Clerk’s Report 14th June 2022

Belstone Parish Council Logo

BELSTONE PARISH COUNCIL

Parish Clerk Report for 14th June 2022

Correspondence

  • A café in Okehampton (Devon Fare, Red Lion Yard) had applied for a licence.
  • A venue in Bratton Clovelly has applied for a licence.
  • I have completed the VAT return for £106.82, and we have received it.
  • Dartmoor National Park have written with information about their new plan. There is training available on 30th June in person.
  • There are a series of free online workshops available from a charity called Taw & Torridge Voluntary Services (TTVS), on digital issues to improve computer skills. Contact me for information.
  • A member of the public has written asking for advice on constructing a mobile field shelter; I have replied saying that the Council do not comment and pointing her to the DNPA website.
  • A member of the public has written asking for information about old Belstone maps. I forwarded her email to Chris Walpole.
  • National Highways only notified us of the overnight closures of the A30 on Monday 6th June, the day they started.
  • I receive regular newsletters from DALC, DCC, WDBC/SWDevon, Dartmoor Commoners, Devon Communities, Devon Wildlife Trust and Rural Services Network. I only forward those that I think may have relevant information to Belstone Council. Please let me know if there are some you would individually like forwarded.

Matters Arising not on Agenda

  • I applied for the Sustainable Community Locality Fund (Cllr Lynn Daniel’s fund), and was successful. We have received £100. I applied for the DCC Locality Fund and am waiting to hear the result.
  • In the DNPA ballot, both candidates received 5 votes, so the election was decided on the flip of a coin and Mr Richard Glanville (not the one we voted for) was elected.
  • I have written to Michael Reddaway and emailed Dicky at The Tors regarding the temporary sign for No Parking on Great Green. Cllr Cooper had already spoken to Dicky, and he will be providing the sign himself. Both Michael and Dicky have responded positively to the use of the sign. I have made a note to bring this back to the September meeting, giving time to assess its effectiveness over the summer.
  • I have emailed our Highways Officer and Ian Brooker regarding speeding in Belstone. Ian Brooker has directed me to Andrew Watson at DNPA who arranged the 40 mph zones on the open moor; I have emailed him and await a reply.
  • The Dog Poo Signs have finally gone up. Many thanks to Cllr Cooper for mounting them and putting them up.
  • Car Park Sign – Cllr Weaver has been putting out the sign, which now has a Dog Poo Poster on the reverse. I did not put the plan on because it encouraged parking beyond the trees, which would be outside the boundaries of the car park.
  • I have emailed Ella Curnow regarding her Biodiversity enquiry, and she has not replied with any further requests. In a Webinar that I attended recently they mentioned that the Environment Bill is strengthening the biodiversity duty so that we will have to produce a Biodiversity Report every five years. I am not clear when this will be introduced.  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/environment-bill-2020/10-march-2020-nature-and-conservation-covenants-parts-6-and-7 Section 4.

Training

I have attended the following free online training:

  • ‘What to do about pesticides, grass cutting and tree planting’.
  • ‘Local Council Accounts – From Zero to Hero’
  • ‘SLCC’s Big Conversations’ (Clerk’s Forum)
  • ‘Are Freedom of Information Requests Like a Box of Chocolates?’
  • ‘How Clerks Are Successfully Broadcasting Their Council Meetings’

Agenda Items

2022/23- 55 Asset Inspection

  • We have received an email from Ella Curnow regarding the Phone Box. Ella has already taken actions to make the repairs to the box, she says “It needs repainting and one pane of glass needs popping back in but I’m on top of this.  I’ve got a voucher from the Community Heartbeat Trust for the correct paint and my dad (who was a professional painter and decorator) has offered to paint it when we’ve got a patch of consistent weather.”
  • Rather than working through all the assets, I have attached the list of assets and seats with the agenda, please report at the meeting those that need action.

2022/23- 57 Clerk’s Annual Appraisal

The Clerk’s annual appraisal is due in July. The contract states that the Chairman will do it. This can be delegated to one or more councillors if required. If the Council can decide who will carry out the appraisal, then those people can prepare any format/documents and agree a date with the Clerk. I have example appraisal documents and notes from SLCC (Society of Local Council Clerks).

2022/23-60 Proposal to create Transport Committee to investigate speeding, parking and associated problems, and develop solutions.

The advantage of a committee is that they can appoint members who are not councillors, but who are interested in the subject. I have attached some notes on committees with the agenda, together with an example Terms of Reference. The idea is that the committee will consult with the community, to find innovative solutions to the problems of speeding and parking, and lack of public transport in the village.

2022/23-61 Road Warden Scheme

The Road Warden Scheme is a way to get potholes and signs repaired, which the Highways Department will not do. It gives priority for DCC highways grants as well. The Road Warden does not have to be a Councillor, but can be. They work with a group of volunteers. Further information can be found at  https://www.devon.gov.uk/communities/opportunities/road-warden-scheme