Ordinary Meeting Minutes 3/12/2012





Minutes of the Ordinary Meeting of Penshurst Parish Council held on Monday 3 December 2012 at 7.30 pm in Penshurst Village Hall



1. PRESENT: Cllr J Cass (Chairman), A Campbell, I Carson, Mrs D Broad, J Horsford, J O’Shea



APOLOGIES: Cllrs S Frederick, B Townsend. These were approved. (Cllr Broadhead had forwarded his apologies via voicemail but these had not been received prior to the meeting)



2. MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 5 November 2012, having been circulated, were approved and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of interests in agenda items


If a Member has a disclosable pecuniary interest in an item of business this must be declared at the start of the meeting, unless dispensation has been granted. The member may not participate in any discussion, vote or discharge any function related to that business.
Non-pecuniary interests may be declared at this point if not already registered. Members with a non-pecuniary interest may speak on the subject if members of the public can do so but may not vote.


It was recorded that all members had an interest in Item: 7a – Precept.


The Chairman reported that SDC had confirmed via the Minutes of the full Council meeting that the recommendations to maintain the existing structure of Penshurst Parish had been approved, also that the name of the council and the warding arrangements also remain as is. It was further noted that two properties had been transferred from Leigh to Penshurst.
The Chairman advised that meetings held in 2013 in Penshurst Village Hall would commence at 7.45 pm




Problems with overgrown hedges, vegetation blocking vision through the post and rail fencing and near the bus stop at the bottom of Glebelands were reported. Clerk to write to Penshurst Estate and advise of the problem together with all landowners along the length of road in the area of Long Bridge through to the Glebelands junction. It was noted a contractor had been requested to cut back the overgrowth in the area of The Glebe.
Cllr Lake explained the safety problems as reported by the clerk to Steven Noad, Cllr Lake had requested Mr Noad accelerate the supply of the promised signage, an order had been placed on 23 November.
Problems with the rubbish generated in the village and collected by the Lengthsman were still causing a problem, the PC agreed to provide a suitably sized bin to house the sacks if the village hall agreed to provide space for the item.






SE/12/02795/LBC: Old Surrenden, Walters Green Road, Penshurst: Replace flat roof on existing rear dormer window with pitched roof, repair pitched tile roofing, replace metal windows to two front dormer windows with hardwood windows, replace plastic rainwater goods with metal rainwater goods.


12/02895:Old Surrenden, Walters Green Road, Penshurst: Convert rear garage into living accommodation and to include changes to fenestration, with extensions and alterations to the roof. Replace flat roof on existing rear dormer window with pitched roof.


SE/12/02792: Tall Trees, Smarts Hill, Penshurst: Demolition of existing dwelling replaced with a proposed single dwelling with detached garage. P C Support


SE/12/02184: St. John The Baptist Church, Rogues Hill, Penshurst: Erection of single storey extension to the north wall of the tower, improvements to existing drainage and adjustment to paving levels to the south. PC Support


SE/12/02831: Larkfield House, Saints Hill, Penshurst:


Demolition of existing porch and two out buildings. Erection two storey front/side extension; rear extension including first floor balcony. Construction of basement. Alterations to roof and fenestration. The PC have visited this site again and would record that we are still in support of this application.


SE/12/03045: The Grove Cottage, Grove Road, Penshurst: Demolition of existing terrace deck and erection of a new terrace deck to the North side. PC Support


SE/12/02900: Lilac Cottage, Penshurst Road, Penshurst: Demolition of existing garage building, and erection of new oak framed garage with log store.


Tree Surgery:


SE/12/03101: Colquhouns, High Street, Penshurst: Removal of 1 No. Eucalyptus tree




SE/12/2146: KCC – Fordcombe C of E Primary School, The Green, Fordcombe: Two storey extension to existing reception classroom/staffroom, including single storey adjoining toilet block and extension of existing canopy over decked area to rear of reception classroom. GRANTED


SE/12/02005: Place Farm Barn, Penshurst Place: Change of use of existing plant sales area to proposed Kiosk/Eating Area (A3). Infill the existing front and end elevations to provide the seating area and toilets. GRANTED




a. Warren/Bottle House Allotments: Clerk reported one allotment holder wished to relinquish their plot at the Bottle House site with effect from end March 2013, the holder confirmed he would make the site presentable before hand over. Further letters to be written to the holders of those whose plots identified as needing attention to bring them up to an acceptable standard, giving until end of March to complete the work. Plots to be withdrawn with effect from 1 April 2013 if standards not met.


c. Broadband: Survey finalised, replies had been received via email and forwarded to Joe Middleton at SDC. Clerk collected envelopes from the garage/post office, surgery and pub and hand delivered to SDC together with those received direct via the post.




a. Kent County Councillor: Penshurst Village Hall Trustees declined the offer of provision of a defibrillator to be held on site. Cllr Lake hoped that parishioners felt the recent visit of the lengthsmen had been successful, he hoped they could work in the village for a week during 2013. He was aware of a consultation paper on road safety in Fordcombe formulated by David Waghorn (clerk had circulated this to all councillors), this could be extended to Penshurst School also. Cllr Lake would provide funding for zigzag lines, hopefully provided this year rather than next, Cllr Cass was unaware of any objections to these.
Cllr Lake was still waiting for the anti skid surface to be provided on Penshurst Road.
A meeting was scheduled at Gatwick on Friday to discuss problems of noise, he had spoken against a second runway and night flying. At present 11200 take offs and landings occurred between 11.30 pm – 6 am during the summer months, this reduced to 6,200 during the winter months; average movements per hour were 57. The vehicle activated sign was underway, Laura Squires would be writing to adjacent properties


b. Sevenoaks District Councillor: No report


c. KALC: Cllr Carson advised that the speaker at the recent meeting had advised members of the restorative justice scheme whereby perpetrators of crime could meet with their victims. It was hoped the next speaker would be the new Police Commissioner.


d. Alms Houses: Peter Johnson reported that two further applications for residency had been received for the vacancy, one from a couple and the other from a single person. The refurbishment of the window in Flat 2 would commence on 10 December and the work required to Flat 1 would probably commence during February 2013.


e. Neighbourhood Watch: Peter Johnson advised that the current PCSO, Anne Kingscott was being transferred and that PCSO David O’Neil would replace her, his area of coverage would be wider that the previous PCSO and he could be contacted via the 101 number. The Neighbourhood Liaison Officer Suzanne Daniell had moved to London, the name of the replacement had not yet been provided. Although no crimes had been reported in the two villages, a number of attempted thefts had occurred and numerous unsolicited telephone calls had been received by residents. Parishioners were reminded to be careful of scam phone calls.


f. Speedwatch: Peter Johnson reported that one session had been undertaken at Rogues Hill, the information collected was now available. (If a further Speedwatch report is made available, this will be circulated to councillors and placed on the parish noticeboard.)




a. Penshurst School Access: Signage promised: Bridleway SR48 – near Meadow Corner and the track down to Nashes Farm; on the verge near to No. 3 New Road and on the verge between 1 and 2 Glebelands (adjacent to Penshurst Village name sign). Highways Lengthsman team attended parish on 23 November and were unable to work in the area from New Road through to The Glebe due to the speed of traffic and consequent danger. Report being submitted to highways regarding situation by Lengthsmen team to support parish request for speedy provision of signage by Steven Noad.


b. Penshurst Rectory Hedge: Letter forwarded to diocese regarding new rectory hedge, providing highways guidelines for hedge cutting requirements when hedge is adjacent to highway. No response received.


c. Reported Faults Update:


Ref: 43360: Culvert outside Alms Houses, Rogues Hill. Website indicated work completed on 6 November although no evidence of clearance having taken place. Clerk contacted Highways to report again, Lengthsmen removed some of the debris from the culvert at end of their visit but further work was required, this was carried out by Mr Rob Sellings. Clerk reported again to highways who advised contractors had reported that five gullies had been emptied on Rogues Hill and water tested and were running clear, highway’s drainage department sending out team again to check.


Ref: 49302: Missing cat’s eye reported to KCC, Clerk advised a number of cats’ eyes were now missing from the stretch of road. Website indicates issue resolved as of 23 November. Clerk to liaise with Cllr Broad regarding whether work had been completed or not.


Ref: 49751: Lack of zigzag signs outside Fordcombe Primary school reported. Confirmation received from Steven Noad that he would be happy to progress issue if funding could be secured, to assist provision consultation with local residents and the school would help, article placed in Fordcombe magazines to gauge public response.


Ref: 49299/49750: Fordcombe Road junction with Glebelands – Primary School: puddling adjacent to pavement causing problems for pedestrian using route to school. Website indicates issue being investigated on 8 November. Further photos forwarded to highways.


Ref: 49301: Poundsbridge Lane edging/gravel replacement and possible plastic warning posts adjacent to deep ditches. Website indicates works completed 8 November.


Glebelands Pavement 11/12: Jim Latheron advised week commencing 25 November order had been placed with contractors to clear vegetation, renew edges of path and repair surface back to full width.


Ref: 53305: Laying water reported on road between Poundsbridge and Barden Road. Issue under investigation 28 November


Ref: 42889: Laying water reported on road opposite Poundsbridge Lane/Marlpit Lane. Outstanding since 23 May 2012. Passed to contractors for action within 28 days but no further information available, issued being raised again under new Ref: 17006636.


Ref: 53307: Laying water reported opposite Latymers – Forge Garage. Issue under investigation 28 November


Ref: 53311: Laying water reported between Petersfield and Birch on Fordcombe Road. Issue under investigation 28 November


Poundsbridge Church: Clerk to check with the Highway Officer if the bollards installed adjacent to the
wall could be moved to the other side of the lane, parking here had caused the ditch to collapse.


d. Highways Lengthsman Team: Attended 23 November to carry out minor works ie sign cleaning/clearance, vegetation removal etc.




The following accounts were presented and approved for payment.
Mr I Streeter Lengthsman £172.00
RIP Cleaning Services Ltd Dog Waste Removal £54.00
Fordcombe Village Hall Hall Hire £12.00
Goldservice Contract Cleaning Ltd Public Toilet Cleaning Contract £529.54
Penshurst Place Allotment Rental £7.50
EDF Energy Public Toilet Electric Supply £82.53
Mrs E M Divall Clerk Salary Oct-Dec £845.40
HMRC Clerk’s Tax £294.60



a. Precept 2013/2014: Preliminary figures provided for members with a breakdown on the costs of the public toilets, fun day and bulk freighter.
Approach made to SDC with regard to provision of bulk freighter on three occasions during 2013, possibly in January, June and October. Members approved funds for this.
Article prepared regarding costs and future of Public Toilets for inclusion in parish magazines. After discussion it was agreed that funding for this be included in the precept, responses to the articles in the local magazines asking parishioners to give their opinion on retaining the facility to be considered at the next meeting. It was agreed that unless there was strong support for retaining the toilets they would be closed at the end of March 2013 in view of the high cost to parishioners.
Playdale costs for inspection £195 which included minor repairs ie tightening bolts, Rospa costs £90
Dunbrik contacted regarding collection of sacks from alternative site, no problems reported to date.
Clerk to include funding for Play Place, grant application unsuccessful for possible youth club, KCC placing contract with cheapest supplier. Report received regarding 2012 Play Place Fun Day: Springhouse/Merry-go-round/Childrens’ Centre accessed 1415 children during Fun Day provision of 30 events across 20 areas. 224 children in total attended the Fordcombe/Leigh and Chiddingstone sites, nearly 50 attending Fordcombe plus parents/grandparents totalling over 90 on the day. Feedback showed optimum length of time for play was three hours. Expenditure on this project was approved.
County Archive require list of items for storage prior to confirmation of space available. Cllr Campbell and clerk to action.
After discussion it was agreed that the Lengthsman’s salary would be increased to £89 per month.
It was agreed that the rental charges on the allotments would be increased to the equivalent of £20 per unit with effect from 1 April 2013, a further increase would be applied with effect from 2014, amount to be agreed at next precept discussions for 2014/15.


Taking the foregoing into account it was agreed that the precept for 2013/14 be set at £28,291


Gangmowing: Quotation for 2013 season received from Landscape Services was £253.57, this represented an increase of approximately 3% on the previous year’s figure.


Future Parish Swathe Cutting: Clerk working with Leigh/Chiddingstone clerk to provide specification for circulation to suitable local contractors for quotations for 2013 season of cutting. Five quotes being sought. Further information awaited from county, ie specification to be followed, up to date maps and contract conditions prior to despatch of requests to contractors.




a. Kent Lane Rental Scheme – Consultation: Results of consultation used to formulate application to operate the KLRS to the Transport Secretary. The Scheme and associated documents submitted for the application have been published to the KCC KLRS webpage – www.kent.gov.uk/kentlane2012 together with a summary of consultation comments and the Council’s response and the final KLRS Cost Benefit Analysis.


b. Kent & Medway Fire and Rescue Service: Draft plans for the future published on 29 October in a document called Towards 2020 Update, this is available on their website at www.kent.fire-uk.org. The closing date for comments is January 2013.


c. Office of HM Lord-Lieutenant of Kent: Invitation for PC Chairman to attend annual Civic Service at Maidstone All Saints Church on 12 March 2013.


d. SDC: Policy in respect of Licensing of Sex Shops, Sex Cinemas and Sexual Entertainment Venues – Request for Comments.




a. Town and Parish Planning Meeting: Information from the meeting had been circulated via email by the clerk. Cllrs Cass and Campbell attended. Cllr Campbell raised the issue of the Government consultation on the permitted development proposal planned for three years, this covered single storey extensions to a depth of 8m. After discussion it was agreed Cllr Campbell draft a response to the consultation confirming that the PC was opposed to the permitted development rights being allowed in AONBs, it was noted Penshurst was covered by this designation.
With regard to gypsy and traveller sites, SDC were required to provide 40 permanent pitches, at present there were 25 temporary sites.


b. Signs for Village Events: Members were reminded that there were planning issues with the erection of signs, both permanent and temporary, information would be available on line at SDC covering size, type and position etc.


Meeting concluded at 9 pm Next Meeting 4 February 2013 – Penshurst




Reminder: 2013 Meetings: Penshurst: 4 February, 2 April, 3 June, 5 August, 7 October, 2 December. Meetings to commence at 7.45 pm at Penshurst venue only.


Fordcombe: 4 March, 8 April (Annual Parish Assembly), 7 May, 1 July, 2 September, 4 November.