Minutes of the meeting of Hollingbourne Parish Council monthly meeting held on Monday 11 July 2016, in the Cardwell Pavilion, Hollingbourne, commencing at 7.30 pm.
Present: Mr M Bedwell, Mr A Ward, Dr S Bauer, Mr D Ardley, Mr A Bennett, Mrs A Bennett and Mr M Gray
In attendance: Mr Patrik Garten, Borough Councillor, Mr D Davison, one member of the public and Mrs V. Smith – Parish Clerk.
1. Apologies for absence: Mr J Cobbett (CAB meeting clash) and Cllr Mrs J Whittle
2. Declarations and Requests
Declaration of Changes to the Register of Interests – none;
Declaration of Interest in items on the Agenda – All Planning Matters: Cllrs Mr & Mrs Bennett – Fern Cottage, 26 Eyhorne Street as they know the property owners; Cllr A Ward – 103 Eyhorne Street, as he is a neighbour and Cllr Dr S Bauer – Coachman’s Lodge, as she is the Planning Applicant.
Requests for Dispensations – none
3. 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.
4. Matters Arising (not covered elsewhere on the agenda)
All items included on the Agenda and mentioned in minute sub-sections.
5. Chairman’s Report
a. Cllr M Bedwell reported that fly-tipping is a real problem in the village. Greenway Court Road has had a settee, building debris and a sink dumped in it, as well fly-tipping in Eyhorne Street and around the recycling area.
b. A gazebo inventory was carried out by Cllr Bedwell, Cllr Ward and the Clerk. Notes have been made of the damaged ones, some of which can be repaired, and they have been safely stored away.
c. Cllr M Bedwell stated that preparations for the 2017 fete needed to start early. Cllr Bedwell insisted that nothing is printed or placed on the village website about the fete, without the fete committee’s permission first.
d. Cllr M Bedwell had been kindly contacted over August by a gentleman who had brought a property, and whilst working upon it found the 1967/68 approved drawing of the village hall. The drawings have subsequently been given to John Holley so that they can be displayed at the village hall.
e. The new street lighting looks fantastic and the Parish Councillor’s would like to sincerely thank Cllr J Cobbett for all of the efforts he has made in getting the lights up and running. Cllr Mrs J Whittle has also assisted the Parish Council in arranging the grant for the lights, and we really appreciate her help in this matter.
6. Crime Report –PCSO Ryan Waring
a. The Hollingbourne crime figures 9 July – 9 September 2016. There were five crime reports created this month. 10th July – theft from motor vehicle – Eyhorne Street, 12th July – criminal damage – Greenway Court Road, 15th July – criminal damage – Eyhorne Street, 31st August – theft from motor vehicle – A20 and 1st September – vehicle interference – Station Approach (down the lane from the Station). There were no cases of anti-social behaviour.
b. In comparison with the same period in 2015, there were four crime reports created between 9th July and 9th September 2015. 14th July – criminal damage – Broad Street Hill, 23rd August – theft from motor vehicle – Troys Mead, 1st September – burglary other than dwelling – Eyhorne Street, 1st September – criminal damage – Pilgrims Way. There were four cases of anti-social behaviour which were 11th July – nuisance vehicle – Greenway Court Road, 12th August & 6th September – nuisance vehicle – Hospital Road and 2nd September – poaching – Pilgrims Way.
c. The PCSO’s are unsure whether Network Rail got informed of criminal incidents which take place on their land. The Clerk will chase up the letter that we sent to Network Rail regarding the works required to their security camera at the station. It would be good for them to install a further camera at the entrance to Station Approach to monitor any potential offenders. Action: The Clerk
d. There have recently been two vehicles burnt out on the Drakes Lane byway, which comes off of Ringlestone Road, and leads to Saywell Farm. If you see any fires on this byway, or locality, please call 999 to report Kent Fire and Rescue Service, who will refer the matter to Police if it is a vehicle on fire. The Parish Councillors asked whether you still notify the KCC about removing a burnt out vehicle. The PCSO’s advised that you need to contact the Police and they will pass the information on to the KCC. For interest, if the vehicle is on a byway or highway, the KCC will remove it. If the vehicle is stolen the Police will recover it, or the owner. If the vehicle is on private land the landowner removes it.
e. Cllr Dr S Bauer reported that recently, at 2.00 am, a driver of a car parked close to her home jumped over the fence and looked around the car park. This was promptly reported to ‘101’. The vehicle was known to them, and Cllr Dr Bauer was thanked for her call. It is important to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to ‘101’ or if necessary ‘999’.
7. ‘Christopher’s Village Shop and it’s future –
a. No further progress to report yet. The Parish Councillor’s reiterated how important the shop is to the village and await for further updates.
8. Clerk’s Report –
a. The Clerk advised that she had met with Mark Harrison, National Policing and Crime Advisor, Historic England at a Heritage Crime meeting last month. Hollingbourne and Swanscombe have been chosen to spearhead Kent Heritage Watch, which is similar to Country Eye http://e-watch.co.uk . The Parish Councillor’s look forward to meeting Mark Harrison at the next Parish Meeting, which warmly welcomes all interested people, where he can explain the many advantages of Kent Heritage Watch and what it means to the residents of our village.
9. County Councillor’s Report – Cllr Mrs J Whittle (via email)
a. Regarding the proposed meeting with Stagecoach to consider double running the bus to service the Hollingbourne side of the A20 on Maidstone bound journeys on the Ashford Road, Cllr Mrs J Whittle has the following update. Stagecoach have requested that they carry out a risk assessment to consider the safety of the manoeuvre (having to go from a standing start across a lane of the A20 to position in the right hand side of the carriageway to go round the roundabout), and to a lesser degree the commercial considerations. The KCC have granted Stagecoach their request to produce the assessment, but this needs to be carried out quickly. Cllr Mrs J Whittle will report back to the Parish Council with updates.
10. Borough Councillor’s Report – Cllr Patrik Garten
a. Cllr P Garten advised that he had spoken to the possible developer of the property 21 Eyhorne Street, and he would be moving building materials to the property by dumper truck. To take up the ground floor he would need to move approximately 100 tons of rubble, which would then need to be filled with cement. The logistics in carrying out this work are difficult to comprehend. The developer had also suggested that he had a joint meeting with the neighbouring residents, but Cllr Garten has heard nothing since and is pursuing the matter. The developer has a duty of care to the village and Cllr P Garten will feed back to the Parish Council any further updates. Feedback from the Planning Committee to Cllr Garten has been, “where are the legal reasons for not permitting the building?” It is the ‘Duty of Care towards Listed Buildings’. The neighbouring homes are older than any building in North America!
b. On the ongoing issue of fly-tipping, if you are reporting an incident on the Maidstone BC website please make a different report for each area of fly-tipping, rather than ‘there is another fly-tip just down the road’.
11. Planning Report – Cllr Mr A Bennett
a. 16/504805/FULL – Coachman’s Lodge, 1 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne
Proposal: Change of use to business use, erection of single storey side extension of outside building. Decision: do not wish to object.
b. 16/506111/FULL – 103 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne
Proposal: Proposed new vehicle access from Eyhorne Street. Decision: do not wish to object.
c. 16/505700/LBC – Fern Cottage, 26 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne
Proposal: Listed building application for the conversion of cupboard into a washroom (toilet and sink), relocation of gas and electricity meters from into the cellar and connection of foul drainage (underground). Decision: Refused (Five Councillors in objection, and two abstaining to vote).
Reason for refusal – the information given is insufficient to determine the impact upon the building and the adjacent property, and whether works will be sympathetic or not. The Parish Council has concerns about sound and ventilation, which are not addressed upon the application.
d. Update: 15/503232/FULL – 21 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne –
The planning application will be reconsidered at the Planning Committee on the 15th September 2016. The Parish Council are hopeful that the application will be refused, but if this is not the case then rules will need to be enforced to the construction of the building to avoid damage to the neighbouring properties as they were built without foundations.
12. Maidstone BC Draft Local Plan – Cllr J Cobbett
a. The Plan will be subject to examination by a Planning Inspector from October and into 2017.
13. Environmental Report – Cllr Dr S Bauer
a. Cllr Bennett reported at the July meeting that the hedge outside of Bourneside Terrace, Eyhorne Street, has now had a substantial cut-back, however since then the hedge has been trimmed back excessively, and has removed various nests and fledgling birds. The sharp branches coming out of the hedge could scratch passersby and the maintenance contactors, Golding Homes are difficult to contact for their comments. Action: Mr & Mrs A Bennett.
b. Cllr Dr Bauer continues to report the excessive fly-tipping in the village, which has included ‘used syringes’. With this in mind leave the collection of the fly-tipping to the Maidstone BC contractors!
14. War Memorial Project –
Mr D Davison, Royal British Legion, has a team of volunteers ‘working party’ to repair and tidy up the village War Memorial. Mr Davison has received confirmation from Michael Parkinson, Principal Conservation Officer, Maidstone BC, that following his approval of the building blocks to be used, works can take place. It is proposed that the works take place over the school half-term, 22nd to 30th October, to avoid disrupting the entrance to the school gate. Mr Davison is investigating the provision of a small grant from a large super-market chain, and the results look very positive.
15. Parks Report (Millennium Green) – Cllr A Ward –
a. Cllr A Ward and Cllr M Gray reported that there had been an arson attack on the Millennium Green. Grass cuttings, placed beneath a tree had been set light to leaving a blackened mess of charred grass. The incident happened in the afternoon. Fortunately the fire did not set light to the tree, but the situation could have been a lot worse. Please report fires on public land to the Fire Services, 999.
b. As reported in July, Wealden Homes have designated £22,050 to the Parish Council specifically for the children’s playground on the Lance Memorial Field. To enable the release of the funds, Maidstone BC asked for prices of the equipment and quotations for the supply and installation of the goods. Cllr A Ward has agreed to action this matter. Action: Cllr A Ward
16. Station Approach Recycling Area – Cllr J Cobbett (via email)
a. No further progress, as Network Rail say that the recycling area is the responsibility of South Eastern Trains who previously said it was the lot of Network Rail! Network Rail took nearly three months to reply and so far there has been no reply from South Eastern Trains. We cannot take over responsibility for the recycling area until we know who owns it and what the terms of usage are.
17. Fête Report – Cllr D Ardley
a. The date of the 2017 fete is the 10th June 2017. However, the Parish Council needs a lot more volunteers at the event. We have regular helpers who we could not be able to run the fete without, but it would be far easier with a possible representative from each of the different village clubs / groups. Cllr A Ward pointed out that it is a Village Fete, not just the Parish Council’s event, and it needs help from other organisations. Please contact the Clerk on 01622 880526, or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to help, it would be very much appreciated.
b. The Clerk will send out invitations to all three hostelries in the village this week with a tender to provide the bar, evening food and entertainment at the 2017 fete. Action: The Clerk
18. Off-Road Motorcyclists and Quad Bikes –
a. The off-road club seems to be meeting once a month, and it does not seem to be so popular. The Parish Council will continue to keep an eye on the situation.
19. Twinning with Templeuve-en-Pévèle – Cllr J Cobbett (via email)
a. A trip has been organised to go to the Armistice Day events in Templeuve on 11th November 2016, and Templeuve residents will be coming to Kent on the 12th and 13th November for Remembrance Day events, including a service in All Saints’ church and a lunch in the Village Hall. The trip to Templeuve is a very worthwhile and thought-provoking event. The Parish Council would warmly welcome any new villagers to come along.
b. No interest has been shown in the White Dragon Martial Arts Challenge event in Templeuve on 26th and 27th November 2016.
20. Village Sewerage Inspection Report– Cllr J Cobbett (via email)
a. Neither the surface drainage problem nor the sewerage backflow problems appear to have been completely resolved. The problem with the sewerage appears more difficult than previously thought and Southern Water have yet to come up with plans to sort out the problem under the Grove Mill pond. KCC Highways have gone silent on the Tanyard Green flooding issue.
b. Cllr A Bennett advised that the June minutes should be changed in 8.b. to ‘Tanyard Green’ rather than ‘Tanyard Cottage’, as the flooding affects the whole of that area.
21. Financial Report –
a. The cheques at the meeting were authorised, and there is £26221.69 in the bank.
b. The after-school club at the Cardwell Pavilion has started this week.
22. Street Lighting – Cllr J Cobbett
a. The LED upgrade project has now been completed and the KCC grant agreed and applied for.
23. Community and Communication – Cllr Mrs A Bennett
a. Cllr Mrs Bennett suggested that photograph information of Councillors and Clerk be produced, with a possible short text about them. Cllr A Ward thinks that if villagers want to know who the Parish Councillors are warmly invited to the Parish Meetings.
b. It would be good to produce a welcome pack for the residents of the new housing development opposite Godfrey House. Cllr Mrs Bennett is going to consider what the pack should include. Action: Cllr Mrs Bennett.
c. The Parish Council could ask Wealden Homes to install a notice-board on the new development of houses. However, a proper notice-board should be installed at the Church first. Also it was agreed that the notice-boards are only to be used for Parish matters and to advertise local events at the discretion of the Parish Council, rather than menus and items for sale. It was agreed that the notice-boards were made lockable. Posters to be advertised can be posted through the Cardwell Pavilion letterbox and the Clerk will put them upon the notice-boards. Action: The Clerk
Date of next meeting: Monday 10th October 2016, 7.30 pm, Cardwell Pavilion, Hollingbourne
Signed as a true record: Chairman: