Ruscombe Parish Council
Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council
Held in the William Penn Room, Loddon Hall, Twyford
On Wednesday 3rd April 2019 at 7:30pm
Councillors Present: Mr J May, Mrs C Bulman and Mr C Bell
Twyford Parish Councillor: Mrs L Jarvis
Public in attendance: Mr J Jarvis
Clerk in attendance: Mrs R Reid
Mr May opened the meeting at 7:30pm.
39/19 Apologies for absence: Mrs K Robson, Mr G Howe, Mr P Cassidy, Mr A Wrigley and Mr M Evans.
40/19 Declaration of Interests: Mr Bell and Mr May declared that they are directors of the Campaign to Protect Rural Wokingham (CPRW).
41/19 Minutes: Minutes from 6th March 2019 circulated. Mr Bell updated that unfortunately the owner of the house with the overgrown garden in Milton Way has died intestate. Approval of minutes proposed by Mr Bell, seconded by Mrs Bulman, approved unanimously and signed by Mr May.
42/19 Public Forum: Mr J Jarvis explained that Twyford needs a new library, 20% of its users are from Ruscombe. Mr Jarvis explained the building plans to use the old Polehampton boys school, future use of the building (Library, café, and keep fit class). This is a costly project and Mr Jarvis is asking RPC to consider supporting the project by £5,000 a year for 10 years, this would support the repayment of the loans required to complete the project. Other local parishes are also being asked. Mr May and Mrs Bulman have asked if Mr Jarvis would talk at RPC’s Annual Parish Meeting on the 8th May 2019, RPC hope to have more residents than last year and it would be useful for them to understand the Library project, Mr Jarvis has kindly agreed.
43/19 Update from Twyford Parish Councillor: Mrs Jarvis reported that Twyford’s Neighbourhood plan survey is out to resident and lots of responses are coming back. TPC hosted a meet your councillor session they had residents attend to talk about parking in Bryon Road and Wessex Way, it is suspected people park there to use the train station and this is making parking for the residents of those roads difficult. TPC have got councillor elections in May, voting cards will be delivered to residents in case and councillor re-election is contested. There has been illegal activity reported in the disused public toilets in Twyford. TPC had a great litter pick, approximately 50 people attended.
44/19 Polehampton Swimming Pool: Mrs Jarvis has written to RPC asking that RPC consider using some CIL money to support the Polehampton Swimming Pool, they require a lot of new equipment to cope with the demand of use on the pool. They have also invested in new online registration and card payment options to stay up to date and accessible.
45/19 Update from Wokingham Borough Councillors: No one in attendance but Mr Bell updated that it is expected that Grazely will be used for large housing development and with that development and the other new houses already built or areas with planning permission it will meet the numbers of housing WBC needed to provide until 2036. This reduces the pressure on Ruscombe but RPC and Neighbourhood Plan team will continue with the Neighbourhood Plan.
46/19 Wokingham Borough Landscape Character Assessment: This is a 365 page document and questionnaire. Mr May feels it is especially important RPC do give a comprehensive response, it will feed into the WBC Local Plan. Mr May will talk with Mr Halsall CPRW about whether the completion of the questionnaire can be done by Mr Andy Meader, paid for by the monthly retainer fee from CPRW.
47/19 Cow field: Mr May has shared aerial photos of the location of the cow feeding station and resident’s house. The resident complains of an awful smell and fly problem, his request is that the feeding station is moved further into the field. Mr May will write to the farm owner to request the feeding station is moved further into the field or further along the fence.
48/19 Southbury Lane: Over the bridge on the right-hand side is being used as a service area – storage area of containers, cars and other industrial equipment. This is within Ruscombe conservation area, next to a grade II listed bridge, RPC and local residents do not feel this is suitable use of the land. Mrs Reid will find out the local liaison for the electrification of the train lines. The grass verges along the bridge have been ruined from the bridge works and not replaced.
49/19 CPRW contributions 2019: These are not required yet, but they may be in the coming months. RPC have not done a specific budget for CPRW this year (2019-2020) but the contingency budget was doubled to provisionally provide for CPRW if required.
50/19 CCB Loneliness Project: They have been awarded a grant that covers some of the costs of this project. Mrs Reid will ask them how much more money they would require before the research could begin. At this stage RPC do not commit to financial support.
51/19 CIL: RPC have received £46,656.28 so far, Mrs Reid believes there is another £13,000 coming very soon and a possible £9,000 in the future, beyond that there isn’t expected to be anymore future CIL coming in. To date RPC have paid £840 for the topographical survey on Pennfields and £3,000 for Loddon Hall CCTV.
Library RPC agree in principle that the library is a good worthy cause of CIL but with so few councillors in attendance it could not be agreed by how much RPC would contribute.
Polehampton Swimming Pool RPC agree in principle. Mrs Reid will request for the percentage of users that are from Ruscombe before deciding how much to donate.
Pennfields parking Mr Bell will talk to Mr Howe about WBC contributing to the project because they have taken away parking in Middlefields to build 2 new houses. Mrs Reid has displayed drawings and approximate costs onto the noticeboards, 1 person has responded to support the more expensive option of 12 spaces, he is not a resident of the Pennfields area but is fairly local to the area.
Mrs Reid reported that Angie Gibson CIL manager is retiring, WBC have said they will replace her but it is not known when someone new is expected to start. This might cause a delay will implementing CIL projects if we’re using WBC contractors.
Church fences: RPC are disappointed to read the church wardens talking of RPC negatively in a recent AGM report however RPC have previously agreed to financially support the Church fence upgrade project and since RPC have now been able to review the invoices sent by the church, RPC will pay £3,000 from CIL money. This is a one off payment.
Church Fences £3,000 cheque #386
Econet (Pond clearing) £60 cheque #384
Edge IT systems (Finance service) £242.40 Cheque #385
Keep Mobile Grant £150 Cheque #387
Ruth Reid wages & expenses £859.90 cheque #388
Nest £78.68 direct debit
Mrs Reid pay date will now move from first Wednesday of the month to the 7th of every month. This will avoid having two pay dates in the same tax period and decrease the amount of national insurance contributions Mrs Reid and RPC would be required to pay. RPC and Mrs Reid have had to make NI payment (£97.27) since the last RPC meeting, agreed on email. Mrs Reid expects there will be a small NI payment for April as well but cannot say how much until financial year is ended in PAYE basic tools. Mrs Reid will raise this cheque and get signatories in April. Mrs Reid’s 50 hour of annual leave will be prorated to 4 hours a month, worked as overtime.
Mr May and Mrs Reid have checked and signed the bank reconciliation.
All payments proposed by Mr May and seconded by Mrs Bulman, approved unanimously.
53/19 Planning applications:
190677 Ruscombe Business Park parking RPC make no comment but they do support the mitigation suggestions of installing wildlife habitat i.e. bat boxes.
54/19 Annual Parish Meeting: It will be on the 8th may in Twyford Room of Loddon Hall, speakers Mr Halsall for waste and Mr Jarvis for the Library.
55/19 Annual Audit: Internal audit booked with Mr Cedric Gilson on Monday 29th April. Mrs Reid will contact LittleJohn PKF, the external auditors, to check what extra we need to do because of higher precept.
56/19 Neighbourhood Plan: Survey deadline has closed and surveys passed to Anne Hasted who will analyse the data for us. Mr Bell has spoken to Maureen Hunt Councillor from Hurley and the Waltham’s, their neighbourhood plan is complete and they are willing to share Environmental screening information with us.
57/19 Correspondence: Mrs Reid shared a letter from The Piggot Senior School informing RPC that they are in consultation to become a multi academy trust.
Mr May closed the meeting at 10:06pm.