Approved Minutes 2023 December 07

Dec 11, 2023 | Minutes

The minutes can be read below or downloaded here: MN_2023_December BPC Approved Minutes

APPROVED Minutes of the Monthly Meeting of Blackawton Parish Council held on
Tuesday 5 December 2023 at 7:30 p.m. in St Michael’s Church

Open Forum

No members of the public present.

Present: Parish & South Hams District Cllr Rake (Chair), Parish Cllrs Oughton (Vice-Chair), Coe, Luckens, Mardon, and Thomas were present, as was Devon County Cllr Brazil (for his report), and A Thom (Clerk). There were no members of the public.

  1. Apologies

Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Hadow.

  1. Declarations of Interest

None declared.

  1. Minutes of Previous Meetings

It was resolved to approve the Minutes of the Meeting held 7 November 2023.

  1. Report from South Hams District Council Councillor

Cllr Rake said that today, 5 December, is International Volunteers Day and thanked Parish Councillors for being volunteers.

Cllr Rake discussed recent progress in the appeal of SHDC decisions to refuse applications to develop the Dairy Crest site in Totnes. There is a proposal to drop one of two appeals (because the required information has been provided subject to a satisfactory S106). Only an outline planning permission has been applied for. The Totnes Community Development Society is concerned that the project is too complicated for the development to progress. We are awaiting the Inspector’s decision.

There is a vote next week regarding Plymouth and South Devon Freeport sites in Plymouth Docks, Sherford, and Langage.

A deal has been agreed in principle for a devolution deal for Devon. It will be considered by Devon County Council on 19 December. DCC and Torbay Councils would become a combined authority. Spending on skills and training and business development would be transferred to the combined authority. The specific details of the offer remain to be determined.

The changeover by SHDC to the new waste system appears to be going smoothly. Cllr Rake has only received a couple of queries.

  1. Report from Devon County Council Councillor

Cllr Brazil suggested BPC progress with the project to consult the community about whether to change Blackawton’s street lighting and to then give DCC a request about which lights Blackawton wants on or off, and for what hours. Cllr Brazil said to be careful with the wording of the consultation because DCC may not agree to implement the request.

There is currently no Slapton Line meeting scheduled. They are waiting for a DCC Highways’ Planning Report. The Adaptation Plan needs to progress. There is some money to improve back roads and an extra £6.6 million has been received from Government for all of Devon’s highways.

Cllr Brazil was asked to investigate the street light next to 1 Tumbling Fields which has been left on for many weeks.

There is a special Cabinet meeting on 19 December regarding a Devon Devolution Deal. Details of the proposal are to follow. A consultation will start after the meeting.

There is a consultation about parking meters being installed in Dartmouth which will run from 7 December to 7 January.

  1. Planning Applications

    1. SHDC Planning Decisions

The following decisions were noted:

  • 2714/23/FUL Balsam Farm Vicarage Road Blackawton TQ9 7AY. Application to convert an outbuilding to ancillary living accommodation, revised proposal to application 3855/22/FUL to replace obscured glazed windows proposed to South elevation with timber boarded windows & reduce level of excavation at rear to form access to the garden. Conditional Approval.

  • 2815/23/FUL West Hartley Bungalow Blackawton TQ9 7DHProvision of replacement dwelling. Conditional Approval.

  • 3382/23/PDM Land At Sx 801 505 Blackawton. Application to determine if prior approval is required for a proposed change of use of agricultural buildings/barns to 2No dwellinghouses (class C3) & for associated development (Class Q (a+b)). Prior Approval Given.

  • 2914/23/ARC Watsons Farm Blackawton TQ9 7AZ. Application for approval of details reserved by conditions 7 (Roof, hardstanding & external wall materials/finishes) & 11 (DEV32) of planning consent 1709/22/FUL. Discharge of condition Approved.

    1. Review of New Applications

  • 3673/23/FUL The Old Dairy, North Millcombe Farm Blackawton Totnes TQ9 7AE. Replacement dwelling following Class Q approval, including landscaping& engineering works.

Support It was resolved to Support. Cllr Rake abstained.

  1. Cemetery Management

It was resolved to approve the revised Cemetery management proposal document and the Grounds Maintenance Specifications & Contract. The Clerk was delegated authority to decide the tree to plant in replacement of the removed dead ash in consultation with Cllrs Hadow and Coe.

  1. Churchyard Grounds Maintenance

The completion of 2023 works was confirmed with the exception of the path and gate from School Lane into the Churchyard. The contractor will be asked to do that work when next in the village.

  1. Maintenance of the Closed Churchyard

The Report on the Clerk and Cllr Rake’s site meeting with an SHDC Officer was discussed. It was arranged to help Cllrs to prepare to make an informed decision if a request is received from the PCC for BPC to take legal responsibility for the maintenance of the closed St Michael’s churchyard.

  1. Community Consultation about Street Lighting in Blackawton

DCC has not made progress with reviewing its Street Lighting Policy – which BPC has been waiting for. It was decided, as recommended by DCC Cllr Brazil, to proceed with a community consultation. The results of that consultation will then be used to propose to DCC a 12-month trial of the preferred change, if any. Options: a) lighting remains as is, b) lighting from the Normandy Arms corner to the Millcombe Corner as is, with other village street lights removed, c) no street lighting in the village, d) Other. The consultation will be added to the January Beacon for distribution. There will be an online form. Paper forms can be returned to the Community Shop and to The George Inn if the publican wishes. The results will be used to make a request to DCC to trial the preferred option for 12 months, if a change is requested by the majority of respondents. BPC will not know in advance if DCC will agree to the request.

  1. Thermal Imaging Camera Hire from SHDC

Sustainable Blackawton has borrowed a camera from SHDC. It is available to survey houses in the Parish. Cllr Coe is a contact and will write an article for the Beacon offering a survey to those who want their house done.

  1. Finance

    1. Update on Current Financial Position

The Reports showed a total balance of £58,575.21 and unearmarked general fund of £15,528.79.

    1. Payments & Receipts

It was resolved to authorise the following payments:

  • Clerk, Expenses reimbursement, £29.48

  • Pittman Trees, Removal of ash, £180

  • Parish Lengthsman, 17/5-4/11/23, £793.5. BPC will request allocation of 11 July and 19 September visits to the DCC grant funded works.

    1. 23/24 Salary Award

The Award was noted and it will be implemented as per the contract.

    1. Draft Budget 2024/25

The draft budget was discussed. The Clerk was asked to budget for grant allocations of up to £1,000, works to the Cemetery wall £1,500, an allocation to the Clerk’s contracted sick leave reserve, and to include grounds maintenance in the churchyard. The precept requirement will be calculated on that basis.

  1. Correspondence

The following training was noted and recommended:

  • 16/11/23, SHDC, Planning training town and parish councils, 24 January,4.00pm-7.00pm, On-line

  1. Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Parish Council will be held on Tuesday 9 January 2023 at 7:30 p.m.

The meeting closed at 21:13.