Minutes of Meeting of Stert PC on 12th December 2016


Present:   Clive Boyes (CB)  Chairman
Alick Edwards (AE) Dty Chairman
Chris Lawrence (CL) Councillor
Sam Deacon (SD) Councillor
Lucy Barker (LB)  Councillor/Treasurer
William Howkins (WH) Councillor/Clerk

Also present were Mr. Philip Whitehead (PW), Wiltshire Councillor.

Before starting the PC meeting, Mr. Nigel Grist, owner of the Tinkfield Recycling Site, was invited to brief the PC on the progress of the building works for the new sorting shed.

Mr. Grist said the building’s frame was completed and his staff were erecting the side cladding with their own labour when they had spare time from ongoing operations. This was the reason for the long time it was taking to finish the work. There was no specific schedule to complete the work, but when pressed, Mr Grist thought the sidings should be complete by the end of January. He was urged to do so as the mound of rubbish inside the building was an eyesore from the main road and after high winds from the SW, plastic bags were blown into the hedgerows of adjacent fields. Mr Grist said that the building had already eliminated the foul smell from the rotting rubbish by keeping it dry and this would also prevent fires from starting as happened in 2014.

The PC were also anxious to hear when Mr Grist would raise the bund to the east of the site and plant it with trees, an integral part of the works and a condition for WC giving planning permission for the new building. He replied that this work would be carried out using his own equipment and labour and would be done in the spring when the ground had firmed up: the planting would follow next autumn.

Mr Grist was also questioned about how he would reduce the mud on the main road outside the site which caused the road to be quite slippery at times. He replied that he was planning to extend the concrete hard standing within the site at the same time as installing a new weigh-bridge. This combined with pressure washing the wheels of lorries leaving the site should greatly improve the condition of the main road. PW informed that contractors operating from sites adjacent to public roads were only required to take reasonable measures to prevent mud being brought onto roads and that the public were responsible for driving with due care so as to prevent accidents near site entrances. However, he said he would make sure that signs were put up to warn motorists about the mud on the road.

Mr Grist ended by assuring the PC that they were always welcome to call him should they have any matters of concern. CB thanked Mr Grist for his briefing on the progress of the building works and he then left the meeting. This briefing was followed by the PC meeting:

1.   Apologies for absence  

2.  Declaration of Interest  
There were no declarations of interest.

3. Minutes of previous meeting.
The minutes of the previous Parish Council meeting were approved (proposed by LB, seconded by CL) and signed by the Chairman.

4. Treasurer’s Report  
LB reported that there had been one transaction since the last meeting: payment of £300 to Alick Edwards for maintaining the village verges and hedges. (The autumn round of maintenance had just been completed and AE was complimented by the PC on how neat the village lane looked.)
The account balance stood at £2,223.80 (confirmed in the passbook by WH).
5. Neighbourhood Watch  
WH reported that he continued to receive warnings from Wiltshire Police from time to time of various scams that he had passed on to residents where relevant. Otherwise, there had been nothing to report. AE said there had been some fly tipping at the top of the track opposite the entrance to the village which he had cleared away, but he had not seen who was responsible.

6.  Tinkfield Recycling
See above.

7. Verge Maintenance 
CB had received a complaint about the footpath along the main road between Clock Inn and the entrance to the village. The path has become narrow and overgrown in places by the hedge so that it is no longer passable without stepping into the road. PW said that this should come under WC’s routine road maintenance program and the PC should request this through the Parish Steward Scheme. WH said he would fill in the necessary form on WC’s website and send PW the log number so he could follow up on it.

8. Church View
CB raised the matter of the view from the churchyard. The leylandii trees between Spout Cottage and Orchard Cottage had become so tall that they were blocking the view of the Vale from the churchyard. As this view was one of the important features of the village, much admired by residents and visitors, he suggested that the PC might help with the costs of cutting down these trees. SD said she would visit the churchyard to inspect the view. CB asked the other councillors to do so as well so that the matter could be discussed at the next PC meeting.

9. Salt Spreader
WH had been in touch with Andrew Perrett of WC and had arranged to schedule his and AE’s training in the operation of the salt spreader in late January. This is a requirement for the PC’s insurance cover.

10. Stert PC’s Christmas Party
The Christmas party will be held at Stert House at 6.30 pm on Friday 16th December. CB asked the PC members to come early to help with the drinks and canapés.

11. AOB
11.1 LB said that she had been warned that moss on the pavement outside Stert House had made the path very slippery. Cleaning the surface was WC’s responsibility and could be included as an item under the Parish Warden Scheme, but it would take time for it to be acted upon.
11.2 LB also informed that Maggie Faultless’s Music for Awhile group had agreed to give a concert in St. James’s Church next year on 14th October.

12. Next meeting
The next meeting will be held in Stert House on Monday 24th April, at 7.30 pm.

Signed    ………………. Dated  …………….


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