DHPH & discuss capping off the showers & consult them as to any other potential frost concerns.


6. Open Forum

No members of the public were present.

7.   To approve previous minutes & report on any matters arising (All)

Minutes of the BPC meeting held on 11th October 2023

Council agreed the minutes as a true record.


8.   To hear the Planning Committee Report & Ratify/Agree Planning Responses (LI)


8.1 To agree the council’s response to the following consultations


8.1.1 P23/V2094/HH 85 Dibleys, Blewbury

Resubmission of P23/V0560/HH to include amended parking & dropped kerb.

Deadline 8.11.23, extended to 13.11.23

Council agreed to object on the grounds that the space for the parking of two cars is too tight to be

practically workable.


8.2 To note planning permissions / withdrawals received during the month

8.2.1 P23/V1943/HH 29 Bridus Mead, Blewbury

Planning permission 27.10.23

8.2.2 P23/V1300/HH Charity School House, Church Road, Blewbury

Planning permission 03.11.23

8.2.3 P23/V3076/FUL Churn Cottage, Churn Farm, Bohams Road, Blewbury

Planning permission 03.11.23


9.   To hear an update on Finance & Administration from the Clerk


9.1 Financial Updates

9.1.1 The Chair, D Mathias, stressed to the Council that following the significant increase in the insurance premium, the management of the Council’s finances would be even more crucial       going forward.


9.1.2 End of month reconciliation sent in advance of the meeting to the Chairman. To be agreed & signed at the meeting.

Due to problems with Lloyds Bank, the reconciliation was presented to the Chairman at the meeting & signed accordingly.


9.1.3 Lloyds Bank account funds

As of 31.10.23 were £73,306.57

This sum includes £17,269.51of remaining village hall refurb funds & £10,521.53 of CIL funds.

Net funds available to the Council £56,037.06


9.1.4 Receipts

Tennis Club £100 payment was made on 31.10.23, with £80 to follow in early November.


9.1.5 To confirm applications for release of funding S106 funding for artwork project

Licence agreement between the parish council & parochial church council signed on

02.11.23. Also, application for release of S106 funding signed on 03.11.23. Application for release of Climate Action Funding for EV Charger

Signed by LR & DM on 01.11.23.


9.2 Administrative updates

Tennis Club clubhouse insurance for 23-24 agreed at £180.


9.3 To agree authorisers for this month’s payments

9.3.1 DM & LR

9.3.2 A Lloyds Bank mandate to add A. Calder as a signatory was signed at the meeting.


9.4 To approve payments to be made under the general power of competence and within budgeted amounts (All): –

Council also agreed to the addition of two recent invoices for Walters Electrical & Worthy Builders, detailed below.





Amount (inc vat)

E Cooper/D Hollick/

E Holroyd

Clerk, Lengthman & Hall Administrator salaries & expenses for October£2401.42
HMRCPAYE Clerk, Lengthman, Hall Admin & Employer NICs October£452.75
NEST DDClerk’s pension October£107.93
Biffa Waste Services Ltd DDWaste services October£123.84


BT DDClubhouse line rental October£46.53
MarshBPC Insurance via Zurich*£29,638.60
RoSPA (Play Safety)Play areas inspection£499.20
J NewmanClubhouse cleaning October£252.00
EEClerk’s phone top-up*£25.00
ScribeMid-Year Health Check£58.80
VHEMCPO Grant 3rd quarter£300.00
SLCCClerk membership renewal£177.00
Walters ElectricalPAT testing of all electrical items at Clubhouse, Scout Hut & metal shed, plus other electrical work.£1052.00
Worthy BuildersInstallation of trace heating system around pipes in loft space of the Clubhouse.£3736.50

* Paid to be ratified





Tennis ClubInsurance share£100.00
Cemetery FeesVarious£205.00


10.    To receive an update from VHEMC representative on village hall activities (DM)


10.1 Bike rack update (Clerk)

Letter sent to OCC Planning Obligations Manager on 25.10.23 confirming bank details for receipt of

funding of £1000. Clerk’s note; funds received on 8.11.23.

10.2 Any other updates on village hall activities (DM)



11.    To receive an update on the all things relating to the operation of the Clubhouse & the Recreation Ground (DM, JG, DH, Clerk)


           11.1 Clubhouse & Recreation Ground

11.1.1 BT phone contract (LR)

LR had looked at wifi services available from BT & other suppliers, & concluded that as costs were similar, he recommended staying with BT on a new contract. Council                              unanimously agreed. LR to arrange.


11.1.2 Melland Room IT Upgrade update (AM)

AM provided an update in her absence. In order to save costs at this stage, the projector would not be replaced, but all other equipment would be upgraded to bring the system in to                           use. A new quote was provided by Total Audio Visual Solutions who installed the original system, for £2610. Council unanimously agreed to proceed.

Clerk’s note: Work scheduled for 29th November.


11.1.3 Any other updates on any aspect of the Clubhouse (DH, JG) Protec new fire alarm installation 27.10.23 Worthy Builders trace heating installation is complete & invoices received. Requirement for additional anti frost heaters

Council agreed more research was required in to frost protection for the building.

DM to investigate. Consider Clubhouse gutter & velux window cleaning

DM to propose a contractor. Clubhouse Working Group Meeting

A meeting was held on 2nd November 2023 & the following recommendations are made to Council:-

i that hire fees are raised by 10-13.3% (depending on the user) with effect from 1st                                                               January 2024

ii that the equipment upgrade will take place on 29th November

iii that Amazon football fees, as discussed with the football leaders, are increased with effect from 1st September 2023, & that the tournament fee for June 2024 will be                                 £310 (all other details TBC)

12.    To receive an update on all aspects of TFF & car park (DH/MS)


12.1 Play areas update (DH, EC, MS)

12.1.1 RoSPA play areas inspection carried out on 27.10.23. Inspection reports sent to Council

31.10.23.  DH is working on list of low-level tasks. DH / MS to arrange the replacement of a part on the zip wire.

12.1.2 Skate Park refurb/replace considerations

The skate ramp had been closed due to the appearance of a hole in one of the boards. This is scheduled to be repaired by Radii Ramps, who also stated that the skate ramp will soon be in           need of major refurbishment work or replacement. Council to further consider the implications of this.

Clerk’s note: Skate ramp repair carried out on 9th November & skate ramp reopened.


12.2 Any other updates – Trim Trail/TFF/Car Park (DH, MS)

12.2.1 Goal area – holes in ground highlighted in inspectors report have been filled in.

12.2.2 JG reported that the bonfire night fireworks event organised by the BVS was a huge success & well attended.


13.    To receive an update on Risk Management & Compliance (LI / JI)


13.1 Speed Watch update

A report was received in advance of the meeting & sent to Council.

13.2 Speed reduction measures update

LR will continue to endeavour to find a contractor to install the SIDs & to move them around on a regular basis. Council agreed this work was beyond its scope & should only be carried out by an       experienced contractor.


14.   To receive an update on issues relating to the Environment (AM)


14.1 Information from Sustainable Blewbury


14.2 Any other environmental issues (All)

14.2.1 Leaf clearance is being organised for Sunday 03.12.23

All volunteers welcome. DH agreed to drive the tractor for collection of debris.

14.2.2 Lavender hedge & other shrubbery removal quotations (EC)

Three contractors had been approached for this work. To date, one has been on site with DH.

14.2.3 West of village lights (All)

Council agreed this emanated from the new properties on this side of the village. JG agreed to monitor the impact of the lights.


16.   To receive an update on any issues relating to footpaths, rights of way and open spaces (All)


16.1 Parking on the Pound (MS / DM)

Several suggestions were put forward to reduce the adverse impact of parking on the edge of the Pound.

  • Plant low level shrubs between the footpath & top end
  • Rebuild damaged area from footpath down

DM proposed informing residents of proposals in the December Bulletin & on Facebook.


16.2 Village Artwork installation update (LI)

Clerk reported that more information had been requested to go with application.


16.3 Any other updates on footpaths, rights of way and open spaces (All)

Access to the footpaths on the Churn Estate (off Bohams Road) was raised by MS.

The concrete path had been made into a private road with no access. Council acknowledged this was private land, but it had been walked for many years. DM to ask AM if she can open discussions with he landowners.


17.   To receive an update on any outstanding consultations



18. To agree the date/venue of the next meeting(s) of the Council & any related matters (DM)


18.1 Next full Parish Council meeting currently scheduled for Wednesday 13th December at 7.00pm in the Melland Room at the Clubhouse. Council acknowledged this is a clash with the village carol concert & agreed to start the meeting at 5pm on 13th December.


18.2 Parish Council Finance Committee meeting currently scheduled for Wednesday 20th December at 7pm in the Melland Room.


18.3 Council to consider proposed new version of agenda

Council agreed in principle to trial the updated version of the agenda.


18.4 AOB

AOB can only be used raising issues for discussion at a future meeting. There can be no discussion or decisions (these would be unlawful) under AOB.


The meeting finished at 9pm.


Appendix A


1.DM to provide HG with details of doctor’s surgery correspondenceASAP
2.LI to provide HG with copy of Gove letterASAP
3.DH to contact DHPH re capping of showers & frost concerns in ClubhouseASAP
4.LR to arrange new contract with BT for ClubhouseASAP
5.DM also to investigate frost protection at ClubhouseASAP
6.DM to propose a contractor for gutter clearing & velux window cleaning at ClubhouseASAP
7.DH / MS to arrange to replace part on zip wireASAP
8.LR to find a contractor for installation & moving round of SIDsASAP
9.Parking on Pound issue proposals – LI to include in Bulletin update, LR to update on FBASAP
10.DM to ask AM to open discussions re footpath access on Churn estateASAP


4.AM, JG, SA to meet to discuss getting Clubhouse fully in order, inc MarketingOngoing
9.MS to deal with vandalised bench by the TTT on TFFASAP
7.EC to copy Neighbourhood Plan to HG & DDActioned
10.VH Woodlands Surgery – DM to update on new lease & commercial agreement.Ongoing
21.Clerk to action removal of sign on Pound.C’fwd
23.Clerk to draft new ‘hedges’ letter.C’fwd
3.Clerk to arrange a meeting with BVGA to discuss allotment administration.Scheduled for w/b 15.1.24
12.MS to investigate possibility of installing steps in to TFF from Rubble Pit LaneTo be installed