Minutes – 29 January 2019



PRESENT: Cllr. H Salwey (Chairman); Cllr. D Ayres (Vice Chairman); Cllr. A Cowell; Cllr. C Giles; Cllr. A Hall; Cllr. A Wright; and Cllr. R Smith.

IN ATTENDANCE: Shropshire Cllr. V Parry; and R Hewitt, Clerk. There was one (1) member of the public present.

18/88 Apologies – None.

18/89 Declarations of Members Interest and Written Requests for Dispensation – None.

18/90 Minutes of the previous meeting – Minutes of the meeting held on 27 November 2018 were approved and signed as a correct record.

18/91 Reports of noise and smell pollution from biodigester, Park Lane – A request has been made to the Environment Agency to confirm whether the matters raised in their compliance report have been resolved. Should this information not be forthcoming, it was agreed to ask for the most recent compliance report, assuming a new report has been done since the one previously provided by the Environment Agency following a Freedom of Information request.

18/92 County Councillor Report – Shropshire Cllr. Parry’s report was noted. Shropshire Council is to allocate £10 million to build houses to help local people. The first step to accessing this is to request a housing needs survey. It was agreed to consider a housing needs survey for the parish at the next scheduled meeting. The number of highways staff is to be reduced from 20 to eight people. Highways is planning work on Overton Road in April 2019.

18/93 To invite views and discussion from members of the parish – A member of the public talked about planned improvements at their property. The Chairman said the parish council welcomes early consultation on planning and advised the member of the public to contact planning services at Shropshire Council.

18/94 Planning
There were no matters considered.

18/95 Report from Councillors who have attended meetings of other Organisations on behalf of the Parish Council – Cllr. Giles reported on a Ludlow and Clee Local Joint Committee which looked at a South Shropshire National Park. The people that attended the meeting were said to be cautious about the proposal.

18/96 Financial items
a) The following payments were agreed: Richards Castle (Herefordshire) PC, website hosting fee (£42.50); and Richards Castle Village Hall, room hire (£81.00).
b) Parish council accounts 2018-19 to date, and precept for 2019-20: The finances of the parish council for 2018-19 to date were reviewed. The budget for 2019-20 was agreed and the precept set at £4,500.00. An application will be made for a £750.00 environmental maintenance grant in 2019-20 which will be match funded by the parish council. £750.00 will be earmarked in reserves to support the local bus service. The Clerk’s salary will be in accordance with SCP27.
c) Internal financial controls: Systems of internal control were reviewed, and it was agreed they are effective in safeguarding public money and resources.

18/97 Highway Items/ Amenity Items/ Footpath Items
Highway / Amenity and Footpath items – Cllr. Wright said the culvert on Station Road has been fixed by highways. There is still a problem with subsidence at the culvert however.

18/98 Forestry Commission’s Mortimer Forest Plan consultation – The parish council completed the consultation form and agreed the following comment: With reference to income and employment/ recreation and access, sustainable tourism is supported, which in the view of the parish council excludes development of camping or chalet facilities. The forest plan appears not to address the areas of grassland and there should be planned grassland management as well as for the forest. The plan needs to deal effectively with notifiable plants such as ragwort, and fencing with neighbouring farms should be kept in good condition. It is suggested that the plan should consider taking a genuinely long-term view, up to 100 years.

18/99 West Mercia Commissioner’s Safer Roads Fund – Noted.

18/100 NALC standing orders and Shropshire Council Code of Conduct – The parish council agreed to adopt new Standing Orders, and the 2012 Shropshire Council Code of Conduct.

18/101 Clerk’s Report – Shropshire Council is to provide £385.00 for the 2018-19 Environmental Maintenance Grant. The SmartWater initiative has had very few expressions of interest from members of the public, and Richards Castle Herefordshire is taking no further action on this for the time being. The next SALC Area Committee meeting is on 28 February 2019. The parish council’s insurers have announced that they are to be acquired. The Clerk is to attend a South Shropshire Clerks’ Area Network meeting in February 2019. Shropshire Council is undertaking a preferred sites consultation for the Local Plan. There are no preferred sites in the parish.

18/102 Matters raised for next meeting – None.

18/103 Next Meeting – The next scheduled meeting will be at 7.30pm on Tuesday 9 April 2019.

The meeting closed at 8.25 pm.