Serving Little Aston, Shenstone, Stonnall, Shenstone Wood End, Lynn, Parish Council Office 25C Main Street Shenstone WS14 OLZ
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Approved minutes of Full Council meeting Tuesday April 12th, 2022, at 7.15pm Stonnall Community Centre.
188 Register of members in attendance.
Cllr David Thompson, Cllr Stuart Jones, Cllr Lesley Edgley, Cllr Rita Hancocks (Shenstone), Cllr Sheila Beilby (Chair),
Cllr Gail Nicholls (Stonnall), Cllr Kelly Harrison, Cllr Nick Smith (Little Aston) Shirley O’Mara (Clerk)
County Cllr David Smith. PCSO Andrea Horsnall.
Mr Bob Ingram. Mr Christopher Vickers.
189 Acceptance of apologies.
Cllr Nicky Macdonald, Cllr David Salter, Cllr Mick Cox, Cllr Val Neale & Cllr Neil Perry.
190 Public Participation.
Members of the public are invited to address Council for a maximum of 15 minutes.
Mr Bob Ingram wished to speak on three subjects. Firstly, he raised the recently circulated Stonnall independence petition and suggested that Council may wish to consider a public meeting.
County Cllr Smith interjected to say he believed there was not enough time left to arrange this & it would be best left until the second stage of consultation. Cllr Beilby stated that Council would be discussing its response to the petition and next steps later in the agenda.
Mr Ingram also raised the subject of recognising local people of distinction with blue heritage plaques and asked for Council to support the initiative. Cllr Thompson pointed out that there are other ways to do this such as in Heritage Trails. The Clerk will investigate.
Finally, Mr Ingram expressed his recent disappointment with Speedwatch and his view that Councils are not aware of the very high speeds cars travel at through the village & his belief that drivers who live outside the area are not pursued despite offending. He intends to invest in an app that records speeds and will share the data with Councils. PCSO Horsnall responded that only data from regulated cameras will be recognised by Staffs Police & that the speedwatch data has proven to be effective. She also stated that her understanding is offenders who live outside the area still get a letter but will double check this for Mr Ingram.
PCSO Horsnall reported that Shenstone Speedwatch will be off the ground soon with interest also in Shenstone Wood End. Also looking at Stonnall again led by Cllr Mick Cox.
Complaints of individuals photographing properties on the Birmingham Road have been investigated but shown to be without criminal intent.
Cllr Nicholls then shared the following post with PCSO Horsnall.
“There used to be regular visits to the coffee club on a Wednesday morning if anyone had any issues. However, this seems to have stopped now and the meetings are now in Shenstone. The last two meetings gave us very short notice. One was one days’ notice, and one was an hour if I remember. This is another reason why we should have our own Parish Council.”
PCSO responded to say that the Parish Council has nothing to do with police clinics. She is currently the only PCSO on our patch when there should be three. Once it was safe to arrange clinics after Covid she arranged in Shenstone to start with, and dates were published in January on noticeboards & on the Website. The alerts of one day & one hour are smart alerts reminders.
Regardless, no one turned up & no one turned up to the last actual clinic pre Covid in Stonnall. It may be that clinics are not an avenue that is working. However, Stonnall are not being marginalised and suggestions that a change of Council would change this situation is utter nonsense. The PCSOs are doing the best they can with the resources they have got. For immediate response to incidents please use the 101 number.
191 Declarations of interest.
Members should consider whether they should partake in any discussion or vote on matters on the agenda unless they have a dispensation: None
192 To accept and confirm minutes of the last Full Council meeting on Tuesday 8th March 2022
Proposed Cllr Cllr Nicholls, seconded Cllr Edgley. Approved & signed.
193 Clerk’s update on outstanding issues from last meeting:
The Clerk reported that Nigel, the new Lengthsman has made a really good start. Steve has now officially left but declined a send-off. His gift will be presented next week with Council’s thanks & best wishes.
194 To receive reports from District and County Councillors.
County Cllr Smith briefed on the following issues:
• The traffic survey is in progress now. Cllr Nicholls queried whether Wallheath Lane was included but Cllr Smith said he had not had this request. The Clerk confirmed it had been sent several months ago.
• Cllr Smith is optimistic that Walsall’s requirement of 3,000 homes at Shire Oak may not be called in but expressed disappointment that this Council did not submit an objection.
• Re housing development, there is still some danger of “an attack on Little Aston” from Birmingham
• Birmingham Road is being resurfaced with efforts to complete the work at the most convenient times.
• TPO Application 22/00539/TPO Shenstone Business Park. Council has no objection.
• An objection has been submitted re temporary closure of Lynn Lane.
• There is a meeting shortly to discuss the Birmingham Road traffic problems in Shenstone Wood End.
• Currently working on a complete traffic strategy for Little Aston.
• Cllr Smith has met with Cllr Perry to look at the outstanding Shenstone station parking issues following the traffic monitoring order (TMO) and feels that rather than look at the one or two minor issues a whole of Shenstone survey would be more beneficial, and money better spent. Cllr Edgley responded that she & Cllr Perry believed Cllr Smith, after the meeting, intended to consult his engineers & come back to them on the approach to reviewing the outstanding issues. Furthermore, a letter to residents in the affected area will be distributed asking to share their feedback, good or bad. Cllr Smith warned against this saying it could stir up a hornet’s nest. Cllr Edgley said there would be no commitment to an immediate or eventual resolution to issues raised but it demonstrates Council are listening. Cllr Thompson added that wider traffic issues will be addressed as part of the Neighbourhood Plan refresh and that SPC wanted to focus on the review of the TMO now in accordance with the plan agreed. Again, Cllr Smith warned of managing expectations.
Finally, Cllr Smith stated in advance of the review and due consideration that the individual problem parking issue at the New Rd end of Richard Cooper Road will not be pursued & that the original objection was not a reasonable complaint.
Cllr Edgley raised the subject of traffic notice emails. When they are received the subject header is not specific, including only a vague location rather than specifics: i.e., closure of Main Street from The Fox & Hounds to the cenotaph. Cllr Smith explained that the detail is in the link in the email. Cllr Edgley said she knew that, but could it not be made clearer in the heading itself. Cllr Smith said this was not possible as there are too many notices sent out.
Cllr Nicholls asked Cllr Smith for his views on the Stonnall independence petition. He said he had seen it and that it was produced by the community for the community and based on strong arguments. He felt that there was no issue it being headed “Shenstone Parish Council” as it was about Shenstone Parish Council despite the view that the header could be misleading. Also, he stated the letter distributed to residents explaining there was no actual Parish involvement was a waste of money & served only to increase signatures.
195 Cllr Nicholls asked Cllr Smith if he had an opinion on the anonymous postings on Stonnall Matters Facebook
Cllr Smith responded he “did not do Facebook”. He added he is a key consultee & will be making his submission to LDC soon.
Cllr Beilby asked Cllr Smith for an update on the transfer of lease to Stonnall Community Centre. Cllr Smith said things were progressing well with land & buildings transferring on May 3rd along with the £18,000 paid by Council. The new charity will then speak with St Peters School about charging for use of the car park. Cllr Thompson commented that this would be a significant issue for the school with Cllr Smith saying he did not believe it would be and that Council had not investigated this. Cllr Thompson reassured the meeting that it was an issue for Ian Turner lead officer in SCC and the Head of St Peters school both of whom had identified an entitlement of the school to park a specific number of cars during the school day. He had met them personally as part of Council’s research into future use of the SY&CC building and the school Head had also shared with the Parish Council their historic, written parking entitlement. Cllr Smith said this was all a matter for the new charity anyway.
Cllr Thompson moved on to ask why, having been a member of the Shire Oak Quarry sub committee for some years, he has not yet been invited to any meetings. Cllr Smith said there haven’t been any due to Covid.
Cllr Thompson then raised the subject of blocked drains in Shenstone. Cllr Smith said he will investigate if the Parish Council can supply the Amey report numbers- Clerk to pursue.
Finally, Cllr Thompson reiterated that Council have been meticulous in identifying early, the additional street traffic surveys required to complement the existing list in the traffic survey specification for all three villages and added that if there is a fragmented approach because the additional list has not been added to then the Council will need complete its own additional traffic survey as part of the Neighbourhood Plan refresh.
Balance of accounts at end of Financial Year: Nat west current account £905.00
Nat West Business Reserve £53,319.19. Nat West Liquidity Account ring fenced funds £112,413.53. Unity Bank £62,038.54
Current financial position & transactions for approval as of 12th April 2022.
Nat West Business Reserve £53,319.19. Nat West Liquidity Account ring fenced funds £112,413.53. (£25,000 ongoing professional & legal fees, £25,000 St Johns cemetery stone safety & fencing, £10,000 Lammas Land paths, £25,000 Neighbourhood plan revisions, £25,000 traffic calming across wards) Unity Bank £61,670.28. Link to financial transactions spreadsheet
Recommendations from Finance Legal Health & Safety Committee Meeting 22nd March 2022.
Lichfield District Council Grounds & Street Cleaning contract. RECOMMENDATION: Continue with the contract for 2022/23 but retender the following year. RESOLUTION: Unanimously approved. Proposed Cllr Jones, seconded Cllr Nicholls.
Tonks Tree Services at Little Aston Recreation Ground. RECOMMENDATION: Continue with the contract for 2022/23 but retender the following year- pending LARGA Committee approval. RESOLUTION: As LARGA approval received, unanimously approved. Proposed Cllr Nicholls, seconded Cllr Thompson.
St Johns Churchyard: Cllr Salter raised the issue of estate fencing for St Johns Churchyard. RECOMMENDATION: Obtain quotes for consideration at Full Council
Shenstone Community Library. RESOLUTION: Unanimously approved. Proposed Cllr Jones, seconded Cllr Thompson.
Approve planning applications received in last month and update on any objections/ developments – link to planning applications spreadsheet. The Fox & Hounds pergola is already under construction, but permission not yet received to noise attenuation. No objection to tree work on Shenstone Industrial Estate.
Amendments re planning app 21/00086 had been distributed to Council in advance of the meeting along with the applicants statement . It was agreed there would be a continued objection. RESOLUTION: unanimously approved continued objection.
Next meeting of the Neighbourhood, Planning & Property Committee Meeting Tuesday May 2nd Shenstone Library at 5.30pm.
197 Shenstone Playing Fields/Shenstone Village Hall: landlocked issue update.
Following a meeting between both parties the matter is still awaiting satisfactory resolution.
Conversations therefore have now been initiated/ongoing.
198 Traffic Management Order Review: next steps. Covered under item 194.
199 Traffic review: Shenstone Wood End.
In the absence of Cllr Salter, the Clerk asked for Councils approval & support in this investigation. RESOLUTION: Unanimously approved.
200 Staffs County Council Road notices via email.
Covered under item 194.
201 Consideration of Mark Ridgeway quote of for St Johns Cemetery graveyard gravestone project. £6500.00.
RESOLUTION: Unanimously approved. Proposed Cllr Thompson, seconded Cllr Edgley
202 Stonnall Community Centre: update on transfer of lease. Covered under item 194.
203 Stonnall Community Centre: payment of rates 2022/23.
Now that SPC are no longer leaseholders there is no longer the automatic requirement to refund rates or insurance payments. However, SPC have been asked to do so in this transitional year. RESOLUTION: Council will consider payment of both rates and insurance on submission of a Councillor led grant application & provision of supporting documentation.
204 RCEF Two Village Feasibility Study:
Bioregional Site visit & inception meeting Mon 28th March 2022 & next steps for Stonnall and Shenstone agreed.
Cllr Thompson reported that the meeting went extremely well with very useful site visits to Shenstone Pumping Station, the Industrial Estate a local farm and Stonnall recreation grounds. The Bioregional team are very encouraged so far.
The initial report will be shared with Council via Zoom at the Full Council meeting on June 14th. The following week will see the public meetings on Monday 20th & Tuesday 21st June in Shenstone & Stonnall.
205 Shenstone Drains clearance: issues across village.
Covered under item 194
206 Lammas Land Boundary survey.
Cllr Thompson briefed Council with an overview of the Friend Associates boundary investigation (attached). This will be discussed in much greater detail & next steps agreed at the next meeting of the Neighbourhood, Planning & Property Committee Meeting Tuesday May 2nd Shenstone Library at 5.30pm. Cllr Jones shared a request from the Lammas Land Committee for Council to consider quotes for legal representation into one specific boundary incursion. RESOLUTION: Unanimously approved. Clerk to pursue.
207 H.M. The Queen Jubilee 2022 celebrations. Consideration of latest grant requests.
RESOLUTION: Council unanimously approved £250 towards a street party in Lincoln Croft & £250.00 towards a street party in Church Rd.
208 Casual Vacancy.
The resignations of Cllr John Branch & Cllr Nicki Gobran were accepted.
In his absence the Clerk read the following for Cllr Salter as Chairman
“Thank you to Nicky & John for their valued contributions over the years that they have been members of SPC and for their resolve in representing their respective communities. I’m sure we all wish them well for the future and hope they still find time to take an active interest in local issues”. Council fully endorsed these sentiments.
209 May 2022: Elections. Consider position of Chair, Vice Chair & membership of committees & outside bodies
Council was reminded to consider involvement from May.
210 Lichfield District Council Community Governance Review
In response to the Stonnall independence petition the following documents were approved:
a) Letter to all Stonnall residents
b) Response to Lichfield District Council.