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Widecombe Parish Council Minutes May 2017
WIDECOMBE PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of a meeting of the Parish Council
held on Thursday 4 May 2017
in Church House, Widecombe
Present: Councillor Newbolt-Young (Chairman), Booty, Hassell (from item 4131), Morley, Routley, Southcombe & Welby
Members of the Public: There were two members of the public present.
Clerk: Suzanna Hughes
4128 ELECTION OF CHAIRMAN
It was proposed by Cllr Morley, seconded by Cllr Fenton and unanimously agreed by all members present and voting that Cllr Newbolt-Young is re-elected as Chairman.
4129 ELECTION OF VICE CHAIRMAN
It was proposed by Cllr Welby, seconded by Cllr Fenton and unanimously agreed by all members present and voting that Cllr Booty is re-elected as Vice Chairman.
4130 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
• Cllr J Lomax
• County Cllr Gribble
• District Cllr Jeffery
• PC Andy Dudley
4131 CO-OPTION OF NEW MEMBER
Members received an application from Tim Hassell. It was agreed to co-opt him with immediate effect. Mr Hassell signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office and joined the meeting.
4132 OPEN FORUM
A parishioner expressed concern about straying cattle in the village which he believes is a result of an absence of cattle grids. He stated that landowners have a responsibility to fence against the common and that DCC have a responsibility to stop cattle from straying into the road. He expressed concern about the dangers of cattle with their calves. There was then a discussion about the responsibility for the village greens and whether the Parish Council would be liable for any incident which occurred on the village green which was caused by straying livestock. The Chairman clarified that that the village green was only for sport and recreation use. Straying rights apply to common land – the village greens do not have straying rights. It was suggested and agreed that the Parish Council writes to DCC to make them aware of the problem, to clarify the legal position and to ask whether DCC has any plans to install any additional cattle grids in the parish.
4133 DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST & REQUESTS FOR DISPENSATIONS
Councillors were reminded of their responsibility to continually update their Notice of Registerable Interests and to declare any disclosable interests, including the nature and extentla of such interests they have in any items to be considered at this meeting. Unforeseen requests for a Dispensation to be considered at this point only if there was no way a Councillor would have been aware of such before the meeting.
There were no declarations of interest or requests for dispensation.
4134 RATIFICATION OF MINUTES
A minor amendment was made to the minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council on 6 April 2017 after
which they were approved and signed by the Chairman as a true and correct record.
4135 ELECTION/APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS TO OTHER BODIES
(a) It was agreed to ask Simon Tame whether he would continue to would act as the Parish’s tree consultant.
(b) It was agreed that Cllr Welby would represent the Parish Council on the Widecombe Fair Committee
(c) It was agreed that Cllr Morley would represent the Parish Council on the Widecombe & District Sports Group.
(d) It was agreed that Cllr Southcombe represent the Parish Council on the Educational Trust.
(e) It was agreed that Cllr Fenton would represent the Parish Council on the Church House Committee.
(f) It was agreed that Cllr Booty would represent the parish’s highways issues. as agreed to write to Miles Fursdon thanking him for his efforts as Snow Warden and to confirm whether he wishes to continue with this role.
(h) It was agreed that the sandbag store would be left open and therefore it was not necessary to nominate keyholders.
4136 REVIEW OF PARISH COUNCIL GOVERNANCE DOCUMENTS
(a) Standing Orders
Members reviewed the Council’s Standing Orders and agreed no changes.
(b) Financial Regulations
Members reviewed the Council’s Financial Regulations and agreed no changes.
(c) General and Financial Risk Assessment
Members reviewed its General and Financial Risk Assessment and agreed no changes.
(d) Statement of Internal Control
Members reviewed the Statement of Internal Control and agreed no amendments.
(e) Fixed Assets Register
Members reviewed its fixed asset register. It was agreed to add the defibrillator with a value of £1,260.
(f) Investment Strategy
Members reviewed its Investment Strategy and agreed no amendments.
(g) Anti-fraud and Corruption Policy
Members reviewed its Anti-fraud and Corruption Policy and agreed no amendments
4137 POLICE REPORT
PC Dudley was unable to attend the meeting but sent the following report covering the last two months: ‘3 incidents were reported by members of the public during this period:
In the early hours of 4th March, persons were seen acting suspiciously near a vehicle on the outskirts of the village. Officers attended from Newton Abbot and the area searched, no persons were found (no crimes were later recorded as a result of this).
Two possible abandoned vehicles have also been reported. One in Dartmeet car park and the other on the road at Spitchwick. Both vehicles were taxed and insured, giving us no powers to remove them. 2 crimes were reported in the 2 month period:
An unattended parked car was broken in to and handbags stolen at Spitchwick on the evening of Easter Saturday 15th April.
A common assault was reported in the village on 20th April and has been investigated.
You may well have seen the recent convictions and sentencing of three members of the SMALL family from Plymouth for a period of 16 years. They were responsible for over 30 thefts of vehicles and plant equipment across Dartmoor and South Devon during 2015 and 2016. A piece of evidence from a Widecombe resident who saw something suspicious was vital in linking the offenders to these crimes and enabling us to progress the enquiry.
I can be contacted at Conway House Ashburton visa the central no.101. My next Police Surgery is at Ashburton Information Centre from 10-11am on Tuesday 9th May.
The totally confidential Crimestoppers no. 0800 555111 can be used to pass information to the Police. The Neighbourhood Team can also be contacted by e-mail: email@example.com
4138 COUNTY COUNCILLOR’S REPORT
4139 DISTRICT COUNCILLOR’S REPORT
4140 DELEGATE REPORTS
There were no reports.
4141 MATTERS ARISING
A parishioner, Dorinda Britton, attended the meeting and expressed her concerns about the Parish Council’s decision to purchase a defibrillator. She emphasised that CPR training and training to use the device was vital as it can be very stressful using a defibrillator in an emergency situation. She also questioned whether the cabinet should be locked as time is of the essence in an emergency. Cllr Southcombe advised that she had written an article for the Parish Link advising that training is being arranged and anyone wishing to attend should contact her. The Chairman thanked Dorinda for her advice and suggested that she and Cllr Southcombe work together to ensure that the whole community is aware that it has been installed and that training is given to as many people as possible. Cllr Fenton agreed to look into whether signage could be provided from the ‘Moor than Meets the Eye’ budget.
Following an observation from a parishioner, members gave consideration to how it communicates with parishioners. It was noted that the agendas are published on the noticeboards and website, minutes are available on the website and articles are published in the Parish Link. It was further noted that the Parish Link is available to download from the website. It was agreed that parishioners are therefore provided with sufficient opportunity to find out what the Parish Council is doing. However, Cllr Hassell offered to investigate additional ways of communicating with the parish including the creation of an email database.
(c) New Village Hall
Members received a request for a small grant to help with the cost funding the printing and distribution of a questionnaire to all households. It was agreed to offer a grant of up to £50. In addition, Cllr Fenton offered to help with the printing of the survey which he could arrange for a significantly cheaper price. It was also suggested by the Community Council of Devon that certain questions might be included in the questionnaire seeking views on how the hall could be funded e.g. through the precept or by a public works loan. Members felt that they hadn’t had sufficient time to consider this and that a draft of the questionnaire should be supplied for their approval at the next meeting if questions about funding are included. The Parish Council was concerned that if these questions are included, there may be an expectation from the parish that the Parish Council will help fund the building.
(d) Leusdon Summer Funday
Members received a request to use the Village Green on Tuesday 8th August for the annual summer fundday. This was agreed.
(e) June Parish Council Meeting & Village Walkabout
It was agreed to move the date of the next meeting to Thursday 8th June. The annual village walkabout would also be held on the same evening commencing at 6.45pm from Church House.
(a) New applications/appeals
(i) 0204/17 – Replacement windows at Northway Farm, Widecombe-in-the-Moor
Members agreed to support this application.
No decisions were reported.
4143 FINANCE AND GOVERNANCE
Members received and approve payments for approval:
Cheque no 000948 - Clerk’s salary and disbursements - £259.06
(b) Audit 2016/17
(i) Members received, completed, approved and authorised the Chairman and Clerk to sign Section 1 of the Annual Return (Annual Governance Statement 2016/17).
(ii) Members received, approved and authorised the Chairman and Clerk to sign Section 2 of
the Annual Return (Accounting Statements 2016/17).
(iii) Members confirmed that this Council is confident that the internal audit arrangements provide excellent reassurance for the public that the financial systems are robust and fit for purpose and to continue with the appointment of Hania Lee as the Internal Auditor to the Parish Council
Members were informed that the renewal documents had not yet been received.
It was observed that there was still no signage at Newbridge warning drivers about the CCTV cameras.
(i) Members received correspondence from TDC’s Parking Services Support Manager in response to matters raised by this Council relating to car parking issues and proposed charges. The Parish Council’s objections to the increased charges have been rejected as they were considered insufficient to stop the Order from being made and sealed. The property department will look at improving the signage directing cars into the car park and to make the tariff boards clearer as to when charges apply. There is also the possibility of covers to place over the machine.
(ii) Members received correspondence from a parishioner expressing concern about straying livestock and requesting that DCC put in a cattle grid on Bonehill. This matter had been discussed at item 4132.
(iii) Members received correspondence from DNPA regarding Local Plan Review and the Town and Parish Council Workshop on 12 June. Cllr Southcombe offered to attend the workshop.
(iv) A parishioner reported that the bus timetable in the bus shelter was incorrect and needed to be corrected to show that the 672 operates on a Wednesday and not on Thursday. Cllr Southcombe offered to see if she could amend the timetable.
4146 MATTERS OF INFORMATION AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN
There being no further business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 9.37pm.
Signed ………………………………………….. Dated ……………………………………….
The next meeting of the Parish Council will be held on Thursday 8 June 201 at 7.30pm.
Please note that on the same evening there will also be a walkabout of the village commencing at 6.45pm from Church House.
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