Minutes 6th October 2021

The Minutes of a Meeting of the Parish Council held on Wednesday                   6th October 2021 at Anstey Village Hall at 7.30pm

Present: Cllr’s Mrs H Warne (Chair), Miss J Gannon, R Gibson, R Milton, Miss L Moore and I Vigus.
In attendance: District Cllr E Ley, Six members of the public and the Clerk, Mrs J Larcombe.

54/10/21. To receive apologies. Apologies were accepted from Cllr J Griffin.

55/10/21. Disclosure of interests in items on the agenda. Cllr Gannon declared a
personal interest in planning application 74008 because she lives opposite.

56/10/21. To agree the minutes of the meeting held on 4th August 2021 as an
accurate record of the meeting. The minutes were agreed as an accurate
record of the meeting and were duly signed by the chair.

57/10/21. Matters arising from the minutes, not included on the agenda. There  were no matters arising.

58/10/21. Public Questions. There were no questions from the members of the public.

59/10/21. Planning
a) To make a recommendation on any planning applications received by
the council before the meeting.
74008 Conversion of an agricultural building to form a single residential dwelling at New Park Farm, East Anstey, Grid Ref: 286803; 125320.
Comment: East Anstey Parish Council has no objections.
Should this application be approved East Anstey Parish Council ask that the
S106 agreement for recreation should be for the refurbishment of the play
equipment in East Anstey.

73925 Demolition of utility room & erection of two storey extension together with replacement roof coverings, windows & external repairs to the main dwelling to be used as a holiday let together with conversion of shippen to a holiday let & conversion of garage/workshop to a permanent dwelling to be used by the farm manager at Cruwys Ball, East Anstey, Grid Ref: 286345; 125012
Comment: East Anstey Parish Council is concerned about the substantial amount of development proposed for the open countryside and the impact this will have on a listed building. No agricultural justification has been given for the Farm Managers permanent dwelling. The Parish Council request that this application is called in for decision by the Planning Committee.
Should this application be approved East Anstey Parish Council ask that the
S106 agreement for recreation should be for the refurbishment of the play
equipment in East Anstey.

73963 Listed Building Application for demolition of utility room & erection of two storey extension together with replacement roof coverings, windows & external repairs to the main dwelling to be used as a holiday let together with conversion of shippen to a holiday let & conversion of garage/workshop to a permanent dwelling to be used by the farm manager at Cruwys Ball, East Anstey, Grid Ref: 286345; 125012.
Comment: East Anstey Parish Council is concerned about the substantial amount of development proposed for the open countryside and the impact this will have on a listed building. No agricultural justification has been given for the Farm Managers permanent dwelling. The Parish Council request that this application is called in for decision by the Planning Committee.
Should this application be approved East Anstey Parish Council ask that the
S106 agreement for recreation should be for the refurbishment of the play
equipment in East Anstey.

Standing Orders were suspended to allow a member of the public to speak.
A member of the public said that he had emailed the Chair to ask for an item on
the agenda to discuss his thought that this site should be used for communal
electric charging points instead of housing. The Clerk explained that his email
had been sent after the agenda for this meeting had been published. This site is
allocated for housing in the Local Plan and outline approval has been granted form three dwellings. If this site had been owned by the Parish Council it would be very different to private land. The school is the only destination point in the village and there is no onus to have a charging point for the public. Standing Orders were resumed.

b) To note any decisions made on planning applications by NDC.
73012 Outline application for erection of three dwellings and associated works
with some matters reserved (appearance, landscaping, layout and scale). Land
opposite the Froude Arms, East Anstey. Decision: conditional approval granted.
It was noted that one of the conditions is ‘no property on the site shall have more than two bedrooms or a total internal floorspace of more than 100 square metres’.
There are other conditions relating to drainage and parking.
Councillors were disappointed that the recreation contribution of at least £6,619 in the S106 agreement will be allocated only towards the improvement and/or the enhancement of Anstey Village Hall. This amount of contribution would have been a very useful contribution towards the upgrade of the play equipment on the village green.
c) Any other planning matters. It was planned that Maria Bailey, NDC Service
Manager for Development Management, would attend the meeting to speak the
Parish Council but she emailed the Clerk to cancel this as she would be leaving
NDC in late October. The intention was to question her about the enforcement
process for Oaklands Poultry Unit.
It was reported that chicken dung has been spread on the land at Oaklands
Poultry Unit which is something they are not meant to do. A councillor questioned
who at NDC the Parish Council would be keeping in touch with once Ms Bailey
has left. Cllr Ley said it should be Jeremy Mann, Head of Housing and Planning.
It was agreed that he would be invited to a Parish Council meeting as Ms Bailey
had cancelled.

60/10/21. Highways: any highways issues. It was reported that the sign at Woodburn Cross is in need of repair. The surface of the road from Oldways End to the Kennels is in a poor condition. Councillors were concerned about the poor
standard of recent pothole repairs.

61/10/21. Reports
a) District Cllr. Cllr Ley commented that there was no requirement in the Exmoor National Park area for S106 payments on a farm manager’s dwelling.
b) County Cllr. No report.

62/10/21. Finance:
a) To approve invoices for payment. It was resolved to make the following
payments:
Mrs J Larcombe – £103.90 Clerk’s salary for September and expenses (Payment ref: 2122/18).
West Anstey Village Hall – £9.00 room hire (Payment ref: 2122/19).
Ridd & Son – £90.00 grass cutting (Payment ref: 2122/20)
C J Thorne – £7,440.00 Second payment for heating at West Anstey Village Hall
(Payment ref: 2122/21).
b) To note payments made since the last meeting. The Clerk reported that as
there a meeting wasn’t held in September the following payments had been authorised by the Chair and Clerk:
Ridd & Son – £480.00 grass cutting (Payment ref: 2122/17).
It was noted that one cut had been made less than ten days since the previous
cut and no attempt had been made to contact the clerk to say why this needed to
be done. The specification for grass cutting for the 2022 season will be very clear about the terms of payment and the frequency of cuts.
Mrs J Larcombe – £100.40 Clerk’s salary and expenses (Payment ref: 2122/18)

63/10/21. Batsworthy Wind Farm Community Grant Fund applications and any
involvement the Parish Council may or may not have with West Anstey’s
community hall’s application. This item had been added at the request of Cllr
Milton because he had received some questions from members of the public that he was unable to answer. Rex Milton told the meeting that the application to this grant fund had been held up by the approval of the name change for the hall. The committee would like an application to be made as soon as possible and would like the Parish Council to make the application so that the VAT on the work could be reclaimed. The Clerk’s advice was that the Parish Council would not be able to reclaim the VAT. This was queried because the Parish Council had submitted the grant application for the solar panels and new heating system and reclaimed the VAT. The Clerk explained that the Parish Council had applied for the Climate and Environment Grant on the hall’s behalf as a way of recouping some of the S106 funding from Blackerton that NDC had used towards the new leisure centre at Barnstaple. The grant had then been paid to the Parish Council who ordered and made the payments for the solar panels and heating system in their name and still had ownership of what they had paid for, although it was planned to look at gifting this to the committee. She said that as the hall was not in East Anstey parish and the Parish Council were not custodian trustees then trying to reclaim the VAT on building an extension could be seen as tax avoidance by HMRC. District Cllr Ley disagreed with the Clerk’s advice and claimed that some other local Parish Council’s had reclaimed the VAT when extensions had been built onto their village halls. It was pointed out that East Anstey parishioners use this hall as it is the only community hall in the two parishes and it was not likely that one would be built in East Anstey. Some councillors felt that the subject of combining the two parishes should have progressed further before East Anstey Parish Council got involved with the building of an extension to the hall. The Clerk said that if this went ahead the Parish Council ran the risk of having to repay the £20,000 of VAT that would have been reclaimed and she couldn’t advise going ahead. This was supported by the Chair. It was suggested that the application for grant funding might be more successful if a joint application was made. The Clerk said the Parish Council would not be able to reclaim the VAT in that case and suggested writing to HMRC to check whether the Parish Council could reclaim the VAT but there was concern that their advice might not be clear enough for the Council to be sure it wasn’t running a risk. The Parish Council is not a member of Devon Association of Local Councils and the Clerk didn’t feel that their officers would be able to provide advice on VAT. It was agreed that the Parish Council would pay for professional advice to clarify the position. Cllr Ms Moore asked why the Parish Council wasn’t making an application to the Batsworthy Cross Wind Farm Community Grant Fund for funding towards new play equipment for East Anstey and it was explained that it would be difficult to apply for both. Some councillors felt this was unfair to East Anstey as there are no other grant schemes it can apply to at present. The Clerk noted that she had suggested in the past that the S106 funding from Blackerton should have been used towards replacing the play equipment in East Anstey but Cllr Ley had advised that it shouldn’t be used for that and should be left for when East Anstey might need it towards a community hall.

64/10/21. Play Area
a) Any issues arising from playground inspections. There was nothing to
report.
b) To agree who will carry out inspections for the next month. Cllr Mrs
Warne will carry out the inspections.

65/10/21. Correspondence. There was no further correspondence.

66/10/21. To agree the date of the next meeting. The next meeting will be held on Tuesday 9th November 2021. (NB: this meeting was cancelled).