Churchill & Blakedown
Parish Council



Parish Council Election Results
May 2007

Parish Candidates Votes Cast
Churchill & Blakedown
(Blakedown Ward)
Ashley John Cairns 195
Electorate 1030
Seats 6
Ballot Papers 432
% Poll 41.94
Sally-Ann Cartwright 218 Elected
Simon Darren Charman 237 Elected
Primrose Coley 105
Paul David Cook 139
Peter Anthony Dearden 253 Elected
Timothy Alan Gardiner 250 Elected
James William Long 242 Elected
Vicky Swindells 289 Elected

Churchill & Blakedown
(Churchill Ward)
Pauline Vera Hayward Elected
Uncontested Brian Anthony Pitt Elected
Robert John Whiston Elected

The full Parish Results may be downloaded from here

The full District Results may be downloaded from here

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CHURCHILL AND BLAKEDOWN PARISH COUNCIL

Minutes of the Meeting of Churchill and Blakedown Parish Council held on Wednesday, 21st February 2007, in Blakedown Parish Room.

PRESENT Cllr R J Whiston (Chairman)
Cllr A J Cairns
Cllr P A Dearden
Cllr Mrs P V Hayward
Cllr J W Long
Cllr Mrs I A Scott

In attendance: County Cllr S J M Clee
Mark Jones, Lengthsman and Handyman
Malcolm Hall. Web site keeper
R D Gurney, Clerk to the Parish Council

21/07 CHAIRMAN’S REMARKS
The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting.

22/07 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
These were received and accepted from Cllr Pitt and Cllr Mrs Swindells. An apology was received from District Cllr Williams.

23/07 DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Cllr Long declared a personal interest in Items 12 and 13 (Min. nos. 32/07 and 33/07). Personal interests were declared by Cllr Whiston in planning application WF/07/0015 and by Cllr Cairns in planning application WF/07/0092 (Min. no. 29/07).

24/07 COMMUNITY POLICING
Apologies for non attendance were received from PC Gemma Goode and PC Don Hemingway and there was no report.

ADJOURNMENT FOR PUBLIC COMMENT
(One member of the public was in attendance. He commented the street light no. 20 (Mill Lane/Sculthorpe Road) is not working - Clerk will report; street light no. 32 (bottom of Mill Lane) is covered in ivy - Mark Jones will attend to; could the street light in Station Drive (no. 12) be moved across the road?; could the street light by the pumping station in Sculthorpe Road (no. 26) be moved adjacent to the footway?; the footpath sign adj.19 Birmingham Road is missing - Clerk to report; the kerbstones by Station Cottages have sunk into the ground after being run over by heavy vehicles. It was also reported that there is considerable fouling of the footway between Swan Close and the Shoppers car park - Cllr Mrs Hayward will speak to the EHO)

25/07 ELECTION OF VICE CHAIRMAN
There were no nominations and it was agreed that this continue to be left on the agenda.

26/07 REPORT FROM COUNTY COUNCILLOR
County Cllr Clee was invited to speak. He made reference to the consultation on the Regional Spatial Strategy which sets out projected housing and other targets for 2026. He commented that, while Wyre Forest District would be able to accommodate the identified housing needs without encroaching Green Belt, there is concern that the necessary infrastructure may not be available. Further housing allocations in adjoining Districts could "tap into" the infrastructure of the Wyre Forest communities. The PC view ought to reflect this. County Cllr Clee also reported that WCC will be recommended to accept an increase of 4.94% in Council Tax for 2007/8 and that all departments will have to reduce staff levels.

27/07 CONFIRMATION OF THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 17th JANUARY 2007
It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Scott, seconded by Cllr Mrs Hayward, and RESOLVED that the Minutes, being a true and accurate record of the proceedings of the meeting, be signed by the Chairman.

28/07 PROGRESS REPORTS FOR INFORMATION
(1) Parish Web site. Malcolm Hall was invited to speak. He commented that the usage is increasing and in the last month there had been 1917 loads, 480 of which were first time visitors. 48% of the visitors stay on for more than one minute. He has revamped the first page and will be enhancing the diary page.
(2) Lengthsman report. Mark Jones was invited to speak. He reported 3 matters. First, the occupier at 19 Birmingham Road has deposited old fence panels on to the embankment and residents on the new development have also deposited rubbish on the embankment. The Clerk was asked to draw Network Rail’s attention to these. Second, the hedges along Birmingham Road opposite the school and church have been cut back, although the holly hedge at the rear of 1 Roxall Close is still overhanging; the Clerk was asked to follow this up. Third, the overhanging hedges at the former Blakedown Nursery and no.20 Belbroughton Road have been cut back by residents. Mark Jones reported that he is continuing to work on the drains along Belbroughton Road and a replacement to the damaged litter bin on the Sports Field will be pursued by Cllr Mrs Hayward.
(3) Stream Course, adj. Churchill Lane. The Clerk reported that he has had a discussion with Richard Bentley from the EA at Shrewsbury. He said that the brook has been surveyed and a report on the action to be taken is to be considered shortly.
(4) Park Hall planning appeal decisions. The Clerk reported that he had discussed this with the Enforcement Officer who gave the updated position. The Pheasant building is scheduled to be demolished by 27th March 2007; Coachman’s Cottage and Gardener’s Cottage are scheduled to be demolished by November 2007; Dairy Cottage requires a new structural survey and there could be further enforcement proceedings; a white lorry trailer near Pheasant building is enforcement pending; the use of Park Hall itself for varying residential uses does not require planning permission, but this aspect is being considered for Council Tax purposes.
(5) Parish Council Elections, 3rd May 2007. The Clerk informed the Meeting that nomination papers have to be submitted by 4th April. He expected to have nomination papers available by the next meeting, although they are available from WFDC.
(6) Wolverhampton Airport. WAAG letter regarding the RSS was noted.
(7) Litter Picking Agreement. The Clerk reported that this has been signed.
(8) Police Community Consultative Group. Mr Keys’ report of the meeting held on 10th January 2007 was noted.

29/07 PLANNING APPLICATIONS
(1) It was resolved that the comments on the following applications, as detailed, be sent to Wyre Forest DC.
Applications received
WF/07/0015 Erection of wooden chalet (dwelling) in association with the keeping
of horses, Field 2, Glebelands, Churchill

Objection to the proposal, as the site lies within the Green Belt where development will only be allowed in very special circumstances, which cannot be justified in this case. The screening shown is only temporary and not within the applicant's control; there is already a tack room on the site and drainage proposals are inadequate.

WF/07/0040 Prune 3 Douglas Fir trees, 2 conifers and a Eucalyptus tree, reduce or
remove 1 cherry tree, 3 Wannerton Road, Blakedown
No objection

WF/07/0045 Reduce crowns to 2 mature beech trees, 7 Roxall Close, Blakedown

No objection

WF/07/0065 Erection of fence behind conifers to secure rear garden and change of
use of amenity land (retrospective), 17 Wannerton Road, Blakedown
No objection

WF/07/0074 Fell or prune one horse chestnut tree, 1 Roxall Close, Blakedown

No objection

WF/07/0092 Erection of two storey extension, 40 Belbroughton Road, Blakedown

Concerned with the scale of the extension particularly the roof details

Planning Decisions (for information)
WF/06/1182 Prune oak trees, "Woodlands", Waggon Lane, Churchill -GRANTED
WF/06/1250 Extension to balcony, Birch Hollow, Churchill - GRANTED

30/07 FINANCE
(1) The Clerk reported that the current account today stands at £1,742.23p in credit and the Instant Access account stands at £6,638.04p, giving a total balance of £8,380.27p.
(2) It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Hayward, seconded by Cllr Mrs Scott, and resolved that the following accounts be approved for payment:
Staples UK Ltd, photocopying, stamps, stationery - January
£34.48 + £3.18 VAT (3 invoices) £ 37.66
Mark Jones, handyman (£325) and lengthsman (£160) £485.00
£522.66

31/07 HIGHWAY MATTERS, INCLUDING CHURCHILL CROSSROADS
The reply from WCC was enclosed with the agenda. Members expressed their concern that the Parish Council would be expected to pay for a new sign in its entirety, as well as maintaining and insuring it, when this is the responsibility of the highways authority. Members quoted several examples where villages in Worcestershire have such speed warning signs, which are paid for, maintained and insured by WCC. It was also noted that WCC is prepared to undertake another survey, but it was felt that this would only duplicate the survey done by the Police. The Clerk was asked to respond accordingly.

32/07 POSSIBLE CLOSURE OF LOCAL POST OFFICES
The standard questionnaire for responding to the proposed closure of post offices had been prepared by Cllr Long and was enclosed with the agenda. It was agreed that the Clerk completes this and submits it to the Department of Trade and Industry on behalf of the Parish Council.

33/07 TREES IN THE AVENUE, BLAKEDOWN
The Clerk reported that he is awaiting a reply from the solicitor at WFDC regarding the status of the TPO on the trees in The Avenue.
The Clerk has been told by an officer in the Countryside Section at WCC that The Avenue can be claimed as a right of way, but this would require an application and be accompanied by evidence of its use over many years. An application does not have to be made by the owner of the land, therefore the PC could submit this. WCC suggested that, if successful, The Avenue would become a " restricted byway", ie it would be available for use by all traffic, except motorised vehicles. This view was not accepted by the Parish Council: the PC’s proposal is that it should be a Green Lane open to all traffic.

34/07 ENTRANCE TO SHOPPERS CAR PARK
Cllr Mrs Scott reported that she has had no reply from Amey Mouchel, but it seems that WFDC would be prepared to put a warning sign at the exit. As this is a busy crossing it is hoped that the School Governors will support the PC’s action.

35/07 PARKING AROUND BLAKEDOWN STATION
Cllr Long had obtained details of the parking restrictions in force by Waltham Forest Council in the vicinity of Chingford station, details of which were available. The current problem is the parking in Station Drive and Mill Lane will move to other roads if restrictions are imposed. With charging at Kidderminster station this is a problem which is likely to increase, but this needs to be balanced to keep Blakedown station open. This matter needs to be raised at the Annual Meeting in April but, in the meantime the Clerk was asked to write to Network Rail and WFDC regarding the current problem and to WCC to undertake work to the kerbing. With the Grosvenor Hall site now unoccupied it would be useful to know if the owner is interested in helping to resolve the parking issue.

36/07 PARISH NEWSLETTER
It was agreed that the Clerk and Chairman prepare the newsletter in time for the next Council meeting, so that it can be distributed to Members for circulation prior to the Annual Meeting.

37/07 VERGE CUTTING AND MAINTENANCE FOR 2007
As the Clerk has not yet heard from Mr Rudge on his quote for 2007, nor whether he could undertake the additional grass cutting at the Sports Centre, this item was deferred to the next meeting.

38/07 REQUEST TO REINSTATE TRAIN SERVICE FROM STOURBRIDGE
In the recent modification to the timetable Central Trains has removed the 16.02 service to Hagley and Blakedown, which was a popular school train. There has been some Press coverage and both SLUG and County Cllr Clee have written to Central Trains. It was agreed that a strongly worded letter be sent to Central Trains, stating the problem and asking for the reinstatement of the 16.02 service from Stourbridge Junction, whilst retaining the existing 15.37 and 16.17 services.

39/07 PARISH COUNCIL NOTICE BOARDS
It was agreed that this item be deferred.

40/07 REGIONAL SPATIAL STRATEGY
The Clerk’s draft consultation response was circulated with the agenda. Having discussed the RSS earlier in the meeting with County Cllr Clee it was agreed that the response be sent with an additional comment to reflect the impact of adjoining District Council’s allocations affecting the infrastructure in Wyre Forest District.

41/06 CORRESPONDENCE FROM CALC
The MAIL had been circulated previously and the Clerk drew attention to courses on Employment and PAYE (1st March) and Accounting (7th March, at noon) - Clerk able to attend the latter and the Area Meeting at Chaddesley Corbett (7th March, at 7 pm).

42/07 CORRESPONDENCE (for noting)
(1) Communities and Local Government - Revised Model Code of Conduct
consultation
(2) DEFRA - Quality Parish status qualification
(3) Audit Commission - Clement Keys to continue as External Auditor for 2006/7
(4) WCC - Notice of closure, Broome Lane (5 days in week commencing 19.03.07)
(6) WCC - Timetable changes to local bus services
(7) South Staffs DC - Background Paper and Housing Land Availability Assessment
(8) WCC - Acknowledgement of Parish Council minutes at Records Office
(9) E-on - Parish Council Pack in case of power cuts
(10) WCC - Waste Core Strategy submission document
(11) WCC - Winter gritting routes
(12) Highways Agency - need for feasibility study
(13) WCC - Wyre Forest Schools Review newsletter
(14) Wicksteed catalogue
(15) Enjoy England magazine - celebrate St George's Day
(16) Kinver PC - minutes and agendas
(17) WMRA - magazine

43/07 ITEMS OR PARISH INTEREST/ITEMS FOR NEXT AGENDA
None.

44/07 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
This will be held on 21st March 2007, in Blakedown Parish Room.

The meeting closed at 10.11 pm.



Dated this 21st day of March 2007 ………………………………............
Chairman