Report of the July 2017 Parish Council Meeting.

Following requests from local residents, Hollingbourne Parish Council have decided to publish draft and unapproved minutes of Parish Council Meetings as soon as possible after the Parish Council Meetings take place. The full and approved minutes will continue to be published on this website as soon as they are formally approved.

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT – As from the January 2017 issue of the Hollingbourne Parish Magazine the deadline for copy has been changed to the 10th of the month preceding publication. As many Parish Council meetings are held after the 10th of the month it will be impossible to publish in print the approved or abridged minutes in the month after the monthly meeting that is being reported. Additionally the Parish Magazine has requested that the length of the Minutes be curtailed and because of these constraints it has been decided not to publish any Minutes in the Parish Magazine with effect from January 2017 The full unapproved and approved minutes will continue to be published on this website as soon as they become available. Copies will be supplied to the Kent Messenger and Downs Mail. If you would like to be alerted by e-mail as soon as the draft minutes are posted on the Hollingbourne Village website please contact the Webmaster or Parish Clerk via the contact details on the left sidebar. Printed copies will be available upon application to the Parish Clerk.

DRAFT AND UNAPPROVED

 

Minutes of the meeting of Hollingbourne Parish Council monthly meeting held on Monday 10th July 2017, in the Cardwell Pavilion, Hollingbourne, commencing at 7.30 pm.

 

Present:           Mr M Bedwell (Chairman), Mr A Ward (Vice-Chairman), Mr J Cobbett, Mr D Ardley,

Mr A Bennett and Mr M Gray

In attendance:             Mr Patrik Garten (arrived late), Mrs Shellina Prendergast (arrived late) and

Mrs V. Smith – Parish Clerk.

 

  1. Apologies for absence:    Dr S Bauer (illness), Mr S Hulme (previous engagement) and

PCSO Dave Rowley (work commitments)

 

  1. Declarations and Requests

Declaration of Changes to the Register of Interests – none; Declaration of Interest in items on the Agenda – Cllr J Cobbett neighbours the land to the west of Windmill Lane and the residents of 47 Eyhorne Street and he will abstain from commenting or voting on these planning applications; Requests for Dispensations – none

 

  1. Approval of minutes of last meeting (circulated prior to meeting)

It was resolved that the minutes were a true and accurate record of the meeting.

 

  1. Matters Arising (not covered elsewhere on the agenda) –

5.f   At the previous meeting the Merchant Navy Day, 3rd September 2017, with the flying of the Red Ensign flag was discussed.  The Parish Council will look into holding this event in forthcoming years.  Cllr Bennett has looked into whether permission is required to fly the flag.  The planning department informed that there are no hard and fast rules about this matter and it may depend on the size and nature of the flag.

 

  1. Chairman’s Report.
  2. Cllr M Bedwell advised that the WI and their guest speaker had been stuck at the village hall for more than two hours when a car parked along the Windmill Lane had blocked their exit. The owner of the car had been unwilling to move it and the staff at the Windmill PH then had to manoeuvre cars within their car park, after closing time, so that the WI could make their way home.  The Police did not attend the scene as it had occurred on a private road/land.  Cllr Bedwell feels that the response from the Police was not satisfactory and that the WI were let down.  Cllr D Ardley asked whether there was any land within the village identified to provide off road parking.  The Parish Council is not aware of any, but any information would be much appreciated and please contact the Clerk on pchollingbourne@gmail.com if you can offer any advice.
  3. Cllr M Bedwell had received a letter from the Secretary of the Hollingbourne Pre-School Committee regarding the renovation of the outdoor playing area at the Cardwell Pavilion with artificial grass. This would mean that the pre-school children could play out of doors in all weathers and it would greatly enhance the area.  The pre-school have raised a substantial amount of money towards the project but require help from the Parish Council to fulfil the works.  Cllr J Cobbett proposed that the Parish Council help out in this matter and this was agreed upon by all of the Councillors present.  Initially, the Parish Council needs to know how much the pre-school have raised and details of the quotations received for the works.  The Clerk will approach the Pre-School to obtain this information.  Action:  The Clerk
  4. Cllr M Bedwell have received a letter from the WI with regards to the stalls at the 2017 village fete and the comments have been noted.
  5. The Parish Council have received a thank you letter from Mr Ralph Baldock, Headteacher of the Hollingbourne Primary School. The Parish Council are really glad that he enjoyed his retirement gift.
  6. Cllr M Bedwell advised the Parish Council that following years of work for the fete Jean Duffy has resigned as the stallholder co-ordinator. The Parish Clerk will take over this role and all of the Parish Council would like to thank Jean for all of her hard work.  Action:  The Clerk

 

  1. Crime Report – PCSO Dave Rowley (via email)
  2. The Hollingbourne crime figures from PCSO Dave Rowley are to follow for the dates of 6th June onwards.
  3. The e-watch police report for this month gave the following information about five crime reports: Culpeper Close – between 6:00 pm on Thursday 15th of June and 10:30 am on Friday 16th of June when items were taken from a property without consent.  Ashford Road, Hollingbourne – On Tuesday 27th of June between 10:30 pm and 10:45 pm a residential property was broken into but nothing appeared to have been taken.   Culpeper Close – between 12:00 pm on Friday 30th of June and 1:00 pm on Monday 3rd of July, a white Ford Transit, WM11***, was stolen from the road.  M20, Hollingbourne – between 7:30 pm on Thursday 6th of July and 6:30 am on Friday 7th of July, a Ford Transit van parked in a hotel car park was broken into, but it is unknown whether anything was taken.  M20, Hollingbourne – between 6:30 pm on Thursday 6th of July and 7:20 am on Friday 7th of July, a Vauxhall Movano van parked in the road was broken into and a Dewalt drill was stolen.  If you would like regular newsletters from e-watch please sign up to the scheme on www.e-watch.co/register.php .
  4. PCSO Dave Rowley will start his new role within the Police on the 31st July 2017.  The new PCSO for the Hollingbourne area is Mike Buckfield and the Parish Council will soon have his contact information. The Parish Council would like to thank Dave for all of his support and hard work over the years and wish him the best for the future.

 

  1. Clerk’s Report  –
  2. The Clerk has been informed by KALC (Kent Association of Local Councils) about a Fire Hydrant Initiative Project, which encourages the community to monitor and report fire hydrant defects and water provision issues directly to the Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS). Inspections of the fire hydrants are visual inspections only and no risks should be taken at any time.  The Parish Councillors agreed that it would be advantageous to sign up to.  The Clerk will instigate this matter.  Action:  The Clerk
  3. The Clerk had received a letter of sincere thanks from the charity ‘Holding On Letting Go’, for the donation of £25.00 given by the Parish Council. The charity which helps and supports children and young people adjust to life when they lose a loved one through death.  The charity was chosen by our friend Elaine Lawrence, the previous Parish Clerk, for donations at her funeral.  Please see the website https://holdingonlettinggo.org.uk/ if you would also like to support the charity’s fine works.
  4. As previously mentioned in the Chairman’s Report of the June 2017 parish meeting, the A20 roundabout is dangerous for all road-users because vehicles are just not giving way to one another. It is essential that broken white lines are reinstated or ‘give way’ signs placed in the area of the roundabout.  The Clerk was happy to inform the Parish Council that in a response to her letter to the Highways Department, KCC had been responded to and the re-lining of the roads in this area are programmed for completion during the school holidays.  The areas needing refreshment works extend along the Ashford Road, extending from approach to the A20/M20 roundabout to past the Leeds Castle roundabout, therefore covering areas at the entrance to the Hollingbourne village.

 

  1.      County Councillor’s Report
  2. Cllr Mrs Shellina Prendergast was disappointed that the Stagecoach bus service had decided to stop collecting school children from the Hollingbourne side of Ashford Road went they travelled to school in the mornings. Cllr D. Ardley  advised on behalf of the Parish Council that the concerns with the children were that if the bus did not see them standing on the Hollingbourne side of the road, and drove off without them they would be late for school.  A lot of parents drop their children off at the bus stop by car removing the danger of children crossing the road.  Additionally, a number of children use the train service to travel to school.
  3. With regards to the planning application on the land at Woodcut Farm, Ashford Road (17/502331/OUT), Cllr Prendergast advised that Cllr Matthew Balfour, Cabinet Member for Planning, Highways, Transport and Waste, KCC, had made a strong strategic comment supporting rejection of the proposed development.   Cllr A Bennett confirmed that he is always willing to speak up on behalf of the Parish Council with regards to Woodcut Farm.
  4. Cllr Prendergast, who is one of the two Deputy Cabinet Members for Children, Young People and Education, advised that although there had been a dip in the birth rate in 2017, there were too many children looking seeking places within school for the years 2018/19, due to the level of development in this Borough. It was advised that the Parish Council should refuse large housing developments in this area due to this problem.
  5. The KCC Children’s Specialist Services have received a very favourable Ofsted report of ‘good’ in 2017. This is a great achievement because in 2015 the result was ‘requiring improvement’, which was mainly because of the huge amount of unoccupied children entering the county.
  6. Cllr Prendergast would like to meet up with the Clerk and a Parish Councillor every four to six weeks to discuss any matters of concern.
  7. Cllr J Cobbett asked Cllr Prendergast where the KCC stood regarding to extra traffic on the roads of Kent following Brexit with the end of the Customs Union when there will be lorry queues at for customs clearance and immigration controls. Concern was expressed that Operation Stack could become a regular event and it was felt that the policy of KCC in this scenario should be clarified and that any additional policing or other costs should not fall on the council tax-payers of Kent including those in Hollingbourne.. Cllr Prendergast agreed to report back on the matter.

 

  1.      Borough Councillor’s Report – Cllr Patrik Garten
  2. Cllr P Garten apologised for attending the meeting late. The Low Emission Strategy (air management) had been published and a survey is on the on the Maidstone BC website for comment.
  3. Cllr P Garten advised that AONB is a statutory outside body in Maidstone, having an input into the planning applications and also a strategic branch, Mid-Kent Strategic. AONB assists Maidstone BC considerably and has been previously funded with £10,000 per annum.  However, funding has now stopped and Patrik is investigating why this has happened wishing to have the money reinstated.  Cllr Garten would like full support from the Parish Councils and will report back on the matter.
  4. Planning Report – Cllr A Bennett
  5. 17/502168/FULL & 17/502169/LBC – 47 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne

Proposal:  Change of use from shop (A1) to residential (C3) and listed building consent for change of use from shop (A1) to residential (C3).

Decision:  Five councillors voted ‘DO NOT WISH TO OBJECT’ and one councillor ‘abstained’. 

  1. 17/503009/FULL – Hollingbourne Property Services, Musket Lane, Hollingbourne

Proposal:  Erection of single storey rear extensions to two dwellings previously approved 15/508307/FULL.

Decision:  OBJECT – Four councillors voted ‘object’ and two councillors voted ‘do not wish to object’.

Reasons for objection:  The Parish Council were divided in their opinions with regards to this planning application (4:2) in favour of objection.  They objected to this development because it represents over-development of a small site.  The objection is also supported by the fact that this original application has only just been approved and to already look to extend a new property is unreasonable.

  1. 17/503314/FULL – Hollingbourne Property Services, Musket Lane, Hollingbourne

            Proposal:        Demolition of existing buildings and erection of two dwellings.

Decision:         Five Councillors voted ‘DO NOT WISH TO OBJECT’ and one councillor ‘objected’.

  1. 17/503206/SUB – 1 Culpeper Close, Hollingbourne

Proposal:  Submission of details to discharge condition 2 (materials), condition 3 (boundary treatments), condition 5 (landscaping) and condition 8 (bird and bat boxes) subject to 13/2043.

Decision:  DO NOT WISH TO OBJECT 

  1. 16/508640/FULL – Resubmission: Land East of Eyhorne Street

Proposal:  Erection of twelve residential dwellings, together with associated access, parking, drainage and landscaping.

Decision:  DO NOT WISH TO OBJECT – Four Councillors voted ‘do not wish to object’ and two voted ‘object’ because of traffic and other infrastructure issues.

Comment:  Predominately, the resubmission highlighted differences in the position of the dwellings on the land.  There are now four dwellings described as “more affordable” but not “affordable” housing and eight dwellings of the original price and design.  The land is highlighted on the Maidstone BC Local Plan for housing, and it was felt by the councillors voting in its favour that it was a well thought out development proposition.

  1. 17/503118/FULL – Land to the west of Windmill Lane, Eyhorne Street

Proposal:  Erection of ten dwellings and associated works including associated garaging and construction of access road (resubmission of 16/508436/FULL).

Decision:  OBJECT – Five Councillors voted to object and one Councillor abstained.

Reasons for objection:  Primarily, there is an unsustainable access connection from Eyhorne Street to Windmill Lane and the proposed development.  The access is no more than three metres wide and the Parish Council are strongly concerned that an increase in traffic would cause severe problems.

 

  1. Maidstone BC Draft Local Plan – Cllr A Bennett – nothing to report.

 

  1. Environmental Report
  2. In the neighbouring village of Hucking the Woodland Trust have managed to raise, through its loyal supporters, £750,000 to buy an additional 116 acres of woodland extending their estate to 689 acres. The estate is to the west of the top of Hollingbourne Hill and includes part of the North Downs which overlooks Hollingbourne and the Weald.  The Estate is popular with dog walkers, hikers and nature lovers.  If you should walk in this area, the views over Hollingbourne and the surrounding areas are absolutely breath-taking in their beauty!  The Estate also borders the St Margaret’s Church in Hucking and the popular Hook and Hatchet PH, which now has a campsite.  The Hucking Woodland Estate also has a car park for easy access.  The Woodland Trust is a registered charity and is based in Grantham, Lincolnshire.  Please contact their website at https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk for further information.
  3. There have been reports of non domestic rubbish being burnt at the back of one of the Eyhorne Street properties. It was noted that bonfires can cause a nuisance to residents in the surrounding areas and that they can be reported to the Maidstone BC via their website.

 

  1. Cardwell Pavilion (bookings past and present) – Cllr M Bedwell
  2. Cllr M Bedwell advised that a pilgrimage would be using the Cardwell Pavilion on the 29th July 2017.
  3. Cllr D Ardley gave Cllr M Bedwell some guidance notes and forms which he had obtained for the terms and conditions of letting halls to hirers, etc. Cllr M Bedwell will study in detail these documents.
  4. Cllr A Ward had looked into the cost of installing ‘led’ lights in the Cardwell Pavilion and they are quite expensive. It was agreed that the Parish Council continue to use fluorescent lighting in the building for the meantime.

 

  1. Parks Report (Millennium Green) – Cllr A Ward
  2. The Parish Council has now received the S106 money of £21,911.70 from the Maidstone BC for the provision of new play equipment in the village playground. A S106 is a legal agreement outlining what a building developer is required to do with regard to obligations to make a payment for infrastructure or affordable housing.  The S106 money that the Parish Council received was from Wealden Homes on behalf of the houses built at Godfrey Meadow.  Wealden Homes stipulated that the money was to be used for children’s play equipment at the Cardwell Pavilion, which is very good news for the children and parents within our village.  The new equipment will be introduced after the school summer holidays. NO alternative use for the money was permitted although enquiries were made.
  3. The Parish Council’s future ownership of the Millennium Green is pressing forward following Cllr A Ward’s successful communication with Kate Turnham, Mid Kent Legal Services. Delays in this matter have occurred, mostly due to outside agencies, but this project is now progressing.

 

  1. Defibrillator(s) for the village – Cllr J Cobbett

The Clerk has written to the Landlords of the village pubs to see if they would be willing to have a defibrillator installed on the outside of their buildings.  Update:  Richard Phillips of the Windmill PH has responded to the letter (and the Clerk and Cllr J Cobbett had a very positive meeting with him subsequently regarding the positioning of a unit on the outside of the Windmill PH)Action:  The Clerk – to find out where we could put the defibrillators and their success rate.

 

  1. Station Approach & Railway Station –
  2. The lights are now working along the Station Approach which is good news. It has been noticed that there is now a footpath from Godfrey Meadow to the Station Lane across Network Rail land.  UPDATE:  The Parish Council has been advised of a problem with the ticket machine at the station and the CEO of South Eastern has been informed about this matter.  The Station Master has advised the Clerk that the ticket machine was working at 3.00 pm, 21st July, but he is keeping his eye on it.

 

  1. Off-Road Motorcyclists and Quad Bikes – nothing to report.

 

  1. Fête Report – Cllr D Ardley
  2. Cllr Ardley advised that a fete review meeting had taken place on the 3rd July, and he was glad to report that an approximate £1000 was raised at the fete as a combination of the charities present and the Parish Council.
  3. A provisional date of the 9th June 2018 has been made for next year’s fete. However, Cllr Ardley would like to discuss whether the fete will actually take place as there is a great necessity for support from outside of the parish council.  It is not solely the parish council’s fete but the responsibility of all of the organisations in the village!  Please contact the Clerk on pchollingbourne@gmail.com if you are willing to help out and support future fetes as any help would be very much appreciated.

 

  1. Twinning with Templeuve-en-Pévèle – Cllr J Cobbett
  2. Cllr Cobbett advised that unfortunately the Chairman of the Templeuve Committee in France had resigned from his post, and this may put a strain on the relationship between our villages due to language communication.
  3. The Hollingbourne branch of the Twinning Committee has written to neighbouring villages for their support in events.
  4. Templeuve took back ownership of the claret jug when they won the golfing event that took place on the 26th June in France.

 

  1. Financial Report –
  2. The cheques at the meeting were authorised, and there is £65,109.88 in the bank. However, the S106 money of £21,911.70 will soon be spent on the new playground equipment out of parish council’s bank account.   The Clerk is waiting for the end of year accounts to be returned from the external auditor following the public Finance Meeting held on the 5th June 2017.

 

  1. Community News –
  2. In September 2017, the Hollingbourne Primary School will have a new Headteacher called Mrs Helen Bradley-Wyatt. Previously, Helen has been the Deputy Headteacher at the Greenfields Community Primary School, Maidstone.  The Parish Council wish Helen every success in her new role and look forward in continuing to forge strong links with the school.
  3. Cllr J Cobbett was very glad to inform that new Team Vicar who will live in Hollingbourne Vicarage from the Autumn of this year, has been appointed. The new appointee, the Reverend Paul Kite, comes from the Benefice of West Sheppey. The Reverend Kite will also minister to the other parishes on the Pilgrim’s Way within the North Downs Benefice.  Apart from Hollingbourne these include the churches at Hucking, Thurnham, Detling, Boxley, and Grove Green.  Prior to becoming a priest Mr Kite was a Tax Inspector with HMRC.  The clergy team for the North Downs Benefice will include the Rector, the Canon John Corbyn in Bearsted, the Reverend Steve Hughes who will cover Leeds, Broomfield, Langley, and Otham and Captain Graham Bibby of the Church Army who has recently been appointed as a Missioner.

 

 

 

Date of next meeting: Monday 11th September 2017, 7.30 pm, Cardwell Pavilion, Hollingbourne