Bourtons Parish Council – January Minutes

Minutes of the meeting held at the Village Hall, Great Bourton on                                                               Tuesday January 10th  2017 at 19:30
Present : Cllr Mrs S E Lesczcynski (Chairman), Cllr Mrs S Upton (Vice Chairman), Cllrs A Johnson, C Upton, T Sowler,                              OCC Cllr G Reynolds (2000-2045), CDC DCllr K Atack (2050-2210)
Apologies : None
Declarations of Interest : Cllr A Johnson – part time volunteer driver for Cluster Care
Public Participation : No members of the public were in attendance
Minutes : The minutes of the previous meeting (November 2016) were received, APPROVED and signed.
Item Delegated to
Footpaths – Progress Report
Nothing to report from Footpath Warden this month.
The Clerk updated the Council regarding progress with getting the towpath section of footpath 16 repaired and made safe.  He believes that C&RT now accept that maintenance is their responsibility and an on-site meeting with their engineering team leader and local lengths man will be arranged soon. Clerk
Highways/Road defects – Progress Report
No further action from OCC regarding fixing of reported potholes. Information
Cllr Mrs S Upton has been in contact with Mr Maurice Sheehan of OCC and is arranging to meet with the Inspector on site in March when the next survey is scheduled, to ensure all potholes are identified and repairs made. Cllr Mrs Upton
The lack of response from OCC was brought to the attention of C Cllr G Reynolds who advised that this was a County wide problem.  It was AGREED that the Clerk should formally write regarding the matter to C Cllr G Reynolds asking that he raise the matter of lack of response with OCC. Clerk
Cllr Mrs S Upton reported that South View now required major attention as previous repairs are now failing and this will be shown to the Inspector in March. Cllr Mrs Upton
Village benches – Progress Report
No further work has been done on the benches.  An invoice is awaited from Paul Howells for the 1st bench which has been repaired.  Next bench for repair is on Foxden Way and it was AGREED that this should be resited following repair to a new position with a view. Information
Defribrillators – Progress Report
Great Bourton – inspection completed OK Information
Little Bourton – inspection completed OK. Power is still connected despite the pub being closed.  It was NOTED that the location may need to be changed if the pub is sold and does not reopen.  Consideration is being given to the potential to purchase the BT phone box [see below]. Information
Website development – Progress Report
No further work scheduled.  Cllr Mrs S Upton reported that several attempts to hack the site have been made from foreign countries and the situation is being monitored. Information
Garners Field development – Progress Report
The Clerk updated Council following a telephone call with Mr R Everest of Hayfield Homes [HH] who advised that a heavily revised application will be submitted to CDC at the end of the week, copies will be made available to us.  It was AGREED that the website will become the major communication channel for all matters relating to this development in the future. Information
Concern was expressed regarding the number of houses and the proposed timing of review by CDC Planning committee and these will be clarified with HH. Clerk
HH will be asked if they wish to make a further presentation to the village about the revised application. Clerk
Playgrounds & public spaces
Great Bourton : Cllr Inspection completed OK. No further damage reported to shelter. Information
Little Bourton : Cllr Inspection completed.  Dog bin has become detached from post and requires repair as bin has been taped up and is currently unusable.  A loose post holding the rope handrail on the mound has been noticed and this requires securing. Cllr C Upton
Chairman has contacted Mr Hall and he advises that 15 gates now made but not yet fitted.  Further work remains to be done to entrance surface.  He has been in contact with existing plot holders regarding moving of plants, tools etc. Information
The Clerk presented the November/December financial statement which was ACCEPTED. Information
Payments totalling £ 108.00 were approved : Information
National Allotments Society £66.00 – annual subscription
OALC £42.00 – end of year audit training
The Clerk presented the 2017/18 draft budget for further consideration.  This was discussed and the Chairman proposed and Cllr Mrs Upton seconded and it was RESOLVED that it be accepted and that an increase of £500 in the annual precept be APPROVED.  The Clerk will advise CDC. Clerk
Planning applications
There were no new planning applications for consideration. Information
The issue regarding the process for reviewing planning applications, included on the agenda has been deferred due to time pressures at this meeting and will be considered in February. Clerk
Request from Cluster Care for a donations towards their costs was considered and it was RESOLVED that a contribution of £100 would be made as in previous years. Clerk
Email received from Mr Probert advising of revised bus times required further verification in the light of new information and following this the details will be published on the new Village website and in the Broadsheet. Chairman
Email circulated by DCllr Atack regarding possible future County Connect bus service was reviewed.  See below for further details. Information
Letter received from Cllr P Wallace resigning from the Council was noted and ACCEPTED. Information
Removal of BT phone boxes.  The Chairman has been in contact with CDC and received details regarding the process for appealing the removal decision.  On investigation it would appear that neither box would meet the BT retention criteria.  It was RESOLVED that the Clerk would investigate the option to purchase the Little Bourton box for use as a Defibrillator point, to solve the problem of the location at the now closed pub. Clerk
New business
Councillor vacancy : only 1 application has been received from Mr D Walker.  This was discussed and Cllr Mrs S Upton proposed that he be Co-Opted, this was seconded by the Chairman.  it was RESOLVED that Mr Walker should be Co-Opted onto the Council with immediate effect. Information
Cllrs considered the updated Risk Management Assessment, and the Chairman asked that her changes be incorporated before the revised document was circulated again.  This will be reconsidered in February. Clerk
The Council has received a request from the Village Hall Management Committee for a replacement boiler as the current is is experiencing reliabilty problems due to its age.  This was discussed and it was RESOLVED that investigations about replacement and possible alternative heating solutions would be investigated.  A letter explaining this would be sent to the Committee. Clerk
A revised layout for the minutes to enable us to comply with best practice circulated by the Clerk was considered.  Cllr Mrs Upton proposed and the Chairman seconded that this should be adopted for a trial period. Information
Two quotes for work on trees in the Churchyard have been received and a third is awaited.  All are from experienced contractors whose work is known to the Council.   A cost comparison matrix will be prepared and circulated.  It was RESOLVED that the quote demonstrating the best price and availability of service will be accepted. Cllr Mrs Upton
A quote for trimming the Burial Ground hedges has been requested from Mr Parry and this is awaited.  Subect to it being in line with previous years’ costs it was RESOLVED that this would be accepted. Cllr Mrs Upton
District Councillors report
DCllr Atack reported that CDC had confirmed that their finances were in good order and that they would not be increasing Council tax in the coming year.
Date of next meeting : Tuesday February 7th at 7.30pm in the Village Hall
Meeting closed at  22.10hrs
Minutes drafted by the Clerk on 12/01/17

Minutes of the meeting of Bourtons Parish Council

Held at the Village Hall, Great Bourton on Tuesday 1st November 2016

The meeting opened at 7.30pm.

  1. Present: S E Leszczynski [Chairman] Cllrs Mrs S Upton [Vice Chairman], A Johnson, C Upton, T Sowler.

In attendance: District Cllr K Atack, and S Bowen [Parish Clerk]  

Apologies: Cllr. P Wallace – business commitments

  1. Declarations of Interest: None.
  2. Attendance: No members of the public were present.
  3. Minutes: The minutes of the October 2016 meeting were received and APPROVED.
  4. Progress reports:
  5. Footpaths:
  6. The request from Mr Aries regarding replacement of the stile with a kissing gate is acceptable to OCC and has been confirmed by email. This has been confirmed to Mr Aries.
  7. The condition of the footpath along the Oxford Canal towpath has been reported to C&RT and the Clerk is attending the next regional meeting on November 8th and will discuss it with the appropriate person and report back.
  • The OCC footpath officer will contact Mr Pearson at Peewit Farm regarding the condition of the temporary diversionary footpath on his land, which is now frequented by cattle feeding on the line of the path.
  1. Road Defects:

Potholes along Foxden Way that were missed during last months’ survey now appear to have been marked up but repair is still awaited.  Cllr. Mrs Upton will chase them up.

  1. Residents are reminded that they should continue to report any potholes or road damage to Oxfordshire County Council via their website, which can be found at:, as the severe budget issues at OCC are restricting their repair work and this is the best way of getting a response.

  1. The damaged drain cover reported outside Parnassus in Main Street was reported to Thames Water who have advised it is not their responsibility. Cllr. Mrs Upton will follow up with OCC Highways for urgent action.
  • The footpath alongside South View is partially blocked by an overgrown hedge and Cllr. Mrs Upton will discuss this further with the landowner.

c]            Village benches:

  1. i) The contractor repairing the village benches has now completed the first repair, and has reinstalled it in the Little Bourton playground.  The repair is most satisfactory and a repair cost of £100 per bench plus parts has been agreed.  The next bench to be repaired will the one on Foxden Way, and relocation to a more suitable position will also be considered.

d]            Defibrillators:

  1. i) Inspections of both machines have been completed and logbooks updated satisfactorily.

ii]            The closure of The Plough Public House in Little Bourton may cause the electricity supply to be cut off.  The Council is reviewing other locations for the unit, residents are asked to suggest any suitable places.

  1. e) Website Development:
  2. i) Cllr. Mrs S Upton was delighted to report that the new website had been launched at the end of October ahead of the deadline. Residents are encouraged to log onto the site at and inspect the site for themselves.

ii]            Finishing touches are continuing and the website will become the focus for the distribution of urgent and important news that affects our villages. A subscription service will follow and residents who register will receive email notification of new additions as they are posted.

iii]           The final invoice for £855 was presented and it was AGREED that this should be paid.

  1. e) Garners Field Development:

i]             The Hayfield Homes presentation of their plans for the development at the Village Hall was attended by more than 70 people and a small number of feedback forms have been returned.

ii]            Plans have been submitted to CDC and the application is view-able on the planning portal reference 16/01979/F.

iii]           The CDC Planning Officer has advised that it is intended to be presented to the Planning committee at the December meeting.

iv]           Survey forms have been distributed to every household in The Bourtons and residents are encouraged to return their forms whether in support of or objecting to the development so that the Council can form a considered view of village opinion, prior to submitting their response.

v]            A lengthy discussion between Cllrs. took place and it was DECIDED that a further meeting would be required to develop a representative response.

  1. Playgrounds

Councillor’s regular monthly inspections have been carried out:

a]            Little Bourton: It was reported that the litter problem was much less this months and users are requested to continue to use the rubbish bins accordingly.

b]           Great Bourton: The litter problem here was significant and required considerable cleaning up, it would appear from the type of litter that this occurred around Halloween.  More serious was the arson attempt on the shelter which has caused some considerable damage, repairs will be investigated.

c]            The Clerk has been in contact with CDC regarding the transfer of the maintenance money from the S106 contribution by the Avoncroft developer for the Little Bourton playground development and a letter has been sent formally requesting this.

  1. Allotments

a]            Unfortunately final works remain incomplete at the Claridges Piece site so legal transfer of the site to the Council has been further delayed.

b]            A meeting of all tenants was held in the Church on October 26th and deposits and rents were gratefully received from those present.  These monies will not be banked until legal completion is concluded.

c]            Tenants agreed to the formation of a Tenants Committee and tenants Linda Matti, Simon Pepper and Clare Curnow volunteered to serve on the initial committee.

d]            The question of mowing of the open space surrounding the plots was discussed and rather than tenants paying an additional fee to cover this it was agreed that the rent would be increased to £20 per annum.

  1. Finance
  2. Twelve payments totalling £14731.01 were APPROVED. Those over £100 are listed below :

Prysebros Ltd                     Weed treatment                                                              £276.00

Mrs S Upton                       Reimbursement of Website hosting                            £252.00

Bourton News                    Contribution to Broadsheet                                         £100.00

CDC                                      Dog bin emptying – Summer period                       £768.77

K C Graphics Ltd               Web site set up, design and construction             £1026.00

Came & Company             Annual insurance premium                                      £1220.64

Mr George Ennis               Burial Warden half year fee                                         £125.00

Mr David Upton                Churchyard mowing half year fee                               £312.50

Mr John Hicks                   Internal auditor half year fee                                      £125.00

  1. Difficulties continue in arranging electronic banking arrangements with our Bankers, Cllr. Mrs Upton and the Clerk have a meeting with Barclays to discuss and resolve.
  2. The Clerk presented the first draft of the 2017/18 budget for consideration and it was AGREED that a Finance sub committee comprising Cllrs. Mrs Leszczynski, Mrs S Upton and A Johnson, would meet separately to review and report back to the next Council meeting prior to setting the Precept by the required date in January.
  3. Planning Applications.

a]            No new applications have been received.

16/01752/F          Mrs D Chism The Manor Barn, Manor Road GB – New garden shelter GRANTED.

16/01979/F         Garners Field development. Expected to be discussed at December planning committee

16/01751/F         Mr & Mrs Osborne, Corner House, School Lane.  2 storey side extension and single storey rear extension.  Granted.

  1. Correspondence

a]            A letter from Mr & Mrs Damen regarding the new Allotments Tenancy Agreement was reviewed and a reply sent by the Clerk answering the points raised, has been acknowledged.

b]         Horton Hospital. Letter from ‘Keep the Horton General’

c]            A letter has been received from Mr Cannon and this will be circulated to Councillors for their comments, before a reply is drafted.

  1. New Business

a]            Update on action regarding potential loss of BT phone boxes in GB & LB

  1. District Councillor Report

a]            Dist. Cllr. Atack provided an update on the New Homes bonus and potential changes due to Government spending rules.

Date of next meetingTuesday January 10th 2017 at 7.30 pm.

The meeting closed at 9.40 pm.

Minutes drafted by Parish Clerk on November 3rd  2016






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