Parish Council Meeting 03 July 2017

Ashampstead Parish Council 

 An Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council will be held in the Jubilee Hall
on Monday 03 July 2017 at 7.00pm


1:     Apologies –
………….Councillors Colin Butler and Rita Butler

2:     Declaration of Interests

3:     Minutes of the last Annual and Ordinary Parish Council meetings

4:     Matters arising not covered in the agenda

5:     District Councillor’s report

6:     Police matters –
………..AD to report

7:     Footpaths and byways –
………..Maintenance review

8:     Roads –
………..Maintenance review

9:     Planning application –
…………17/01468 Replace conservatory with extension at the rear and a new
…………single storey extension to provide a garden room at 1 Flowers Piece

10:     Updates –
………….17/01454 Single storey extension at Oaktree Cottage, Church Lane
………….16/03600 Replacement of outbuildings with an extension to the
………….existing garage and annexe at Noakes Hill Cottage

Flowers Piece Maintenance –

12:     Defibrillator –
…………..Review options

13:     Finance –
…………..Payment authorisations
…………..Donation requests
…………..Audit 2017

14:     Any other business (only for discussion)

15:     Parish Council meeting closes

16:     Parishioners’ question time

17:     Meeting Closes. Next meeting date arranged.

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Public Rights to Audited Accounts 2017

Public Rights Notice


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Parish Council End of Year Reports 2016-2017

End of year reports 2016-17 (1)

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The Ashampstead Arms

Please note this month’s Pub Night has been moved to 2nd Saturday of June

Ashampstead Arms - June 2017

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Minutes of an Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council on 15 May 2017


Minutes of an Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council
held in the Jubilee Hall on Monday 15 May 2017 at 7.50 pm

Present:                 Councillors T Butcher (Chairman), C Butler, R Butler and A Jeffrey
In attendance:      P Thompson (Clerk) and D Slack (Yattendon Estate)
Apologies:             Councillor A Dick and A Keeley

Police Matters:
Councillor Alex Dick had provided a brief report to say that thefts of Landrover Defenders were on the increase. It was thought that they are being used as spare parts.

Footpaths and Byways:
Councillor Colin Butler confirmed that there had been no reports on the state of footpaths and byways other than the matter raised by a parishioner at the Annual Parish Meeting which the Clerk would report to WBC.

A parishioner had requested that the Council should consider removing the tree stump and place a bench on the small piece of waste land opposite The Green. The Councillors were not able to act on this matter as the ownership of the land is not known.

It was reported that the state of Chapel Lane had worsened due to works at Field House. The Clerk was asked to write to the owners requesting that they make good the area in question.

Flowers Piece:
The Chairman advised that ART were not aware of any works required at this stage although the safety inspection of the playground is still to be carried out.

Planning Applications Update:
17/00554    Erection of swimming pool and terrace at Burnt Hill House. “No objections”
………………..submitted and approved by WBC.
17/00714    Single storey rear extension and new front porch at 12 Flowers Piece. This
………………..application has been withdrawn. 

Community Infrastructure Levy:
The Clerk reported on the discussion that he had with a representative of St John Ambulance regarding the proposed purchase of a defibrillator. It was agreed that he should now discuss the matter with South Central Ambulance Service who had provided the one at Yattendon and who were also providing training at Hampstead Norreys.

The Clerk advised that the installation of a zip wire was likely to cost up to £8600 due to the need for a ramp, installation and safety surface. This was well in excess of the funds available and it was agreed that the Council should initially use the levy for the defibrillator.

Payments were authorised as follows:
P Thompson                            £248.80     Clerk’s salary for April and May
P Thompson                            £ 56.43      Clerk’s expenses
Scofell Landscapes Ltd         £595.56     Grass cutting
CPRE                                         £ 36.00      Subscription
Aon UK Ltd                              £160.20     Insurance

It was agreed that the following donations should be made:
West Berkshire Citizens Advice Bureau –
£25.00   Provides a wide range of advice and.guidance.
Pangbourne and District Volunteer Centre –
£60.00   Provides transport to surgeries and hospitals.
The Rosemary Appeal –                     …………
£100.00 To provide a Chemotherapy Centre.and Renal Dialysis Unit at West Berkshire
…………….Community Hospital.

There being no further business the meeting closed at 8.29pm.

The next meeting will convene at 7.00pm on Monday 3 July 2017.


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Minutes of the Annual Parish Council Meeting 15 May 2017

Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council
held in the Jubilee Hall on Monday 15 May 2017 at 7.30pm

Present:                Councillors T Butcher, C Butler, R Butler and A Jeffrey
In attendance:     P Thompson (Clerk) and D Slack (Yattendon Estate)
Apologies:            Councillors A Dick and A Keeley

Election of Chairman and Vice Chairman:
Councillor Trudi Butcher was elected as Chairman and Councillor Colin Butler was elected as Vice Chairman. Both accepted their respective offices.

The minutes of the extraordinary meeting on 04 April 2017 were approved and signed by the Chairman.

Agreement of roles and responsibilities:
It was agreed that the Chairman would continue to represent the Council on ART, Alex Dick would take police matters, Colin Butler would take footpaths and byways, Tony Keeley would take the lead on planning matters and Rita Butler would manage the village website.

Standing Orders and Financial Regulations:
The Standing Orders were reviewed and approved without amendment. The revised Financial regulations were also reviewed and approved.

Inventory of Land and Assets:
The inventory of land and assets was reviewed and approved.

Risk Management Register:
The risks and responses thereto were considered and the register approved. Councillor Colin Butler agreed to check the benches on the recreation ground and the telephone box for any damage.

Insurance cover:
It was agreed that the cover provided under the three year contract with AON was appropriate.

Internal Controls and Annual Governance Statement:
The Councillors reviewed the statement of internal controls and the annual governance statement. These, together with the risk management register and annual accounts had been reviewed by the Council’s internal auditor, Caroline Billing, as confirmed by her Annual Internal Audit Report. Both were approved and the Annual Governance Statement in the Annual Return was duly signed by the Chairman and the Clerk. The Chairman recorded her thanks to Caroline for carrying out the internal audit so promptly.

Receipts and Payments Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2017:
The annual accounts which had been circulated to the Councillors prior to the meeting were adopted and signed by the Chairman and the Clerk. The Accounting statements included in the Annual Return were also adopted and signed by the Chairman and the Clerk.

Complaints Procedure:
The revised complaints procedure was reviewed and approved.

Requests under the Freedom of Information Act:
The existing arrangements were reviewed and approved without amendment.

Future meetings:
It was agreed that ordinary meetings would be held at 7.00 pm on Monday 3 July 2017, on Monday 11 September 2017, on Monday 6 November 2017, on Monday 8 January 2018 and on Monday 5 March 2018.

The Statutory Annual Parish Council Meeting closed at 7.48 pm.

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Minutes of Annual Parish Meeting 15 May 2017

Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held in the Jubilee Hall
on Monday 15 May 2017 at 7.00pm

Present:                   Councillors T Butcher, C Butler, R Butler and A Jeffrey
In attendance:        Paul Thompson (Clerk), District Councillor V Von Celsing,
………………………… D Slack (Yattendon Estate) and one parishioner
Apologies:               Councillors A Dick and A Keeley

Councillor Trudi Butcher chaired the meeting.
The Minutes of the last Annual Meeting were approved and signed by the Chairman.

Chairman’s Report:
I am pleased to report that one of our first actions at the Annual Parish Council Meeting last year was to co-opt Tony Keeley onto the Council following Zaz Worth’s resignation in March 2016.

The Council met seven times during the year to 31 March 2017, including one extraordinary meeting to discuss a planning application at Straight Ash. More recently, we held an extraordinary meeting to discuss a planning application at 12 Flowers Piece.

As in previous years, certain councillors agreed to take lead roles for specific matters. Alex Dick undertook police matters, Colin Butler undertook footpaths and highways, Tony Keeley took the lead on planning matters and I continued to represent the Council on ART. More recently, Rita Butler has taken over responsibility for the Village website. I would at this point like to thank Rob Barker for his work in successfully setting up the website and subsequently maintaining it. We will miss his support and contribution to village life following his move to Kent.

The Council was asked to make observations on a total of nine planning applications over the last year. One was refused but later allowed on appeal, two relating to the same property were refused but the latter refusal is subject to an appeal and the remaining six were granted planning permission.

West Berkshire Council responded again to our requests for action to reduce the flooding on the Aldworth Road by The Old Fleece and Feathers and also by Willow Tree Cottage. The Clerk continues to report potholes and other highway issues to West Berkshire Council on a regular basis. The Council is also now responsible for providing salt bins and consequently I must ask residents to ensure that the salt is only used on the hills for which the bins are provided.

The Council continues to monitor footpaths and byways, reporting problems to either the landowners or West Berkshire Council. We continue to cut the grass on the recreation ground and The Green. We have also allowed sums in the budget to meet the cost of tree surgery and essential playground repairs on behalf of ART. The Council has agreed to meet these costs until a regular hirer of the hall is found, although ART is expected to carry out works on the recreation ground that could be carried out by work parties.

Councillor Alex Dick continues to update us on police matters through the text alert system and dog watch which help to reduce local crime. These do however rely on residents being vigilant and reporting any suspicious activity to the police and Alex.

The Council responded, on behalf of residents, to the consultation carried out by West Berkshire Council requesting that mobile library services should continue. The Council has agreed to contribute £375 to the cost providing that the payment would guarantee the service offered.

The Council received a Community Infrastructure Levy of £2,263 which must be spent on a capital project within five years. The options currently being considered are a defibrillator and/or further play equipment such as a zip wire or new goal posts.
As regards finances, the Council had set a precept of £6,680 for 2016/17 to which was added the council tax support grant of £41. We also received the CIL payment of £2263.

Income was spent on the following items, excluding VAT:
Clerk’s salary £1,560; Clerk’s expenses and other administrative costs £510; Grass cutting £1,962; Dog waste collection £102; Donations to local charities £215; VAT paid on these items totalling £463 has been recovered in 2017/18. This resulted in a surplus for the year of £4,172 against a budgeted surplus of £1,050. The difference is largely due to the unexpected CIL payment and an underspend on Flowers Piece maintenance.
The Council’s retained funds of £9,206 at 31 March 2017 include an election reserve of £400, the CIL reserve of £2,263 and a Flowers Piece maintenance reserve of £850.
The precept for the current year was again set at £6,680 although no Council Tax Support Grant will be received in 2017/18.

I would like to thank our District Councillor, Virginia Von Celsing, for the information and support that she has given the Council on a number of matters. I would also like to thank my fellow Councillors for their support over the last year but most particularly Paul Thompson, the Clerk, whose help and advice are, as usual, so invaluable to the smooth running of the Parish Council.

The Chairman then invited District Councillor Virginia Von Clesing to update parishioners on matters concerning WBC:
Virginia reported that the District Council was continuing to face problems in managing its budgets with some services being devolved down to town and parish councils, such as library services and transport, and others that it is hoped will be shared with larger local authorities. Housing continues to be a problem with more sites being sought to meet the local development plan. This is unlikely to affect Ashampstead as we have no settlement boundary and are within the AONB. Our local MP, Richard Benyon is supporting initiatives to raise funds to provide accommodation for young people in the Newbury area. WBC were also concerned at the low life expectancy rates found in Newbury compared to the parishes in the area. Finally, Gigaclear are now promising to deliver broadband to Ashampstead by the end of August.

Parishioners questions:
Anne Woodage advised the meeting that Carebus had obtained a Section 22 permit to provide its “Handybus” service to Reading. By providing a flexible routing service it is able to accept bus passes. Users will still need to phone and book the service which is provided on a Tuesday .

Anne also advised that the handrail provided for walkers where footpath 11 meets the Aldworth Road by Pyt Cottages has a crack which has been taped over. The Clerk was asked to report this to WBC.

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 7.28.

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