Minutes of PC Meeting 22/01/204.

Minutes Uploaded on February 21, 2024

Public time   –


Held in the Village Hall on Monday 22nd January 2024 at 7.30pm


PARISH COUNCILLORS        Rev. Deborah Perreau, Chairman

 Mrs. Cressida Govier-Drake, Mrs Di Hine, Miss Sue Pargeter, Mrs. Louise Simmons

 Messrs. Ian Croucher, John Gilbert, Ian Stonex, Ian Whitehead,

Also     Mrs. Jenny Kenton and Martin Wale (County Councillors), Mrs. A. Hunt – Parish Clerk

Apologies –Mr. Ed Cockburn, Dr. Colin Ryall,


80/2023-24           DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST – Mr. Ed Cockburn re planning application 23/02732 Personal


81/2023-24           COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORT


Application made to Government to allow an approx. 10% increase in Somerset Council Tax.  The Finance Officer can call Section 115 re bankruptcy if not granted.  On February 6th the interim report from Govt. is expected to allow the increase from 4.99% to 9.99%.  If allowed, it will ease the burden.

Various things will be cut but somethings are statutory, i.e. Adults and Children’s care. The cost of living and Covid have caused costs to be increased.  All County Councils are affected, but Parish and Town Councils can increase their precept without limits, and will need to take on more items, such as verge cutting, if wanted.


82/2023-24          MINUTES


The Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 27th November 2023 were approved as a true record and signed




2 x 2 packs `water snakes` have been purchased from the grant from Somerset Prepared.  A meeting was held with Highways re the drainage problem at George Barton/buttle overflowing.  The original scheme to install more road drains along that area is still on their scheme of works.  Meanwhile, using the water snakes along the top of the kerb stones will help when heavy rain happens, although it may make it awkward to open vehicle doors while in place.  The drainage scheme will continue to be on the Highways list.


The next public meeting re Resilience will be held on Friday 26th January.  The emergency plan is nearly finished.  It is hoped to recruit more volunteers at this meeting – cheese and wine will be supplied to encourage people to attend.


The extensive river works in Court Mill Lane should be completed by the end of January.  Costings have been met by the Insurance Company The new arches and larger chamber under the surface at Burnside House/Coach House are nearly complete.


84/2023-24           PLANNING


  • App. 24/00058Tree P.O. Land at Cuttifords Door Orchard. Notification of proposed works.

No objections

  • App. 23/03006 Five Acres House, Higher Beetham. Removal of dilapidated roofs, replacing with a modern roof with increased ridge line. No objections.


85/2023-24           HIGHWAYS


  1. Footpaths – CH7/2 Combe Wood Lane – Brocolle Lane (top entrance). Deep ruts appearing during building works at New House Farm.  Check when works finished to ensure surface repaired.
  2. Road Closure – Cuttifords Door Cross roads – Bonds Close from 12th February for 40 days. Investigate bus routes, etc. while closure in place.  Possible signs to deter drivers using narrow lanes?
  3. Speed Watch following some comments placed on the Parish Facebook page, invite the new Wadeford group to come to a meeting. Statistics are kept on the SIDs showing the speed of vehicles travelling past. – Next meeting
  4. Road signs following diversions, etc. are not being picked up when works have finished. Highways to be informed.


86/2023-24           THE LAWNS PLAY AREA/Combe Wood Rec. Field


Following the request for a cricket net, or some other activity for children 11-18, Somerset County has been contacted to see what, if anything, is allowable within the terms of the Lease for Combe Wood Rec. Field.  Reply received to say `they don’t see any particular issues, but confirmation required that items are removed when no longer required and the Parish Council takes this liability`.

No information yet whether this scheme still wanted.


Request from a neighbour by The Lawns re hedge, as new fence panels are required.  Site meeting will be set up.  New goalposts ready for installation.


87/2023-24           VILLAGE HALL


Community Hub – A weekly café has been set up on a Wednesday which coincides with the fortnightly Chiropody service – also a monthly Games morning and a monthly Film Show for children.  The Chiropody service pays for the heating on their morning, but funding to cover the heating on other days  would be very welcome.  It was resolved to pay £150 to cover the next 6 months.


88/2023-24           FINANCE


Precept – After discussing the possible extra commitments due to the County funding especially for verge cutting, possible drainage, etc., it was resolved to increase the Precept by 10% – from current £20,000 to £22,000 for the year 4/2024 – 3/2025. 8 Councillors in favour, 1 abstained.


The following payments were approved and will be paid via Internet Banking/Cheque

Mrs A. Hunt (broadband costs)                                                                      £30.00

Village Hall (January PC mtg + Resilience meeting 26th Jan)                       £18.00 + £22.50

Village Hall (donation towards heating for Community Hub)                      £150.00

Mrs. A. Hunt (repay purchase of water snakes for Resilience)                      £55.00


89/2023-24           GENERAL MATTERS  


Some hedges in Whiteway need trimming back.

Combe St. Nicholas Parish Council