- Rob Morgan (Chair)
- Bridgette Crundwell (Vice)
- Laurence Mellor
- Philippa Carter
- Sandy Timms
- Rodney Rose
- Hilary Hibbert-Biles
- Jillian Southwell OCC Library Services
- Angela Barnes
1. MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
The Minutes from the December meeting were agreed, signed, dated and duly filed.
There were no apologies received.
3. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST:
There were no declarations of interest.
4. FINANCIAL REPORT:
- £282.24 Peacock & Co Chq: 100895 (snow fund)
- £100.00 The Wychwood Day Centre Ltd Chq: 100896 (donation)
- £180.00 The Wychwood Day Centre Ltd Chq: 100897 (proceeds from carols round the Christmas Tree)
- £45.00 World of Color Cotswolds Ltd Chq: 100898 (printing for carols round the Christmas Tree)
- £192.00 Bruern Farm Chq: 100899 (Christmas Tree)
- £100.80 R A Newman & Sons Chq: 100900 (Hedgecutting on the Playing Field)
- £1000.00 Cottsway (grant for Project Safe Play)
- £180.00 Proceeds from carols round the Christmas Tree
- £3.63 Interest
5. COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORT:
Please refer to Item No. 9.
Oxfordshire County Council
- Road from Ascott towards Leafield (dip caused by badgers ) – This was now complete, albeit it had been noted that the standard of work was not good as motorists could still sense a considerable dip whilst driving – CCllr Rose to look into
- Gullies” on London Lane (already marked) – CCllr Rose to look into
- Hedgerow on London Lane – Ongoing CClr Rodney Rose to look into
- Flooding – After a very lengthy discussion and explanation Cllr Carter asked CCllr Rodney Rose for ongoing permission to shut the road (Shipton Road, Ascott Earl) and use appropriate road blockage. CCllr Rodney Rose completely understood and agreed to look into this and report back to Cllr Carter.
- Home to School Transport – CCllr Rodney Rose reported that the consultation was scheduled to end on Tuesday 14 January and a report would be presented to Cabinet on 4 February.
- Bus Service – CCllr Rose agreed to look at the routes through Ascott-under-Wychwood, in particular the Charlbury taxi bus.
6. DISTRICT COUNCILLORS REPORT:
DCllr Hibbert-Biles reported that the Local Plan was not yet complete. She reported that the nurse contracts at the Chipping Norton Hospital were up for review.
7. CHIPPING NORTON RIVER BRIDGE:
No further progress. The Clerk was asked to remove this item from the Agenda and future recorded Minutes.
8. PUBLIC TIME:
There were no members of the public and so no public time was recorded.
9. THE WYCHWOOD LIBRARY:
Jillian reported that the Wychwood Library’s funding from OCC was included in the cuts and that she was due to meet with Milton-under-Wychwood and Shipton-under-Wychwood Parish Council over the next two weeks to finalise how they wished to administer the cut in funding while still keeping the Library open. To maintain the Wychwood Library’s current opening hours, a combination of alternative funding plus volunteer hours would have to be found. She presented a table listing the number of borrowers registered at Wychwood Library also showing these as a percentage. This included Ascott-under-Wychwood, Milton-under-Wychwood, Shipton-under-Wychwood and Others (in Oxfordshire and outside Oxfordshire).
CCllr Rodney Rose reported that Milton-under-Wychwood Parish Council would be prepared to give the majority funding as Milton has the majority of borrowers. Ascott and Shipton would be asked to consider giving according to the proportion of borrowers registered at the Wychwood Library.
Cllr Crundwell referred to the advice sought by the Clerk and given to Ascott-under-Wychwood Parish Council by Oxfordshire Association of Local Councils (OALC) that any financial donation given would have to be recorded under Section 137 expenditure and should be concurrent to the need of the parishioners of the Village. The Clerk confirmed that any Section 137 Expenditure would need to be reviewed on an annual basis and indeed any decision made under Section 137 Expenditure, if challenged, would need to be justified.
After a lengthy discussion, the Clerk was asked to clarify the advice given by OALC and report back. Cllr Morgan thanked Jillian Southwell for attending the meeting and for giving such an informative presentation to the Parish Council. CCllr Rodney Rose offered to organise and facilitate a meeting between all three Wychwood Parish Councils. Cllr Morgan confirmed that the PC would give this some thought and report back to CCllr Rose once they had had time to digest the information presented.
10. PLANNING APPLICATIONS:
14/0018/P/FP Change of use from agricultural to light industrial unit (Use Class B1©. New doors and windows and installation of solar panels (to allow amendments to elevations, cladding materials and provide additional solar panels) at Kingstanding Barns – The Clerk was asked to reply no objections
11. CAROLS ROUND THE CHRISTMAS TREE:
- All councillors felt the evening went well and feedback was positive.
- It was decided that the catering was spot on – mulled wine for 200, 10 boxes of 12 mince pies, a tine of sweets for children. However a soft drink as an alternative choice could be considered next time.
- Proceeds from the collection buckets – £180 was collected in aid of The Wychwood Day Centre Limited. Councillors suggested that there should be more than 2 people collecting.
- Cllr Carter reported that spare polystyrene cups and the carol sheets had been placed back into storage. There were enough carol sheets if shared between 2 people.
Cllr Mellor asked the Clerk to record the Parish Councils gratitude and thanks to Kerri Morgan for all of her hard work in supplying the Nativity Scene around the Christmas Tree. Cllr Mellor proposed that a letter of thanks should be written, this was seconded by Cllr Crundwell.
12. ASCOTT-UNDER-WYCHWOOD RECREATION GROUND:
Cllr Carter reported that incuded in the project to develop the Recreation Ground we hope to improve drainage. The Chief Engineer of WODC has taken an interest in this scheme and advised us to organise a basic grid survey of the ground before any decisions can be made. Simon Gidman has offered to do this and Rob Morgan will assist. I have walked the Ground with Simon explaining all the issues regarding the proposed development of MUGA, footpath and drainage. He will be arranging to do the survey this month.
13. PROJECT SAFE PLAY:
Cllr Carter reported that the grant application to Sport England Inspired Facilities was submitted mid December. Sport England has a partnership with the Thomas Cook charity which supports disadvantaged young people. Their application form is attached to the end of the Inspired Facilities form and we have applied to Thomas Cook to support the path. This would allow disabled access to the playing field and facilities for the first time. There is currently £16,008.74 in the PC account ringfenced for Project Safe Play. We recently received a donation of £1,000 from Cottsway. The promises of funding from OCC ChillOut Fund, WODC and Ascott Village Charity would bring the funds to over £42,000. 2 applications to private charities need to be chased and 2-3 others written this month. Cllr Carter reported that the Sport England grant is key to being able to achieve the MUGA goal and their decision is expected in March.
14. ASCOTT-UNDER-WYCHWOOD SPORTS CLUB:
Nothing to report.
15. COMMUNITY EMERGENCY PLAN:
Cllr Mellor reported that the salt had been delivered and that the machinery had been serviced.
Cllr Carter reported that properties around Ascott Earl put all protection in position on Xmas Eve. Friends helped to lift furniture in some homes in the first week of January. All residents were in touch with each other and monitored Met forecasts and Evenlode levels on the EA website.
One property had problems with a defective drain. Sand bags were requested and volunteers called upon to fill and deliver them. I received no other requests for sandbags.
The 2 cottages on the bend suffered from water entering their properties from traffic bow waves. Flood warning signs do not deter drivers. Highways agreed to close the road (after Police gave their permission), arrived several hours later and then left without doing anything. No explanation has been given. The cottages do have substantial flood guards but for one cottage this means being imprisoned – not ideal with young children on a very sunny Xmas Eve. Are there no other solutions?
All other properties remained dry and it seems that the flood relief works have helped to relieve a very tricky situation at the Ascott Earl end.
16. HELPERS OF ASCOTT-UNDER-WYCHWOOD:
Cllr Carter reported that she planned to call a session to clean up around the gulley opposite Sunset House. She is planning to form a rota for weeding the bed by the station and have received offers for this already, which is encouraging.
Cllr Carter reported that she met with Teresa Ceesay of First Great Western on 12 December. She has asked for another donation from FGW for maintenance and seasonal planting around the station and she stated that this had been agreed. No money has been received yet. She is very enthusiastic about our work and has used photographs in presentations to other stations.
Cllr Carter reported that she had inspected and discussed the ‘stadium’ light over the Level Crossing (see Matters Arising).
17. MATTERS ARISING:
- Culvert by Tyack’s Yard – Network Rail (NR) – Ongoing
- Stadium light over the Level Crossing
Cllr Carter reported that complaints about the bright light over the level crossing had been reported to NR and FGW. Two NR engineers had reports showing that remedial work had been done. When I replied that residents were still complaining they asked if I could visually check what had been done to the light and report back. On 12 December I discussed this issue with Teresa Ceesay (FGW) and the signalman.
(The signalman explained that the reason for the strength of light was that it was planned at the time when NR thought there would be central signalling from Swindon. A-u-W level crossing would therefore have had CCTV and strong lighting would have been necessary for the camera to pick up information.)
On inspecting the light we agreed that no shuttering had been installed. The only action taken was that a strip of black tape had been placed on the Perspex cover of the light thereby reducing the width of the beam. The effect was to reduce the strength of light on the car park (signalman reported) and possibly on Sunset House.
17. MATTERS ARISING Cont’d:
- Sign on London Lane – resolved
- Open Gardens 22 June 2013 – this was discussed and Cllr Crundwell agreed to reply to Paul Jackson on behalf of the Parish Council that they had no queries and wished the Committee good luck with their forthcoming event.
- Clerks & Councils Direct
- Letter from WODC Planning – Consultation on Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) & affordable housing
- Email to Clerk from WODC re Election Briefing for Clerks 2014
19. ANY OTHER BUSINESS
- Succession and the Elections – the Clerk was asked to add this to the Agenda in February. She reported that she would be attending an election briefing for Clerks on Thursday 13 February 2014. The Clerk was asked to add this to the Agenda in February.
- Meeting dates 2014 – it was agreed that the meeting dates would remain the same, this being the second Monday in the month up to and including June. The remaining dates would need to be confirmed after Election by the new Parish Council.
- Defibrillator – email received from RFO Stuart Fox via WODC – Clerk to carry forward to February.
There being no further business Cllr Morgan declared the meeting closed at 10.00pm and confirmed the next meeting would be Monday 10 February 2014 at 7.30pm.