Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Tuesday 10th March 2020 at Clapton & Wayford Village Hall


Members Present

Mrs Julia Borland (Chairman)

Mrs Caroline Broom

Mr D Yeomans

Mr Frank Freeman

Mr R Franklin

Mr Mike Best (Somerset County Councillor)

Mrs S. Osborne (South Somerset District Councillor)

Also present

5 Members of the Public



1.         Apologies for Absence

Apologies received from Miss Jackie Parsons (Parish Clerk), Mick and Mary Wilson, Mr L Graham-Gleed and Mrs M Ashby (These parishioners came in part way through the meeting).


2.         Public Open Forum – Each member of the public present is entitled to speak once only, in respect of business itemised on the agenda and shall not speak for more than 5 minutes.

            No member of the public had any item to discuss.

3.         Declarations of Interest in items on the agenda (Pecuniary or non-statutory interests).

            None of the Parish Councillors declared any Pecuniary or non-statutory interest in items on the agenda.

4.         To approve the minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on the 14th January 2020.

            The minutes approved by the meeting and proposed for approval by Mrs C Broom and seconded by Mr F Freemans.

5.         Matters arising from the minutes not covered elsewhere on the Agenda.

            No matters were brought up for discussion.

6           Planning Matters.

             West Crewkerne Parish Council is a Statutory Consultee for Planning Applications

and as such does not make the final decision on any application.  Any decisions        and comments made by the Parish Council will be fed into the planning process and added to the report by the Planning Officer.  South Somerset District Council is the Planning Authority and will issue the final decision notice (Planning Determination) once their investigations into the application, consultation period and decision making process has been completed.

A): 20/00292/HOU  The Coach House Henley Manor Henley Cross Crewkerne TA18 8PQ,  External Alterations to replace one velux roof light and install one new velux roof light on front elevation of dwelling.  Received 30th January 2020.

All Parish Councillors had had a chance to look at this application and none of them had any objection to this application.

B): 20/00423/TPO  Hillside Farm Hewish Crewkerne Somerset TA18 8QS,  Application to fell one deciduous tree as shown within the South Somerset District Council (WECR 1) 2010 Tree Preservation Order, Woodland 5, Confirmed 15.11.10.  Received 30th January 2020. 

This application was for information purposes and as the tree was at a 45 degree angle to the road, it was a foregone conclusion that the tree was going to have to be felled.

C). Fuzzy Ground and concerns raised.

Update from Councillor Best after his discussion with SSDC Planning.

Councillor Mike Best stated that he had lodge a written complaint with the planning department of South Somerset District Council stating the reasons for the complaint was that the owner had not complied with the conditions laid down, when the planning application was granted.  Councillor Mike Best had also asked in the written complaint to be informed of the progress of the complaint.  It was now up to the enforcement officer of the planning department to pursue the matter.  The Chairman thanked Councillor Best for pursuing this matter but equally the Parish Council needed to keep this matter on the Agenda for the forseeable future.  


7.         Highway Matters


1.  Mr Mike Best (Somerset County Councillor) stated that part of the scheme had been Implemented but due to the weather conditions the scheme had not been completed because road teams had been pulled off of these jobs to help with the clear up operations after the storms.

2.  Julia Borland, Mr D Yeomans, Barry Carter (Parish Councillor) had met with the neighbourhood Police sergeant to discuss Roundham and the concerns of the residents in Roundham and the fact that the Police although not against a reduction of the speed limit from 40mph to 30mph did not support it when the request was made in 2015.  The Police sergeant was aware of the Small Improvement scheme for Roundham and was in agreement with the Parish Council view, that the scheme be re-visited in six months time after implementation.  In the meantime he will install some speed monitoring equipment when the scheme has been completed.  This will show whether the scheme has;

a) made no difference to the speed of vehicles

b) improved the speed of vehicles

c) caused more speeding vehicles.

Then there will be evidence on which to base an assessment of the situation and whether to go forward with any further improvements for Roundham.

Ongoing reporting of potholes, poor road surfaces, ditches etc.

            The Chairman Mrs J Borland reiterated to the meeting that if there is a problem with

roads, ditches and anything else that comes under the remit of Somerset Highways to please report the problem on their website.  It has been her experience that they usually come out and look at the problem even if they are unable to fix the problem straightaway.  The more that is reported the more statistics can be gathered regarding the Highways of Somerset.  Also if it is a private contractor who takes on the job and the work is not deemed to be of a sufficiently reasonable standard, then please contact Somerset Highways to air your concerns.


8.         Reports from Councillors, including District and County Councillors.

1. Mrs C Broom reported that a motorbike had been abandoned on neighbouring land.  The District Councillor and the County Councillor both advised her to contact the Police on 101 and then the South Somerset District Council.

2.  Mr F Freeman gave a short report on the Almshouses in Crewkerne as he has taken on the role of trustee on the board that looks after these houses from his predecessor Mr John Wyatt.  The houses were originally built in 1620 and therefore are listed buildings.  The inside of the properties, of which there are eight, have now been brought up to a very good standard and are occupied by elderly people.  They have had one tenant give notice recently but as there is always a waiting list to rent these properties the vacant property should soon be occupied.  The finances are very well managed by the Chairman of the board to the extent that the Board of Trustees are considering purchasing another property to be used as an Almshouse.

3.  Mr R Franklin stated that he had spoken to his neighbour regarding the mobile home that was now situated on the neighbour’s land.  Mr R Franklin stated that the Parish Council were concerned that once one person erected a mobile home on their land other parishioners could follow suit.  Mr R Franklin asked his neighbour whether the Planning Office of South Somerset District Council had been informed and had they been given permission for the siting of the mobile home on their land.  To date Mr Franklin has heard nothing from his neighbour.   Mr D Yeomans stated that he thought that planning permission had to be given to site a mobile home on your land.  This was confirmed by Mrs S Osborne (South Somerset District Council) who stated that the enforcement officer from the planning department should be informed although at present they have a huge backlog of cases to attend to.

4.  Mrs J Borland had nothing to report, only the potholes that had come up under the heading of Highways.

5.  Mrs S Osborne (South Somerset District Councillor) stated that she had been to a presentation by the Somerset Clinical commissioning group who are proposing to;

a) move Mental Health beds to Yeovil from Wells and putting more care out into the community, to be picked up by agencies.

b) looking at Minor health and injuries units and renaming them Urgent treatment centres but not all of them.  The Parish Council should look at the proposals with a view of what it means for Crewkerne and Chard hospitals and the wider community.

Mrs S Osborne stated that South Somerset District Council is looking at fees and charges to make sure they are in line with other councils and that they are fair.   There is also extra money set aside to help sort out the problems with the computer programme and to retain and recruit planners for the planning department

6. Mr M Best (Somerset County Councillor) stated that no decision had yet been reached on the Cathole Bridge Road scheme.  Mr M Best had also frozen the Maiden Beech cross roads Small Improvement Scheme because the consultant they had engaged for the appeal against the Cathole Bridge Road Scheme had stated that if the Inspector allowed the Cathole Bridge Road Scheme to go ahead then the Maiden Beech cross roads would have to be seriously looked at in conjunction with this scheme.

Mr M Best also stated that it had been announced that every County Councillor can have two more Small Improvement Schemes in the next financial year, so if there was any particular stretch of road that needed a Small Improvement Scheme to push it forward to let him know.


9.         Finance

                   A): To pay the Clerk’s Salary £106.40  Cheque No. 328

       B): To pay HMRC £26.60  Cheque No. 328

The clerk paid HMRC out of her own personal account because she was unable to get the cheques signed until the 19th March when the payment should have been with HMRC.


10.       Correspondence;

Various e-mails from Somerset Waste Partnership stating no food waste in the refuse bin only in the Food Waste Bin, Civic Update, Rural Bulletin, a letter from Val Ketch leader of the South Somerset District Council and a letter from Somerset Community Foundation regarding Coronavirus and various links to community organisations.


11.       To confirm that the next meeting will be the Annual Parish Meeting together with the West Crewkerne Parish Council meeting to be held on the 12th May 2020.

            The above confirmed subject to Coronavirus restrictions not allowing the meeting to take place.


            The meeting closed at 7.50pm.