Approved Minutes 2021 May 04

Apr 8, 2022 | Minutes

The minutes can be downloaded here or read below  MN_2021_May 04 BPC Approved Minutes

APPROVED Minutes of the Meetings of Blackawton Parish Council held using public videoconferencing on Tuesday 4 May 2021 from 7:30 pm

  • Present: Cllrs Rake (Chair), Cllr Mewes (Vice-Chair), Mallyon, and Thomas were present, as were Devon County Cllr Brazil, South Hams District Cllr Reeve, A Thom (Clerk), and two members of the public.

Annual Parish Meeting

  • Parishioners were invited to speak.
  • This meeting was called to meet the requirement to hold the meeting in April or May. BPC looks forward to holding a face to face Parish Meeting later in the year.

Monthly Meeting of Blackawton Parish Council

Open Forum

  1. Planning enquiry from a Parishioner.

A parishioner asked BPC’s view of building a house on land to west of Wadstray House, about one third of an acre with properties either side. They said that SHDC Reeve preplanning suggests engagement with the PC and those affected to gauge the likely reaction and obtain feedback. They would envision a 3-4 bedroom home. There are currently no services, there is an access track, this site has a TPO. Comments from BPC included that given site constraints it may be useful to engage planning consultant before beginning with SHDC, use of the preplanning service from SHDC, a line of trees would help screen and would support an environmentally based approach from the start, feel free to contact to discuss, DCC – is there a contact for access, and that BPC is willing to have further conversations.

63/21    Apologies

Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Perry.

64/21    Declarations of Interest

Cllrs Rake and Thomas declared a personal interest in the Blackawton Business Units CIC.

65/21    Minutes of Previous Meetings

The minutes of the Meeting held 2 March 2021 were approved.

66/21    BPC COVID-19 Response Review

We are lucky to escape the worst and to live in a community where people have been helpful.

67/21    Future Meetings

It was noted that legislation permitting virtual Parish Council meetings ends 6 May. It was resolved to approve Delegations to the Clerk to ensure continuity of business. BPC will return to face to face meetings as soon as it is safe. The delegations permit the Clerk to be instructed by a public virtual meeting of BPC.

68/21    Report from South Hams District Council Councillor

Cllr Reeve has heard mixed feedback about waste collection. There have been some problems. SHDC is planning to do a trial allowing self-contained motorhomes and campervans to stay overnight in some SHDC car parks. The additional Localities Officers are now working and can be contacted.

Cllr Rake said he was aware of complaints about the existing waste collection system. Cllr Reeve said to provide her with the property details and she will look into the issues.

69/21    Report from Devon County Council Councillor

Deferred pending the arrival of Councillor Brazil.

70/21    Planning

70/21.1       SHDC Planning Decisions

The following decisions were noted:

  • 0001/21/LBC Woodford Farm Blackawton TQ9 7AA. Listed building consent for installation of air source heat pump units outside of the property with associated works. Conditional Approval.
  • 4283/20/OPA Land adjacent to Woodfin Cottage Blackawton TQ9 7BW. Outline application with some matters reserved for proposed 2 bed chalet bungalow. Conditional Approval.
  • 0390/21/ARC The Old Forge Blackawton TQ9 7AA. Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 3 and 4 for planning application 0400/19/FUL. Discharge of condition Approved.

70/21.2       Review of New Applications

  • 0847/21/FUL The Old Dairy North Millcombe Farm Blackawton TQ9 7AE. Replacement Dwelling Following Class Q Consent and Full Consent to Extend Curtilage.

Cllr Brazil joined the meeting during this item.

It was resolved to respond noting that the proposal is of increased size and displaced relative to the original footprint (resolution proposed Cllr Rake, seconded Cllr Thomas).

  • 3494/20/NMM Development At Sx 8052 5109, Town Farm School Lane Blackawton Devon. Non material minor amendment to planning consents 06/0992/14/F and 0318/18/VAR to increase the size of the soakaway.

It was resolved to respond confirming the interim response sent by the Clerk:

BPC has already raised with SHDC its serious concerns about problems with the drainage at the development site, which has failed to prevent flooding of properties downhill, and SHDC Officers are well aware of the issues. Because of the complexity of the matter, in response to 0810/20/ARC BPC asked that the proposed drainage plans in that application receive great scrutiny from SHDC Officers. It also asked that any approval includes a system for emergency contact should the drainage system fail.

The following reserved condition applications were noted.

  • 0862/21/ARC Dartmouth Golf And Country Club Road To Dartmouth Golf And Country Club Blackawton Devon TQ9 7DE. Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 3 and 4 of Planning Permission 0700/20/FUL.
  • 1166/21/ARC Proposed Development At Sx 8074 5071 Blackawton Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 3, 8 and 9 for planning application 1972/17/FUL.
  • 0657/21/ARC Blacksmiths Cottage Land adjoining Woodcott, Woodcott, TQ9 7AA. Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 3, 4, 5, 6,10, 11 of planning permission 0263/19/FUL.
  • 0873/21/ARC Shearstone Barn Blackawton Devon TQ9 7DG. Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 6, 8 and 9 of Planning Permission 1387/20/FUL.
  • 1058/21/HHO East Down Barn Blackawton TQ9 7AW. Householder application for demolition of existing garage/outbuilding and erection of new. Neighbouring parish consultee.

No comment.

70/21.3       Premises Licence Applications

  • Variation to a premises licence application from Mr Graeme John Piesse for The Shambles (previously Quay Wines), 1 Higher Street, Dartmouth, TQ6 9RB. No comment.
  • Variation to a premises licence application from Saveurs Ltd for Saveurs, 3 Victoria Road, Dartmouth, TQ6 9RT. No comment.

71/21    Report from Devon County Council Councillor

Cllr Brazil restricted his comments because of the DCC Election purdah.

He reported that DCC resolved almost unanimously to support the CEE Bill support.

Cllr Brazil support a French Furze site visit. Cllr Reeve will organise the visit. Cllr Mallyon will attend

72/21    Consultations

  • Totnes & South Devon Bus Strategy Survey by Anthony Mangnall MP. Closes 20 May.

73/21    French Furze Project

To request a site visit agreed as above.

74/21    Cemetery Management

It was resolved to take the two actions as follows (proposed Cllr Thomas, seconded Cllr Mallyon):

To update the Cemetery Regulations to state that BPC follows the Local Authorities’ Cemeteries Order 1977 and ICCM Guidance for transfers of entitlement to exclusive right of burial.

To agree expenditure of £135 for the Clerk to do the ICCM course on granting, exercising and transferring exclusive rights of burial, in preparation for a project to update BPC’s records.

Cemetery Maintenance

Cllrs Rake and Mallyon reported concerns about safety of the pedestrian gate on the Hall side of the Cemetery. A parishioner has quoted £120 to reproduce the gate in steel, the metal might be round not square. Metal hinges might break when fixing to the post and be changed. The Clerk said it can be difficult to get quotes for small jobs and a safety concern has been raised. BPC Financial Regulations require value for money at all times, and to try to get three estimates between £100 and £3,000. It was agreed that because it is a good price and there is a safety issue to proceed. Cllr Mallyon said he would remove the existing gate, and it can also be used as template. Clerk to obtain written confirmation of the work that will be done.

Cllr Mallyon reported that the tap on the water butt has a jammed washer or it is silted up. The Clerk will ask the Maintenance Contractor to investigate.

75/21    BPC Forward Plan

It was agreed to adopt the plan as an evolving document to be posted on the parish website.

76/21    Management of BPC’s Trees

The Risk Assessment Survey of BPC, Village Hall and Blackawton Playing Field Committee Trees was noted.

77/21    Climate Ecological Emergency Bill

It was resolved to support the Bill.

78/21    Community Energy England

The following matter was deferred:

To consider a) Whether BPC would encourage and support a community energy project?
b) Whether BPC wishes to become a member of Community Energy England?

79/21    Stoke Gabriel Cycle track project

BPC will write in support of the proposal.

80/21    Parish Lengthsman’s Report

The report was noted.

81/21    Bus Shelters outside Woodlands

Repairs made by the supplier to refix the retaining wall and to replace the bus stop sign on the Totnes bus shelter were noted. Action is being taken to replace the ’plastic’ in the vandalised timetable case.

82/21    Finance

82/21.1       Update on Current Financial Position

The Report showed a total balance of £61,628.77 and unearmarked reserves of £19,416.36.

82/21.2       Payments Made, Due and Received

The following payments were approved, Cllr Mewes abstained:

  • Westdown Farm Ltd, Cemetery hedge, £54.00
  • Cllr Mewes, Cherry Tree, £39.99
  • DALC, Membership fee, £186.32
  • ICCM, Annual Membership, £95.00
  • Devon Communities Together, Annual subscription, £50.00
  • Society of Local Council Clerks, Membership fee, £55.00
  • Local Council Administration Services, Internal Audit, £100.00

The following payments made since the March meeting were noted:

  • ICO, Annual fee, £35.00
  • Came & Company, Insurance Premium, £411.84

The following receipt was noted:

  • SHDC, Precept first instalment, £8,250.00


83/21    2020/21 Annual Governance and Accountability Return

83/21.1       Internal Audit

The Auditor’s report was noted.

83/21.2       Local Council Administration Services Invoice for 2020/21 Internal Audit

Payment of the invoice (£100.00) was approved.

83/21.3       Certificate of Exemption – AGAR 2020/21 Part 2

It was resolved that BPC meets the criteria for 2020/21 and wishes to be an exempt authority, not subject to a limited assurance review, for 2020/21 (resolution proposed Cllr Mallyon, seconded Cllr Thomas).

83/21.4       To sign the Certificate of Exemption.

Cllr Rake will sign this after the meeting.

83/21.5       2020/21 Audit Annual Governance Statement

It was resolved to approve the Statement.

83/21.6       Signature of the Audit Annual Governance Statement by the Chair of the meeting

Cllr Rake will sign this after the meeting.

83/21.7       2020/21 Audit Accounting Statements

The Accounting Statements were considered.

83/21.8       To resolve to approve the Statements.

It was resolved to approve the Statements.

83/21.9       Signature of the Accounting Statement by the Chair of the Meeting

Cllr Rake will sign this after the meeting.

83/21.10     Internal Audit of Year Ending March 2022

It was resolved to approve re-appointment of Local Council Administration Services.

84/21    Contracts

  • Churchyard and Cemetery Grounds Maintenance Contract

It was agreed to advertise the Blackawton churchyard and cemetery grounds maintenance contract with the current scope of work for a decision to be made by the July meeting. The current three year contract ends 30/6/21.

  • Parish Lengthsman Contract

It was agreed to extend the agreement for 2021/22.

85/21    Clerk’s Leave

The requested annual leave, 24 July to 22 August, and 18 December to 4 January 2022, was approved.

86/21    Correspondence

  • 22/4/21, Regional Fraud Protect Advisor South West Regional Organised Crime Unit (SWROCU). – APM
  • 26 February 2021 Enquiry letter about planning permission – referred to SHDC in first instance
  • Parishioner, Notice of works to stabilise a hedgebank near Wood Corner and to change entrance onto the highway, noted and referred to DCC

87/21    Reports from Parish Councillors and Wardens

Parish Council Minutes – It was agreed that when the transcription project is complete the historical minutes will be stored at Devon Archives.

88/21    Next Meeting

It was confirmed that the next meeting of the Parish Council will be held on Tuesday 8 June 2021 at 7:30 p.m. The format is under review.



89/21    Closure of the Meeting to Agree Contracts

It was resolved to close the meeting to members of the press and the public while quotes were considered due to commercial in confidence nature of the business. Cllr Reeve and the remaining member of the public left the meeting.

The work required is the tree-works to the Box in the churchyard and the Monterey Cyprus in the Cemetery, as recommended in the risk assessment survey, and choice of a firm of solicitors to represent BPC in the receipt of land at French Furze. The solicitors will not be instructed at this stage, so no costs incurred.


Annual Meeting of the Parish Council

92/21    Election of Chairman

Cllr Mewes chaired the meeting for this item.

Cllr Rake was unanimously re-elected as Chairman.

93/21    Chairman’s Signature of Declaration of Acceptance of Office

Cllr Rake will sign this after the meeting.

94/21    Apologies

Apologies were received from Cllr Perry as for Monthly Meeting.

95/21    Declaration of interests

None declared.

96/21    Election of Vice-Chairman

Cllr Mewes was unanimously re-elected as Vice-Chairman.

97/21    Appointments to special areas of responsibility
The appointments for Snow Warden, Health Representative, Tree Warden, and Footpath Warden were discussed. A new Tree Warden will be sought. Cllr Coe continues as Footpath Warden and Cllr Perry as Snow Warden.

98/21    Asset Register, Insurance Cover, Current Contracts and Agreements, and Subscriptions
These were noted. They have been listed in a separate document (posted on

99/21    Annual authorisation of the Clerk’s base salary & Working from Home Allowance

It was approved that the Clerk’s base salary will be paid on the last day of each month and be authorised annually in April of each year or when the national salary award is changed, and to continue payment of £10 per month being the BPC’s contribution to the total £27 per month pro-rata with Dittisham Parish Council (rate as per Devon Association of Local Council’s notice).

100/21  Review of Risk Assessment and Statement of Internal Controls

The Statement of Internal Controls was approved and the conduct of a more in-depth review of the Risk Assessment agreed.

101/21  Ordinary Meetings of the Parish Council

It was confirmed that the ordinary meetings of the full council will continue to take place at 7:30 pm on the first Tuesday of each month excluding August and be delayed by one week if that Tuesday follows a public holiday.