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Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 18th November 2019 2019.

Minutes of the meeting of the Chedzoy Parish Council, held on Monday 18th November in the Village Hall at 7.30pm.

1. Present: Cllrs Marion Dethier, Brian Gale, Nick Griffiths, Simon Howes (Chairman), Patricia Lennard and Rodney Young.

Also present:
Cllr Anthony Betty.

In attendance: The Clerk (Chris Fry).

Apologies: Cllrs John Paige, David Hall (Somerset County Council (SCC)) and Liz Perry (Sedgemoor District Council (SDC)).

2. Discussion on agenda.

The chairman raised the issue of the agenda for this meeting and noted that the item regarding a planning application on land in Manor Road to the rear of Quantock View, would now be discussed at a special meeting to be held on 25th November at 7.30 pm in the village hall. The chairman apologised to those attending tonight’s meeting in the expectation of discussing this application, explaining that this action was necessary to ensure members of the parish were given sufficient notice. Those who are unable to attend will be able to provide a written statement if so desired.

Action: clerk to ensure the correct notices are posted in the parish and on the website for the meeting arranged for 25th November at 7.30 pm.

3. Minutes of the previous meeting of 21st October 2019 were taken as read, approved and signed.

4. Matters arising from the minutes.

  • Parish Council Notice Board. The clerk reported the new notice board, for the exclusive use of the parish council, has been erected on the other side of the bus shelter from the existing notice board. John Paige has yet to request payment, though it is thought to be in the region of £207.00.

  • Public Footpaths throughout the Parish. The clerk advised the meeting that he had spoken to SALC (Somerset Association of Local Councils), who advise the problem of addressing breaches of footpath regulations is best served by preserving goodwill with the landowners/occupiers, rather than instigating legal steps.

    We are facing several footpath issues:

  • Open Spaces Society. The parish council has joined this organisation.

  • Bridleway (BW 8/10), from Slape Cross to the (former) Halfway Inn. Works associated with the power line has seen more heavy machinery using this drove than usual. The drove was deeply rutted in places by farm traffic. Some of these ruts have been levelled-off by the action of tracks and wheels of the vehicles used, and the largest ruts have been filled (presumably by the contractors) with hardcore and scalpings. When inspected at the end of October, the drove was very muddy due to the amount of rain, making it difficult to judge its true condition. The PPLO suggests that the condition of the right of way be closely monitored, and that the owner or contractor be contacted should the surface need further attention.

  • Footpath (BW 3/4) to the M5 overbridge. After a report of obstruction to this right of way at the base of the steps on the east side, the PPLO inspected the footpath on the 20th October. There was no obstruction apparent at that time. There were signs of vegetation having been cleared recently at the approach to the bridge. This right of way has been forced to the edge of the field on two sides by a fence, so needs to be cleared regularly. It should be noted that this path is in Bridgwater Without parish, and not Chedzoy, although the sleeper bridge over the ditch at its eastern end where it meets Park Wall Drove is.

  • Gates along Moor Drove Bridleway (BW8/16). The clerk has received a reply from George Montague, SCC footpath officer for the Sedgemoor area, to his enquiry about the dilapidated state of the three gates which are causing issues to horse riders in particular. George advises the gates are the responsibility of the landowners/occupiers, but saying that SCC are able to improve access where possible. He asks of someone could survey the bridleway and confirm the number of gates, maybe providing photos of them to show the extent of the damage. He also asks if farm vehicular traffic passes along the bridleway. There are three gates and farm vehicular access is needed.  Our footpath officer is kindly arranging necessary photos to show the extent of the damage to the metal gates and wooden posts.

    The clerk will reply to George and enquire what he can suggest about SCC assistance and/or alternative sources of funding.

    Action: clerk to organise the above and report back to the next meeting.

  •  Northfield footpath (BW 8/2). A parishioner who regularly walks this footpath is in the process of communication with the landowning company’s directors regarding the poor state of the footpath, including the path traversing the field and the one leading to Bawdip which has been ploughed right up to the hedge line.

    Action: any progress to be reported at future meetings.

  • SRA (Somerset Rivers Authority) Community Engagement Team visit. Dawn James and Emma Giffard have agreed to come and speak at the meeting on 17th February 2020, on ways of working together to reduce the impact of future flood events.
  • Web site information. The clerk has updated relevant web site information.

5. Somerset County Council report.  None.

6. Sedgemoor District Council report. Anthony Betty said things are quiet in the lead up to the general election.

7. Planning.  One application has been received for  consideration:

Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (Amended).
Application reference: 18/19/00006/EC.
Applicant: Mr Chandler.
Location: On land to the rear of Quantock View, Higher Road, Chedzoy, Bridgwater Somerset.
Proposal: Erection of three dwellings and one flat, formation of a new vehicular access, associated parking and garden.

The application will be discussed at a special planning meeting on Monday 25th November 2019 in the village hall at 7.30 pm.

8. Correspondence.
  • Planning seminars. The venue for the second of the forthcoming annual planning seminars has been moved to Canalside Bridgwater 0n 28th November 2019 starting at 5.45 pm.

  • Surface drainage problems in Chedzoy Lane. An email was read out from SCC highways advising that they had cleared a number of blocked gullies and associated drains, but they had found some of the ditches which received the surface water are in need of cleansing. The outfall ditch at Slape Cross is of particular concern and importance as it should receive the surface water from both east and west. Laurence Hackling of SCC highways is requesting the parish council brings this matter to the attention of the relevant landowners/occupiers, who have a riparian responsibility to clear out the ditches and pipes on their land. Alternatively Laurence will make contact with them so long as we provide him with their details.

    The clerk has liaised with the clerk of Bridgwater Without parish council as some of the problems lie in that parish.

    Action: it was agreed that the clerk will pass on the landowners’ contact details to Laurence for him to follow up.

  • Parish information held at Sedgemoor District Council. Claire Faun, Corporate Relations Manager at SDC is requesting certain up to date parish information.

    Action:  the clerk to provide this.

  • For information only – New charity fund for communities. Financial experts, Old Mill, have launched a new charity in a new strategic partnership with Somerset Community Foundation (SCF), with a fund to support local charities across Somerset, Wiltshire and Devon. This charity will focus on three areas:
  1. Building brighter futures,
  2. Reducing rural loneliness
  3. Strengthening communities.

    For more information go to: or phone 01749 344949.
  • For information only – Council tax scam by text. SCC warns of a company which is texting people saying a council tax refund is pending and going on to obtain bank details. Members of the public are advised to delete the text.
9. Matters arising from the correspondence. None.

10. Finance.
Balances after allowing for all payments due:-

Lloyds Bank Current Account £5450.02
Lloyds Bank Deposit Account £2.48
Cambridge Building Society Easy Access Account £12341.19

Three cheques were issued as follows:

Number Amount Payee For
666 £540.00 C.N Fry Playing field grass cutting - due to P Clapp
667 £152.47 C.N Fry November net salary
668 £107.82 C.N Fry Expenses

The clerk reminded the councillors that we are committed to paying £1000.00 towards the VE Day 75th Anniversary celebrations 2020, new notice board cost of £207.00 as well as tonight’s cheques, with just over four months of this financial year to go.

Action – Precept setting for 2020/2021 to be on the agenda for the next meeting.

11. Any other business and date of next meeting.
  • Heritage Plaques. The clerk reported that there had been a misunderstanding about this, in that the agreement of both householders concerned has not yet been obtained.

    Action: the clerk will write to the parties setting out the proposed action.

  • Defibrillator volunteer. Rodney Young reported that a parishioner who is trained in the use of the equipment has volunteered to assist in its use. This was appreciated but it was pointed out that the defibrillator gives full instructions to whoever is using it.

  • Item for next meeting – Trees for Somerset – Trees for your parish. An event to promote tree planting is to be held at West Monkton village hall on Wednesday 29th January 2020, from 10.00am to 3.30pm. The parish council supports this initiative which not only encourages community engagement and promotes wellbeing, it also helps to control flooding and counter CO2 emissions, safeguarding the future of our landscape and helping to address climate change.

    Action: to be added to the agenda for the next meeting.
Date of the next meeting: Monday 16th December 2019.

There being no other business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 8.52pm.



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