Minutes of Meeting 15th January 2018


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MINUTES OF A MEETING OF UPTON PARISH COUNCIL (UPC)

Time/Date: 6pm on Monday 15th January 2018

Location: Village hall meeting room

Present: Stuart Fraser (Chairman) Duncan Reid (Vice Chairman) Brendan Heneghan Stuart Norman Carl Pettman  SCF DR BH SN CP

In attendance: Cllr R Waite Cllr M Fox-Davies Liz Cooper (Clerk)   RW MF-D EC
Apologies for absence: Karen Marshall

Preliminary: The Chairman reported that due notice of the meeting had been given and that a quorum was present. Accordingly, he declared the meeting open.

Business: Item Action 1 Apologies for absence

1.1 Apologies for absence were received from Karen Marshall. It was recorded that neither Janet Shelley nor the PCSO were present.

2 Declarations of Interest

2.1 BH handed the Clerk his signed Declaration of Interest form.
BH declared his interest in the planning application for Alden Farmhouse, and stated that he would neither take part in the UPC’s discussion nor vote on the matter.

3 Minutes of the meetings of 27 November 2017 and 7 December 2017

3.1 The minutes of meetings of 27 November and 7 December 2017 were taken as read and were approved for signature by the Chairman as accurate records of the meetings.

4 Matters arising and actions from previous minutes

4.1 All action points were either cleared or on the agenda, with the exception of the play area items requiring attention. DR / SCF to report further at the next meeting.

DR/SCF
5 Planning applications

5.1 Two planning applications were discussed, as follows.

5.1.1 P17/V3341/FUL Willows, Stream Road, Upton – change of use of land to residential curtilage to willows and the erection of a garage/workshop including the erection of a 1.8m high boundary fence.

The council voted ‘No Objections’ to this application.

5.1.2 P17/V3081/FUL Alden Farmhouse, Aldens Lane, Upton – construction of equestrian facilities, including stable building, ménage, horse walker, hay storage barn and associated landscaping including access track; conversion of existing stables to form ancillary accommodation.

The UPC voted to OBJECT to this application as the proposed scale of the development was too large – the equestrian site appeared to be more in keeping with a commercial equestrian centre rather than residential. Were the application to be granted, UPC requested that a condition that the equestrian site not be run as a commercial enterprise, be imposed.
UPC was also concerned about the safety aspect of additional traffic from stabling potentially ten horses plus on site. It was noted that access to and from the site was via a small single-lane, private road with a public footpath running along its centre, with only two passing places and that there had been near-misses of accidents in the past between walkers and traffic. It was further noted that the road then led onto the A417 on a notorious, blind bend, which would make access to and from the A417 hazardous to all parties. If the site were to become commercial, this would obviously increase the risks to an unacceptable level.
It was recorded that while UPC was not opposed in principle to a residential equestrian centre at this site, it was strongly opposed to any commercial venture there for the safety reasons given above.

6 Representations from the public

6.1 No members of the public were present and no representations had been received.

7 Reports from District & County Councillors [Clerk’s note: this item had been taken earlier in the meeting.]
7.1 RW presented his report (appendix A).
RW reported that the Vale had published details of brown field sites that may be suitable to receive planning applications. RW would send a copy of this to the Clerk when available.                RW
7.2 MF-D presented his report (appendix B).
MF-D also reported that the council had been undergoing a separation process with Carillion, as their poor delivery on projects had been recognised.
MF-D further reported that a cross-party Cabinet Advisory Group was looking at many things including the Oxford-Cambridge Expressway. Information would continue to be provided when it was available.

8 Receive reports from the PCSO

8.1 None received.

9 Clerk’s financial report

9.1 Updated cash book report – the updated and reconciled cashbook had been circulated in advance of the meeting. SN asked that the VAT be reclaimed. EC agreed to speak to SN regarding this.        EC
9.2 Precept Application – agreement and sign-off – the Precept application form was completed with a figure of £9,175 and signed by the Chair. It was agreed that this could now be submitted.            EC
9.3 Draft budget for 2018/19 – agreement and sign-off – a further draft of the budget for 2018/19 was circulated prior to the meeting. Two further amendments were requested:
• £2000 for tree maintenance; and • £2500 new bark for play area.                                                   EC
9.4 Transparency Fund Application – the Transparency Fund application had been updated. It was agreed that this be completed and submitted.                                                                                          EC
9.5 Notifications of external auditor for UPC – EC informed the meeting that the auditor for this year’s external audit would be Moore Stephens. SCF confirmed that an external audit would be required.

10 To agree roles and responsibilities

10.1 It was agreed to postpone allocating roles and responsibilities to a future meeting. Three Councillors, Stuart Fraser (Chairman), Duncan Reid (Vice Chair) and Carl Pettman confirmed their intentions to step down as Parish Councillors at the end of this financial year. SCF said that he would continue to support the UPC until new councillors were on board.

11 Discussions on IT facilities

11.1 Microsoft Office update – it was agreed to cancel the subscription to Office 365 at the end of January.                                                                                                                                                            EC
11.2 Purchase of laptop and printer for use by Clerk on behalf of UPC – a grant application had been completed and submitted, with a decision due by the end of February. If successful, UPC would purchase a laptop, software and printer for use by the clerk on behalf of UPC. All data relating to UPC would be held on the laptop and on a cloud server.
11.3 Software /email account /single points of failure – it was agreed to hold a meeting with Brian Rippon to discuss UPC’s requirements and obtain further training.                                                        EC

12 and 13
Potential use of Communities Fund & Communities Grant Fund in Upton including defib cabinet [Clerk’s note: items 12 and 13 of the agenda were taken together.]
SN and SCF had submitted application forms to fund the supply and fitting of a defibrillator cabinet and to carry out tree surgery work required in the village. It was hoped that UPC would receive a decision from the fund organisers in March.

14 Update on siting of WW1 Memorial

14.1 SCF reported that St Mary’s PCC had agreed in principle that the memorial plaque would be relocated to the vestry as part of the proposed future refurbishment works.

15 Approval of expenditure

15.1 Clerk expenses for the period 28.11.17 to 15.01.18 – total £12.80 signed off by SCF.

Data Protection course (OALC / Didcot) 14.2.18 – £48.00 (paid through bank 13.12.17).

Village Hall Hire (2/10, 12/10, 27/11 @£10 each) – £30.00.

Tree cutting in Stream road and the Toddler playground – £2070 + vat. Quote received, awaiting grant approval.

Purchase of two replacement toddler swings – approved at previous meeting – £84.95 each. It was agreed that EC would order the swings.

It was agreed that the End of Year Accounts course (OALC / Burford) was not required. It was noted that no expenses had been incurred in relation to Grounds upkeep.                                                      EC

16 Any other business and next meeting

16.1 A brief discussion took place concerning the pump track. The UPC agreed to look into whether to resurface the pump track in the new financial year.                                                                                      All
16.2 Next meeting: Monday 19th March 2018, 6pm in the village hall meeting room. There being no further business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 7:45pm.

Stuart Fraser Chairman

APPENDIX A

Upton Parish Council District Notes for Parish Councillors on Monday, 15th January 2018 from Cllr Janet Shelley & Cllr Reg Waite

Enforcement Investigations:

VE17/496 – The Gate House, Reading Road, Upton OX11 9HP Reported: 24 August 2017 Alleged breach: Breach of conditions 3 & 5 on planning application P16/V1903/FUL (tree protection and turning area). Case Officer: Zoe Spring Site visits: 21 September 17 and 5 October 17 6 week target date – 5 October 17. 12 week target date – 16 November 17. Still under investigation.

VE17/279 – The Gate House, Reading Road, Upton OX11 9HP Reported: 22 May 2017 Alleged breach: Landscaping not in accordance with the approved plans for P16/V1903/FUL. Case Officer: Clare Merritt Site visited: 12 June 2017. Case now closed. Decision: No breach.

VE17/160 – Plot 29, Warren Place, Upton Reported: 30 March 2017 Alleged breach: Without planning permission the material change of use of land for residential purposes. Case Officer: Susannah Mangion Site visited: 5 April 2017 and 1 May 2017. 6 week target date – 11 May 2017. 12 week target date – 22 May 2017. In early December, it was reported to Enforcement Officer that the gate to the site was unlocked; children and young people had visited creating increased rubbish; considered to be health and safety issue. Matters were then reported to Community Safety team. The owners had promised to clear the site by the end of 2017. Enforcement officer visited last week which confirmed no action had been taken. Matters now being discussed with Senior Officer to consider prosecution and/or direct action.

1. PERMANENT CHIEF EXECUTIVE APPOINTED
South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils have appointed Mark Stone as their permanent Chief Executive. Mark has spent a successful six months as Acting Chief Executive. His appointment was approved by councillors at Vale of White Horse District Council’s full council meeting on 13 December and South Oxfordshire District Council’s full council meeting on 14 December, following a rigorous interview process with the two councils’ Joint Staff Committee.

Waste has never bin so easy with a new smartphone app:
Waste collection information is now just a screen tap away in South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse. The two district councils have launched a brand-new smartphone app, which is available free of charge for iPhone and Android phones right now.
The app is called Binzone – by simply tapping their postcode in and selecting their address, residents can find out which bin is being emptied this week, and what day it’s being emptied.
The app will also send users a notification if their waste collection day changes due to a bank holiday – very handy for keeping track of what day bins will be emptied over Bank Holiday periods.
It will also let residents know if collections are disrupted by snow or icy conditions.
That’s not all though – residents can also use Binzone to look up what bin their rubbish goes in. Ever been confused as to what bin an empty aerosol can goes in? Not any more – residents can simply search for it in Binzone and find out. It’s the green recycling wheelie bin, by the way.
The app is so easy to navigate and will save residents time by having all the information needed right at their fingertips, especially the changes to collection days around bank holidays.
If the weather worsens again this winter the Binzone app will come into its own by keeping our residents informed on what is happening to their collections. It is very handy to have the information in one place.
Binzone is available to download free of charge on the iPhone Appstore and the Google Play Store.

Council support for Syrian refugee families highlighted
In September 2015 the Government committed to resettling up to 20,000 Syrian refugees in the UK. We pledged to resettle six families in the Vale.
Any refugee family arriving in the UK requires intensive support from the moment they get here. They have no possessions or financial resources and many also do not speak English.
To ensure families moving to the Vale were able to quickly settle here we worked with the British Red Cross to provide a suitable environment with access to a support network.
Last month a BBC Sunday Politics featured the story of one family who have settled in Abingdon.
Cllr Matthew Barber, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council said: “When a family arrives in the UK, it is vital that they are resettled into a suitable environment and with the support they need to adapt to life here. That means finding appropriate private rented accommodation, arranging health and education, and providing translation and language services as well as ongoing support. However, it is often the little things, the tasks that people take for granted, such as organising bus passes to ensure the family can get to local services, which are most important.
“I’m very proud of the support that we and British Red Cross have provided for the families. Voluntary groups and residents across the Vale have also been very supportive, offering donations and welcoming the families to the local area and helping to make them feel a part of the Vale community.”
Rose Haines, operations manager for refugee support at the Red Cross said: “We are proud to be working alongside the South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils and our voluntary sector partners to welcome refugees to the area and help them settle into their new home. With more displaced people in the world than at any point since the Second World War, we welcome the fact that the UK is playing its part in offering a place of safety to those fleeing the conflict in Syria.”

Helping residents keep warm and healthy this winter
Residents in southern Oxfordshire concerned about keeping warm and managing their energy bills are being encouraged to contact an advice service for help.
The Better Housing Better Health service, funded by South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils alongside the county’s other district councils and Oxfordshire County Council, helps people who are vulnerable to the effects of living in cold homes over the winter period.
The advice service offers free, impartial advice on staying warm and managing energy bills. Residents can find out if they qualify for a grant to install energy saving improvements to their homes or a free home energy visit to look at ways to save energy to bring their bills down.
The service is run by the Affordable Warmth Network, which all local councils are part of. It offers direct referrals to a growing network of support organisations, including the fire service, falls prevention service and befriending and advice services. All of which aims to ease the pressure on other health services during the winter months.
With increasing energy costs, it is a worrying time for some and we would encourage anyone concerned to make the most of the service. Pick up the phone or visit the website today and find out about the help and support you, or someone you know, can receive immediately.”
Cold weather and homes can directly affect people’s health and we are proud to help fund this advice service which widens the support we already provide for our residents who are in most need.
If you or someone you know is struggling to keep warm and well this winter call the free BHBH hotline on 0800 107 0044 or visit the website www.bhbh.org.uk

Put your real tree to good use after Christmas – recycle it!
Now the festivities are all done, residents in the Vale are being encouraged to make sure their real Christmas trees are put to good use by recycling them.
Garden waste customers simply need to leave their real tree next to their brown bins on their usual collection day: • week commencing Monday 9 January in Vale of White Horse
However, residents do not have to be signed up to garden waste collections to recycle their real trees. They simply need to take it along to one of the drop-off points being set up by Vale of White Horse District Councils.
Details of the drop-off locations are available on the councils’ website here.
Last year a total of 2,384 real Christmas trees were collected and recycled from the various drop off points in Southern Oxfordshire. This is in addition to the trees that were left next to the brown garden waste bins.
Householders can obviously compost their real Christmas trees at home but we understand not everyone will want, or have a garden, to do this. We’re very pleased to give all householders the chance to recycle their trees and hope as many people as possible take advantage of this.
The drop-off locations for real Christmas trees are:
Before Tuesday 9 January • Buckland Village Hall • Childrey playing field • East Challow Village Hall Car Park
Before Friday 12 January • Kennington – Forest Side and Playfield Road playing fields car park
Before Sunday 14 January • Frilford – Millets Farm Garden Centre • Hinksey – The Oxford Garden Centre • Wantage – Charlton Park Garden Centre

2. OVER £100,000 AWARDED IN THE VALE OF WHITE HORSE AREA
Communities from Hinksey to Hendred and Botley to Blewbury have benefited from over £107,000 in grants awarded by Vale of White Horse District Council this month. Out of the total amount, the district council has given £55,306 to communities close to where new homes have been built.
We are delighted to be able to give so much support to local community groups, parish councils and clubs throughout the district – it’s particularly important that we’re supporting communities that are growing due to new developments in the Vale. £10,833 was awarded to Stanford in the Vale Parish Council towards removing a large electricity pylon from a 19-acre site so they can start using the space as a recreation area. There are plans to build a new community building, sports pitches and play areas for the whole community to enjoy. Grants totalling £6,050 have been awarded to refurbish the Royal British Legion clubs in Abingdon and East Challow – a popular venue for lots of community events for residents. A spokesperson from Challow Royal British Legion said, “Being awarded this grant will allow the committee to agree the necessary roof repairs sooner than expected. This well-used hall is a social hub for the area and the improvements to the club will be appreciated by all club users.” Kennington Parish Council received £4,750 to help them to forge ahead with new plans and designs for a brand-new pavilion, a much-needed facility which will be used by local clubs for sports and recreational activities. Other donations include:
• St Peter and Paul Church in North Hinksey who were given £4,088 to improve the heating, toilets and windows for community use, • Snells Hall in East Hendred received just over £1,000 to help upgrade their lighting, • Botley Bridges were awarded £1,518 to support three ten-week family improvement courses and, • Blewbury Parish Council had £6,257 for installing a ‘trim trail’ – a range of equipment offering physical activity for the whole community on their recreation ground. • Watchfield Parish Council received £11,146 to improve their play area and to buy a defibrillator to be placed nearby.
The cash came from two funds, both of which are available to not-for-profit organisations for one-off projects that benefit the wider local community. The district council also provides financial support for community festivals and events happening in the local area. For more information on all the grants the district council offer, visit www.whitehorsedc.gov.uk/grants.

Oxfordshire getting physical to support people with diabetes
Oxfordshire has a new county-wide project to support people with diabetes into physical activity.
The project is being delivered by five district councils, including South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils and Oxfordshire Sport and Physical Activity and is funded by the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning group.
Adults with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes can sign up to receive motivational coaching sessions, subsidised activities and ongoing telephone support and advice on managing their diabetes. They can also sign up to take part in 12 week StepWatchers programmes where they receive free pedometers and motivation to increase their step count.
There are currently more than 28,000 people registered as having diabetes in Oxfordshire and about 2,200 are newly diagnosed each year.
With type 2 diabetes, physical activity is an important component of your treatment plan. Not only does exercise affect your heart health and lower your blood glucose levels, but it can improve your confidence and sleep quality.
We are very pleased to be able to help deliver Go Active, Get Healthy which is a programme targeted specifically for people with diabetes and aims to help motivate and support those who need it to become more physically active.
We hope that through this programme, those who need the help will take advantage of the free coaching sessions, long term support and access to a range of great classes and opportunities.
Ed Nicholas, Physical Activity and Sport Manager at Oxfordshire Sport and Physical Activity added: “The prevalence of diabetes amongst the population of Oxfordshire means that it is time to provide interventions to support them with their condition.”
“I am delighted that we are in place to support people into activity. I am also delighted to see all the districts across Oxfordshire continue to support their respective residents. We hope that residents welcome this scheme and take sustainable physical activity into their lives.”
If you are interested in this scheme, simply complete our Diabetes Survey here https://www.getoxfordshireactive.org and a member of our team will be in touch. Alternatively, you can call us on 01235 422226 or email us ku.vog.elavdnahtuosnull@sdwuonk.etteirdneh.
Call to action. Go Active Get Healthy is a programme designed to support people with diabetes with physical activity interventions. Please visit the scheme website for further information and to self-refer onto the programme and find out more about activities taking place across the county. https://www.getoxfordshireactive.org/. Please also follow the scheme on social media-https://www.facebook.com/goactivesouth/ , https://www.facebook.com/goactive.vale/

APPENDIX B

REPORT TO UPTON PARISH COUNCIL JANUARY 2018 FROM CLLR MIKE FOX-DAVIES

GENERAL OCC REPORT

COUNCIL PROPOSES FUTURE BUDGET FROM A RESILIENT POSITION

OCC is planning to set a new budget having made difficult choices in previous years to manage a combination of squeezed budgets and the fact that more people need council services. Since 2010 the council has managed reductions in finances available at the same time as rises in demand for services – especially in children’s social care and adult social care. At the same time the council has in recent years been involving communities ever more in services for their locality – ranging from support for older people and those with learning disabilities to library volunteers. The net result is that the council’s finances are in a resilient position looking ahead to the 2018/19 financial year and planning for years up to 2022. The council has used its agreed vision for the future – supporting thriving people, a thriving economy and thriving communities – as the basis on which proposals have been made for the 2018/19 financial year and the plan for the three financial years which follow. Although proposed budget changes are not as extensive as in many previous years since 2010, like any organisation the council still has rising financial pressures that need to be matched by new savings so that a balanced budget can be proposed. At the time of writing, plans are based on a Council Tax rise of 4.99% (1.99% referendum limit plus 3% social care precept). However, in December, Central Government announced councils could add an additional 1%, should they so choose. This is currently under consideration. The Budget has to be approved by Cabinet, then Full Council on February 13th. The Budget consultation can be found here: https://consultations.oxfordshire.gov.uk/consult.ti/Budget_1819/consultationHome

CRIMINALS TARGET PUBS AND CLUBS TO PEDDLE ILLEGAL TOBACCO

Trading Standards are warning licensees and pub-goers to be on-the-look-out for criminals selling smuggled and counterfeit cigarettes and hand-rolling tobacco. The call for vigilance follows recent research revealing that nearly half (43%) of illegal tobacco customers use pubs and clubs as their main source of supply. Cheap illegal tobacco is attractive to some smokers because it is often sold at half the price of the legal equivalent but its availability helps children to start smoking, brings communities into contact with organised criminals and undermines legitimate local businesses. In October HMRC released figures showing illegal tobacco made up 15% of all cigarettes and 28% of hand-rolling tobacco smoked in the UK. Taxpayers lost around £2.5 billion from the illicit trade in 2016-17. This money, for example, could be used to fund over 50,000 new NHS nurses for a year. Anyone with information relating to illegal tobacco being bought or sold, can report this to Trading Standards by anonymously via the Illegal Tobacco Hotline, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 0300 999 6 999 or online at http://www.stopillegal-tobacco.co.uk/

ONE MILLION TONNES OF RUBBISH TRANSFORMED INTO ENERGY AT ARDLEY PLANT

OCC and its partner Viridor have marked the one millionth tonne of residual waste received at Ardley during December. The Ardley plant converts waste into electricity, rather than burying it in landfill. It produces enough energy to power 38,000 homes and can export up to 27MW per hour of electricity to the grid.

SNOW GUIDE
December saw substantial snowfall across the county. OCC has produced a useful guide for snow clearance and a copy is attached to this report.

JS & RWW 15 January 201