Minutes of the Annual Meeting of Fulking Parish Council held at the Village Hall, Fulking on Thursday 7 May 2009 at 8.00 pm
Present: Chairman: Mrs Jennifer Vaughan, Vice-Chairman: Mr Tony Brooks, Councillors: Mrs Jennifer Parmar, Mrs Pamela Rowland and Clerk to the Council Mrs Paula Hazard.
The clerk asked for nominations for Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Chairman of the Planning Committee.
Mrs Jennifer Vaughan was nominated as Chairman by Mrs Pamela Rowland and seconded by Mr Tony Brooks. The vote was unanimous and Mrs Vaughan was duly elected Chairman.
Mr Tony Brooks was nominated as Vice-Chairman by Mrs Jennifer Vaughan and seconded by Mrs Jennifer Parmar. The vote was unanimous and Mr Brooks was duly elected Vice-Chairman.
Mrs Pamela Rowland was nominated as Chairman of the Planning Committee by Mr Tony Brooks and seconded by Mrs Jenny Vaughan. The vote was unanimous and Mrs Rowland was duly elected Chairman of the planning Committee
Apologies for Absence: Richard Corner
The minutes of the meeting held on 1 May 2008 were read, approved and signed by the Chairman. The PC proposed that in future the current arrangement for the publication of the minutes would continue unless there were any strong opinions against doing so. This arrangement involved not reading out the minutes at the meeting but posting draft minutes on the notice board and the website before the meeting where the minutes were approved.
Matters Arising: None
Planning: During the period May 2008 to April 2009, 15 applications were received. Of these 9 were granted, 2 were refused and 1 withdrawn. 3 were under consideration.
Market Garden Site: The case came to court and Mrs Hearn pleaded guilty and was fined for failing to comply with the Breach of Condition notice. The PC chased up Development Control to ensure specific requirements for outstanding conditions were complied with. MSDC advised towards the end of last year that they regarded all conditions as having been complied with and discharged. It seemed that external light pollution was still an issue for residents in Clappers Lane. The PC had suggested if photographic evidence could be provided to the PC then this should make a more powerful case so that the PC could pursue the issue again.
Finance: The Parish precept for 2009/10 has been set at 5,776. The accounts for 2008/09 were currently being prepared. The PC thanked Nick Hughes for doing the internal audit last year.
Highways and rights of way: DDMO Perching Drove. The matter of the Permissive Path Agreement had now been concluded. Communications with the landowner had shown that the situation could not be taken any further formally but he had agreed that continued use of the path would be permitted for villagers.
‘Unsuitable for HGV’ signs had been placed at northern end of Clappers Lane.
The PC had requested a non-slip surface at exit of Clappers Lane onto A281. This was still under consideration by WSCC.
New fittings had been fitted to the street lights at the bottom of Stammers Hill and Fulking Cottage.
Culvert work was carried out outside Hillbrook in September 2008.
Several issues of flooding and blocked gullies had been reported to WSCC. The work to rectify these problems was scheduled to be carried out.
North Town Field: The grass cutting contractor, Danny Flynn, had continued to cut the grass in the North Town Field (NTF). Foster Playscapes were again hired to do the monthly safety checks, and ROSPA to do the annual check.
A new entrance to the field had been proposed and the works for this had been completed. A grant was received from West Sussex County Council for half the cost and the remainder was funded from NTF Trust, Social Committee and the precept.
There was a possibility of a grant being available for new playground equipment but this issue needed further meetings to define what was needed and to liaise with the NTF Trustees.
The barkpit in the play area had been topped up
Following a survey, major tree work had been carried out on trees particularly around the play area for safety reasons.
Working Parties from the PC, NTF and the residents had been carried out, clearing areas of undergrowth which were encroaching on the field.
Preston Nomads: No further news, developments or meetings had occurred but there was now a new Chairman and the PC were hoping for better communications.
National Park: The decision had been made to create a South Downs National Park which would include Fulking. There was no detailed information as yet but our County Councillor would press for full democratically elected decision-makers particularly in respect of planning.
Village website: James Lightfoot had now taken over the website. He had updated it and it was running smoothly. The PC minutes were now published within a month of PC meetings. The Annual Return was also posted.
Pigeon Post: Thanks were given to Aidan Walker for taking over and running this. The PC also gave thanks to Tony Brooks for organising the printing of hard copies, the people who distributed it and Bob Rowland for funding the printing for this year.
Action in Rural Sussex: A survey had been placed in Pigeon Post for the top three priorities for the village. The themes chosen were Allotments, Community Shop and Community Transport. Allotment garden sharing was suggested as no land was available for allotments. Community Transport – The possibility of no 17 bus being re-routed via Fulking connecting Horsham to Brighton had been raised by Chris Gildersleeve. It was a very good idea but needed village support for it to be implemented. Community shop at present no progress.
Fly Tipping at Bostal: This was being monitored and the possibility of installing a gate was being looked into.
Freedom of Information Act: The Freedom of Information Publication Scheme had been adopted.
Village Plan: This was under discussion.
Local Reports and Guest Speaker
The Chairman read out a report from the Tree Warden Barry Leppard.
The Police Community Support Officer for Fulking, Eve Todhunter, gave a short talk about her role supporting Fulking and several other surrounding villages.
The Chairman read out the Neighbourhood Watch report from Richard Corner.
David Fletcher, Leader of the Henfield Area Response Team (HART), gave a presentation about the work of the HART team and how they supported the Ambulance service by responding early to serious medical conditions particularly those that benefitted from treatment by a defibrillator. He explained what would be involved if Fulking wanted to keep its own defibrillator and provide a similar service.
National Trust warden Charlie Cain gave a talk about the work of the Trust in the Devil’s Dyke Estate area and talked about particular issues concerning management of the land.
The Chairman read out a report from County Councillor Mr Peter Griffiths. District Councillor Mrs Gina Field talked about the origins and functions of Mid Sussex District Council and the role of a District Councillor.
The meeting was opened up to the floor and a reminder was given that if issues were raised at the APM then they could not be discussed until the following APM. Therefore the best forum to deal with issues was at the ordinary Parish Council meetings. The issue of parking in Clappers Lane was raised and it was requested that this was dealt with as part of the regular Parish Council process.
Date of the next meeting to be arranged. The meeting closed at 9.25 pm and refreshments were served afterwards.
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