Logo Image
return to the previous page

 

 

 

 

report offensive content
click to view site advert 2

click to view site advert 3

 

text version

 

 

Homepage

SPC Meeting dates

WODC News Releases

Swerford Christmas

The Queens 90th

Swerford Gardens

Garden Photos

Swerford VH

Swerford Parish

Swerford PC Agenda

Swerford PC Audit

SWERFORD PC MINUTE

Swerford PC Assets

Sloe Gin

PC Minutes 2018

PC Financial regs

PC Standing Orders

Village hall

Village Hall Diary

Parish Council

Swerford Whos Who

swift boxes

St Marys today

Swerford Orchard

Swerford Castle

Landscape sleuth

Leighs snow pics

Wills snow pics

Swerford Chapel

David Cameron

Bluerow

Swerford WI

Swerford Mayday

50s Memories

Landgirl

Jenny Tustian MBE

Garden Highlights

bookmark this website print this page    
Swerford Parish Council Minutes

Swerford Parish Council Draft Minutes - Annual Parish Council Committee Meeting Thursday 17 May 2018 at 19:30 hrs Swerford Village Hall

Present: Mr J Chaplin, (Acting Chairman), Mrs J Abbott (Councillor), Mr J Drinkwater (Councillor), Mr C Ford (Councillor and Acting RFO) Mr L Tustian (Councillor). Mr W Haddon (Parish Clerk).

Residents: Mr G Hayman, Mrs S Hayman (who left well into the meeting), Mr G Strachan.

A warm welcome was extended to all. The election of the Parish Council Chairman (and Vice Chairman).

Appointed unopposed were:

Mr John Chaplin - Chairman (proposed by J Drinkwater, Seconded by C Ford);

Mr Colin Ford - Vice Chairman (proposed by J Drinkwater, Seconded by Mrs J Abbott).

J Chaplin immediately signed a Declaration of Acceptance of Office as Chairman.

1. Apologies for absence

None.

2. Declarations of Interest (in respect of subjects likely to arise).

None.

3. Approval of minutes: Council meeting12th April 2018 and Parish Assembly 4th May 2018 and Matters Arising.

Mr G Hayman was compelled to note, and felt that it must surely have been a mistake, that the Minutes to the Assembly could have stated that ‘it was acknowledged that the events relating to the Backside planning application were in many ways regrettable’. He was strongly of the view that in not raising an objection, the Parish Council was out of order and had not acted appropriately. He was of the very firm opinion that in allowing the application to proceed unopposed, a real threat, and a possible precursor of worse things to come, had been allowed to the way of life of the village, loved and valued by all the residents for its calm, beauty and tranquillity. He felt that the Council had not taken into account sufficiently, what must be a generally held view in the village, that the sort of development proposed is unwelcome and wrong, and the Council could have done more. He regretted that he had been unable to attend the Assembly as they were not in Swerford at the time;had he been able to do so, he would have raised this objection most profoundly.

A brief discussion occurred and the point was clearly noted. Amongst other things it was pointed out that the Minutes did in fact reflect what was said at the Assembly. And the Council retained its right to differ.

4. Other matters arising

Internal Audit Progress: matters are in hand and the audit is scheduled for 27JUN18.

Playing Fields: account closures and the ROSPA response: the closure of the specific committee bank accounts was noted; repairs had been done as required; bark is being put down in certain areas; a further ROSPA inspection is scheduled for JUL18 and Jane Abbott requested approval to pay the £50 fee required to accompany the team on their return (this was approved). She is giving this her attention.

Later in the meeting this was discussed further and the following noted by Jane Abbott:

- the willow tunnel has nettles,

- the Pipe (tunnel) needs a thorough clean,

- a Picnic Table needs repair.

A working group is being put together to see how best to manage all of this. Amendment of mandate with HSBC: C Ford has this in hand and forms were due to be completed at the end of the meeting.

Chapel End quote for tree work: a quote is awaited from Ben Acreman.

Website update: what is to be kept on the Village Website (e.g.Financial Regulations, Standing Orders, Minutes): It was agreed that all of this should be available on the website. As well as this C Ford noted that there are certain financial reports and statement which should also be published. It was not discussed but a summary of these is to be put together as part of the Financial Timetable which is currently being finalised.

It was also agreed that in addition to the minutes being held by the Parish Clerk, they should be published on the village website and remain there in perpetuity, a process which by general opinion is unproblematical.

CPR training scheduled for April: this has yet to be arranged. C Ford is handling.

5. Election of Officers

Certain councillors have agreed to responsibilities as follows:

Mrs J Abbott - Playing Fields

Mr L Tustian - Village Hall Committee (re-elected)

Mr C Ford - Footpaths and Bridleways (re-elected).

6. Financial Update and Statement

The 2018-2019 Budget was signed off in NOV17 at the time the Annual Precept was agreed.

Insurance Cover: details of current cover will be sent by J Drinkwater to C Ford to ensure that that this is pursued in time and as needed.

7. Financial Governance

Updated Financial Risk Assessment Financial Regulations Standing Orders

All the above have recently been reviewed in detail, circulated and were now presented for adoption. This was proposed by J Chaplin, seconded by J Abbott and agreed.

Accounts and Audit Regulations: it was noted that these are statutory in nature and their existence again noted.

An annual finance timetable: Precept, Annual Budget, Quarterly and Annual Statements, Audits (Internal and External and appointments thereof), Insurance, Financial Risk Assessment: C Ford advised that this is being finalised (the bulk noted in the revised Financial Regulations), is kept under review and a copy circulated. Code of Conduct: the existence of the Code of Conduct was noted, as was the requirement that Councillors follow these rules most carefully.

Minutes and recommendations of any committees: see (5) above. A general discussion occurred as to the need or otherwise of committees on a formal basis and it was not felt that this was necessary, but that it would be kept under review. Mrs S Hayman did make the point that if plans/projects were under consideration at the Church End side of the village (or anywhere within the village) it would be very nice for residents to get early notice of possibilities to allow for dialogue and feedback as appropriate.

Review of Terms of Reference and any related matters: N/A.

The Responsible Financial Officer (RFO) and a review of his/her duties especially in conjunction with the Parish Clerk: it was agreed that this had been clarified by the review of Standing Orders and Financial Regulations which have been simplified.

The appointment of a Vice-Chairman: see first point of order above.

Register of Interests: it was felt that the current system, rather than any formal ’Register’, provides for this.

Frequency of future council meetings over the next twelve months: it was agreed that meetings will be held at least quarterly and the following dates have been scheduled:

14th August 2018

13th November 2108

12th February 2019

17th May 2019 (Annual Meeting)

The Parish Assembly will be scheduled for May 2019 and before the 1st of June 2019.

Swerford Charity Trustees: the situation related to the Swerford Charity was discussed. The Parish Council appoints two of the three trustees. Terms are for four years, the appointments made so that one is due for reappointment every two years. The position requires some clarity as to when these dates are and the relationship between the Council and the Charity which is run independently. The Chairman will contact Jonathan Warr to discuss this further.

8. Any Other Business

Title Deeds, their safe-keeping, and a record of properties owned by the Council: the Clerk has inherited a bundle of deeds and other ‘property’ related documents of one kind or another, together with a listing, that does not appear to be easily reconcilable. These were held in safe custody with HSBC Chipping Norton who ceased offering this service. This reconciliation needs to occur and the deeds placed in safe custody, or perhaps registered. On top of this, there are matters to do with the registration of the village greens. The subject needs a full review and resolution as to the best way forward. The Chairman will start by contacting Mel Poke who is thought to have had a good understanding when on the Council. It will be progressed from there.

Village Hall

Contribution to the Costs of Roof Repairs: this has been the subject of discussion between J Chaplin (Council Chairman and Village Hall Treasurer) and C Ford (Acting RFO) as to how best to allocate costs between the Council (the landlord) and the village hall itself (the tenant). A formula has been agreed in principle such that of the total costs of some £5,500 (including VAT), about £900 will come to the Council. This was discussed and thought to be acceptable.

The need, or otherwise, for Village Hall accounts: now sent annually to the RFO ‘for information’, it was agreed that the Village Hall should supply the Council, in good time, accounts and also insurance information as required in the amended Financial Regulations (2.1 Budgetary Forecasts; 14.2 Insurance). On a more informal basis reporting back should occur for information on a regular basis.

Green and Verges Policy Document: C Ford will review the position and advise further at the next meeting.

War memorial Project: the position is unclear other than it is unlikely anything can now be done prior to the next Remembrance Sunday (the 100th anniversary). Views will be canvassed and this scheduled for a full discussion with some options at the next meeting on 14th August.

Armistice Day celebrations: for various reasons there can be no 11:00 service inSwerford, largely as the focus on this will be in Hook Norton. Two matters were discussed and agreed:

- J Drinkwater will represent the village at the Hook Norton service.

- J Abbott has some great ideas as to how the Armistice might be remembered, say in the Village Hall, and will consider this further.

Committees and Council Representation: Playing Fields, Village Hall, Stores and Equipment. The latter is not applicable. The former dealt with elsewhere.

Finance:

- C Ford confirmed that the AGAR returns, newly revised this year, have been drafted and await internal audit confirmation prior to despatch;

- he noted that the Council has yet to see any invoice from Mrs M Chaplin for her work on the Village website (the Council has, and will continue to, contribute to the costs of running the website);

- a discussion occurred relating to Reserves, which are not thought to be high bearing in mind the need to cover unexpected contingencies. From a current account balance of some £6,000, transfers of £3,000 were put to the Council by the RFO:

o Playing Field Reserve Fund £1,000 (from Nil to £1,000);

o Village Hall Reserve Fund £2,000 (from £5,037 to £7,037);

o General Reserve Fund Nil (stays at £4,900).

After discussion these transfers were proposed by J Drinkwater and seconded byJ Chaplin, then approved.

- The general position vis a vis finances was touched upon, it being little changed to that outlined in the recent Parish Assembly. In addition, a VAT claim for 2017/18 is being made (total £31.61).

- Various documents need to be published on the village website no later than 1st of July in line with the new Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities and this will be managed by C Ford.

There being no further business the meeting closed at 9:45 pm.

********

Swerford Parish Assembly

Minutes of the Meeting held on 4 May 2018

Swerford Village Hall 7.30 PM

Present:Cllr Andrew Beaney (West Oxfordshire District Council), Charles Campion, John Chaplin,Maggie Chaplin, Cllr Nigel Colston (West Oxfordshire District Council), Gordon Craig, Rev.Wendy Cunningham, Charlotte Douglass, Jonathan Drinkwater, Colin Ford,Rosalind Haddon, Annabel Hall, Richard Hall, Maurice George, Cllr Hilary Hibbert-Biles (Oxfordshire County Council), David Nelligan, Leonard Tustian, TVP PCSO Phil Workman.

A warm welcome was extended to all.

Jonathan Drinkwater proposed, and Richard Hall seconded, the election of John Chaplin as Chairman of the meeting. This was carried without objection.

The meeting followed the Agenda as follows.

1. The election of a Chairman for the meeting.

As above.

2. Apologies

The following apologies were noted: Jane Abbott, Phillipa Drinkwater, Gay Ford, Roy and June Haigh, Jonathan and Leigh Warr.

3. Minutes of the last Assembly: 5th of May 2017

These were noted.

4. Matters arising from the minutes

No matters arising that were not to be covered elsewhere in the meeting.

5. Parish Council Chairman's Report

The Chairman noted the success of Swerford Open Gardens (£5,400 raised for St Mary’s and Katherine House Hospice to share); the change to the Masons Arms and its rebirth under new management as the Boxing Hare; and the joy of the Field family in the birth of their baby.

He acknowledged with thanks the great efforts of Mel and Tina Poke in serving the Council so well,both of whom had retired in the year.

With sadness, he noted the deaths of Rosemary Hall and Elsie Evans both of whom had made significant contributions to the life of the village, in particular Rosemary’s efforts in establishing the Village Hall.

In terms of the Parish Council it was acknowledged that the events relating to the Backside planning application were in many ways regrettable. And he noted that the Council will address the positionwith regard to the War Memorial and the Village Green, either with a plan to progress as needed, or otherwise.

6. Parish Council Financial Report

Colin Ford outlined a positive position. Total income for the year was £2,103 and expenditure £1,545. Funds held in the Community Account total £4,919, the Savings Account £6,638, the Current Account £487, and the Playing Fields account £4,878, totalling approximately £12,045. There has been little expenditure over the last few years, but this will now change due to repair and maintenance required to the roof of the village hall. A general discussion ensued.

Two items were highlighted:

- while many in the village have been very generous in dealing with communal areas, the Fords have been especially so. In particular in mowing, and in looking after the maintenance of the Playing Fieldas well as meeting costs to meet the demands of the ROSPA reports. They are leaving in 2019 and the village needs to recognise that the costs borne by them in such a generous manner might soon fall to the village itself. This might, for example, effect the Precept;

- it was noted by Richard Hall that the precept (reported by Colin Ford as being £2,100 for 2017/18) had been little changed for some time. (Interestingly, later in the meeting, Nigel Colston suggested that in terms of the numbers mentioned, the level of our Precept was undemanding.}

7. Police Report

A very interesting report was given by PCSO Phil Workman (who apologised for the absence of his colleague PCSO Chris Jones who was otherwise unavoidably engaged). (The Report is available from the Parish Clerk if anyone would like a copy.)

Two points to highlight:

- he urged that everyone sign up to Thames Valley Alert: (www.thamesvalleyalert.co.uk)and note Non-Emergency Number 101; - they are always keen to receive feedback.

They are both on duty in Windsor for the royal wedding. The assembled promised to keep an eye out to see if they were in a suitably prominent position on the day.

8. Parish Councillor’s Updates

Colin Ford updated the position vis a vis:

- defibrillator training (scheduled soon). He noted that the machines are checked weekly. It was acknowledged that this was welcome and very worthwhile; - the work being done on Footpaths and Rights of Way goes on. Gates and styles are monitored on a regular basis and a programme exists to see this is done: for example, there are six styles that require to be adapted to be ‘dog friendly’ and a working party is being formed to manage this over the summer; new gates have been installed by Great TewEstate on the footpath adjacent to ButtercombeFarm; and the Fords have installed ‘kissing gates’ on the footpath leading through Paradise Farm.

He expressed thanks to Jonathan Drinkwater for all his efforts and support as the retiring Chairman of the Parish Council: this feeling was endorsed by those present.

9. SwerfordCharity Report

An update had been given by Jonathan Warr, published in the last Swerford Insight. An annual income of some £2,000 exists, available to persons, or organisations existing to help persons,in need, in the Parish.

10. Village Hall Report

A full report was given by Charlotte Douglass. The Committee has been joined by Carla Mackay and Gavin Strachan, with Kate Campion retiring as clerk after many years of excellent service. The Hall is quite busy with village events, social evenings and other bookings.

The next event being a wildlife walk on the 27th of May led by Richard and Annabel Hall.

Some £8,500 is in the bank and the hall continues to manage with an annual surplus (albeit modest). The appreciation of all was obvious.

This year will see repairs to the roof completed. The cost is expected to be about £6,000, the expense of which is to be shared with the Parish Council in line with a landlord/tenant formula that has been agreed:close co-operation exists.

Much effort is made to serve and it was remarked on by all the District and County Council Officers that they were continually impressed with the whole spirit of Swerford, reflected not only as regards to the efforts to do with the village hall, but the Council, volunteering, and the community in general.

11. Playing Field Committee Report

The enormous support given by the Ford family, and particularly Jane Ford, in meeting the costs of maintaining the playing field was again noted. Colin Ford and John Chaplin outlined a few facts and in preparation for the Ford’s departure, and matters in general:

- the account that has been separately maintained re the playing field is being wound up and the funds put back amongst general Council funds. A track will be kept on this for information purposes going forward;

- fixing the swings as demanded by ROSPA was a contract of insufficient value to gain the interest of contractors approached and so repairs have been done by council members who are looking to test these now (volunteers needed!).

Importantly, Jane Abbott, our new Parish Councillor, has volunteered to take over the Committee and see what canbe done to best manage the facility going forward.Jonathan Drinkwater asked about the orchard. John Chaplin advised that the weather had contrived against it.

12. Church Report

A wide-ranging report was given by Charles Campion. Two key matters were highlighted:

- the progress in getting to grips with the roof and related repairs has been much slower than anticipated. But this is very close to finalisation in terms of what is needed and a Quantity Surveyors report, addressing details provided by the architect, is expected within a fortnight. After that numbers (estimated to be around £200,000) can be finalised and a phased plan agreed and fundraising begun. St Mary’s has about £92,000 of which £62,000 has been approved to seed a formal fundraising campaign (much of this as a result of approaches already undertaken);

- The Rector of Hook Norton, John Acreman, retires at the end of June. Wendy Cunningham confirmed that there will be a service of thanks and celebration on the 1st of July in Hook Norton. It is Church House’s expectation that he will not be replaced for at least one year.

A wide discussion occurred as to the process. Importantly Charles Campion advised that the Parochial Council of St Mary’s will not see all applications, only those thought warranting further review by the diocesan authority: this was a bone of contention. Whilst no vote occurred, there appeared to be a strong feeling, endorsed by Jonathan Drinkwater, that this was not ideal: St Mary’s should be involved as much as possible, and certainly see all applications.

Charles Campion expressed thanks to the village hall for the reception that was held prior to the carol service and the assistance of the community in the decoration of the church, particularly at Christmas when it is especially attractive.

Wendy Cunningham expressed her thanks for all the help that has been given to cleaning up the churchyard.

John Chaplin emphasised that there was much goodwill towards the church and the more than can done together the better.

13. District Council Report (Nigel Colston)

A very warm, useful, and positive, report was given, supported from time to time by Andrew Beaney (also of WODC), outlining howlocal councillors (responsible for 11 villages and 3,000 electors) and their work is structured, how WODC goes about its business, and some of the key issues of the day. There was general appreciation of the work of the District Council and this was expressed by Richard Hall and endorsed generally.

Of particular note was the fact that a Local Plan is close to being finalised, a key element being housing: of the expected 100,000 new homes to be constructed in Oxfordshire by 2031, 16,000 will need to be accommodated in West Oxford, including 2,750 originally allocated to Oxford itself.

The role of the Uplands Planning Committee (final arbiter of planning approvals, and of which he and Andrew Beaney are members), was touched upon. He did confirm that private citizens, as well as representatives of the Parish Council, may go to this committee to make representation (limited to 3 minutes)on any Planning Application. Only planning facts and policy will be taken into consideration, but this is taken very seriously.

However, the somewhat unsatisfactory process of changes in legal use was also raised by John Chaplin. That this might be applied for, and approved, without reference to Parish Councils, and local residents,and is seen as a great weakness. The initial process of planning permission is detailed and transparent, that related to the change of use not so. This was not disagreed with by the Council members who it appears are quite restricted in the way they can handle such requests, legal and technical in nature.

William Haddon raised the issue of the process to be followed where conditions attached to approved planning applications are broken. It was confirmed that community members need to police this themselves and raise any issues with the Parish Council who should take this to the planning office Enforcement Officer as soon as possible.

Jonathan Drinkwater proposed thanks to Keith Butler of WODC for all his support, and those Councillors present absolutely endorsed this.

14. County Council Report

Hilary Hibbert-Biles apologised for not being able to make the meeting last year and then went on to give a very full report. This sparked debate, particularly as related to the dreadful condition of our roads, but also in relation to potential plans to unify District Councils. If there was a mood in the hall, it was that bigger, notwithstanding theoretical budgetary and management issues, may not be better and that we have an excellent council in West Oxfordshire who are thought big enough to deal with local issues and small enough to care. (Andrew Beaney noted that they have a flexible approach with a view to sharing services, back office resources and so on and some of this is already being implemented.)

The key message was the size of budgetary cuts (extraordinarily some £360m has been saved since 2010 on a budget then of £1bn). This has had obvious negative effects on services which the Council has to deal with. They are focused on priorities and these were mentioned. The challenge is obviously substantial.

She was helpful and pro-active in mentioning some possible help towards the War Memorial area, and even a ‘mowing grant’. But this was just touched upon and would of course be subject to details being finalised.

Hilary Biles thanked the Parish Council for their efforts and was also very impressed with the spirit shown in Swerford.

15. Open Forum and Any other Business

Andrew Beaney did raise the issue of Data Protection and the need for the Parish Council to register a Data Protection Officer. John Chaplin noted that regulations for small councils such as Swerford were under review which might well change any need for this;he noted that there was no information held that would warrant inclusion under such provisions as now exist. He confirmed that the Council keeps this under review.

The Meeting closed at about 9:30 pm and many of those present stayed on for a glass of wine and some peanuts and crisps.

Minutes Presented at Parish Council Annual Meeting on 17MAY18 Proposed: Colin Ford Seconded: Jonathan Drinkwater Carried. *************

SWERFORD PARISH COUNCIL MINUTES

of the Meeting held on 12th April 2018 At 19:00 – Swerford Parish Hall

Present: Mr J Chaplin, (Acting Chairman), Mr J Drinkwater (Councillor and Acting Clerk), Parish Clerk), Mr C Ford (Councillor and Acting RFO) Mr L Tustian (Councillor).

Residents: Mrs J Abbott (newly elected Councillor), Mr W Haddon (to be appointed new Parish Clerk), Mr M McCloy, Mr R Hall and Mrs A Hall (from about 19:30)

. AGENDA

Mr McCloy was welcomed.

1. Apologies for Absence.

- None received.

2. Declaration of Interest (in respect of subjects likely to arise).

- None made other than as related to Jane Abbott (see below).

3. Approval of Minutes of Last Meeting.

- While not formally Proposed or Seconded the Minutes were taken as read.

4. Matters arising.

- It was agreed that there were no Matters Arising which were not to be covered elsewhere in the meeting.

5. Election of New Parish Councillor.

- A warm welcome was extended to Jane Abbott. It was noted that there were still documents to be signed, and that these were to be completed and returned to the Parish Clerk as quickly as possible. This was considered to be straightforward and entirely acceptable.

o Mrs Abbott attended the meeting, against her doctor’s advice, on crutches, nursing a recent new knee replacement.

o The Acting Chairman asked if she had signed the various forms to which she replied that she had not, to the best of her knowledge, received any forms and was rather expecting them to be at the meeting for her to sign.

o A discussion ensued. J Drinkwater was confident that he had indeed sent the same. (It subsequently transpired that these, including the Declaration of Interest and Acceptance of Office, had been sent but to an old email address).

o The importance of these forms was noted and the Declaration of Interest in particular was discussed. Mrs Abbott confirmed her only interest was in the joint ownership of Grange Farm, in the village.

o A brief discussion occurred (Chaplin, Drinkwater, Ford). It was agreed, as summarised above, that the forms should be located and completed asap (and this has been done).

o As there was no objection to Jane Abbott taking her place on the Council (in fact she was unanimously welcomed), and noting that forms would be found, and signed, the obvious way forward was to proceed accordingly. No consideration was given to the need for any formal votenor the matter to be anything other than an administrative slip.

6. Appointment of new Parish Clerk.

- T W W Haddon was appointed. K Butler of the West Oxfordshire Council to be advised and asked to confirm this in order. (Since done.)

7. Items Submitted for Consideration by Members of the Public.

- None recorded.

8. Financial Matters;

Financial Update.

Colin Ford advised the following balances:

- Community Account (Current) £4,955.17

- Business Money Manager

(Savings) £6,683.90

- SPFMC £487.45

Other Matters.

- C Ford reiterated that Moore Stephens, based in Peterborough, are now the external auditors, replacing BDO. (The appointment is made by Smaller Authorities Audit Appointments.)

- C Ford advised that the Internal Audit by Arrow Accounting is to be completed by 30JUN18.

Action: C Ford to complete and advise of results when finalised.

- J Chaplin noted that as the Swerford Playing Fields Management Committee (SPFMC) has ceased to function effectively, it has been decided to bring related matters under the Council’s direct control (the playing field being owned by the Parish Council). The bank account will be closed and the balance transferred to the Council’s account.

Action: C Ford / J Chaplin to act and advise.

- C Ford advised that the budget referred to in the last minutes (of 25JAN18),is due to be presented at the next meeting.

Action: Council to formally ratify if not done already.

- C Ford subsequently requested that the minutes record that a cheque for £36.00 was raised, and handed to John Chaplin during the meeting, for payment for additional Village Hall use for various ‘planning’ meetings / elections etc.

- The Account Mandates with HSBC are required to be amended/regularised replacing J Drinkwater as a signatory. Forms were handed to J Chaplin and J Abbott to be considered and completed.

Action: J Chaplin/C Ford / J Abbott, as appropriate, to resolve as necessary with HSBC.

- C Ford noted that the Council’sFinancial Regulations, Financial Risk Assessment and Standing Orders need to be reviewed and presented as ‘Fit for Purpose’ (revised as necessary) at the Parish Council AGM on 17th May.

- Action: C Fordand all Councillors. Interestingly noted in the minutes of 2NOV17 as fit for purpose. a constant theme as these are reviewed at every meeting ‘through the year’.

- The future appointment of the Responsible Finance Officer (RFO)needs resolution.

Action: J Chaplin

9. Village Hall Committee.

- The Village Hall had its AGM on the 10th of April and it was advised by J Chaplin that their committee has been re-elected. Their accounts go to the RFO on an annual basis.

- The Village Hall roof is in the process of being repaired. The council expressed the knowledge and confidence that this is all in order.

(Under the statutes of the Village Hall Committee, it is required that the Parish Council nominate a representative to the Committee. At present that is Mr L Tustian.)

10. Playing Fields;

a. Replacement Equipment.

A general discussion occurred. Subsequent to the annual inspection by ROSPA last July, certain remedial (repair rather than replacement) works were identified as being necessary to the swings.Work is being done to them and general satisfaction was expressed as to progress.

Action: J Abbott kindly agreed to take forward the issue of the overall response to ROSPA and the creation of an ‘involvement group’ of users to help create a plan going forward.

(Mr D Andrews has quoted a cost of £50-60 to provide metal straps to additionally strengthen the repairs. The swings will be fully tested before use.)

Action: J Chaplin / C Ford.

11. Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows.

L Tustian raised again the ongoing issue of the very large tree on the village green at Chapel End. (In the meeting of 2NOV17 three quotes were going to be obtained etc etc). It was agreed that the views of local residents would be taken on an informal basis and prior to this a plan finalised, including cost and action by a local tree surgeon, and put to them.

Action: C Ford kindly agreed to take this forward including a quote from Ben Acreman whom it was agreed was excellent and entirely appropriate. Financial regulations will need to be considered.

12. Collection of Household Waste.

No longer an issue.

13. Planning Consultations and Considerations.

The situation with regards to Backside was noted. It was agreed that the nearest neighbours would be provided with a copy of the WODC’s decision outlining, amongst other things, conditions as to any future development.

Action: J Chaplin

The ‘Pond’ near South Newington was the only other recent proposal. This has already been responded to by the Council with no objection.

14. Footpaths and Bridleways.

C Ford continues to monitor. All is said to be in order other than the Windy Hill blockage and 3 stiles needing some attention.

Action: C Ford to keep the Council advised.

15. Website and Swerford Insight.

The website was not discussed and the item is to be carried forward.

It was noted that ‘Swerford Insight’ is the private endeavour of Mrs M Chaplin and not a formal Council, or indeed, village ‘enterprise’, albeit of great value to the village and much appreciated and praised.

Action: The website is to be updated, particularly with regard to Council regulations and procedures. It was the Parish Council’s responsibility to produce updated procedures/regulations: these will then beupdated on the website by Mrs M Chaplin.

16. Correspondence.

Nothing to note.

17. Any Other Business.

- Times of Council Meetings: L Tustian has difficulty meeting what is an early time of 1900. It was agreed that this would change in future to 1930.

- Defibrillator and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training:

it was agreed that this would be offered again in APR17.

Action: J Drinkwater.

- The anniversary of the 1918 Armistice: the situation was discussed and it was felt that something should be done in the village that is appropriate.

Action: J Chaplin will consider and advise further after contact with Hook Norton to see what they are doing.

- Village Speed Limits:

C Ford has spoken to the County Council and it is felt that there is nothing more that can be done.

- General Data Protection

Regulation (GDPR): J Drinkwater was keen to see this generally discussed as to any ramifications related to formal Council/Village activities. It was thought that the only lists around that mightpossibly constitute relevant data relate to that used to circulate copies of Swerford Insight. But as a private initiative and effort, not formally to do with the village, J Chaplin confirmed that this was not relevant.

NEXT MEETINGS:

VILLAGE HALL, SWERFORD ANNUAL PARISH ASSEMBLY – 4TH MAY 1918 ANNUAL PARISH COMMITTEE AND NEXT PARISH COUNCIL MEETING – 17MAY18 Both meetings to be held at 7:30 pm. Minutes presented to Annual Parish Council Meeting 17MAY18 Proposed: Colin Ford Seconded: Jonathan Drinkwater Carried with no objection.

*********

SWERFORD PARISH ASSEMBLY MEETING MINUTES 05 May 2017 AT 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall

Present: Mr J Drinkwater Chairman Mr M Poke Vice Chairman Mrs T Poke Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed) Mr C Ford Parish Councillor Mr L Tustian Parish Councillor

Maggie Chaplin, Richard & Annabel Hall, Charlotte Douglass, Jennie Tustian, David & Deborah Lang, Maurice George Andrew Beaney (WODC), Nigel Colston (WODC), PCSO Phil Workman (TVP)

Item Discussion

1.0 Apologies PCSO Chris Jones (TVP), Gay Ford, Philippa Drinkwater, Charlie & Kate Campion, John Chaplin

2.0 Minutes of last Assembly Minutes agreed for accuracy. Proposed: Mr C Ford Seconded: Mrs A Hall

3.0 Matters Arising

Mr M Poke provided an update regarding the adoption of the BT kiosk and outlined the reasons for not pursuing this as an option.

4.0 Chairman’s Report

 Mr J Drinkwater stated it has been a relatively busy year in respect of Parish Council activity and each of the parish councillors will be providing an updates on each of their respective areas of responsibility.

 Births and Deaths –

Mr J Drinkwater noted the sad news of Katharine George’s death. He also noted the death of Paddy Blacker who had lived in the village for many years prior to her moving to Brailles some years ago.

 New Residents

– Mr J Drinkwater formally welcomed Carla McKay - Springbank Cottage, Nick Davies and Alice Drummon-Hay – Lyndhurst, Sam and Charles Banbury to Ash Tree Hill Cottage, it was also noted the departure of Fatima Hussein to Hook Norton and replaced by Ryan Whordley and Finley Tait.

 Planning Applications

– Four planning applications received in respect of Mill Cottage (2 storey extension), Leys Farmhouse (Extension and alterations), Backside Lane (New dwelling), Land on Wigginton Road, west of Heath Farm (Conversion of barn to dwelling)

 Consultation –

Mr J Drinkwater did advise residents to consult with their immediate neighbours prior to submitting planning applications; this is deemed to be good practice which the planning department encourage. He also stated that parking is a potential issue for certain parts of the village, especially in respect of builder’s vehicles and plant.

 Appreciation –

Mr J Drinkwater formally thanked the following for their valuable contributions to village life: Maggie Chaplin for the website and Insight, Charlotte Douglass and her team with the Village Hall Committee, Jayne Ford for the Playing Fields Committee and the maintenance of the site, which saves the Parish Council funds, Jennie Tustian & Charlie Campion our Church Wardens, Jonathan Warr & Kate Campion for the Swerford Charity, June Haigh for researching the War dead and finally the Parish Councillors and Clerk for their support and attendance at Hook Norton remembrance day service and parade.

5.0 Financial Report

 Mrs T Poke confirmed the Precept remains at £2174.00

 Balances – Business Money Manager Account £6635.76, Community Account for Swerford Parish Council £5183.71. Expenditure for the year £1594.55. Income was £2177.77 made up of Precept and £3.77 bank interest.

 It was also noted the HSBC Chipping Norton branch was closing in the near future.

6.0 Thames Valley Police Report

 General Report – It was noted there has been more activity in respect of construction sites in the area with various items being stolen off sites and out of vans etc., Power tools being stolen from vans is an issue, therefore people need to be vigilant and report any activity to TVP via the 101 emergency number. Phil also encouraged residents to sign up for the Thames Valley Alert service which can be done online at www.thamesvalleyalert.co.uk. Mrs M Chaplin stated she has signed up and finds the alerts and updates useful.

7.0 Parish Councillor’s Updates

 Defibrillator –

Mr C Ford was pleased to report that 40 people are now trained to use the equipment; this has been a positive project with residents attending the training. However it was noted a number of people were not able to attend and it is therefore hoped another date can be arranged in due course. Refresher training will be run annually/bi-annually using our own training kit. Mr C Ford and Mr M Poke are guardians for the equipment and will ensure it is checked weekly and signed off.

 Footpaths & Rights of Way –

Mr M Poke reported that Windy Hill farm remains an issue and Mr M Poke and Mr J Drinkwater have met with Dan Weeks of OCC to get the signage reinstated, this still hasn’t been actioned to date, Mr M Poke will be following this up again. 13 out of the 19 stiles have been converted to make them dog friendly; the remainder will be completed over the summer.

 War Memorial Project –

Mr C Ford provided an update and confirmed the Parish Council is currently in the process of obtaining quotations from several building contractors to complete the works as specified in a recent edition of Insight. The budget has been set and it is envisaged works will be commenced and completed in approximately 4 months.

 Village Greens & Verges –

Mr M Poke stated the winter damage was considerable again this year and the Parish Council has been considering options for protecting such areas. Mr C Ford and Mr M Poke will be developing some schemes which will include the use of suitable bollards and planting. Mr M Poke said he would also welcome ideas from residents. Mr M George stated the works at Park Cottage have affected the flow of water down Backside Lane, this is being considered by the residents affected.

 Road Safety Initiatives

– Mr C Ford confirmed the Twenty’s plenty sign located at Church End had been removed by a resident, this has now been reinstated further up the Lane. Mr C Ford confirmed any further initiatives will be subjected to consultation with residents.

 Bonfires –

Mr M Poke reminder residents to consider other residents when having Bonfires and to ensure the guidance from WODC is adhered to. Copies of such guidance are displayed on all notice boards.

 Future Initiatives –

Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he has spoken to Wendy Cunningham about Swerford having its own service on Armistice Day 2018, it is hoped the village can make more of an event of it and celebrate the works for the War Memorial.

 Parish Council Vacancies –

Mrs T Poke confirmed she has resigned from the post of Clerk & RFO due to her own business commitments. It is hoped someone will volunteer to replace her with effect from the end of May 2017, Mrs T Poke stated she would provide a detailed handover and training.

8.0 Swerford Charity Report

 Mr J Drinkwater confirmed people can apply for grants. No formal report provided.

9.0 Village Hall Report

 Charlotte Douglass presented her report and formally thanked Madeleine Ford and Jane Abbot for their valuable contribution and noted they have left the committee due to other commitments. Charlotte welcomed two new members Gavin Strachan and Alex Stanton. With regard to finances Mr J Chaplin reported to Charlotte the good news that the village hall had more than broken even and the three polling days last year contributed significantly to the £640 surplus. Charlotte completed her report with a detailed overview of the activities and events held during the year and also noted the forthcoming events. Mr J Drinkwater thanked Charlotte and her team for all their hard work and dedication.

10.0 Playing Field Report

 Mr J Drinkwater noted the ROSPA report has been considered in details and some minor works undertaken to address some of the more urgent issues highlighted.

11.0 St. Marys Church Report

 Jennie Tustian provided an update on the services throughout the year and it was noted John Acreman retires in July 2018.

 Jennie provided an update regarding the required works in respect of the church roof. It was also noted a bat survey is to be undertaken in the near future.

 Charlotte and the church team have been working on a formal plan which is currently being documented; this will be published in due course.

 Mr J Drinkwater thanked Jennie Tustian and Charlie Campion for all their hard work and dedication and also acknowledged the contributions of other residents.

12.0 District Council Report

 Mr N Colston presented his report with some key themes as noted in the following bullet points as priorities for WODC in the coming year.

 2nd lowest Council Tax in the country

 Maintain service delivery in respect of waste collections, leisure centres, public amenities, planning, environmental health and pest control.

 One Oxfordshire – may go forward following the election results for County Council

 Deliver further efficiency savings and to build upon the success of shared services working

 Manage the larger housing development applications, noted a number of significant applications had been overturned on appeal

 Keep free parking – vital for protecting town centres

 Mr A Beaney reiterated the messages provided by Mr N Colston and confirmed a new contractor was now in place for waste collection and WODC were involved with the NHS consultation regarding the Horton Hospital in Banbury and Chipping Norton Hospitals.

13.0 County Council Report

 No attendance or report.

14.0 Open Meeting/Any other Business

 Mrs M Chaplin provided an update on Swerford Open Gardens on 17 & 18 June and read the press release.

 Charlotte Douglass reiterated the work being undertaken to launch St. Mary’s Church appeal and stated the document will be released in due course.

The meeting was declared closed at 20:45 hours. DRAFT MINUTES 3RD AUGUST 2017

4.0 Matters Arising

 The Playing Field Committee/ROSPA Report – Mr M Poke confirmed Mrs A Stanton still holds the cheque book and documents in relation to the committee; however she is the only person left on the committee. Following a discussion, it was agreed the future of the committee needs to be considered with a view to transferring the responsibility to the Parish Council, unless other arrangements can be established. It was also noted that the queries raised at the last meeting regarding the recommendations set out in the ROSPA report will be followed up by Mr J Drinkwater.

 Maintenance of Greens & Verges Policy Document – Mr M Poke confirmed this will be finalised once the works required for bollards etc., have been specified, to ensure it is in line with Oxfordshire County Council (OCC) guidance.

 Use of Bollards & Planting in Strategic Positions – Mr M Poke confirmed he has emailed OCC to ascertain if permission is required prior to installation. The specification provided by OCC is clear and some suitable bollards have been sourced, however it was agreed that some comparison quotes should be obtained, Mrs T Poke agreed to undertake this action. Mr C Ford and Mr M Poke have installed some temporary posts around the green at Church End in order to enable residents to comment on their location. A notice would also be placed on notice-boards to alert residents to the purpose of them. Mr L Tustian voiced his concerns and felt the large stones are sufficient; Mr M Poke quoted OCC guidance stating stones should not be located next to the highway for such purposes. The selected bollards comply with the specification set out by OCC.

 Footpath at Windy Hill Farm – Mr M Poke confirmed the sign has been reinstated in the correct place; however the footpath is blocked therefore he will email Mr Dan Weeks of OCC to get the matter rectified.

 Tree located outside The Old Chapel – Following a site meeting with SSE on 03.08.17, they have confirmed it is permissible to prune the tree but the works need to be undertaken by an ‘Arboricultural Association Approved’ contractor. Mr M Poke agreed to obtain three quotes from suitably qualified contractors.

 Dog Friendly Stiles – 10 out of the 18 stiles have been completed, it is envisaged some further working parties are arranged to complete the works.

 Damage to Highway at Church End – Mr M Poke to send a formal letter to OCC to request a site meeting, as the online requests have not been responded to.

 War Memorial Project 2017 – Mr C Ford said he would contact OPUS to clarify which scheme their quote covers, if it was for the reduced scheme the Parish Council will need to consider other options. Mr L Tustian stated he was not aware of the proposed scheme; Mr C Ford produced the necessary consultation documents and confirmed how the resident consultation was undertaken. Mr L Tustian stated he does feel the works are necessary.

 Mud on Lane past Windy Hill Farm – Mrs T Poke confirmed an email has been sent to OCC to alert them to the problem and has received an acknowledgement confirming the matter is being dealt with.

5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 None received

6.0 Financial Update

 Mr C Ford confirmed the balances as at 13.07.2017: Community Account £4312.07 and the Business Money Manager Account £6636.42. Payments Schedule Payee Date Amount Proposed Seconded Arrow Accounting 25.07.17 £106.84 Mr M Poke Mr L Tustian

 Mr C Ford confirmed a telephone conversation with BDO the external auditor, they were querying the increase in assets, and this is due to the grant to procure a defibrillator. Some minor outstanding points were also raised; these have been responded to accordingly. The internal audit process went well with some minor points highlighted for ‘good practice’.

 Mr C Ford will be producing a financial timetable for this financial year to ensure all actions are cross checked and a clear audit trail is established.

Swerford Parish Council Financial Risk Assessment 01.04.17 – 31.03.18 Swerford Parish Council Financial Regulations 01.04.17 – 31.03.18 Swerford Parish Council Standing Orders The above mentioned documents will be kept under constant review and updated as necessary throughout the year to ensure they remain fit for purpose. All agreed they remain so currently.

7.0 The Village Hall Committee

 Mr L Tustian confirmed the following events following the committee meeting on 01.08.17 – Coffee Morning on 30.09.17 with board games, toys and books, a history of Punch and Judy talk possibly on 28.10.17 and a Festive get together before the Annual Carol Service.

 Village Hall profit £32.71

8.0 The Playing Field Committee

 ROSPA report and general matters covered under Item 4 Matters Arising on Page 1 of these minutes.

9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows

 Mr M Poke raised the issue regarding the maintenance of the bank opposite Lane Cottage, Church End. Mr L Tustian said he would get his contractor to do it at the end of the season when the church yard hedge is trimmed around October. Mr M Poke said he would ask Nic Wiggin if he could undertake and interim tidy up of the area. Mr L Tustian & Mr M Poke

10.0 Planning Consultations and Considerations

 No notifications received

11.0 Footpaths and Bridleways

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 1 of these minutes.

12.0 Highways and Repairs

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

13.0 Website and Swerford Insight

 Mrs T Poke confirmed Maggie Chaplin is very helpful with publishing our articles and updates. The Parish Councillors expressed their gratitude for the work Maggie undertakes.

14.0 War Memorial Project

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

15.0 Correspondence

 Mrs T Poke outlined a letter received from ‘The Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum’ seeking donations to support the archive preservation project to mark the centenary commemoration of the Great War. It was agreed a donation of £50.00 would be made by the Parish Council.

16.0 Code of Conduct & Standing Orders

 Still in force and subject to ongoing review.

17.0 Any Other Business

 No additional items raised

18.0 Dates of forthcoming meetings

 2 November 2017 at 19:00 hours All to note

The meeting was declared closed at 20:25 hours.

SWERFORD PARISH COUNCIL DRAFT

1.0 Apologies

Mrs A Wiggins – Parish Councillor

2.0 Declarations of Interest

None recorded

3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Proposed by Mr C Ford

Seconded by Mr M Poke

Minutes signed as approved by Mr J Drinkwater.

4.0 Matters Arising

 The Playing Field

Committee/ROSPA Report –

Following the site meeting on Saturday 7 January 2017, Mr J Drinkwater and Mr C Ford confirmed a number of remedial tasks have been undertaken as recommended within the ROSPA report. Mr J Drinkwater and Mr C Ford agreed to send a list of the completed remedial works to Mrs T Poke; this will then be passed to Mrs A Stanton for her records. Mr J Drinkwater also agreed to ring ROSPA to clarify some points which are not entirely clear within the recommendations.

 Defibrillators –

Mr C Ford confirmed the dates for the training sessions and the draft flyer was approved, these would be addressed to each household and delivered. The training dates are scheduled for 28 March and 22 April. Following the meeting with members of the Village Hall Committee, the exact location of the defibrillator was agreed and Mr R Haigh has agreed to construct a canopy to protect the unit. The cost of the electrical supply was discussed and the cost of £220 was deemed to represent good value, therefore the expenditure was proposed by Mr J Drinkwater and Seconded by Mr L Tustian. A discussion followed regarding making a donation to the British Heart Foundation, as the equipment has been supplied free of charge, a sum of £100 was proposed by Mr C Ford and Seconded by Mr M Poke. It was also suggested that on the training event dates, residents attending would be invited to make a donation also. Prior to a donation being made, Mrs T Poke agreed to email Mr P Hood our internal auditor to ascertain this is appropriate and not in breach of any financial regulations. All members of the Parish Council expressed their gratitude to Mr C Ford for his input into this matter.

 Maintenance of Greens & Verges

– Mr M Poke confirmed he has made the suggested amendments. It was agreed this would be formally adopted at the next meeting once the Parish Council are satisfied with all other outstanding items have been addressed in respect of village green and verge areas. 09.03.17 Update – Action carried forward to next meeting.

 Use of Bollards in Strategic Positions –

Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford have identified some areas where wooden posts could be used effectively to protect the greens. It was agreed to purchase 10 bollards for the Church Green initially, ensuring they comply with the specification set out by Oxfordshire County Council. However, it was noted this needs to be undertaken in accordance with the Financial Regulations; therefore several quotes may be required.

 Footpath at Windy Hill Farm

Mr J Drinkwater and Mr M Poke have met with Mr D Weeks of OCC, he has agreed to have the signage reinstated. Works are still to be completed.

 Tree located outside The Old Chapel –

Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he has spoken to Mr N Wiggin and is awaiting his quote to undertake some pruning. Mr J Drinkwater will chase this matter.

 Dog Friendly Stiles –

6 out of the 19 stiles have been completed and a flyer has been produced to encourage residents to take part in some working party sessions on 18 and 25 March.

 Damage to Highway at Church End –

Mr M Poke confirmed he has submitted an online request to OCC, however they appear to have undertaken some works in another part of the village, therefore he will send another request.

 War Memorial Project 2017

– Mr C Ford confirmed planning permission is not required, therefore a plan and schedule of works will be sent to three local contractors for quotations. Mr C Ford will forward the plan and specification to Mrs T Poke, to enable her to co-ordinate the quotation process. Mr M Poke suggested setting up a sub-group of residents with a Parish Councillor as chair.

5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 Mrs J Horwood of Windy Hill Farm attended the meeting to express her concerns regarding the amount of mud being left of the lane leading out of the village. This had been noted by a number of residents and it was agreed an email would be sent to County Highways and also to Mr R Gasson, who is believed to be responsible for the land. Mrs T Poke confirmed she would action this, requesting the mud is cleared at the end of each day.

6.0 Financial Update

 Mrs T Poke as noted in Item 4 Matters Arising (Defibrillator) will contact Mr P Hood regard the BHR donation.

 Mrs T Poke confirmed the balances as at 09.03.2017: Community Account £4284.92 and the Business Money Manager Account £6635.10.

OALC Annual Subscription 09.03.17 £133.07 Mr M Poke Reimbursement for pipe lagging from CN Plumbing Supplies 09.03.17 £2.98 Mr J Drinkwater Mr L Tustian Mr C Ford Reimbursement for screws from Jewson 09.03.17 £15.16 Mr M Poke Mr L Tustian

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Risk Assessment

01.04.16 – 31.03.17 – Mr M Poke confirmed he will review the document in readiness for the new financial year, although it was noted no amendments are likely to be necessary as it has been kept under constant review.

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Regulations

– Reviewed by all Parish Councillors and remain fit for purpose.

 Swerford Parish Council Standing Orders –

Reviewed and confirmed as fit for purpose with no amendments required.

 External Auditor (BDO) –

Mrs T Poke will select a date for the annual external audit inspection and inform Mr J Drinkwater.

 2017/18 Budget Setting and 2016/17 Year End –

The finalised budget has been circulated as agreed. With regard to the year-end, it was agreed Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke will meet to finalise the documentation for the internal auditor.

7.0 The Village Hall Committee

 Mr L Tustian confirmed a plant sale and coffee morning will take place on 01.04.17, along with a music evening on 13.05.17. It was noted the annual quiz night on 18.02.17 was a great success.

8.0 The Playing Field Committee

 ROSPA report and general matters covered under Item 4 Matters Arising on Page 1 of these minutes.

9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows

 Mr L Tustian raised a concern regarding the hedges towards Griffin House; Mr J Drinkwater agreed to email Mr J Chaplin, Ms G Woods and Mr I Heath to highlight their responsibilities.

10.0 Planning Consultations and Considerations

 Land at Church End – New dwelling –

Still in circulation, therefore Mr J Drinkwater will draft a response once this process has been completed.

 Cranemore Cottage – Replacement windows and door to rear of property

 Mill Cottage – Discharge of planning conditions

11.0 Footpaths and Bridleways

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

12.0 Highways and Repairs

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

13.0 Website and Swerford Insight

 Mrs T Poke will reserve some space in the April edition of Swerford Insight to advertise for her replacement.

 Mrs T Poke confirmed Maggie Chaplin is very helpful with publishing our articles and updates.

14.0 War Memorial Project

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

15.0 Correspondence

Mrs T Poke provided an update in respect of correspondence received as follows:

 Email from Mrs Caroline Balcon OBE regarding Mr Robert Court MP visiting all parishes within his constituency in due course. Due to the high demand it is unlikely to be until late summer and they will be in contact during the summer to arrange.

16.0 Code of Conduct & Standing Orders

 Still in force and subject to ongoing review

17.0 Any Other Business

 Mr L Tustian questioned the ownership of ‘Backside Lane’ and suggested it may be worth getting it registered as parish land. Mr J Drinkwater agreed to contact Mr J Chaplin to get the history relating to this, as it is deemed to be ‘unregistered’ with Land Registry.

 Mr M Poke is in the process of looking through the documents retrieved from the bank storage system; he will list them and present a summary to the next meeting.

 Swerford Charity –

Mr L Tustian requested a Trustee of the Swerford Charity attends the next meeting to update the Parish Council on their activity. Mrs T Poke agreed to email Mr J Warr and Mrs K Campion to invite them to the next meeting on 18.05.17 after the Annual Parish Committee.

 Twenty’s Plenty Sign –

The one located at Church End has been removed by a resident, however it was agreed unanimously to reinstate it further down the lane on the ‘road narrowing’ sign.

18.0 Dates of forthcoming meetings

 Village Assembly

– 5 May 2017 at 19:30 hours

 Annual Parish Committee Meeting – 18 May 2017 at 19:00 hours

 3 August 2017 at 19:00 hours

 2 November 2017 at 19:00 hours

The meeting was declared closed at 21:20 hours.

MEETING MINUTES (Draft)

05 January 2017 AT 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall

Present: Mr J Drinkwater Chairman Mr M Poke Vice Chairman Mrs T Poke Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed) Mr C Ford Parish Councillor Mr L Tustian Parish Councillor Mrs A Stanton Treasurer Playing Field Committee (For Playing Field item) Residents: None

1.0 Apologies

Mrs A Wiggins – Parish Councillor (Received at 20:10 hours)

2.0 Declarations of Interest

None recorded

3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Proposed by Mr C Ford, Seconded by Mr M Poke. Minutes signed as approved by Mr J Drinkwater.

4.0 Matters Arising

 The Playing Field Committee/ROSPA Report

– Mrs A Stanton provided a general update regarding the structure of the playing field committee and expressed concern regarding the outstanding matters from the ROSPA report. Mrs A Stanton stated she doesn’t feel adequately qualified to assess the recommendations made by ROSPA in their findings report. This was fully understood by all, therefore it was agreed that Mr J Drinkwater, Mr C Ford and Mr M Poke would all meet on site on Saturday 7 January 2017 at 09:00 hours to review the report recommendations to enable a plan of works to be agreed. Mr M Poke expressed the playing field must remain in a state which is fit for purpose and compliant with ROSPA standards. Mrs A Stanton also queried insurance for the playing field, Mr J Drinkwater stated he was sure this was covered with the blanket policy for all Parish Council assets, since the meeting this has been confirmed. It was also agreed to review the financial contribution, as there appears to be a lapse in payments since 2013, Mr J Drinkwater will ensure the £200 per annum contribution is reinstated.

Ms Stanton also produced the invoice for ROSPA for VAT claim back purposes, Mrs T Poke will action this.

Mr J Drinkwater expressed his thanks to Mrs A Stanton for her assistance and stated a review of the Playing Field Committee constitution will be undertaken in liaison with Mrs A Stanton in due course.

 Defibrillators – Mr C Ford formally confirmed the application to the British Heart Foundation was successful with the order now being processed with an expected delivery timescale of approximately 6 weeks. Mr C Ford submitted a request to WODC on 21 December 2016 to determine if planning permission is required for the ‘Erection of defibrillator housing to front of Village Hall’ (Reference 16/04239/PDC); a full response should be received in approximately 15 working days. The British Heart Foundation has also provided a template for the press release, which will be useful to create the press release with all the relevant details. Mr C Ford will report back once approval and the equipment have been received.

Mr J Drinkwater expressed his gratitude to Mr C Ford for his input into this matter.

 Verge Opposite Mulberry Cottage and Hillfields

– Mr L Tustian stated he is not concerned about the parking near his farm gate as long as he can still gain access. This area will form part of the ‘greens bollard scheme’, for such areas which are vulnerable to damage.

 Maintenance of Greens & Verges

– Mr M Poke confirmed he has made the suggested amendments. It was agreed this would be formally adopted at the next meeting once the Parish Council are satisfied with all other outstanding items have been addressed in respect of village green and verge areas.

 Use of Bollards in Strategic Positions –

Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford have identified some areas where wooden posts could be used effectively to protect the greens. It was agreed the Parish Council would procure the materials and ask for a quote for the works to be undertaken. Mr M Poke stated he had recently used a local contractor and would request a quote. However, it was noted this needs to be undertaken in accordance with the Financial Regulations; therefore several quotes may be required.

 Footpath at Windy Hill Farm

– Mr M Poke has been in contact with Dan Weeks of OCC, they have agreed to meet on site to discuss this matter in detail. Mr M Poke will arrange a date and time for a site meeting including Mr C Ford with Dan Weeks in the near future.

 Tree located outside The Old Chapel

– Mr L Tustian stated Mr D Lang of The Old Chapel was in agreement with up to 20 ft being taken off the height of the tree. Other residents had also expressed concern about the impact on overhead electricity lines. Mr M Poke stated he had received differing views from residents in the area; therefore the matter needs to be dealt with appropriately. Mr C Ford suggested speaking to SSE to seek their advice. It was also agreed to contact a local tree surgeon to also seek advice on the matter.

 Dog Friendly Stiles

Mr C Ford and Mr M Poke will now agree a date to complete the works on one of the stiles near ‘Hilltop’. This will be used as an example and Mr C Ford suggested setting up a working party to assist with the works required for the remaining stiles.

 Damage to Highway at Church End

– Mr M Poke confirmed he has submitted an online request to OCC and is awaiting a response.

 War Memorial Project 2017 – Mr C Ford had previously circulated a draft plan and specification. Mr C Ford has also submitted a request to WODC on 21 December 2016 to determine if planning permission is required to ‘Construct a safe access for wreath laying etc.,’ (Reference 16/04242/PDC); a full response should be received in approximately 15 working days. Once approval is received a full consultation process will be undertaken with residents. Mr M Poke suggested setting up a sub-group of residents with a Parish Councillor as chair.

5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 None received

6.0 Financial Update

 Mrs T Poke confirmed the balances as at 05.01.2017:

Community Account £4324.92 and the Business Money Manager Account £6635.10. Payments Schedule

Royal British Legion – War memorial wreath 25.11. 16 £20.00

Royal British Legion – St. Peter’s Church wreath 25.11. 16

£20.00

Mrs M Chaplin – Annual fee for Swerford Insight & Website 05.12. 16 £200.00

Mr C Ford Mr L Tustian

 Agreed Expenditure

– It was agreed to allocate funds to enable 2 hours of hedge trimming in the playing fields area, this will be undertaken by the contractor used by Mr L Tustian. Mr L Tustian to confirm the actual cost to Mrs T Poke.

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Risk Assessment 01.04.16 – 31.03.17 – Mr M Poke confirmed he has reviewed the document and the only outstanding item is in respect of attendance at formal training events facilitated by OALC. Mrs T Poke confirmed no course details have been received recently, but will circulate them when known.

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Regulations

– Reviewed by all Parish Councillors and remain fit for purpose.

 Swerford Parish Council Standing Orders

– Reviewed and confirmed as fit for purpose with no amendments required.

 External Auditor (BDO)

– Mrs T Poke will select a date for the annual external audit inspection and inform Mr J Drinkwater.

 2017/18 Budget Setting

– The finalised budget has been agreed.

7.0 The Village Hall Committee

 Mr L Tustian confirmed the next meeting of the Village Hall Committee will be held on 17 January 2017. He also provided an update of the village hall forthcoming events which will include a quiz evening on 18.02.17. Unfortunately, the music evening made of loss of £40.00, however it was noted as being a very enjoyable evening.

8.0 The Playing Field Committee

 ROSPA report and general matters covered under Item 4 Matters Arising on Page 1 of these minutes.

9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows  No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

10. 0 Planning Consultations and Considerations

 Leys Farmhouse, Chapel End – Consultation response returned to WODC in respect internal alterations and extension.

11. 0 Footpaths and Bridleways  No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

12. 0 Highways and Repairs  No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

13. 0 Website and Swerford Insight  Mrs T Poke will reserve some space in the March edition of Swerford Insight for updates on Parish Council activities, including defibrillator training.

 Maggie Chaplin is very helpful with publishing our articles and updates.

14. 0 War Memorial Project

 No further matters raised in addition to those noted in ‘Item 4 Matters Arising’ on Page 2 of these minutes.

15. 0 Correspondence

Mrs T Poke provided an update in respect of correspondence received as follows:

 Email from Barry Lennon of St. Peter’s Church, Hook Norton – expressing his gratitude to Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford for taking part in the Remembrance Service at St Peter’s in Hook Norton on 13 November 2016.

 Email from WODC regarding the ‘Budget Strategy Consultation’ in respect of the 2017- 2018 annual budget and Page 4 of 5 the medium-term financial strategy up to 2025-2026. There is a consultation survey which is available for all residents of West Oxfordshire at www.westoxon.gov.uk/budget. Mrs T Poke has asked Maggie Chaplin to publish both in Swerford Insight and on the website.

 Letter from Robert Courts MP – introducing himself as the new Member of Parliament for Witney and West Oxfordshire. Robert Courts MP is currently undertaking a “parish tour” during the early 2017 and has requested a meeting with the Parish Council in an informal setting to discuss any issues the Parish Council consider requiring his immediate attention. It was agreed Mrs T Poke would respond and agree a suitable date.

16. 0 Code of Conduct & Standing Orders

 Still in force and subject to ongoing review

17. 0 Any Other Business

 Mr J Drinkwater reiterating the need to review the constitution of the Playing Field Committee, as it was unfair for Mrs A Stanton to take sole responsibility for this function. It was agreed the Parish Council would support this important function.

All to note

18. 0 Dates of forthcoming meetings

 9 March 2017 at 19:00 hours

 Village Assembly – 5 May 2017 at 19:30 hours

 Annual Parish Committee Meeting – 18 May 2017 at 19:00 hours

 3 August 2017 at 19:00 hours

 2 November 2017 at 19:00 hours

All to note The meeting was declared closed at 21:00 hours.

*******

August 2016 AT 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall

Present: Mr J Drinkwater Chairman Mr M Poke Vice Chairman Mrs T Poke Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed) Mr C Ford Parish Councillor Mr L Tustian Parish Councillor

1.0 Apologies

Mrs A Wiggins – Parish Councillor

2.0 Declarations of Interest

None recorded

3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous

5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 Firework Displays – Mrs T Poke read out an email received from Mrs J Abbott regarding her concerns in respect of a recent ‘professional firework display’ at The Yews. Her main concern was the impact on farm animals and pets, as the noise levels were very high. The matter has been researched via the County Council website and Mrs T Poke confirmed the Parish Council has no powers to stop or place restrictions on such events; however the website does state a finish time of 23:00 hours, apart from specific dates such as New Years Eve.

6.0 Financial Update

 Mrs T Poke confirmed the balances as at 18.08.16: Community Account £3437.92 and the Business Money Manager Account £6633.15

Payments Schedule Payee Date Amount Proposed Seconded WODC – Election Fees 30.04.16 £73.98 Mr M Poke Mr C Ford Village Hall Committee – Queen’s Garden Party donation 14.06.16 £250.00 Mr C Ford Mr M Poke Game & Co., Insurance 15.06.16 £291.04 Mr M Poke Mr L Tustian Game & Co., Mower Insurance 22.06.16 £189.25 Mr C Ford Mr M Poke Village Hall Committee – Hall hire fees 01.07.16 £60.00 Mr M Poke Mr C Ford Arrow Accounting – Internal Auditor 21.07.16 £98.00 Mr M Poke Mr C Ford

 Internal Audit Report

- Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke presented the findings of the internal audit, which was undertaken by Arrow Accounting on 02.07.16. As a result of the audit process an action was produced, which was also discussed with actions allocated to the appropriate Parish Councillors. A number of the action points concerning financial regulations and the financial risk assessments have been completed and noted in the following sections.

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Risk Assessment 01.04.16 – 31.03.17 –

Mr M Poke presented the Financial Risk Assessment and following a discussion it was formally adopted by the Parish Council and will be an integral part of all meetings to ensure compliance. There was a discussion concerning the Swerford Charity, therefore it was agreed Mr J Drinkwater would invite one of the trustees to attend the next meeting to provide an overview of their activity. The Financial Risk Assessment was proposed by Mr C Ford and Seconded by Mr L Tustian, it was then declared formally adopted and signed by Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke.

 Swerford Parish Council Financial Regulations –

Mr M Poke presented the Financial Regulations and following a detailed discussion they were agreed. Proposed by Mr C Ford and Seconded by Mr L Tustian the master copy was signed by Mr J Drinkwater and the Parish Council declared the regulations formally adopted.

 Swerford Parish Council Standing Orders

Following some minor changes to the draft document presented to the Parish Council by Mr M Poke at its meeting on 13.04.16, the Standing Orders were formally adopted and signed by Mr J Drinkwater.

 External Auditor (BDO) –

Mr J Drinkwater outlined the content of an email exchange regarding some queries raised by BDO, however it is envisaged the outstanding points will be completed shortly but will inevitably result in a ‘qualified’ audit. Mr J Drinkwater will report back to the November meeting.

7.0 The Village Hall Committee

Mr L Tustian provided an update of the village hall forthcoming events as follows:

 Queen’s Birthday Barbeque - The Parish Council agreed it was a great event with the raffle raising a good sum of money for the committee.

 Forthcoming Events – Mr L Tustian confirmed a number of events were due to take place including a Wildlife talk in October, Coffee morning and book sale in November and a Musical evening.

8.0 The Playing Field Committee

 Mrs A Stanton has sent a copy of ROSPA report for Parish Council records, nothing further to report.

9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows

 Damage to War Memorial Green –

in addition to the discussion under Matters Arising – Item 4.0, it was agreed works should not be undertaken until the regular movement of heavy plant and major building works at Glenroy had receded. However, it was noted with similar works due to commence at Mill Cottage early 2017, this items needs to be kept on hold for the time being. Following a discussion it was agreed the contractor for Mill Cottage needs to be contacted at an appropriate time to ascertain their plans in respect of contractor parking and the management of large plant.

 Use of Bollards and Strategic Positions –

in addition to the discussion under Matters Arsing – Item 4.0 concerning the potential to install bollards at the War Memorial site, Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford agreed they would undertake a survey of the village to ascertain where they could be best placed to ensure all vulnerable greens and verges remain protected from such damage. 18.08.16 update: Ongoing, will report back to next meeting.

 Charity Field, Top of Chapel End & Lane towards Griffin House–

Mr L Tustian expressed concern regarding the lack of maintenance being undertaken in respect of the boundary hedgerows and the height of the trees on the roadside. It was agreed that all such areas will be considered as part of the Parish Council walkabout on 09.09.16 at 10:00 hours.

All to note

10.0 Planning Consultations and Considerations

 Track at Hollywell Farm –

Mr J Drinkwater to send a response to WODC. 11.0 Footpaths and Bridleways

 Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford have undertaken the physical survey and now need to compile a document to detail the locations and works required. It was agreed to use footpaths/bridleways located on Ash Hill Farm land as a good example of ‘dog friendly’ stiles. Mr C Ford & Mr M Poke

12.0 Website and Swerford Insight

 Nothing to report

13.0 War Memorial Project

 It was agreed to discuss this area as part of the walkabout on 03.09.16.

All to note

14.0 Correspondence

 Nothing to report

15.0 Code of Conduct & Standing Orders

 As noted in Minute 6 above, the Standing Orders were proposed by Mr C Ford, seconded by Mr L Tustian, signed by Mr J Drinkwater and formally adopted at this meeting for the following 12 month period.

16.0 Any Other Business

 No matters raised

17.0 Date of next meeting

 Thursday 10 November 2016 at 19:30 hours.

The meeting was declared closed at 21:05 hours.

Swerford Parish Council

APRIL MEETING DRAFT MINUTES

SWERFORD PARISH COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES (Draft) 13 April 2016 AT 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall Present: Mr J Drinkwater Chairman Mr M Poke Vice Chairman Mrs T Poke Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed) Mr C Ford Parish Councillor Mr L Tustian Parish Councillor

1.0 Apologies

Mrs A Wiggins – Parish Councillor

2.0 Declarations of Interest

None recorded

3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Proposed by Mr M Poke Seconded by Mr C Ford

Minutes signed as approved.

4.0 Matters Arising

 Defibrillators – Mrs A Wiggins had provided an update for the meeting via email confirming the application for funding was unsuccessful.

Following a discussion, it was agreed the Parish Council would fund one defibrillator to be located on the external wall of the village hall.

Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he would ring Mrs E Walkinshaw to discuss the funding of a second defibrillator, location to be decided when issues regarding the BT Kiosk have been resolved.

 Adoption of BT Telephone Kiosk – Mr M Poke stated that before the adoption of the kiosk can be further progressed, a letter dated 04.04.16 from West Oxfordshire District Council Planning Department has advised that given that the kiosk is listed they need to undertake further research/consultation in respect of possible restrictions of use. This is expected to take up to 15 working days.

 Tree near Hill Top Cottage –

Mr J Drinkwater has established the tree is not the responsibility of Oxfordshire County Council (OCC). He has therefore requested a plan in order to confirm ownership, as OCC had stated they had referred to their documents.

13.04.16 Update: Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he is still awaiting the plan.

 Swerbrook –

Mr J Drinkwater outlined the email exchange with Mr A Abraham in which Mr Abraham has confirmed his contractor will be undertaking the required works in due course. Mr J Drinkwater has requested a further update from Mr Abraham on 25.01.16 as works have not yet commenced. 13.04.16 Update: Works have been completed.

 20 Plenty Signs –

Purchased and installed, no feedback received to date.

 External Light at Lilac Cottage

– Following a discussion it was agreed this matter is outside the statutory duties of the Parish Council to enforce any restrictions in respect of domestic outside lights. Therefore, it was agreed Mr J Drinkwater would respond to Ms S Bowers accordingly and will also mention it at the forthcoming Village Assembly on 06.05.16, to remind residents to be mindful of the impact of such lighting on neighbours.

 Verge Opposite Mulberry Cottage and Hillfields –

Ms M Ford has been in contact with Mr J Drinkwater and confirmed she will ensure the area is not used for parking and will arrange for grass seed to be sown on the affected area.

 Maintenance of Greens & Verges –

Mr M Poke confirmed he has received some useful guidance in respect of how to develop a draft policy and confirmed he will produce a draft policy which will be circulated for consideration.

 Use of Bollards in Strategic Positions –

Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford have been considering this matter and in particular the impact of damage to the War Memorial area. Information has been received from OCC regarding the cost of installation and had also provided a plan of utilities in the area. Mr M Poke confirmed he would contact Mrs P Radford from the Rectory to discuss various options following her kind offer to donate stone etc., to protect the verge.

 Footpath at Windy Hill Farm –

Mr L Tustian to locate the footpath sign and reinstate it. Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford confirmed following the survey of all footpaths, a comprehensive record has now been established, with an email being sent to Mr D Weeks of OCC with photos to enable him to confirm formally the exact location of the footpath.

 National Litter Picking Weekend

– A successful litter pick was undertaken over the weekend with village residents helping out, which was very much appreciated.

 Standing Orders –

Mr J Drinkwater suggested some minor alterations to section 3.8, Mr M Poke agreed to update the document which will be sent to all Parish Councillors and published on the Website as a draft until it is formally adopted at the Annual General Meeting.

5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 None received

 Mr M Poke circulated some guidance cards which will be placed on seats allocated for public and press attendees, the guidance states the parameters of public participation and conduce at Parish Councils. It was agreed these will also be placed on the Village Hall notice board and the website.

6.0 Financial Update

 Mrs T Poke confirmed the balances as follows: Community Account £3856.79 and the Business Money Manager Account £6631.99.

Payments Schedule

Arrow Accounting- Auditor £68.00

Mr M Poke Mr C Ford

OALC – Annual Subscription £133.07

Mr C Ford Mr M Poke

Mr J Drinkwater - Vouchers £40.00

Mr M Poke Mr L Tustian

 Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke met with Arrow Accounting to discuss the requirements for year-end auditing and ongoing accounting arrangements, it was a useful visit.

 Mrs T Poke outlined some of the pressures on her time and requested some assistance in respect of setting up the finance records for the new financial year; she would then maintain the ongoing records. Mr J Drinkwater and Mr C Ford agreed they would assist.

7.0 The Village Hall Committee

Mr L Tustian provided an update of the village hall forthcoming events as follows:

 Coffee Morning and Plant Sale –

Saturday 23 April between 10:30 and 12 noon in the Village Hall.

 Queen’s Birthday Barbeque -

The Parish Council agreed it was appropriate to provide some financial support for the event, the sum of £250 was agreed. Proposed by Mr C Ford and Seconded by Mr L Tustian.

8.0 The Playing Field Committee

 Mrs A Wiggins had provided an update via email confirming the ROSPA certification was in progress.

9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows

 Damage to War Memorial Green –

in addition to the discussion under Matters Arising – Item 4.0, it was agreed works should not be undertaken until the regular movement of heavy plant and major building works at Glenroy had receded. However, it was agreed some options need to be developed and priced so all interested parties could be consulted and one of the options agreed. Mr C Ford agreed to develop some plans and options for consideration.

 Use of Bollards and Strategic Positions –

in addition to the discussion under Matters Arsing – Item 4.0 concerning the potential to install bollards at the War Memorial site, Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford agreed they would undertake a survey of the village to ascertain where they could be best placed to ensure all vulnerable greens and verges remain protected from such damage.

10.0 Planning Consultations and Considerations

 Mrs T Poke confirmed there is now an option to undertake all planning consultations electronically rather than receiving paper copies of applications and associated plans, the Parish Council decided to remain with the current system for the foreseeable future.

 Mrs T Poke circulated a letter from OCC in respect of a planning application by Great Tew Farms for planning permission for the proposed extension for ironstone extraction, revocation of existing consented mineral extraction, export of clay, construction of temporary and permanent landforms, retention of an existing overburden store, relocation of consented stone saw shed, replacement quarry, farm and estate office building, erection of a new shoot store and multi-purpose building at Great Tew Ironstone Quarry, Butchers Hill, Great Tew, Chipping Norton. Mr C Ford declared an interest.

11.0 Footpaths and Bridleways

 Common Land, Watery Lane –

Mr L Tustian stated a declaration of interest in respect of this item and left the meeting whilst it was discussed. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he had received a response from Mr J Chaplin regarding ownership of this land. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he will refer the matter to Ms K Skinner of OCC for their consideration, as it’s not a decision for the Parish Council to take.

12.0 Website and Swerford Insight

 Mrs T Poke confirmed Mrs M Chaplin has been very helpful in publishing the notices and information on both the website and Swerford Insight.

13.0 Queen’s Birthday Celebrations –

Village Events

 Nothing further to report – See Village Hall Committee update item 7.0

14.0 Correspondence

 Nothing to report

15.0 Code of Conduct

 Nothing to report

16.0 Any Other Business

 No matters raised

17.0 Date of next meeting

 Swerford Parish Assembly –

Friday 6 May 2016 at 19:30 hours in the Village Hall

 Swerford Parish Council – To be confirmed

The meeting was declared closed at 20:45 hours.

JANUARY 2016

SWERFORD PARISH COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES 26 January 2016 AT 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall

Present:

Mr J Drinkwater, Chairman Mr M Poke, Vice Chairman Mrs L Stapleton, Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Resigned) Mrs T Poke, Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed) Mr C Ford, Parish Councillor Mrs A Wiggins, Parish Councillor – left meeting at 20:25 Mr L Tustian, Parish Councillor Ms. S Bowers, Parish Resident

1.0

Apologies

None recorded

2.0

Declarations of Interest

None recorded

3.0

Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Proposed by Mr M Poke, Seconded by Mrs A Wiggins

Minutes signed as approved.

4.0

Matters Arising

 Defibrillators – Mrs A Wiggins confirmed she was still awaiting confirmation regarding the application for funding. This matter will be discussed further when this information has been received.

 Adoption of BT Telephone Kiosk

– Following the village walkabout on 19.12.15 it was agreed the adoption contract needs to be reviewed to ensure this is going to be a viable acquisition. Mr. M Poke confirmed he would review the documents in liaison with Mr J Drinkwater in order to ensure all legal liabilities are clarified. Mr M Poke to report back to the next meeting.

 Tree near Hill Top Cottage

– Mr J Drinkwater has established the tree is not the responsibility of Oxfordshire County Council (OCC). He has therefore requested a plan in order to confirm ownership, as OCC had stated they had referred to their documents.

 Swerbrook

– Mr J Drinkwater outlined the email exchange with Mr A Abraham in which Mr Abraham has confirmed his contractor will be undertaking the required works in due course. Mr J Drinkwater has requested a further update from Mr Abraham on 25.01.16 as works have not yet commenced.

 20 Plenty Signs

– Mr C Ford presented the pro-forma invoice in respect of the supply of 3 aluminium signs with fixings. The purchase was agreed by the Parish Council and the payment of £252.11 plus VAT £50.42 making a total £302.53 was proposed by Mr L Tustian and seconded by Mr M Poke.

5.0

Items Submitted by Public for Consideration

 Ms S Bowers attended the meeting to formally raise her concerns regarding light pollution in the village, particularly in respect of an external light at Lilac Cottage at East End. Ms Bowers stated the light reflects onto the stone wall and creates additional light into her bedroom, therefore having an impact on her sleep. Ms Bowers also confirmed she had put a polite note through the door of Lilac Cottage outlining her concerns, however no response was received. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he would observe the impact of the light and will, if appropriate, send a letter to the resident concerned. However, it was also essential to ensure the legal position regarding light pollution from external domestic lights was also established.

6.0

Financial Update

 Bank Mandate form for Local Authority was signed by all present.

 No update on balances as Bank Statements have not been redirected, Mr J Drinkwater will follow this up with HSBC.

 Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke will be meeting on 20.02.16 to discuss the 2015/2016 revised auditing arrangements and will meet with the new auditor in due course.

 Thank You vouchers to be purchased for Mr C Ford and Mr R Haigh for the refurbishment of the village benches, Mr J Drinkwater to arrange.

7.0

The Village Hall Committee

 Next meeting – 02.02.16

 Queen’s Birthday Barbeque

- The Parish Council have agreed to support the event with a Pig Roast donated by Mr N Wiggins and also to offer some financial support towards the event organisation. It was agreed Mr L Tustian would confirm the arrangements when he attended the next meeting. Mr J Drinkwater also requested that he ascertain from the Village Hall Committee how much financial support they would be seeking.

8.0

The Playing Field Committee

 Mr J Drinkwater asked Mrs A Wiggins to check with Mrs J Ford if the Safety Certificate is up to date and the ROSPA inspection has been undertaken. He stressed the need to maintain compliance in such matters.

9.0

Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows

 Verge Opposite Mulberry Cottage and Hillfields

– It was noted that considerable damage has been done to this area of verge by cars and large vehicles being parked on it by residents of Mulberry Cottage. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he will write to Mrs M Ford of Mulberry Cottage to request this area is no longer used for parking of such vehicles.

 Maintenance of Greens & Verges

– Mr M Poke confirmed he has undertaken some research into the maintenance of such spaces and the impact of them being used for parking. It was agreed Mr M Poke would draft a policy for consideration at the next meeting.

 Use of Bollards and Strategic Positions

– As this is an accepted practice, Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford agreed they would undertake a survey of the village to ascertain where they could be best placed to ensure the greens and verges remain protected from such damage.

10.0

Planning Consultations and Considerations

 Leys Farm

– Mr J Drinkwater confirmed the appeal for the Garden Room has been refused. 11.0

Footpaths and Bridleways

 Footpath Survey –

Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford confirmed they have completed their survey and have taken photos of all gates and stiles. It was noted the footpath sign at Windy Hill Farm has been removed again, Mr L Tustian confirmed it was buried under one of his hedges, he will find it and arrange for it to be reinstated.  <_P>Footpath at Windy Hill Farm –

Mr J Drinkwater stated he has some documents relating to this footpath and would share them with Mr M Poke in order to ascertain the exact location of the footpath within Mrs J Horwood’s land.

12.0

Website and Swerford Insight

 Swerford Insight

– It was noted by all present the new style newsletter now known as Swerford Insight has been very well received, the new format works extremely well.

13.0

Queen’s Birthday Celebrations – Clean for the Queen Campaign

 National Litter Picking Weekend - It was agreed as a village we should participate in this national initiative, Mrs T Poke will arrange for an item to be place in Swerford Insight inviting residents to participate on Saturday 5 March from 11am. Refreshments will be provided.

14.0

Correspondence

 Trees at Swerford Park

– Mrs T Poke confirmed she had received an email forwarded by Mrs L Stapleton regarding the trees on Lodge Lane/Swerford Park. Mr N Dalby of West Oxon stated in the email he is not clear what this matter is about and is not sure if WODC would have any role to play in the matter. Mrs T Poke to email Mr N Dalby to ascertain if they have contacted Mr J Law of Swerford Park to inform them of their position.

15.0

Code of Conduct

 Nothing to report 16.0

Any Other Business

 Standing Orders –

Mr M Poke has now drafted these, they will be formally adopted at the Annual General Meeting.

 Distribution of Agendas –

It was agreed these would be placed on the village hall notice board, website and in the church at least three clear business days before the meeting.

17.0

Date of next meeting

 Next Parish Council Meeting

– Thursday 14 April 2016 at 19:30 hours in the Village Hall

 Swerford Parish Assembly –

Friday 6 May 2016 at 19:30 hours in the Village Hall

The meeting was declared closed at 21:10 hours.

November 2015 Minutes

1.0 Apologies None recorded 2.0 Declarations of Interest None recorded 3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting Proposed by Mr M Poke Seconded by Mrs A Wiggins Minutes signed as approved. 4.0 Matters Arising  Defibrillators – Mrs A Wiggins confirmed she was still awaiting confirmation regarding the application for funding. This matter will be discussed further when this information has been received.  Adoption of BT Telephone Kiosk – Following the village walkabout on 19.12.15 it was agreed the adoption contract needs to be reviewed to ensure this is going to be a viable acquisition. Mr. M Poke confirmed he would review the documents in liaison with Mr J Drinkwater in order to ensure all legal liabilities are clarified. Mr M Poke to report back to the next meeting.  Tree near Hill Top Cottage – Mr J Drinkwater has established the tree is not the responsibility of Oxfordshire County Council (OCC). He has therefore requested a plan in order to confirm ownership, as OCC had stated they had referred to their documents.  Swerbrook – Mr J Drinkwater outlined the email exchange with Mr A Abraham in which Mr Abraham has confirmed his contractor will be undertaking the required works in due course. Mr J Drinkwater has requested a further update from Mr Abraham on 25.01.16 as works have not yet commenced.  20 Plenty Signs – Mr C Ford presented the pro-forma invoice in respect of the supply of 3 aluminium signs with fixings. The purchase was agreed by the Parish Council and the payment of £252.11 plus VAT £50.42 making a total £302.53 was proposed by Mr L Tustian and seconded by Mr M Poke. Mrs A Wiggins Mr M Poke Mr J Drinkwater Mr C Ford 5.0 Items Submitted by Public for Consideration  Ms S Bowers attended the meeting to formally raise her concerns regarding light pollution in the village, particularly in respect of an external light at Lilac Cottage at East End. Ms Bowers stated the light reflects onto the stone wall and creates additional light into her bedroom, therefore having an impact on her sleep. Ms Bowers also confirmed she had put a polite note through the door of Lilac Cottage outlining her concerns, however no response was received. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he would observe the impact of the light and will, if appropriate, send a letter to the resident concerned. However, it was also essential to ensure the legal position regarding light pollution from external domestic lights was also established. Mr J Drinkwater 6.0 Financial Update  Bank Mandate form for Local Authority was signed by all present.  No update on balances as Bank Statements have not been redirected, Mr J Drinkwater will follow this up with HSBC.  Mr J Drinkwater and Mrs T Poke will be meeting on 20.02.16 to discuss the 2015/2016 revised auditing arrangements and will meet with the new auditor in due course.  Thank You vouchers to be purchased for Mr C Ford and Mr R Haigh for the refurbishment of the village benches, Mr J Drinkwater to arrange. Mr J Drinkwater Mr J Drinkwater & Mrs T Poke Mr J Drinkwater 7.0 The Village Hall Committee  Next meeting – 02.02.16  Queen’s Birthday Barbeque - The Parish Council have agreed to support the event with a Pig Roast donated by Mr N Wiggins and also to offer some financial support towards the event organisation. It was agreed Mr L Tustian would confirm the arrangements when he attended the next meeting. Mr J Drinkwater also requested that he ascertain from the Village Hall Committee how much financial support they would be seeking. Mr L Tustian 8.0 The Playing Field Committee  Mr J Drinkwater asked Mrs A Wiggins to check with Mrs J Ford if the Safety Certificate is up to date and the ROSPA inspection has been undertaken. He stressed the need to maintain compliance in such matters. Mrs A Wiggins 9.0 Maintenance of Greens and Hedgerows  Verge Opposite Mulberry Cottage and Hillfields – It was noted that considerable damage has been done to this area of verge by cars and large vehicles being parked on it by residents of Mulberry Cottage. Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he will write to Mrs M Ford of Mulberry Cottage to request this area is no longer used for parking of such vehicles.  Maintenance of Greens & Verges – Mr M Poke confirmed he has undertaken some research into the maintenance of such spaces and the impact of them being used for parking. It was agreed Mr M Poke would draft a policy for consideration at the next meeting.  Use of Bollards and Strategic Positions – As this is an accepted practice, Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford agreed they would undertake a survey of the village to ascertain where they could be best placed to ensure the greens and verges remain protected from such damage. Mr J Drinkwater Mr M Poke Mr M Poke & Mr C Ford 10.0 Planning Consultations and Considerations  Leys Farm – Mr J Drinkwater confirmed the appeal for the Garden Room has been refused. 11.0 Footpaths and Bridleways  Footpath Survey – Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford confirmed they have completed their survey and have taken photos of all gates and stiles. It was noted the footpath sign at Windy Hill Farm has been removed again, Mr L Tustian confirmed it was buried under one of his hedges, he will find it and arrange for it to be reinstated.  Footpath at Windy Hill Farm – Mr J Drinkwater stated he has some documents relating to this footpath and would share them with Mr M Poke in order to ascertain the exact location of the footpath within Mrs J Horwood’s land. Mr L Tustian Mr J Drinkwater 12.0 Website and Swerford Insight  Swerford Insight – It was noted by all present the new style newsletter now known as Swerford Insight has been very well received, the new format works extremely well. 13.0 Queen’s Birthday Celebrations – Clean for the Queen Campaign  National Litter Picking Weekend - It was agreed as a village we should participate in this national initiative, Mrs T Poke will arrange for an item to be place in Swerford Insight inviting residents to participate on Saturday 5 March from 11am. Refreshments will be provided. Mrs T Poke 14.0 Correspondence  Trees at Swerford Park – Mrs T Poke confirmed she had received an email forwarded by Mrs L Stapleton regarding the trees on Lodge Lane/Swerford Park. Mr N Dalby of West Oxon stated in the email he is not clear what this matter is about and is not sure if WODC would have any role to play in the matter. Mrs T Poke to email Mr N Dalby to ascertain if they have contacted Mr J Law of Swerford Park to inform them of their position. Mrs T Poke 15.0 Code of Conduct  Nothing to report 16.0 Any Other Business  Standing Orders – Mr M Poke has now drafted these, they will be formally adopted at the Annual General Meeting.  Distribution of Agendas – It was agreed these would be placed on the village hall notice board, website and in the church at least three clear business days before the meeting. Mr M Poke Mrs T Poke 17.0 Date of next meeting  Next Parish Council Meeting – Thursday 14 April 2016 at 19:30 hours in the Village Hall  Swerford Parish Assembly – Friday 6 May 2016 at 19:30 hours in the Village Hall The meeting was declared closed at 21:10 hours. PARISH COUNCIL MINUTES,30TH NOVEMBER 2015 & 10TH DECEMBER 2015

Present:

Mr J Drinkwater , Chairman

Mr M Poke, Vice Chairman

Mrs L Stapleton , Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Resigned)

Mrs T Poke, Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer (Appointed)

Mr C Ford, Parish Councillor

Mrs A Wiggin, Parish Councillor

Mr L Tustian, Parish Councillor

Mr J Chaplin, Parish Resident – Meeting of 30 November 2015

Mrs M Chaplin, Parish Resident – Meeting of 10 December 2015

1.0 Apologies,

None recorded

2.0 Declarations of Interest,

None recorded

3.0 Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Proposed by Mr M Poke, Seconded by Mrs A Wiggin

Minutes signed as approved.

4.0 Matters Arising

 Resignation & Appointment of Parish Clerk/Responsible Financial Officer – Mr J Drinkwater formally acknowledged the resignation letter from Mrs L Stapleton and the Parish Council agreed the appointment of Mrs T Poke to the role of Parish Clerk/Responsible Financial Officer, and was appointed by Mrs A Wiggin and seconded by Mr C Ford.

 Motte & Bailey – Mr J Drinkwater wished to formally acknowledge and record the Parish Council’s thanks to Mrs M Chaplin for laminating and installing the information sign relating to the Motte & Bailey.

 Defibrillators – Mr J Chaplin attended to represent the views of some residents in respect of the purchase of a defibrillator for the village. Mrs A Wiggin confirmed she had undertaken some further research and the Department of Health have sponsored 1 million pounds worth of defibrillators for communities and as a result they have been removed from the British Heart Foundation website until this funding has been spent. Mrs A Wiggin has submitted an application for funding of one of these machines. Therefore, we should hear by May 2016 if our application has been successful. The matter was discussed in detail and it was agreed some formal procedures need to be established in respect of training and an effective alert system. Mr J Drinkwater agreed he would contact the residents concerned and provide them with assurance that they will be updated on progress.

 Adoption of BT Telephone Kiosk

– Mr M Poke provided an update in respect of the adoption process and how it was progressing. Mr J Chaplin expressed some concern about it becoming a liability to maintain. It was agreed this would be examined and discussed as part of village walkabout on 19 December 2015, before a final decision was made.

Mr J Drinkwater – at the meeting of 10.12.15 Mr J Drinkwater confirmed this had been completed.

All to note for 19.12.15

5.0 Financial Update

 2016/17 Budget – Mr J Drinkwater circulated a draft budget and following a lengthly discussion some adjustments were agreed and noted on the printed version to ensure a clear audit trail is established.

 Remembrance Day - Mr M Poke requested a cheque for £60 for the Remembrance Day poppy wreaths, Mr J Drinkwater requested a receipt was obtained from the local organiser in order to ensure compliance with S137. This expenditure was proposed by Mrs A Wiggin and Seconded by Mr C Ford. This was confirmed again at the meeting on 10.12.15.

 Gratitude Gifts – discussion on 10.12.15 agreed to the following expenditure for thank you gift vouchers - £40.00 voucher for Mrs L Stapleton for her valuable services as Parish Clerk, this was proposed by Mrs A Wiggin and seconded by Mr C Ford.

All to note Mr M Poke

6.0 The Village Hall Committee

Minutes received – no further comments

7.0 The Playing Fields Committee Nothing to report – balance received £647.05

8.0 Mowing and Hedges

 War Memorial Green - Recent damage to the war memorial green was discussed and Mr M Poke confirmed he has spoken to the new residents of Lyndhurst who have also contacted their removal contractor requesting the damage is made good as a matter of urgency. It was agreed this is a vulnerable area and is often subjected to damage from HGV traffic, therefore it was agreed this would also be discussed at the village walkabout on 19.12.15.

 Holly Tree, St. Mary’s Lane- Mr M Poke confirmed this will be removed by Acreman Arboriculture Services in the near future.

 Village trees – There was a general discussion in respect of various trees within the village boundary, although it is often difficult to established ownership when near a highway, it was agreed these would be discussed at the village walkabout and funding would be provided to benefit the village environment and not individual households.

 Tree near Hill Top Cottage – At the meeting of 10.12.15 Mr J Drinkwater confirmed he had met with a representative from O.C.C on 09.12.15 concerning the safety of it and who is responsible for the maintenance of it. This is still to be established.

 Swerbrook – Mr J Drinkwater confirmed the boundary issue has still not been addressed and he would be contacting Mr A Abraham again to ascertain when progress will be made in respect of the repositioning of his gates. All to note for 19.12.15

All to note for 19.12.15 Mr J Drinkwater

9.0 Planning

 No planning applications received.

10.0 Footpaths and Bridleways

 Nothing to report for meetings of 30.11.15 & 10.12.15

 At the village walkabout, Mr M Poke and Mr C Ford agreed they would inspect all footpaths and bridleways within the parish boundary during January 2016.

Mr M Poke & Mr C Ford

11.0 Website and Newsletter

 Website - At the meeting of 10.12.15 Mr J Drinkwater formally thanked Mrs M Chaplin for maintaining the village website, it was agreed that Mrs T Poke would continue to forward relevant articles to Mrs M Chaplin for publication on the website. It was also agree the agendas and minutes would also be published and marked as draft where relevant.

 Newsletter – Ms. C Douglass is no longer able to co-ordinate and publish the village newsletter, it was agreed this should continue as it is a valuable source of information and news for all residents. Mrs M Chaplin agreed she would consider taking this on, but feels it would benefit from a re-launch and different format.

Mrs T Poke

12.0 Correspondence

 Statement received from BDO LLP requesting payment of £36.00, this was proposed by Mr C Ford and seconded by Mr L Tustian.

 Remittance Advice received from WODC for the precept - £1050.18

10.12.15 Meeting

 Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th Birthday Celebrations in June 2016 – Mrs T Poke read the letter received from the Officer of Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Oxfordshire concerning national and local celebrations. She agreed to forward copies to the village hall and playing fields committees, as well as having something published on the website and in the newsletter.

Mrs T Poke

13.0 Any other business

 Auditing Arrangements – Mr J Drinkwater confirmed the retirement of the auditor and outlined a proposal from Arrow Accounting, which would cost £80 per annum including one attendance at a Parish Council Meeting, with travel expenses at 45p per mile being the only additional cost. This was agreed and proposed by Mrs A Wiggin and seconded by Mr C Ford.

 20 Plenty Signs – Mr C Ford confirmed he has researched the installation of such signs and it was agreed the actual location of them would be agreed at the village walkabout on 19.12.15. Mr J Drinkwater asked Mr C Ford to ascertain if any liability issues exist in respect of this type of signage.

 Register of Electors – It was agreed this should be obtained from WODC, Mrs T Poke agreed to action this.

Mr C Ford

Mrs T Poke

14.0 Date of the next meeting

26 January 2016 at 19:30 in Swerford Village Hall

The meeting of 30 November 2015 was declared closed at 21:00

The meeting of 10 December 2015 was declared closed at 20:30