MINUTES OF THE MONTHLY MEETING OF DRYBROOK PARISH COUNCIL
HELD ON TUESDAY 18th JULY 2023 AT THE SCHOOL ROOM, FOREST CHURCH at 7.00pm
PRESENT: Cllr J Print (in the Chair), M Jones, P Weaver, R Bardo, C Blake, P Caton, D Middlemiss and R Moore. Also District Councillor J Fraser and 6 members of the public. The minutes were taken by the Clerk Mrs D Smith.
- APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies received from Cllr Garland due to family illness and Cllr Hale due to bereavement. The funeral arrangements for Cllr Hale’s wife were confirmed. Cllrs Bardo and Middlemiss will represent the parish council. A condolence card has been sent.
- DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
- ACCEPTANCE OF MINUTES OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 9 JUNE 2023
It was proposed by Cllr Moore, seconded by Cllr Middlemiss and agreed that the minutes were a true and accurate record and they were duly signed by the Chair.
- MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES, NOT ON THE AGENDA
Cllr Blake agreed to lead the planning sub committee and will advertise for members of the public who may want to join. It was decided that an events committee would not be required as public events are not the remit of the parish council. Instead the parish council will look at providing financial support for events organised within and by the community and will consider the application process for this.
Parking outside the Co-op – Cllrs Middlemiss and Bardo will arrange to meet with the Highways manager and Cllr Hale once he is available again. The possibility of bollards or flower boxes was suggested
Cllr Middlemiss advised of a new template for standing orders which will be circulated for consideration and adoption at the next meeting.
After seeking further advice, Cllr Print confirmed that Annual meetings will be re-introduced next year
Cllr Blake asked if there could be a list of contacts for specific queries at the District Council and Cllr Fraser will look at this for her.
- REPORTS, including CHAIR
Cllr Print advised of the resignation of the Clerk and that it is hoped that the clerk from Mitcheldean parish council will act as a temporary clerk until a replacement is found. He will be looking at the application process and sort a suitable job description. He is also networking with Mitcheldean councillors.
It was noted that there is a patient participation meeting on 3rd August regarding the Doctor’s surgery.
There has been a complaint of dog fouling in Batts Lane and the bags being thrown into gardens – the street wardens are investigating.
Cllr Bardo reported that the one road safety sign is being repaired. Two are not working as the batteries run flat and he is looking at putting solar panels to help with this. The pole outside Cllr Garland’s will need extending to accommodate this. Cllrs Bardo, Garland and Moore will sort these issues and purchase approved batteries in future. Cllr Bardo also reported that the CANDI AGM will be held tomorrow and he will provide details for the event in Drybrook for councillors to attend.
Cllr Blake provided a planning report. There are concerns that the planning application at Overbrook Garage does not seem to be progressing. This is apparently due to contamination and leaks and flooding problems. Cllr Blake will contact the owner to find out the current position.
It was noted that the butchers is likely to close in the new year due to retirement.
Cllr Fraser advised she is now joint deputy leader in the FODDC cabinet. She advised that the community alarm system is changing to a digital system and is out for procurement.
- PUBLIC QUESTIONS
There was a request for a pedestrian crossing near the Memorial Hall and Cllr Bardo will talk to Highways about this. Parking along the road outside the school was discussed and a request was made for the markings outside the school to be repainted as they have faded.
- PLANNING MATTERS
Already discussed and report given
- FINANCIAL MATTERS
The following payments were agreed
- i) Payment of accounts: D Smith (July salary) – £308.67, Expenses (July/Aug), £33.00, N Baker (toilet cleaning) -£480), Complete Landscape Gardeners (grass cutting ) – £1308, Complete Landscape Gardeners (street cleaning – £460 , Holy Trinity Church (room hire) – £165, EON (electricity – toilets) – £39.83
- ii)Acceptance of audit report & annual governance – accepted and agreed
iii) Review of contracts, including approval of Christmas light infrastructure expenditure
It was agreed for Cllr Moore to liaise with the contractors regarding the grass cutting and street cleaning and the contracts will be reviewed for next year, with the possibility of employing a village warden. Cllr Middlemiss has contacted the property owners that have fixtures on their properties for Christmas lights. The new electrical infrastructure required will be around £6000. He is also looking at the costs and options of extending the lights. The preferred company would install and store the lights if the parish council purchase them. After discussion, it was proposed by Cllr Blake to proceed with the infrastructure for the Christmas lights with a budget up to £6000. This was seconded by Cllr Bardo and agreed. Cllr Middlemiss will sort this and will also look at sponsorship to support funding. As this will be a long, phased project it was suggested that for next Christmas there could be a large tree outside the Memorial Hall and Cllr Middlemiss will investigate prices and options.
- iv)Review of Standing Orders – as discussed earlier.
- ITEMS FOR DISCUSSION
Overgrown Pavements & Kerbsides, Footpaths and Rights of Way – land owners need to be asked to cut back their hedges. Any blocked footpaths need to be reported to the Footpaths Officer at the County Council.
Signage – there are several that need repairing or cleaning and Highways are responsible for these.
Flooding – there are overgrown grids at Overbrook and the BT exchange that need clearing. A list of flooding areas needs to be compiled and contact made with owners or District Council accordingly.
Waste & Salt Bins – Cllr Blake suggested a bin review. The slat bins will be replaced on a rolling program. The waste bins are the remit of the District Council and Cllr Fraser will look into the disposal/replacement of old bins
Notice Board – information needs updating. Cllr Print had keys and Maxine at the Charity shop now has them. Cllr Weaver will update Ruardean Hill and Woodside noticeboards.
Toilets – Cllr Moore has cut back brambles and will sort flower boxes/broken stones. Thanks, extended to Cllr Moore for this. He will also look at sorting the brambles by the car park area. Cllr Print suggested that there could be an option to update the toilet area with a replacement purpose built toilet and storage/office area. It was noted that the District Council only lease the toilets to the parish council.
- ITEMS FOR INFORMATION ONLY AND AGENDA ITEMS FOR NEXT MEETING
Confirm Christmas light options. A mini meeting to discuss this was suggested for August but Cllr Moore proposed a maximum budget of £12000 to be spent with Cllr Middlemiss leading the project. This was seconded by Cllr Jones and carried.
Standing orders – review.
11 CONFIRM DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Meeting closed at 8.45pm.