South Marston Parish Council
Minutes of the meeting held on 17th June 2014
Present: Mrs S Brown Mr A Leathart
Mr C McEwen Ms S Blair
Mr K Millard Mrs A Featherstone
Mr B Thunder Mrs A Burchell (Clerk)
90/14 OPEN 10 MINUTES
Members of the public present: Mr Adye Goodenough
Ref Environmental Impact Assessment (Planning). Mr Goodenough confirmed that Wiltshire & Berkshire Canal
Trust would like to discuss the water retention plans and destination of the water.
91/14 DECLARATIONS OF INTERES
- Members are asked to have their register of interests completed, signed and returned to the Clerk before
the meeting, and to identify at the start of the meeting any current issues in Parish Council business where
they feel they may have to declare an interest.
- Members are reminded that, at future meeting, any such interest should be declared at the start of the
meeting or item or, if not previously foreseeable, during any discussion of the matter concerned.
SB declared an interest in Community First and an interest in one aspect of the response to SBC regarding the new
development: specifically the existence of the new road and the proximity of SB’s property. However, it was agreed
that, because the route of the road affects everybody in terms of traffic flow, it is a common interest.
SB also declared an interest in the future of the bridleway which is in proximity to her property and in advance of
any decision regarding the management of the green lands which are next to her land.
BT has full view of the field at the back of Bell Gardens, so any development would have an impact on the aspect
view to his property. He also declares an interest in any discussion relating to the location of the new Village Hall
and an interest in the allotments.
SBlair stated that her property is opposite the recreation ground and therefore would declare an interest in any
discussions regarding the potential location of the village hall. She also has two children in the village school and an
interest in the parish car park (Agenda item 15). She would also declare an interest in any topics covering Old
Vicarage Lane with regard to noise and the visual aspect of her property.
KM declared an interest in discussions concerning certain signage and the layout of traffic calming measures within
the 20mph zone as one of the signs is near his property.
AF stated that her property overlooks the recreation ground and therefore would declare an interest in any
discussions regarding the expansion of the school and location of the village hall and village amenities. She also
declares an interest in discussions concerning the 20mph zone and traffic calming measures.
TL lives near Pound Corner and declared a general interest in traffic calming measures and signage provision within
the 20mph zone.
CM stated that his property flooded in 2007 and therefore has an interest in flood alleviation measures, in
particular regarding the body of water that runs through his property.
92/14 TO APPROVE AND SIGN THE MINUTES OF THE PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON TUESDAY, 20th
May 2014 AND
FORMALLY CLOSE ACTION POINTS
Proposed by SBlair
Seconded by TL
93/14 CLERK’S REPORT – JUNE 2014
1. Internal Audit
The internal audit has now been completed, resulting in a clean bill of health. The relevant documentation
has now been forwarded to the external auditor, Grant Thornton (due to be with them no later than 23rd
Action: Clerk to research internal auditors within Wiltshire/Gloucestershire/Oxfordshire borders for
decision at October meeting.
2. Dog Bins
Quotations have been requested – awaiting figures.
94/14 Correspondence received to 17th
Summary (not in date order)
Councillors wished to send their congratulations to Juliet Evans on her award of PCSO of the Year for Wiltshire and
thanked TL for nominating her.
No. From: Reference
1 Office of the Police & Crime
PCC’s Neighbourhood Policing Awards
95/14 FINANCE Statement and Cheques for Approval and Signature – 17.06.2014
Bank Account Statements Received
Julian Hodge Bank at 2nd June 2014 109,077.79
Unity Trust Bank at 4th June 2014 19,283.75
Expenditure: Cheques for Approval and Signature
Payment VAT Amount
300067 A Burchell – Salary Payment 758.46
300068 A Burchell - Expenses 5.10 43.42
300069 HMRC – Quarterly NI & Tax Payment 26.04
300070 Mercure Hotel – Developer’s Meeting 10.00 60.00
300071 WALC – Annual Financial Contribution 17.00
300072 Stratton Garden Contractors (April & May) 697.08
300073 B Thunder – Expenses 12.00
300074 Accounts & Audit Services Ltd – Internal Audit 43.40 260.40
300075 Grove Group – IT System (17 Jan – 16 May) 31.68 190.08
300076 St Margaret’s PCC – Tower & Tap Copying 50.00
300077 Mrs C Golby – Allotment Refund 33.75
TOTAL 90.18 2148.23
Income: Invoices Raised to
Invoice To Amount
14/050 SMRA – Email addresses April and May 13.20
Remittance From Amount
CM proposed to accept and approve the finance statement for June 2014.
96/14 South Marston Parish Council Planning Sub Committee
Plans received to 17th
1. Planning Application Number: S/14/0738HECO
Proposal: Replacement of cement mortar from external walls and chimney stack with lime mortar
Location: Priory Farm, Thorndale Road, South Marston, Swindon SN3 4RX
Comments by: 18th
June 2014 (extended from 5th
Comments: No adverse comments, but it was noted that the address of the property was incorrect.
2. Planning Application Number: S/EIA/14/0966
Proposal: EIA Scoping Report for proposed development at land south of A420 and east and west of A419
(Eastern Villages), Swindon
Location: As above
Details: Online proposal – documents can be viewed via Public Access system – see email attached for
Comments by: 2nd
July 2014 to Sam Howell
Action: As Councillors have not been able to access the Public Access system, Clerk to try to get a hard copy
of the EIA Scoping Report and circulate.
Action: Clerk to also request information regarding S/EIA/14/0710 and S/EIA/14/0713 and request a time
extension for comments.
Grant of Planning Permission received to 12th
1. Planning Application Number: S/14/0563/RM
Proposal: Conversion of garage into habitable space and erection of detached garage.
Location: 29 Church Ground, South Marston, Swindon SN3 4FL
Parish Council comments: No 26 abuts the new development and may lose light at the front of their
property due to this proposal.
97/14 Item 9: 20mph Speed Limit Initiative – Update from Colin McEwen
See Report – June 2014 attached.
Following a discussion regarding the proposed location of signs, CM stated that he believed SBC would be speaking
to local residents as part of the roll-out of the plan, which is a later stage in the process. CM’s understanding of the
way forward is that SMPC would commission SBC to carry out the work and that it was unlikely that a formal
application would need to be made.
Action: CM to establish what the process is going forward with SBC.
CM confirmed that the estimated costs were in the region of £22k for the Pound Corner element with a further
£11k to extend it beyond the hotel. These estimated figures included school signage. All estimates have come from
SB asked for views of the individual Councillors:
TL agreed that the scheme should be progressed using Parish Council funds, but was concerned that, from
experience, projects such as these never come in cheaper than the estimate. TL asked if CM thought HHL would be
prepared to write a letter to confirm that they would fund the scheme. CM stated that he did not believe this could
be done for numerous reasons, but mainly because it could be seen as an inducement in advance of approval of
HHL’s planning application.
TL asked if the Parish Council would need to spend additional money in the planning stage in order to get firm
estimates. CM stated that he believed as long as the Parish Council were committed to the project, SBC may be
willing to do this work.
BT stated that SBC should be confident that the Parish Council were willing to go ahead with the project as funds
have already been allocated for it.
SBlair stated that she was very grateful for the emails from CM and SB regarding the background to the 20mph
zone. As she has children at the school, she believed it would be of great benefit so would be in favour of taking the
KM agreed in principle that the scheme should go ahead. He has already agreed to the £20k already allocated, and
would also be happy if a further £10k were to be added to the fund. KM confirmed he was in favour of opening a
dialogue with Swindon.
AF confirmed that the Parish Council should definitely progress the scheme as it was within the remit of SMPC to
safeguard our children. AF questioned one aspect of the traffic calming measures which had been raised by a
parishioner. The parishioner has visible cracks in her building and AF confirmed that when you were in the
parishioner’s home you could feel vibrations as traffic, particularly lorries, used the traffic calming measures which
were nearby. The house apparently has no foundations. AF had been told a petition had been put before the Parish
Council some time ago requesting the removal of the closest speed hump.
CM said he did not believe there was an actual petition, but there had been an exhibition where people had
commented. Residents were invited to have their own report commissioned as SBC consultants at the time did not
think there was a connection between the cracks in the houses and the installation of the traffic calming measures.
CM confirmed that he had examined the traffic calming measure in question and believed it to be more of a
platform than a speed hump. It may help when the speed of traffic using the platform is brought down to 20mph.
SB stated that there had been a number of houses which had suffered from cracks, which had started appearing
during 2007 and were put down to being weather related. It may be useful to look at the JMP report, which covers,
amongst other issues, traffic calming.
CM confirmed that he anticipates that SBC will be conferring with residents regarding the commissioning of a
SB proposed that CM continue to progress the 20mph zone with SBC and that SMPC agrees to go ahead with, at
least, the smaller scheme and possibly the larger scheme, dependent upon costs.
TL requested that the existing school sign should remain in place, and not be removed.
CM confirmed he would request this.
SB raised two issues:
Firstly, that at the AGM on the 3rd
June, Councillors were allocated to the various working groups. As the Parish
Council holds a large number of documents, it may be sensible to start an inventory on Google Drive, where they
would be available to be viewed by all.
Action: Clerk to start an online archive on Google Drive of important documents held by the Parish Council.
The second point is about village memories. SB felt some disquiet about information being picked up from people
who had been intimately involved in past discussions, but then only imparting elements of that information. SB felt
there was a need to check information to ensure it was correct.
98/14 Item 10: Village Expansion – Update from Sylvia Brown
See Report - June 2014:
Action: CM and SB to prepare a note updating Hartwells and the Hotel on the current positon following the EIP.
Action: SB to chase all three developers to progress a joint meeting to discuss the design of the village centre.
Action: SB and CM to draft a briefing note to local residents on the current positon for inclusion in the Tower & Tap.
99/14 Item 11: To discuss SMRA request for SMPC to grant planning permission for a container to be placed on the
SB stated SMRA had reconsidered their need for a further container on the recreation ground and decided there
was no requirement at present.
CM considered it would be best to buy a plan, rather than trying to use one of our less detailed plans if and when
there is any requirement for the Parish Council to grant itself planning permission in the future.
100/14 Item 12: To discuss the possibility of registering South Marston as a Neighbourhood Area, and to define the
SB stated she was not sure whether moving toward a Neighbourhood Plan would have the benefit now than it
would originally have had. Whilst a Neighbourhood Plan has more authority than an SPD, it must still be in line with
the Local Plan.
Action: Clerk to add this as an agenda item for the October Parish Council meeting.
101/14 Item 13: To discuss parishioner’s concerns regarding overgrown hedges on both sides of Chapel Lane at the Old
Vicarage Lane junction – Anne Featherstone
AF confirmed that the situation had not changed in that the Ranikhet hedge was still considerably overgrown. In
addition, the hedge on the opposite side of the road was also a cause for concern, along with other hedges around
the village. Additionally, there is a lovely stone at Pound Corner but hedge has now grown and obscured it.
SB stated that, because of the weather, the roadside hedges have just exploded and requested that the hedges at
the OAP bungalows are cut as a matter of urgency.
Action: Clerk to arrange for the hedges at the OAP bungalows to be cut by Stratton Garden Contractors.
CM suggested that a note be sent to property owners requesting that they cut their hedges, especially where road
signs are being obscured. Additionally, as overgrown hedges are a road safety issue, property details would be
passed on to the Borough Council for action if the Parish Council request is not actioned.
Action: Clerk to research what powers the Parish Council has regarding highways and hedges.
Action: Clerk to draft a flyer to be put through residents doors where it is felt the hedges need attention. To be
circulated to all Councillors for comment prior to distribution.
Action: Clerk to include an article in the T&T regarding overgrown hedges.
102/14 Item 14: To discuss new Councillor and Clerk training courses and availability
To be brought to the July Parish Council meeting.
Action: Clerk to add to agenda for July meeting.
103/14 Item 15: To discuss the disturbance created by non-villagers using the Parish car park next to the school late into
the night – Stephanie Blair
SBlair confirmed that the police now have new enforcement powers to move people on and PCSO Juliet Evans and
Community Beat Manager PC Marc Jackson have been successful following TL’s request for a patrol.
TL advised that residents should telephone the police non-emergency 101 number if/when there is a problem – the
police have confirmed they will respond.
SB had discussed the matter with the SMRA who had suggested removing the light bulb in the area and/or having a
timer installed on the light.
A general discussion took place with the Council agreeing to consider further action should the disturbances
recommence, for example: calling 101; putting up a sign regarding ball games in the cage; removing the lighting.
104/14 Item 16: To discuss the Tree Preservation Order documents received from SBC regarding the Eastern Villages
The Clerk confirmed that the Swindon Borough Council Tree Preservation Officer had agreed to provide a list of
existing Tree Preservation Orders.
The Council agreed that they are not objecting to any tree preservation orders on the Eastern Villages list.
Action: Clerk to write to SBC confirming there were no objections, but that the Parish Council may well ask for trees
to be added.
SB suggested Tree Preservation Orders to be passed to the Environmental Working Party when received for review.
105/14 Item 17: To discuss the Low Carbon LDO proposals received from SBC
The Council discussed if there were any additional areas that would be suitable for putting forward to SBC as
potential Low Carbon LDO sites. No potential sites were identified.
Action: Clerk to write to David Dewart, SBC confirming that SMPC remain interested in this strategy, but with the
Eastern Villages development still ongoing, it was thought inappropriate to propose any further sites at the current
106/14 Item 18: To discuss the response to the advert for a new Editor of the Tower and Tap village publication
The Clerk confirmed that no applications had been received for the Editorship of the Tower and Tap.
Action: Clerk to put forward options at the July Parish Council meeting as to alternative ways forward.
107/14 Item 19: Annual Review of Risk Assessment and Management document
SB confirmed she had made some amendments to the document ahead of the meeting.
Action: SB to email her proposed amendments to Councillors for comment.
Action: Clerk to add Annual Review of Risk Assessment and Management document to July agenda.
108/14 Item 20: To discuss the request from Tots & Toddlers for financial help with their costs
Clerk and AF have a meeting set up with Tots and Toddlers to discuss their requirements and financial position. The
Council agreed that, ideally, the following information would be useful: insurance status and proposals; cash
position; income; numbers of parents and children attending; what fundraising is proposed.
Action: Clerk to add the request from Tots and Toddlers for financial help with their costs to the July agenda.
109/14 Item 21: Reports from Working Parties and Representatives from Outside Bodies
Appendix I – SMRA Report June 2014 (SB)
Appendix II – Outside Working Group and External Meetings Report June 2014 (BT)
Appendix III – Outside Working Group Report – Oxford University June 2014 (SBlair)
Action: Clerk to request that Stratton Garden Contractors stop strimming around the base of the playing equipment
on the Recreation ground as it is damaging the wooden posts.
Neighbourhood Justice Panel
At the request of the Council, TL looked into the workings of the Neighbourhood Justice Panels. Briefly, they are a
system by which local communities can use restorative justice to address problem behaviour and low level
offending which affects communities, involving both the victim and the perpetrator. SMPC, as a local council, could
apply to have a case dealt with by the Panel, should there be a requirement.
TL confirmed that he is struggling to get volunteers to work on the Speedwatch project. He will be manning a stall
at the village fete on the 19th
July to try drum up some interest and get people involved.
The Parish Council agreed to put forward 3 bottles of wine for prizes on the stall to encourage interest.
TL asked if he would be able to claim the mileage for police meetings in Salisbury as some of his meetings are
funded by the police, but not all.
The Clerk confirmed that there was a section on the current SMPC Expenses form for Councillors to claim mileage
expenses incurred on Parish Council business.
TL confirmed he had identified a warning sign that could be placed at the entrances to the village (maybe 3 in total).
The Parish Council agreed to the signs in principle, and requested TL investigate costings. It may be that SBC
authorisation may be required as it is likely the signs would need to be placed on their posts.
BT confirmed he had met with Tom Blythe of the Forestry Commission (FC). The FC is changing the way it is
structured, and therefore less money will be available for projects in the future. Their wish is to form ‘friends of’
groups in communities and then support them with: management plans; possibly help them to raise money to buy
tools etc; assist with training and setting up. Mr Blythe confirmed that there was a contractor on site thinning out
trees and clearing the woods, which is likely to take between 12 and 18 months. Any timber that is produced will
be taken away and sold.
BT has already identified 5 people who would like to be involved, but recognises the difficulty in recruiting
volunteers – he is looking for ideas on how to set up and incentivise a working group to take this project on.
The Parish Council authorised BT to progress this project in whatever form it may take.
BT also stated that the FC had also met with Sam Howell of Swindon Borough Council. The FC are very concerned
about the growth of properties around the north west of the site, and are incredibly concerned that, if allowed, the
majority of people will drive in to the site. The FC already maintain the access road, which is a massive cost, and
ideally, would like to close this to the public and divert access to the Rowborough side, with a newly built car park
or land-crossing to the existing car park.
Action: Environment Working Group to monitor progress with Nightingale Wood, and also look at any issues with
Oaktree Corner and other sites within the Parish.
110/14 Item 22: Matters brought forward by or with consent of the Chairman
Meeting closed at 10.45pm
AGENDA ITEM - 9
20 MPH ZONE – JUNE 2014
At our last meeting it was agreed that I would carry this forward on the basis of the plan and costings (@£22,000 + £11,000 for
the extension past the Hotel).
I then emailed Suzanne Coles but did not get a substantive reply. I eventually spoke to Martin. We agreed that I should initially
write to HHL to get them to clarify their position prior to our discussing the options with SBC.
I did this and Andy Birch has replied as follows:
Hallam, TW and Hannick are all in agreement that the development would fund these works. I am not sure what has
been discussed in the past but I think the position will always have been that the works are funded on commencement
of the residential development. This is partly owing to cash flow as ultimately we might not get a planning permission
(!); and there is also the issue of being seen to 'buy a planning permission' before consent is granted.
Whilst I'm very pleased that the village are showing support for these proposals, your email suggests to me that you'd
like to get these works implemented asap. Could you advise what your thoughts are about timing please and there may
be a slight disconnect. Of course there might be ways towards an early implementation such as SMPC/SBC paying for
the works now and will be refunded on commencement of the residential development, but it all needs to be discussed.
In principle though, yes, we are still happy to pay for the traffic calming measures as part of the wider transport and
movement strategy for the village.
I have discussed this with Barry, who was keen that the PC make an early decision as to whether we press on with this out of
village funds in order to ensure early delivery or wait for developer finance to become available. However, what neither of us
would particularly want is to let the developers off the hook for part of the infrastructure payment that they would otherwise
have to make.
I have just spoken to Martin who has consulted the Legal team who confirm that we cannot have a legally binding agreement
with the developers prior to the grant of planning permission. Our options are:
1. Do it ourselves with a Gentleman’s Understanding with the developers that they will add £30,000 or whatever it costs to
their eventual s. 106 payment. There is an obvious risk here
2. Wait until after outline planning is granted, probably around February.
One point that Barry makes is that we should be aware of where maintenance costs will fall. The obvious desire is that they
should be with SBC, but as they are being increasingly stripped of cash, we may like to keep the option of doing repairs
ourselves. Perhaps Amanda could review our powers, please?
Whichever funding option is adopted the Highways Department may require formal public consultation or similar and Martin is
going to ask them to clarify this to see what could be done in the interim.
AGENDA ITEM 10: Village Expansion
SMPCEWG PROGRESS REPORT 12 JUNE 2014
The Swindon Borough Local Plan Enquiry
Last month’s PC report covered the early sessions at the enquiry. This report covers the remaining
sessions at which SMPC had speaking roles.
Infrastructure and Transport
Many comments, including SMPC’s input, concentrated on the role of the Infrastructure Delivery Plan (IDP)
which governs the requirements for, in particular, the strategic developments.
Queries were raised on whether the IDP ‘projects’ were classed as aspirational or essential, with the result
that SBC produced a list of ‘must have’ infrastructure which includes the White Hart roundabout, A420
improvements (including the Rowborough tunnel), the EV southern connector road to Commonhead and
the secondary school in the Eastern Villages District Centre.
I raised concerns that the piecemeal form of development could compromise the ability to provide the
eventual infrastructure required for the development. This was later agreed by SBC with a proposal to
amend the text attached to policy NC3 to note that this should be avoided. SBC confirmed that a cost
allocation study was underway which would determine exactly what contribution each development
proposal should make to the overall infrastructure requirements – this is one to watch with the current live
The Inspector’s request for a tighter indication of phasing was required for the Eastern Villages – as a
result, the indicative plan for the EV in the Local Plan will identify phase 1 as South
Marston/Rowborough/Great Stall (the mixed District Centre site immediately south of the A420) as
providing about 2700 houses in total – this is consistent with ‘about 1500’ at Rowborough and 500 at South
The Green Bridge did not specifically appear on the ‘showstopper’ list. SBC confirmed that there was a
transitional solution where the rapid transit scheme (now known as an ‘express bus link’) was routed
around the White Hart roundabout. The express bus route does now appear on the indicative map,
providing links from Rowborough to Swindon at two points – the Green Bridge/White Hart with a second at
Commonhead. There are no indications of whether the express route would then be along Oxford Road or
through Covingham, which was the original preferred route through the urban area. In addition, the revised
plan also shows the Rowborough tunnel and the Park and Ride site at the eastern edge of the EV.
SMPC also asked about provision of safe cycling/walking routes. SBC confirmed that it made sense to
make a further amendment to encourage internal connectivity.
The South Marston SPD indicative masterplan has been elevated to the Local Plan accompanying policy
RA3, which gives further weight to its contents. Minor amendments have been agreed with the Borough
Council and developers, so the hotel rear site is now included as housing and clarity is given that the plan
shows option for one road from Rowborough joining OVL.
SMPC secured significant movement on all the points we raised in our submission. More detailed reports
of the proceedings at the time were provided to Parish Councillors and the Expansion Working Group
members. Following consultation with these, I agreed on SMPC’s behalf to sign a further Statement of
Common Ground with the Borough Council and the developers that confirm all the changes above. If the
draft LP is approved by the inspector, it will now give a much firmer basis for refusal of planning
applications that cut across the plan’s aspirations.
The bad news is that, as a result of the discussions on overall housing numbers and deliverability, the
inspector is asking that provision is made for an early review of the plan – at least before the end of 2015.
We run the risk, therefore, of having to rehearse the arguments against additional housing allocations being
made in our area. Luckily, those arguments focused on infrastructure and non-coalescence which would
be equally valid in 2015. Furthermore, it strengthens the Borough’s opposition to the numbers being
increased at SM and Rowborough in line with the current HHL application and HHL may opt to accept the
lower number this time round.
Joint Meeting with Developers in South Marston Village expansion area
There has been no progress, other than sharing of plans, on the actions agreed at the joint meeting called
by SMPC with the three developers of land in South Marston on 28 April. The outstanding points are:
• The need for further exploration with the owner of land on Thornhill Road regarding the original road
access point in the SPD opposite the Keypoint site
• Inclusion of the section of track/bridleway adjacent to the hotel in HHL’s development boundary
• HHL to kick start discussion amongst participants on an overall Network Plan for the expanded village
• HHL to confirm in writing that their design consultants would be inviting the Parish Council to participate
in discussions on the design of the village centre.
Until further progress is made, particularly on the last point, there is little to be gained from holding further
expansion group meetings, providing there is adequate email communication between members as has
happened over the past two months. However, we should consider communication with local
residents. The two options are either to make a report now, or await the findings of the Inspector in
SMPC Expansion Working Group
AGENDA ITEM - 11
Sylvia tells me that your sleuthing has revealed that there is probably no need to apply for the usual formal planning
permission for the storage container to be located on the field.
I have to say that I was sure that this is the route used previously by SMPC to get the current green container there
too. Colin was also pretty certain that this was the method used, but there didn't seem to be any PC evidence to back
The phrase I remember from then was "Parish Council giving itself permission" but I'm sure there was a more formal
description! I also seem to remember that the dimensions were of relevance.
I believe that you need the container dimensions. Colin and I have measured it and it is 385cm long x 245 cm wide x
235 cm high
Roundly then, it is 4m x 2.5m x 2.5m I suppose.
I hope this is helpful. There is currently no container available unless we wish to pay around £1500, in which case they
are available from many sources on the internet. The price Lionel had was around £500, with delivery of about £200-
250 and done by Young European (from the village).
AGENDA ITEM - 11
PLAYING FIELD PLAN MAY 2014
Herewith a plan of the playing field as requested.
It is not ideal. It prints out at half A4 and does not have street names etc.
I would suggest that you check with Stuart but it may be that we should purchase a site (block) plan from one of the
providers recommended at the Planning Portal site.
Also, should we consult with local residents who will be across the road from it or do we take the view that it will be
AGENDA ITEM - 13
FOOTPATH FROM VILLAGE HALL TO SCHOOL – JUNE 2014
Hannah Jones / Ben Lovelock
I do not know the owner's name. I understand that the Parish Council have discussed this recently so I am copying
this to Amanda who may be able to give you some information.
Begin forwarded message:
From: Hannah Jones
Subject: Re: Footpath from Village Hall to School
Date: 11 June 2014 09:04:39 BST
Do you know the name of the owner of the bungalow next to school that used to be called
Over the Autumn and Winter last year Leo and I kept the brambles at bay so that the footpath was
The brambles and greenary is attacking us again.
I have spoken to the tenants and they say it is their landlords responsibility and that she doesn't
allow them to touch the greenery.
Odd, but this is what they said.
I know the owner from a business group I used to attend, but I can't remember her name.
Something that would be useful in tracking down her contact details!!!
Any help you can be would be much appreciated.
AGENDA ITEM - 13
OVERGROWN HEDGES – JUNE 2014
Re: Overgrown Hedges
I have been asked by Parishioners to raise this issue at the next meeting.
There are concerns about hedges on both sides of Chapel Lane at the Old Vicarage Road junction. I have been able
to reassure folk that discussions are ongoing however I do not know if action has been taken on The Rose Cottage
Colin mentioned the bungalow next to the school. To avoid this hedge pedestrians have to walk in the road. This
compromises safety as well as further complicating manoeuvres at the Chapel Lane junction.
As Colin said there may well be more hedges in the Parish causing concern. Can we please revisit at the next
Maybe a way forward is to action an audit by inviting comments from residents through T & T?
AGENDA ITEM - 17
EMAIL – LOW CARBON LDO UPDATE JUNE 2014
I am emailing to update you on the progress that has been made on the Low Carbon Local Development Order.
A Local Development Order automatically grants planning permission for the type of development specified in it (subject to
Conditions) thereby removing the need for a planning application to be made.
A key element of the Local Development Order will be the identification of sites for solar arrays / solar farms. The Council’s
intention for this project is to increase the coverage of solar arrays in Swindon Borough and to steer new solar schemes to the
most suitable locations.
Identifying Suitable Sites for Solar Arrays
A draft site assessment methodology for considering potential solar sites has been prepared. This draft methodology will now
be subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) which is being undertaken by external consultants. The consultants
have expertise in visual/ landscape impact assessments.
A key element of the methodology that we have asked the consultants to consider is how we can best ensure that the
construction phase of any solar development does not become a nuisance for local communities.
We are also seeking to put in place measures that will ensure that solar farm development delivers tangible local community
The Council will not be seeking to use the Local Development Order to identify sites at any of the following locations:
1. The AONB
2. Nationally Protected Areas such as SSSIs
3. Conservation Areas or Listed Buildings
4. Sites within Flood Risk Zone 3b
Subject to the conclusions of the Environmental Impact Assessment, sites impacting on other designated areas may also be
Support for Community/Parish Led Schemes
We are reliant on land owners and communities to submit sites that we can consider for inclusion in the Local Development
We would be particularly keen to use the Local Development Order to facilitate community-led solar schemes. Further
information on the potential benefits of community-led renewable energy schemes can be found in the “Community Energy
Strategy: People Powering Change” document (summary document attached).
We intend to formally launch a “call-for-sites” consultation later in the year. At this early stage in the project we would invite
Parish Councils to submit potential sites for an informal assessment.
If your Parish has a site that you would like us to consider at this stage, please email me a plan showing the site boundary and
the area within which it is proposed to accommodate the solar arrays / solar farm. We will then provide you with an initial view
as too whether the site is likely to be suitable for inclusion in the Local Development Order.
Should you require any further information on this project please let me know.
Agenda Item 17: Community Energy Strategy can be supplied upon request to SMPC Clerk
Agenda Item 19: Risk Assessment & Management Document can be supplied upon request to SMPC Clerk
APPENDIX I: SMRA Report
12 JUNE 2014
SMRA Committee meeting 11 June 2014
Hedges – Enquiries have been made for alternative quotes but few contractors have equipment of appropriate reach – decided
to stay with Phil Benson for contract shared between SMRA, PC (allotments) and the McEwens (church). Specification and
invoices will be separate, and joint specification document should outline recipient of each bill to avoid current confusion.
Last month’s meeting confirmed the continuation of the strimming contract within the recreation ground under the Stratton
Contractors general village grass cutting agreement. However, a recent external assessment of the play equipment noted that
the strimming was damaging play equipment with wooden bases. The school has agreed to monitor their contractor’s
requirement to strim reverse side of fence to the footpath.
SMPC is requested to amend their contract to include a statement that strimming should not take place in the area
surrounding wooden equipment supports.
Playground Inspection – Professional contractor has reviewed the annual play area report previously obtained and made an
inspection of the equipment. Arrangements put in hand for repair of the equipment. The tower and bridge is a cause for
concern, and unless there is potential for repair (unlikely) will need to be removed. Replacement would be considered, but will
be expensive, as will the reinstatement of the tarmac base which is required for the toddlers area. Arrangements in hand for the
regular checks by SMRA committee members, and their report will be considered at each SMRA meeting. The note put in Tower
& Tap about reporting defects has worked – at least one report has been made by a user.
Litter picking - Awaiting confirmation and equipment from PC Clerk.
PC to confirm arrangements for collection of bags prior to first litter pick.
War memorial – no interest received from request for information on local family military involvement.
Changing Rooms – Repairs in hand.
Village Hall – step ladder acquired to reach taller cupboards. Shed storage to be rearranged to enable youth club to comply
with their insurance agreement that equipment must not be accessible to other hall users. Quote for broadband and external
phone connection received which was judged reasonable – £24 installation, £24 per month. Agreement to go ahead once
download limits have been confirmed.
Fete Arrangements – all in hand, with three contingencies for weather. Arena layout will take account of potential noise
nuisance towards the village, and curfew imposed for Party in the Park.
Welcome display – three containers to be constructed for the price of two by Crocodile packaging – agreed to proceed once
final confirmation is received from the Borough Council
Nuisance in the car park – noted that PC is discussing this. Considered that street light in the car park is an attraction.
SMPC might consider, in addition to any other measures, switching off the street light in summer when it would not
significantly affect legitimate users
OUTSIDE WORKING GROUP & EXTERNAL MEETINGS REPORT JUNE 2014
Outside Working Group Report
Oak Tree Corner
Very little voluntary work taking place due to low numbers and availability of willing residents
St Julian’s Community Woodland
We are still waiting for WWT to erect a new Oak Notice board by the entrance from the car park area. No further update since
Following a resignation from a tenant with a large plot, we have split the plot into two and have let both. One plot to a new village
All plots are now let and rent paid.
The PC now manages 54 allotments.
The first allotment inspection by the Parish Clerk is scheduled for 23rd
May 2014. At present there are several tenants who have
not cultivated their plots to the level required in the new tenancy agreement issued in April 2014.
PC External meetings during May/June 2014
Bodleian Book Store
After a successful meeting with managers from Oxford University landscaping work has re-commenced. We await a copy of the
plans and timetable of works. A detailed report has been written by Stephanie Blair and Anne Featherstone.
Sevor Solar Farm at Nightingale Lane
A formal opening is being arranged for July or August 2014, further details to come from Eneco.
Road repairs to Nightingale Lane are due to take place in June/July 2014.
Community Benefits Fund-Eneco
Work on various projects is still in the planning stage.
EXTERNAL MEETING REPORT – OXFORD UNIVERSITY JUNE 2014
Notes from the meeting of
South Marston Parish Council with Oxford University
Date: Wednesday 4 June 2014
Venue: Book Storage Facility, South Marston
Subject: Planning Conditions for the Bodleian Library Book Storage Facility Planting
• South Marston Parish Council (PC): Barry Thunder, Anne Featherstone, Stephanie Blair
• Oxford University: Mike Wigg and Walter Sawyer
The meeting was convened at the request of Oxford University to assure the SMPC that funding had finally been secured and a
planting schedule and timeline was being produced in order to meet the original planning condition. Given the placement of the
PV panels Oxford University intends to submit an amendment to the original plan which will be submitted to SBC shortly and made
available to the PC.
• OU will provide hard dates for completion on both phases and that there is sufficient budget to achieve both without
• Furthermore, the PC requested OU to show revised plans to the PC prior to submission to SBC Planning Dept when they
will be asking for "Non material changes" to the planning conditions applied to the planning consent granted on 6th
August 2009. (Application number S/09/0724/RO. Condition 9)
In order to provide an enhancement to the original plan, the PC suggested that the overall project is phased in two parts. The
bund and tree planting to the front and side of the main building in the initial phase and then the internal areas landscaped and
planted to provide small animal habitat and outside seating areas. This was agreed by Oxford University.
Walter Sawyer indicated that there will be a phased approach to the completion of the planting on the bund and to the side of
the building. The preparation of the bund area will continue for a further week, and planting on the bund and side of the building
will commence in autumn 2014.
He outlined a draft planting scheme and members of the PC agreed that it sounded appropriate given that the site represents a
major entrance to the village and will mirror the rural nature of the village. The impressive landscape details (attached) indicate:
• 725 tons top soil giving an overall depth of 4 inches;
• 2000 tons of topsoil over the site;
• 72 trees and 3535 shrubs; and
• 150,000 bulbs.
1. Commitment by Oxford University to a further meeting and submission of amended planting plan to SMPC and SBC.
2. Engagement with the school for planting and possible tours. Stephanie Blair will follow up with Mr Maddison to
determine initial interest.
3. Communications and community engagement: Anne Featherstone will look for ways to engage Oxford University in
community activity and write a letter in T & T based on information from Walter Sawyer to inform villagers of the plan
and planting scheme. Mike Wigg will engage the Oxford University communications team to also write a letter for the T