GREATWORTH PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes the Meeting of the Parish Council
held at Greatworth Methodist Church Room
on Monday 2 June 2014 at 8.00pm
APPROVED BY RESOLUTION = TUESDAY 2ND JULY 2014
Present Cllr Peart, Cllr Stageman, Cllr Masser, Cllr Ward, Cllr Edwards, Cllr Tinkler,
In attendance S Loake (Clerk)
Members of the public: Eight members of the public were present.
Mr J Bolton of Berry’s was also present.
Apologies were accepted from Cllr Bingham, Cllr Cross and Cllr Hooper
Mr N Ward expressed his thanks to the Chairman and the HS2 Committee for all their hard work in preparing and delivering the petition to Parliament. The chairman stated that, in addition to the Parish Council petition, he had delivered 13 individual petitions.
Presentation re proposed solar farm
Following a declaration by the Chairman that the Parish Council could express no opinion or make any comment until a formal planning application is submitted, the Council received a presentation from Mr James Bolton of Berry’s concerning a proposed solar-farm to be sited on fields adjacent to Dump Road and Welsh Lane, and north of the Nursery. The proposal is for a site of about 20 acres, producing about 4.5 megawatts. Mr Bolton stated that the site would be barely visible from the village, and that there would be judicious planting of hedgerow to ensure adequate screening. No concrete would be used during the construction, and the panels would be constructed with posts 1.8m apart and panels 2.2m high. The site would be very eco-friendly, and sheep would graze between the solar panels. After a preparation period of approximately, construction would take about three weeks, and would cause minimum disruption within the village. Thereafter, there would be one or two maintenance visits each year, involving just a 4x4 vehicle. The site would be approximately one third of the size of the site that was proposed for Farthinghoe, and would be smaller than the site on the A43 near Silverstone. There would be an expected life of 27 years, after which the site would be returned to farmland. Because there is no concrete involved in the construction, and no noise from the transformers during operation, it is anticipated that the impact on the village would be minimal. At this stage there is scope for flexibility in the detailed planning, and the purpose of the presentation was to assess any particular requirements of the village.
The presentation was followed by a series of questions concerning the proximity to the forthcoming railway, security, and environmental impact.
The Chairman thanked Mr Bolton for his presentation, and stated that the Parish Council would give the matter careful consideration onm receipt of a formal planning application.
Those involved tin the presentation, and 7 of the members of the public then left the meeting.
It suggested by the Chairman, proposed by Cllr Stageman, 2nd by Cllr Ward and agreed that there should be an updated “green energy statement” produced, so that any future such planning applications could be assessed against it. Cllrs Cross and Bingham would be tasked with preparing this.
Minutes of previous meeting
The minutes of the meeting held on 15 May were accepted as a true record of the meeting and were duly signed by the chairman.
a) Standing orders: The clerk stated that he was making good progress with preparing the Standing Orders foir submission to the Council, and hoped to deliver this document prior to the next meeting.
b) Trees and trellis: An email has been received stating that trees have now been planted, and expressing thanks to the Parish Council for its assistance in this matter.
Cllr Tinkler stated that there was nothing to report
It was proposed by Cllr Masser, 2nd by Cllr Edwards, and agreed that the Parish Council would transfer its banking accounts to Unity Trust Bank. It was further agreed that signatories would be Cllr Masser, Cllr Cross, Cllr Stageman and Cllr Bingham. The Clerk was instructed to make the necessary arrangements for this, and to ensure that the signatories completed the necessary forms.
Cllr Peart reported he had successfully delivered the petitions to Parliament, both on behalf of the Parish Council and 13 others for whom he acted as “Role B Agent”. The final version of the petition would appear on the Council website, and would also be delivered to NCC and to Andrea Leadsom MP. The Council expressed its gratitude to the Chairman and to the members of the HS2 Committee. It was agreed that the Chairman should submit an expenses claim to reimburse costs incurred. The Chairman will present the petition to the Select Committee of the Commons in due course, but, because of the overwhelming number of petitions received, this is not likely to be soon! It is hoped that there will be adequate notice of the date of the hearing.
The Council considered made no comment concerning an application for a hay and tractor stsore at hales Copse Farm Cottages or for an extension at the rear of 14 Peveril Road.
The Clerk stated that he had received correspondence and a telephone call from Mr Mead at Tanks A Lot saying that he hade done some alterations to the footpath, but had been unable to complete the work at the entrance because of the wet conditions through the winter. It was noted that the date of planning decision in which the conditions were set out was August 2012, and the work should have been completed within 6 months from that date. It was also noted that since then there has been one of the driest summers on record, so there has been plenty of opportunity for the work to be completed. It was agreed that the Clerk be instructed to refer this matter for Local Authority Enforcement Officer.
It was proposed by Cllr Ward, 2nd by Cllr Masser and agreed that the following payments be made
Previous Clerk expenses
The cheques were duly signed by the authorised signatories.
In: Tanks A Lot re Planning (see below), Brochure for Towcester Food Festival, NCALC Update, SNC Walks and Cycle leaflets, Correspondence with HMRC re VAT rebate and change of clerk, Tree report (see below)
Out: Response to HMRC
Any other business
a) A report has been received from the Village Tree Wardens, saying that the Willow Trees at the playing field require attention, as does a tree in Dump Road. The latter is not within the Parish, and the Clerk will refer tyhis to the Marston Estate
b)Cllr Ward stated that she had obtained permission to reduce a beech tree at Bacon House
c)) Cllr Stageman reported that she had received a comment about the failure to cut grass opposite the school, and it was also noted that an area of The Square was not cut. The Clerk stated that he would contact the mowing contractor, and would the mowing specification to the next meeting to ensure that this is properly updated.
d) Cllr Edwards stated that because she and her family would soon be leaving the area, she will be resigning as a Councillor in the near future.
Date of next meeting
Tuesday 1 July at 8.00pm in Halse