Report of Sibford Gower Annual Parish Meeting held in the hall of Sibford Gower Endowed Primary School on 25th May 2012

The Meeting was attended by the five Parish Councillors, County & District Cllr George Reynolds, twenty local residents, PCSO Angela Alford and PC Duncan Vale of Thames Valley Police and the Clerk.

PCSO Alford and PC Vale answered points raised concerning on-road parking and PCSO Alford said that she is always available to deal with any problems that may arise in this regard. She asked that consideration is given to leave passing space for buses and emergency vehicles.

With regard to Highway Matters, it was with regret that no one was available from Oxfordshire Highways. A main concern expressed was that of the very poor condition of some road surfaces with potholes creating potential hazards. In this regard, Hawkes Lane and the road to the Surgery are particularly bad and an email received from a local resident living in that area strongly stressed the point. The Chairman (Dr Oswyn Murray) said that the Parish Council is well aware of the financial constraints under which Oxfordshire Highways operates but close contact is in place to try to resolve pressing matters.

In his Report the Chairman spoke of the newly defined Conservation Area, the new rules for nonpublicity of planning applications, the Village Pond and the move by the Parish Council to seek ownership, allotments, housing needs survey and affordable housing, priority snow clearance routes, response to Cherwell Strategy Plans, Churchyard and burial matters, Broadband, Bishop’s End (formerly Bishop Blaize). the Parish Precept and the Queen’s  Diamond Jubilee.

With regard to The Bishop Blaize Appeal Hearing which is to take place in Bodicote House, probably on 14th & 15th August, there is  considerable local interest and many residents have expressed a desire to attend. The Town Estate Charity has kindly offered to provide transport.

The Clerk in his report gave details of the Parish Council’s current financial position. The accounts for the year ended 31st March 2012 had been submitted to the External Auditor and thanks were extended to Mr David Soden for carrying out the role of Internal Examiner.

The Report by The Town Estate Charity was presented by Mrs Jean White and she was thanked by the Chairman for the information provided.

The Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator, Mrs Mollie Mulley gave her Report and she asked that residents take advantage of the ‘Have Your Say’ meetings when the police visit the village from time to time. The Chairman thanked her for the Report.

The Sibford Village Hall Report was delivered by Muriel Chandler (Village Hall Committee Secretary). This included information about groups which use the Hall, fund raising activities and plans in place regarding the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. She concluded by saying that the Village Hall Committee appreciates the help and interest of the Gower and the Ferris Parish Councils. The eleven members of the Committee are all volunteers, some for many years, and work tirelessly so that people can enjoy using the venue. The Chairman expressed his thanks for the Report.

Because of prior commitments, neither Mrs Sue Mattinson nor Mr Richard Hartree was available to present The Sibford’s Community Plan Report but it was made available in printed form. It is anticipated that The Community Plan will be published in July/August 2012. The Chairman expressed appreciation of the high Village responses to the Questionnaire and to both Sue and Richard for the work they had willingly undertaken.

 In the ‘Any Other Business’ part of the Meeting Mr Fred Inns raised the matter of road markings where Bonds End Lane joins Main Street, Sibford Gower. In times gone, by the right of way was marked as the turning from Main Street into Bonds End Lane indicating that those approaching from the Village Pond area should give way at the junction with Bonds End Lane. This would appear to be a sensible and safe arrangement and the Clerk was instructed to approach Oxfordshire Highways.

The Chairman announced the almost imminent departure from the village of Cllr Roger Alder when he moves to a new home. He will be very much missed by the Parish Council, the Parochial Church Council and all who know him.

There being no further business to discuss, the Chairman thanked all present for attending and declared the Meeting closed at 9.03pm.

Full details of the Meeting are contained in the Minutes copies of which are available upon request from the Clerk (Peter Hardman. Tel: 780391) or can be seen by clicking on the link below.