SOUTH LEIGH AND HIGH COGGES PARISH COUNCIL MEETING
29th November 2022 7.30 pm in the Village Hall
Nicky Brooks (NB)
Lysette Nicholls (LN)
David Auger (DA)
Peter Grant (PG)
Dick Pears (DP)
- Apologies – Rita Sawrey-Woodwards
District Councillors apologies – apologies from the three District Councillors – Cllr Levy having submitted a written report which can be summarised
- Declarations of interest – LN re item 17 and she withdrew as that item was dealt with
- To approve the minutes of the previous meeting as being a true record of the proceedings – Approved
- Opportunity for any parishioner to raise a matter of concern.
Martin Spurrier indicated that Tree phase 2 of South Leigh Forest Restoration was completed. He presented a map with the location of the planted trees indicated and said a total of 1765 trees had been planted – Rachel Murphy having planted 1600, 96 trees had been planted and privately paid for and 69 trees had been funded by grant money via the Trust for Oxfordshire Environment (TOE) with funding from Grundon Waster Management whose part is expressly recognised. One has also to thank David Brooks whose idea it was and those who have helped in whatever to achieve this. A written report will follow, and it was agreed that TOE executive Rachel Sanderson will come to the parish and meet with Parish Councillors on a date to be organised by Martin Spurrier.
5. Opportunity for any County Councillor and / or District Councillor to update the Parish Council on any matter of relevance or concern. LN as a WODC District Councillor indicated that the land supply having been 5.3 years was now considered to be 4.1 years and therefore below the minimum of 5 years which would mean that applications for housing development could only be rejected by WODC if the developments would cause extreme harm. That in effect would mean that the local plan could be overridden. A number of the parishes that she represented e.g. Aston and Stanton Harcourt were facing development applications. NB was sanguine saying that SL was less likely to have application because it had so few resources such as shop or bus service. Cllr Levy in his report to PC detailed a number of issues that OCC were dealing with such as hardship funds for cost of living support and assistance with Council Tax and gives an update with the dual carriage way and Shore’s Green where it is best to set out what he says “As you will have seen, the likely cost of the HIF2 A40 scheme is now judged to have exceeded the funding from Homes England, because of the high level of inflation. The scheme has therefore been paused to be reviewed. The likelihood is that aspects of it will be scaled back, to bring it back into the available funding envelope. It isn’t yet entirely clear what is in scope or what elements could practically be dropped. The Park and Ride at Eynsham has been started, but it seems imprudent not to include it in the review. The same is true of the Shores Green junction. I will share more information when I have it. In relation to park and ride he says Cheaper Park and Ride tickets up and running: Passengers can now buy a combined ticket covering both parking and return bus travel for £4 for a car with only 1 adult and £5 for a car and 2 adults. With both options, up to three children under 16 can travel for free. Drivers are encouraged to purchase a combined ticket through the RingGo parking app, or at one of the onsite ticket machines.
6. Report on the liaison between the Parish and the Parishes of Stanton/Harcourt, Sutton, Standlake and Eynsham PC.
7. Payments to approve – none to approve but a small credit of £17.99 received
8.Grass-cutting and quotes and potential provision for further cut/leaf collection on village green/ entrance to Lymbrook Close, issues over road gullies/gutters and any remaining hardcore in and around Lymbrook Close. NB outlined that the village green and village hall grassed areas were cut by one contractor whilst the playing field was cut by another. She had tried to consolidate and had sought a quote from the playing field contractor to mow the village green and village hall but the quote was substantially higher. It was agreed to stick with two individual contractors. NB would organise for there to be a further cut/leaf collection on the village green before end of December 2022. The other items were not discussed and need to be dealt with at the next meeting.
9. Conservation area – the result of the village poll on the question “do you support the Parish council’s recommendation to submit the conservation area status application as per the documents you have received in September updated with the new boundary plan” was declared on 31st October 2022 and that 130 persons voted: with 106 in support and 24 against, with the counting overseen by Cllr Rylett of WODC. The Parish Council records that the poll was merely advisory rather than binding but having considered the clear result in favour together with other considerations currently facing the parish there were two motions proposed 1. It is proposed that an application is made to WODC for the areas set out in the boundary plan to be granted conservation area status and 2 It is proposed that Dick Pears who resigned from the Conservation area/working group/sub/committee on 4th October 2022 during the pendency of the poll should rejoin it. Each was proposed, seconded, and carried unanimously
10.Update on Anaerobic Digester. This item was taken out of order because of the number of parishioners present who were concerned with this item on the agenda rather than others
Acorn (the project developer) had from 3.30 to 7pm a presentation in the village hall and 96 people had signed the register to indicate their presence. Alister Veitch the Head of Business Development of Acorn sought an opportunity to address the PC but it was decided that it was more appropriate that he should address the PC and the parishioners at a specially convened meeting when advance notice of what was to occur had been given.
NB noted that no application had yet been made and whilst there had been a presentation, Acorn had not yet put its case fully to the PC and the village.
There were several parishioners present and to proceed efficiently DP summarised and listed the 12 categories of objection that had been received from parishioners on email plus other matters such as the government directive re AD risk and the various parts of the NPPF, local and neighbourhood plan. It was pointed out that the remit of the PC was necessarily more limited than the remit of any pressure group that might be founded and that the PC were not as able as others to seek publicity etc. Further it was pointed out that one had to wait until an application was made and whilst Acorn might want a rapid decision it was a matter that would have to be considered by committee of WODC rather than an officer. There was discussion over whether this was an OCC “sponsored” application or an application by a landowner on an “approved” waste site and which local authority – WODC or OCC would be making a decision. DP summarised other information that had been received such as Acorn’s other site and pending applications and the contact that one parishioner had had with the chair of a PC in Norfolk (Bressingham and Fersfield PC). PC would try and arrange visit to Acorn facility
NB and DP had organised a meeting with Vice-Chair of WODC Climate and Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee
- Village Hall – discussion of potential extensions. Plans had been received on an informal basis from an architect connected to a parishioner for an extension to the village hall. A meeting would be organised between the PC to discuss them
- Update on Emergency Plan – this had been adopted but final observations were awaited from OCC
- Update Shores Green/ A40 dual carriageway planning application – NB indicated that there was still considerable confusion as to what if anything would proceed and clarification would be sought
- Update on local plan, housing allocation and building supply – this had been referred to above
- Thames Water – progress report. DP had had a site meeting with the supervising engineer of Thames Water on 29th November who had attended with another representative of Thames Water and 4 representatives of Costain – the subcontractors for the resilience and phosphate removal work and further details with be provided by Thames Water
- Update on mobile signal – DP had had a prearranged telephone call with the technical department at BT/EE – in summary whilst they had hoped to improve signal by tree pruning or a new site for a mast neither were possible and so they were looking at increasing the height of the current mast
- Commercial dog walkers in the village – issues and resolution. NB indicated that the police were now involved and therefore the PC should not at this stage take any further action.
- Responses to any planning matters – there were no planning matters
- Date of next meeting – NB would circulate dates