Minutes of the Sibford Gower and Burdrop Parish Council Meeting held in Sibford Gower Endowed Primary School on 1st October 2014

Parish Cllrs Peter Abbott, Mrs Susan Bannister, Oswyn Murray (Chairman), Alan Parkin and Mrs Gilian Soden, County and District Councillor George Reynolds, eleven Local Residents and the Clerk (Peter Hardman).

It was proposed by Cllr Parkin and seconded by Cllr Bannister that the Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 9th June 2014 be approved as a correct record and they  were then signed by the Chairman.
Matters Arising: Matters arising were dealt with as they occurred in the various agenda items.

Bishop Blaize
It was reported that at the Magistrates Court Hearing on 29th September 2014 Mr and Mrs Noquet were found guilty of the criminal charge of failing to comply with a lawful requirement to cease residence of the Bishop Blaize except as an ancillary to its use as a public house. They were given a conditional discharge for twelve months in recognition of their previous good character. They were ordered to pay prosecution costs of £17,000 at the rate of £200 a month.

It was agreed that, whilst the Parish Council should not get involved directly in any way to purchase the property (let alone run it as a pub), it would be ready to support any village initiative to buy the pub, including convening a public meeting when plans come forward, and providing backing and advice.

Review of Councillors’ Interests. Risk Assessment and Assets 
There have been no changes in these since the previous review on 14th October 2013.

Audit for the year ended 31st March 2014
Notice has been received from the external auditor, BDO LLP that the audit was completed on 9th July 2014. 

Financial Matters
Proposed by Cllr Soden and seconded by Cllr Parkin approval was given to the payments made since the previous PC Meeting (See Appx A)

Planning Matters
Since the previous Meeting, the planning applications set out in Appx B had been considered: and approved. Decisions received  since the previous Meeting are also as set out in Appendix B.

Churchyard & Parish Council Burial Ground
It had been reported that some graves in the Churchyard had been mowed over by the contractors where the markings of such graves are not particularly evident but where plants had been installed.  The situation must be resolved and the Clerk will take matters forward including speaking with the contractors.

Bonds End Lane: Dialogue is currently taking place with Oxfordshire Highways about the problem of goods vehicles entering Bonds End Lane (the postcode covers quite a large area in that part of the village with the consequent result for sat-nav users) and then having great difficulty in turning round to exit. Some walls have been damaged in the process. Thought is being given to an additional sign also giving an indication of the width of the lane.

Main Street: Oxfordshire Highways is to be reminded that keep clear signs are to be marked on the road adjacent to the telephone box in an attempt to prevent cars being parked and causing considerable problems when farm vehicles and milk lorries attempt to pass.

Temple Mill:  Temple Mill is in the Parish of Sibford Ferris and Sibford Ferris Council has advised that the general feeling is that the traffic problems there are not something that can be easily remedied with signs, as they are mostly caused by uncooperative motorists. It was also felt that it is desirable to keep road signs to a minimum. It was, therefore, decided not to take the matter further.


Following a request from a local resident that brambles and nettles be removed from the footpath which goes from Colony Road to the side of the school in Main Street, Cllr Bannister carried out the work and the Parish Council thanks her for and very much appreciates what she has done.

Any other business

Village Pond: A report was received from Glennis Hardman who was unable to attend the Meeting  saying that the pond had been cleared of blanket weed three times during August and September. A final session will need to take place in early December when Ivor Hopkyns and she will have recovered from their hip replacement operations.

A notice has been erected at the pond by Oxfordshire County Council advertising the fact that the Parish Council has applied to have the pond registered as a Village Green. The notice invites  any comments, objections or representations to be made to the Rights of Way Officer, Oxfordshire County Council.

Hedge in front of 1 – 6 Pound Lane:  Pruning is required but the matter of responsibility for it is currently the subject of dispute between the land owners (Sanctuary Housing) and the County Council. Matters remain to be resolved.

Defibrillator: The Chairman is to attend the next Ferris PC Meeting on 24th November when the subject will be discussed.

Miriam Tebbs’ Land: This will be the subject of discussion at the next Annual Parish Meeting. Extremely little usage is made of it and the thoughts of the Parish Council that maybe allotments could be a feature has proved not to be so as no public interest was shown.

Public Participation 

Matters raised by local residents:
1. The use of the play area at the Village Hall by unaccompanied children causes concern. This is not allowed and a notice is displayed to that effect.

2. With regard to the cleaning of road signs in which regard the |County Council, because of financial constraints, is asking that local residents may care to carry out the work provided that suitable safety measures are taken. This will be on the agenda of the next Annual Parish Meeting.
3.  The poor state of the roads, with special reference made to Bonds End Lane. The Clerk will refer the matter to Oxfordshire Highways.

Date of Next Meeting

The next Meeting will be on Wednesday, 7th January 2015 starting at 8pm in the Staff Room of the Primary School.

There being no further business to discuss, the Chairman thanked all present for attending and closed the Meeting at 8.55pm.

Details of the appendices are available from the Clerk on request (780391)