2004-07-12


12th July 2004

PRESENT: Mr Ian Reynolds chairman; Mr Steve Smowton vice chair; Mr Peter Skilbeck; Mr Bill Reader; Mr Brian Forster; Ms Judy Wanless; Mrs Carole Wainwwight; Liz Casling Selby District Councillor

APOLOGIES: Mr John Reader

Minutes of last meeting read and approved

MATTERS ARISING:

Parish Council Website - This should be on line with 11th August to correspond with Broadband being available in the village.

Village Hall Car Park - Steve Smowton had received a letter from Ms Fiona Pierce, Public Authorities UoE - HM Customs & Excise, confirming that the VAT on the cost of the car park re surfacing work is not refundable. On the next VAT return to be made by EPC the amount will have to be refunded. Steve Smowton - reported that the insurance policy already covers damage to the existing playground equipment. The limit for public liability is £5 million . The village green is certainly covered but there is no reference to the playing field. The Clerk is to make further inquiries about this.

Selby By-Pass - Councillor Casling reported that the mechanism on the swing bridge over the River Ouse has failed twice and is an ongoing problem. She also commented that if the road is de-trunked then the bridge will come under County Council control and therefore the costs will be borne by the local rate payers. SDC's plans for regeneration of the Town Centre are being delayed because heavy traffic is having to be diverted through the town centre when the swing bridge fails. She also has details of the costs of opening/closing the bridge and will provide these as interest to the Parish Council. It is noted that there is increased traffic on the A19 through Escrick since the bypass opened.

Environment Agency/Bridge Dyke - Chairman reported that he understood that if the Dyke becomes a main river under the control of the Environment Agency that the maintenance would continue to be carried out as previously by the internal Drainage Board. We should therefore, see no difference in the standard of maintenance. Hedge Trimming - It was noted that the Ouse & Derwent Drainage Board have trimmed the hedge in Carr Lane but not the bottom of the same where there are nettles and weeds extending over the foot path. There have been complaints particularly by mothers with push chairs. The Chairman is to contact Mr Saddler, the owner of the bank in question and ask him if he will trim back the nettles.

Skipwith Road Sign - The sign is missing and it was presumed that as Councillor Casling has contacted SDC about this that they have taken it away for repairs.

Gas House Wood - The Chairman has had a word with Charles Forbes Adam about the cycling problem. He will deal with it appropriately but probably by erecting additional notices. The concern is the informal "ramps" being erected by children rather than cycling through it.

Street Light - Escrick Park Gardens - It was noted that this had been repaired.

Escrick Playing Field Association - The meeting was declared an Open Meeting at this point. Amanda Ingledew, chair of EPFA and Fiona Ellwood, vice chair attended, plus two other members of the public. Steve Smowton has made inquiries about the insurance and as noted above there is already damage cover in respect of playground equipment on the present policy for which the premium amounts to £71. There would be an increase of about £200 per annum in respect of the proposed new equipment. The soft surface can also be covered but with a limit of £2,500 per claim. This type of surface is preferred by insurance companies as it is proven to be at less risk and can only be damaged by fire. Steve Smowton is to inquire from HMCE about the feasibility of VAT being refunded if EFPA became part of EPC. It appears that if EPC were prepared to take the lease, that any grant money could come direct to EPC and in all probability that would not be an issue. A discussion centered upon whether the EPFA as a charity could hand over money to the Parish Council for the latter to spend. It was doubted that this would be the case and it may therefore be necessary for EPFA to spend the money (including VAT). It was confirmed that a report following the previous meeting was placed in the Parish Council but few comments had been received by members regarding the proposal of EPC to take over EPFA and its liabilities. It appears that SDC will not carry out the necessary weekly inspections once the equipment is installed and that that must be done by Parish Council representatives. Bill Reader informed the meeting that John Reader has shown a willingness in this regard and it was also agreed that other EPC members could train to carry out the inspection as well to provide backup. Amanda Ingledew was still in correspondence with playground suppliers and some had indicated that they would undertake the training of inspectors as part of package of supplying the same. Mr Terry Wilson confirmed that he would prefer to see the playing field equipment on the village green. This was also a view that had been expressed to the chairman who held a similar view. There appears to be nothing in the lease that would prevent this. Mr Wilson's view that it would be much safer as it was within sight of a number of houses. It was thought that the EPC precept would rise by £1,500 per annum which would be an increase on the rates of approximately £2.74 per annum on a Band D property. Amanda Ingledew replied that many sites have been considered and rejected because of location, safety features, EU regulations etc and in particular it is thought that the pond on the village green would need to be surrounded by a 2 metre high fence to prevent access to the same by children. Mr Wilson's view was that children had free and unrestricted access to the village pond already and that the children likely to use the playground equipment would be supervised in any event. Other members thought that the village green would lose its character and not be available for some of the uses to which it is put and that there would be objections from properties that overlook the same. The point was made that the village green was however for the use of the entire village rather than just for the parties that overlook it. It was agreed following a discussion and a vote that the parish council should take over the EPFA and that the equipment should be sited on the existing playing field following a proposal by Brian Forster seconded by Steve Smowton. It was agreed that the chairman would speak to Charles Forbes Adam with a view to having the lease to EPC formalised. The Clerk is to ask Cornhill Insurance to put in writing that the existing cover does include the playing field.

End of Open Meeting

ACCOUNTS

The receipts and balances were noted. It was also agreed to pay certain accounts including room hire and reimbursement of expenditure.

PLANNING APPLICATIONS

8/10/208/PA - two storey extension to the rear of 17 Carrs Meadow is to be a single storey extension. There are no objections by EPC subject to confirmation of correct dimensions.

8/10/206/PA - single storey extension at Chequer Hall Farm Wheldrake Lane Escrick - planning permission has been granted by SDC.

8/10/200/PA - two storey rear extension of Briar Cottage 39 Main Street Escrick - this is a resubmission. It was discussed at length and EPC are to oppose the application because of the proposed height of the extension, mass, obtrusiveness, impact on the conservation area and the loss of light to adjoining property.

Hollicarrs Caravan Site - Brian Forster reported potential contraventions of the existing planning consent. These relate to access to the site and other matters. It had been noted on the website that there are 60 caravans and 40 chalets advertised whereas only 100 caravans had been given consent originally. There was some discussion as to whether the chalets were permanent structures or wood-clad caravans. Brian Forster to contact Selby District Planning Department stating that EPC are disappointed that there appear to be contraventions of the planning permission with particular regard to conditions 13 and 14.

ANY OTHER BUSINESS

  1. A member of the public attended the meeting to report that she had walked through Queen Margaret School and was challenged in an intimidating manner by the Head Master. Mr Terry Wilson, previous chair of EPC produced the article he had printed in the parish magazine earlier this year which said that parishioners who had always used this road were entitled to walk through QM grounds. Bill Reader informed the Council that the road through QM is owned by the estate and it had been a right of way for the public for many years. Clarification was to be sought by the chairman from Charles Forbes Adam. Councillor Casing requested a letter be sent to QM about today's incident.
  2. Peter Skilbeck reported that Escrick entry in the York Dragon Boat Race on Sunday had done well.
  3. Steve Smowton had attended the village green Committee meeting and informed them that as a sub-Committee of EPC their meetings should be made public and that they should produce a full set of accounts. VAT can be reclaimed against their expenditures. Helen Pentith, is to keep EPC clerk informed of future meetings.
  4. The Chairman requested that the Clerk be connected to BT Broadband and that the Parish Council should pay the subscription which would amount to £190 per annum. The meeting disagreed and said that this should be reviewed later.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

Monday 6th September 2004 in Escrick & Deighton Club.