Minutes of Annual General Meeting 16 May 2016


Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of Upton Parish Council

Upton Village Hall, Monday 16th May 2016 at 8.00 pm

PRESENT:  Dr R Lott, Mr S Fraser, Mr S Norman, Mr R Traynor, Ms K Marshall,  Mrs A Hoy (Clerk) and two members of the public

1.         Apologies for Absence: Cllr J Shelley, Cllr S Lilly, Cllr R Waite, Mrs K Fletcher

2.         Election of Chairman:  Dr R Lott had previously expressed his wish to stand down as Chairman.  After discussion it was proposed and seconded that Mr S Fraser would take on the role of Chairman. ,

3.         Declarations of Interest

Members are asked to declare any personal interest and the nature of that interest which they may have in any items under consideration at this meeting.  None recorded.

4.         Election of Vice-Chairman:  There being no other offer to take on the role of Vice Chairman, Dr R Lott agreed to take over from Mr S Fraser but both expressed the wish that another Councillor could then take on the role to increase the expertise in the Council; proposed, seconded and carried unanimously.

5.         Acceptance of Office – Dr Lott , Mr Fraser, Mr Norman, Ms Marshall, and Mr Traynor were duly re-elected as Members of the Parish Council and all signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office.  The various roles and responsibilities would be allocated at the next meeting; Mr Fraser expressed the hope that Dr Lott would continue his effective dialogue with Highways regarding Upton’s traffic problems.  POST MEETING NOTE:  Mrs K Fletcher had written to the Chairman expressing her wish to resign due to pressure of work and family duties.  Several parishioners had expressed their interest in taking on the role of Parish Councillor during the recent Parish Plan questionnaire and would be approached to see if they were willing to be coopted onto the Council. Meanwhile, an advertisement would be placed in the Upton News and on the Council Noticeboard.

The Clerk was requested to write to the representatives who sat on various local committees, thanking them for their past service and requesting confirmation that they were willing to continue with those duties.           Clerk

6.         Adoption of minutes of meeting(s): the minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting on 18th April having been previously circulated, were agreed to be a true record and were signed by the Chairman.  The minutes of 4th May were yet to be finalised.

7.         Reports:  Cllr R Waite had sent a report, which was circulated prior to the meeting.  He reported that the past year had been very busy for both Cllr Shelley and himself, and felt that the Vale had demonstrated good management during the year without reduction in standards despite further budget cuts.  He advised that the Vale’s Local Plan 2031 was currently being inspected and hoped that as soon as it was passed the number of speculative development planning applications would reduce, with the 5 year land supply target having been fulfilled.  The views of the population were sought on the subject of the proposed new unitary authority, which could take place in the next few years.  Cllr Waite announced that the new Chief Executive of the Vale and South Oxfordshire District Councils would be David Hill, who would be moving here from Humberside but with prior experience in South Oxfordshire. Finally he advised garden waste customers that during this week, they could put out double the amount of garden waste.

8.         Public Forum:  The meeting was then closed to allow members of the public to speak.  Responding to a query about a crumbling dropped kerb, Dr Lott advised that OCC should be approached.  The persistent problem of potholes in Prospect Road was raised; the public were assured that complaints continued to be made to the FixMyStreet website but that the more complaints were made, the more chance there was of action being taken.  In the meantime, Dr Lott would continue his efforts to have the road resurfaced.  The meeting was then reconvened.

9.         Matters arising:

Parish Council Meeting on 15th March:

a)                  Emergency Plan: Mr Traynor confirmed he was collating all the information and a decision would be made when to publicise it in the Upton News.

b)                  Potholes in Prospect Road – see above

c)                  Downland Transport Campaign Group, update: Dr Lott reported that a further communication with Thames Travel had taken place today (Maranda St John Nicolle email circulated). There had been 249 responses from local villages, a small proportion of whom had indicated they would have to move if the bus service were to cease. Non-car owners were largely happy with the existing service, car owners wanted improvements to timetabling so that buses coincided with train arrivals/departures to London.  Concessionary bus permit holders had indicated they would be happy to pay for part or all of their fares if it kept the service going.  It was thought that the X2 would stop in North and South Moreton instead of the 94/95 route.  It had also been suggested that schoolchildren could take the bus service instead of dedicated school minibuses, thus making it more viable.  Thames Travel seemed optimistic that at least some of the service could be salvaged.  The final decision would be made in July.

Annual Parish Meeting on 18th April

a)            Publishing Parish Plan – Mr Traynor reported on quotations he had received fro printing of the new Parish Plan.  He was given a budget of up to £200 to cover printing of 180 copies (one for each household with a few spare).  Dr Lott emphasized that it was not possible for the Parish Council to carry out everything that the Parish might want in the village; if additional village facilities were desired, it was important that local people participated in the planning and work required to bring such improvements about.      RT

b)           Queen’s Birthday celebrations – Clerk to investigate whether there was still time to order Queen’s medals to give to children at a picnic on the recreation ground on Sunday 12th June (hall booked in case of rain).  Expenditure of up to £100 was agreed, in case it was too late to take advantage of grants offered. POST MEETING NOTE confirmation received that all grant funds had been used up.  The deadline was 6th May.                   Clerk

10.       Business to be transacted:

a)            Ratification of Annual Governance Statement:  the document was read out and after discussion was duly signed by the Chairman and the Clerk.

b)           Adoption of accounts: the 2015-16 accounts, having been previously circulated, were adopted unanimously.

c)            Aims and Objectives: after discussion on speeding through the village, it was agreed to continue pressing for traffic calming measures to reduce the average speed from 43mph at present, so that a pedestrian crossing became a realistic possibility; the Aims and Objectives were adopted unanimously with these minor amendments.  Clerk to pass to Webmaster and upload to data file.

d)           Standing Orders:  no changes were made to this document.

e)           Financial Regulations: after discussion on the transparency regulations, it was decided to defer this item to the next meeting.  Clerk to confirm that all expenditure over £100 must be displayed.                                                                                                                   Clerk

f)            Risk Assessment; this was reviewed and after discussion was adopted unanimously.

g)            Asset Register: this had been reviewed and the new Masport mower added, after which it was adopted unanimously.

h)           Clerks salary for FY 2016-17 :  the Clerk had circulated a pay award document from NALC which came into force in January 2015, which she apologized for having missed.  This had resulted in an under-payment of £71.52 for the year 2015-16.  The question of a salary increase was held over, to be reviewed before next meeting.

i)             Budget 2016-17: It was agreed to adopt the budget at the next meeting

j)            Resurfacing of Pump Track:  it was noted that the surface was in a sorry state and needed replacing rather than resurfacing.  If agreed, Uptonogood? monies could be used to replace existing surface with tarmac which could last 20 years.  Dr Lott agreed to look at options and get quotes.                                                                                          RL

k)            Leaking Garage Roof: Dr Lott had spoken to a supplier who had offered to re-roof with a rubber membrane at a cost of £500.  It was agreed that this was a very good offer but in the interests of transparency, two other quotes should be sought; Mr Traynor agreed to do this.                                                                                                                        RT

l)             Planning page on Upton Website: in response to the request from a resident, Mr Rippon had drafted a page showing details of recent planning applications with links to the relevant page on the Vale of White Horse website.  After discussion, it was unanimously agreed that this was an unnecessary duplication of information already available to the public, and that a link to the Vale’s Planning Portal website was all that was required.

m)          Proposal to erect a replacement War Memorial on the corner of the Methodist Chapel site (circulated):  Dr Lott had suggested that the existing war memorial (a plaque on the wall of the old Chapel) could be re-sited on the land to the left of the entrance gate which could not be built on because of the existing trees.  This would provide an element of community use and perhaps enable the Methodist Church to seek and acquire change of use to residential for the remainder of the site.  It was noted that the land had originally been given to the Church by the village and in this way a small part of it could be given back.  After discussion Mr Traynor agreed to investigate the cost of such a memorial (in wood), and all were confident that the money could be raised by public subscription.  The Clerk agreed to draft a letter to the Methodist Church outlining the idea and requesting their comments.                                                                                    RT/Clerk

11.       For noting:


  • P16/V0553/FUL Land adjacent to and behind George & Dragon/Provision for Travellers site: Dr Lott had collated information from local and national planning regulations as well as from the North Wessex Downs AONB and the Vale Planning Officer, although he was disappointed to note that the NWD AONB did not intend to object to the application.    Dr Lott had ascertained that the Vale was required to provide 13 pitches for Travellers in total, 3 by 2017, another 4 by 2022 and the remainder by 2029; they had already determined 8 pitches.  Charlotte Brewerton (Planning Officer at the Vale) was checking with their Legal Department whether the application should be subject to the needs of the 5 year housing supply.  If it is, it was noted that a previous application for a dwelling on this site had been turned down.  It was reported that the owners of the George & Dragon had objected to the application as it was felt that it would be detrimental to the family business it had built up.  Mr Fraser noted that the matter could possibly go to a full planning meeting at which every person attending would be able to speak for three minutes; it was suggested that a strategy should be developed so that facts were not repeated but each individual could concentrate on a separate point of objection.  Dr Lott agreed to write to Charlotte Brewerton to ascertain whether it was going to full committee, and if so, the date of the meeting.  The decision date was scheduled for 6th June.


  • Came & Co. renewal of annual insurance (circulated)
  • BDO External Audit documentation (circulated)
  • OALC Training Courses (circulated):  The Clerk was requested to book Mr Fraser on the Chairmanship course, and Ms Marshall onto the Planning course.
  • Methodist Chapel – letter from Mary Hancock (circulated)

Receipts since last meeting

  • VOWH – precept £4250  +£46 grant April;
  • Lloyds Bank Gross Interest 2015-16 £2.38
  • Bank interest March 15p, April 17p

Angela Hoy, Clerk
Tel:  01235 851726
20th  May 2016

Appendix A – Schedule of payments

Description Amount
Mrs A Hoy (salary, April, May @ £149.60 net per month) BACS payment 299.20
HMRC PAYE (standing order) – 3 months 112.20
Correction to Clerk’s salary for year 2015-16 (£71.52 – tax @ 20%) 57.22
Clerk’s Expenses (postage, travel costs, APM refreshments) 59.43
TOTAL                       £528.05