Minutes – 25 July 2019


PRESENT Mr R Alden (Chairman); Ms L Allwright; Ms L Munn; Mr M Ayres; and Ward Cllr. Bowen.

IN ATTENDANCE Mr R Hewitt, Clerk. Four (4) members of the public were present.

19/25 Apologies – Mr S Greetham (Vice Chairman).

19/26 Co-opt two new members to the parish council – Mr Martin Ayres was co-opted to the parish council. Mr Ayres signed the declaration of acceptance of office and joined the meeting.

19/27 Declarations of Members Interest and Requests for Dispensation – Cllr. R Alden declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in planning application 192158 The Old Chapel.

19/28 Minutes of the previous meetings – The minutes of the meetings held on 22 May and 13 June 2019 were agreed and signed as a correct record.

19/29 Report from the Herefordshire Councillor for Bircher Ward
Ward Cllr. Bowen reported on Adult and Children’s Social Care where specific areas are rated in the top four nationally. The cabinet is looking at a review of the road infrastructure planned for Hereford, including the bypass. Local business and the new university are believed to be concerned. With significant funding secured from government, the bypass is a once in a generation opportunity. There are likely to be plenty of other calls on the government funding.

19/30 To invite views and discussion from members of the parish
A member of the public asked about Herefordshire Council charges for commercial waste removal. Ward Cllr. Bowen kindly offered to investigate this on their behalf. A suggestion was made to request speed humps on the B4361 to discourage speeding. It was noted that emergency services would be unlikely to support speed humps.

19/31 Planning
(Cllr. R Alden left the meeting which was chaired by Ward Cllr. Bowen.)

192158 The Old Chapel, Richards Castle, SY8 4EL – Erection of detached building to be used as garage and ancillary accommodation. The planning application was supported subject to a condition that the building is ancillary to the Old Chapel in perpetuity; that permitted development rights are removed; for the new building to be sensitively screened; and that rainwater and grey water is dealt with appropriately on the site of the property. Also, the parish council asked the planning authority to take note of the telegraph pole and cables that run across the site in the area of the proposed new building.

(Cllr. R Alden rejoined the meeting and resumed the chair.)

19/32 Financial Items
The following payments were agreed: Clerk, AVG internet security subscription for parish laptop (£44.99); and R Bayliss, footpaths maintenance (£254.47).

19/33 Clerk’s Report
Two articles and member contact details have been submitted to Castle News. A request has been made for new pads for the defibrillator, which will be provided in spring 2020. A housing delivery test questionnaire has been completed for the two housing sites in the neighbourhood development plan for Herefordshire Council. Balfour Beatty has been asked to advise on an appropriate product or product(s) to use for weed spraying of footways. A Freedom of Information request in respect of HALC services in 2018-19 has been answered. Members have been invited to the second Brimfield Brook NFM Community Group meeting, and a free Websites seminar.

19/34 Reports from parish councillor representatives and review of briefs
a) Footpaths: Cllr. Alden said a landowner has provided very positive feedback on one of the kissing gates that were installed earlier this year. The parish walk on 13 July 2019 was well attended. Cllr. Alden’s guidelines on the role of the footpath officer were noted.
b) Lengthsman: Road signs have been cleared.
c) Highways: Ward Cllr. Bowen said he is continuing to press for Castle Road and Orchard Rise to be resurfaced.
d) Good neighbour scheme: Cllr. Allwright said the bank account has taken an unnecessarily long time to open, which has been very frustrating. After an apology from the bank it looks like the account will soon be set up. Cllr. Allwright was thanked for her persistence with the bank.
e) Village hall: The chairman of the village hall committee has asked for support in repairing the edge between the car park and B4361, and the defect will be reported to Shropshire Council. It was agreed to update the brief to include communications/ PC reports in Castle News (subject to fact checking by the Clerk).
f) Planning: See 19/31.

19/35 Letter from the leader of Herefordshire Council concerning major transport infrastructure projects
It was agreed to write to the leader of Herefordshire Council and responsible Cabinet Member expressing the strong support of the parish council for the planned Hereford bypass, which is considered vital to the future of the county.

19/36 SIDs at Richards Castle
The meeting considered a range of options and associated costs, including sharing the cost with other parish(es), renting from Balfour Beatty and/ or having a long-term rental agreement with a parish council. The objective is to deploy two SIDs every three months to address speeding on the B4361. The parish council agreed to take forward the proposal to purchase a third share of the two SIDs and associated equipment owned by Luston Parish Council. If accepted, the parish council will be responsible for a third of ongoing costs of maintenance for the two SIDs.

19/37 Speed awareness stickers
The parish council agreed to request 250 stickers from the Safer Roads Partnership, and for as many of them as possible to be the 30mph roundel with the yellow and black hatching. It was felt this sign is easier for drivers to read and register. The stickers will be available for people to place on their wheelie bins.

19/38 ‘Welcome to Herefordshire’ sign on B4361
The sign has been reported to Balfour Beatty as a defect. According to the highway agent, the defect is categorised 2c), which means it is on a list of defects for which currently there is no funding. The meeting agreed to request a quotation from Balfour Beatty for the replacement of the sign under Community Commissioning.

19/39 Orleton and Richards Castle NDP
Orleton Parish Council has proposed reviewing the neighbourhood development plan in 2020. The parish council agreed to support the proposed review which will need to take account of Herefordshire Council’s scheduled review of the core strategy.

19/40 Polling Districts, Polling Places and Polling Stations – 2019
There are no proposed changes to the current arrangements in Richards Castle. The consultation was noted.

19/41 HALC Training schedule
The meeting agreed to fund the following courses: Leading Lights (x2) and In the Hot Seat (x1).

19/42 Proposed Parish Council Facebook page – Deferred.

19/43 Allowances scheme
The meeting agreed to put in place an allowances scheme so that members are able to claim travel expenses provided these are agreed by the parish council in advance of the cost being incurred.

19/44 Police and Crime Commissioner Town and Parish Council Survey 2019
The Clerk was delegated to complete the survey on behalf of the parish council.

19/45 Matters raised for next meeting (no discussion) – None.

19/46 The next scheduled meeting will be on 12 September 2019. The meeting closed at 9.45pm.