Ordinary Meeting Minutes 7/12/2009


 Minutes of the Ordinary Meeting of Penshurst Parish Council held on Monday 7 December 2009 at 7.30 pm in Penshurst Village Hall
1.            PRESENT:   Cllrs R Sellings (Chairman), Mrs D Broad, A Campbell, S Frederick, D Geal, M Gilbert, Mrs A Hill, R Horsford, C Viccars
2.            MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 2 November, having been circulated, were approved and signed by the Chairman.
Declarations of Interest in Agenda Items
If a Member has a prejudicial interest, this should be declared at the start of the meeting.
Personal interests may be declared at this point or alternatively can be declared at the time when the specific item is being discussed, if a Member wishes to speak on an item in which s/he has a personal interest.   None
3.            MATTERS ARISING:
a.            Fordcombe Hospital Bus Stop:    Cllr Horsford had discussed the problem with the local landowner who had no objection to the introduction of slabs for a hard standing.   It was reiterated that problems occurred for passengers alighting from the bus, not when waiting for it.   Speldhurst Parish Council were unable to help.
b.         Public Toilets:      Response awaited from Richard Wilson, SDC Officer regarding PC offer of contribution towards continuation of facility. Cllr Frederick advised that a grant might be possible from SEEDA, he would investigate and report.
c.         BT Payphone: Damaged phone box at Smarts Hill reported under reference ND6GKN54.    Clerk advised work should be completed within 14 days, new reference provided: ND2167757.
d.            Allotments:   Clerk forwarded letters to allotment holders regarding inspection visit, it was noted these had been received.
e.         Rogues Hill Bridge: Clerk reported wear on white ‘stop’ line on approach to bridge under reference 1199.   Drains on one side of the hill had been cleared but water was still flowing down the other side.
f.            Saltbins: Cllr Cooke would discuss possible accident black spots affected by ice for provision of further salt bins.  
4.            REPORTS:
a.            Swaylands:  Cllr Sellings advised that five apartments had been sold, one family had moved in to Drummond Hall.    The sewerage system was working. Building Contractors would be off site in March 2010.
b.         Kent County Councillor:      Cllr Lake had advised the clerk that the documentation relating to the provision of dog bones was being taken up by the Joint Transport Board. (Booked under reference 16312799). Cllr Lake would report at the next meeting on the interactive speed signs, Cllr Geal recorded how important provision of this was in Fordcombe due to the poor standard of driving through the parish which was too fast and consequently dangerous.
c.            Sevenoaks District Councillor:    Cllr Cooke advised that the SDC National Energy Action organisation provided means tested grants of £3.5K towards underground source heating systems, these systems were however expensive with an overall cost of £10-12K.   A meeting at Swaylands discussed the S106 and the responsibility for maintenance of the building and grounds.
d.         KALC:  No report   
e.         Community Officer : The continued absence of the Community Officer from recentmeetings was questioned Cllr Geal recorded that no visit had been made by the police after a break in nearly a month previously, Cllr Mrs Hill confirmed she had received four visits from police regarding a recent cut in a fence.   Cllr Geal felt police should also carry out speed checks in the vicinity of the village hall early in the morning.
5.            HIGHWAYS:
Cllr Gilbert and Sellings reported on a constructive meeting with Allan Gibbons, a number of the following items having been discussed:
Slippery Pavement Surface:    Cllr Sellings and Gilbert had been advised that funding was available for the replacement of the bricks, Cllr Geal to investigate most suitable options and report. Further information on the interim sand blasting was awaited from Allan Gibbons, it was noted the PC would have to pay for this work if undertaken.
Longbridge:   White lining/Repairs:   Advice received from Sue Ireland – the contractor carrying out the scour repairs has made a decision to stop the work as the water level in the River Eden is too high and increases and compromises the safety for personnel working in high water levels. Works are planned to recommence in early spring 2010. Members were of the opinion that commencing work at this time of the year had been a waste of time and money.
River Medway Bridleway Bridge: Clerk advised by Nicky Biddall (Footpaths Officer) that Jacobs hoped to remove the bridge by Christmas and erect a replacement by the end of March.   

Verge Mowing and Hedge Cutting:   Cllr Gilbert had placed information relating to this in the parish magazine and newsletter.   It was suggested that landowners be contacted in February, before the spring if work was necessary on their property.
Penshurst Junction:   Sharpening of bend and raising of kerb to slow traffic entering Penshurst Road.   Information still awaited from Allan Gibbons, Cllr Gilbert would contact him again after Christmas.
Village Name Signs:   Incorrect road name plates reported to SDC removed.    Original request for signs to be cleaned or replaced allocated Ref: 10004152 
Members noted that a fire alarm had wakened the residents of a local property recently which had subsequently been badly damaged by fire, everyone was encouraged to fit smoke alarms which were inexpensive and could save their lives.   Free alarms were available for those eligible from The Kent Fire and Rescue service, further information could be obtained on 0800 923 7000.
The problem of the bridge on the approach to Salmans Farm was raised again, clerk to check current position with regard to ownership and responsibility.   (From previous investigations highways considered this bridge to be in private ownership and under these circumstances the owner/s would be liable for any costs incurred in repairs.   Should the bridge become unsafe for use, highways would only be required to reinstate a crossing up to the level of bridleway/pedestrian use, it would be for the landowner and those responsible for repairs to reinstate the bridge to a standard they required.)
6.            PLANNING:
SE/09/02267: Woodgate Manor, (Swaylands) Penshurst Road, Penshurst: Reconfiguration of Apartment 2 to provide additional three bedroom apartment on Eastern Apartment block.   No Comment
SE/02308/9: Blower Hill, Grove Road, Penshurst: 1950’s kitchen extension demolition, new kitchen/family room extensions, first floor bathroom and toilet facilities. No Comment
SE/09/02583: Log Cabin, Coldharbour Road, Penshurst: Erection of extension to log cabin to provide kitchen and studio/garden room.     No Comment
SE/09/02478: The Bottle House, Coldharbour Lane, Penshurst: Retrospective replacement of existing internal boiler with efficient condensing oil fired boiler.   The PC are concerned that still no precaution has been taken against leakage, ie no drip tray installed under unit.
SE/09/02661: Salmans Farm, Salmans Lane, Penshurst:   Erection of a steel frame agricultural building.    The PC request that this be painted green in order to minimise visual impact on the area.
SE/09/02607:   The Old Rectory, High Street, Penshurst:   Proposed partial demolition at rear. Erection of a single storey rear extension.   Erection of new entrance gates. Reconstruction of original summer house. Alterations to fenestration and internal alterations.   TBA
HW/TPO/26/2009 Penshurst Parish Council would support the Tree Preservation Order under the above reference. Members consider there is value in keeping the existing tree stock on this site and note that there are particularly good oak and ash specimens. The trees assist in the screening of the electricity sub station and enhance the general area.
7.            CORRESPONDENCE:
a.         Kent Fire & Rescue Service:   Integrated Risk Management Plan 2010/13. Consultation document             for councillors to register opinion on plan.
b.            Brighton and Hove City Council:   Waste and Minerals Core Strategy: Consultation on Preferred             Strategy
c.            Penshurst PCC:   Advice received that instalment of bench in memory of Alan Broad placed in             church grounds had full support and approval of PCC.
d.         Lord Lieutenant of Kent: Information on Annual Civic Service on 22 April 2010.
e.         Kent Air Ambulance:   Donation request
f.          Moat Housing: Information on HomeBuy drop in session for people to discuss their housing options             and affordable housing schemes on offer.    Details can be found on www.homebuyoptions.co.uk or
8.            FINANCE:
The following accounts were presented and approved for payment:    
Mr I Streeter                                          Lengthsman                                                       156.00
David Wheeler                                       Penshurst Churchyard Mowing                         840.51
Penshurst Village Hall                                Hall Hire Fees – 2008 & 2009                             126.00
RIP Cleaning Services                                    Dog Waste Removal                                        34.50
KCC                                                      Gangmowing                                                        81.75
Mrs E M Divall                                        Clerk Salary                                                   800.00
Penshurst Place                                     Allotment Rental                                                    7.50
a.   KCC Gangmowing Contract:   Quotation for consideration for continuation of contract, after discussion it was agreed that this contract be confirmed for 2010.   Clerk to return form to KCC.
b.   Penshurst Churchyard:    Clerk advised by Nicky Biddall (Footpaths Officer) that she would be discussing the condition of the path with Penshurst Place and the PROW Heritage Section prior to arranging repairs, ie cementing in the lose bricks, she will also seek advice on treatments available to reduce the slippery surface.   The PROW would not raise objections to a pedestrian ramp being installed but would not be able to contribute to this, the PC were asked to note that as the archway is listed permission may not be given to carry out the work.     
a.            Meeting Dates 2010: Penshurst:   1 February, 6 April, 12 April (Annual Parish Assembly), 7 June, 2 August, 4 October, 6 December.    Fordcombe:    1 March, 4 May (Annual Parish Council Meeting), 5 July, 6 September, 1 November.    Clerk to check regarding use of the hall at Penshurst by the dance group and consequent noise problems.
b.            Leicester Square:   Clerk to contact Penshurst Place regarding disintegrating tarmac surface and possible trip hazard.
c.         Parish Records:   Alternative storage to be sought for old parish records.
d.         Road Surface:   The condition of the road from Fordcombe towards Langton was discussed, when wet and the weather was sunny this caused drivers to become temporarily blinded due to the sun reflecting from the shiny surface.   A cyclist had recently been knocked down.   Clerk to check if any treatment can be undertaken to improve this situation.
Meeting concluded at 9pm                                         Next Meeting 1 February 2010 Penshurst