Minutes of the Dorney Parish Meeting of the Council
held at the Eton Dorney Centre on Tuesday 8th July 2014 at 8 pm
Present:- Councillors K Harris (chaired the meeting), P Smith, R Ormond, A Foxley, A Purdie.
In Attendance:- Mrs S Moffat (Clerk), Cllr Dev Dhillon, 2 members of the public ( Susan Hardman, Mr Bowman) .
45. PUBLIC PARTICIPTION – Mrs Hardman continues to investigate the problems with the broadband connection in Dorney/Dorney Reach. She would like to see a sub-committee set up with a representative on it from the Parish Council. Mrs Hardman believes there are 2 problems to be addressed:- (i) A short term problem of variability of broad band speeds and; (ii) A long term problem of the fibre infra-structure not being able to support the future needs of Dorney which includes businesses, families, the school and households with multiple users. Bucks CC has allocated funding, together with funding received from Government and Openreach, to bring superfast broadband to 90% of the County but have not included Dorney in this coverage. Bucks CC has further funding to get coverage up to 95% by 2016. This is a window of opportunity to lobby for Dorney to be included in the 95% otherwise this village will be left as a rural community. Cllr Dev Dhillon responded that he did ask for Dorney to be included in the 90% but was told there were bigger areas which took preference. He will push for Dorney to be included in the 95%. He has been in touch with a representative from Openreach and he is happy to organise a meeting with him and the Officer concerned at Bucks CC.
Dorney Parish Council supports the concerns raised by Sue Hardman and it was agreed to invite the representatives from Openreach and Bucks CC to the next Council meeting on 9th September to raise these concerns. It would be beneficial if anyone has any specific questions, to pass these to the Clerk prior to the meeting so the representatives can be prepared.
Mr Bowman explained he has been asked by a number of residents to raise the following issues:-
(i) The Local Government Boundary Commission for England is carrying out a consultation of ward boundaries in South Bucks which closes on 21st July. Concerns have been raised that this may mean a loss of identity as ‘Dorney’ is not included in the ward title. Also District representation will reduce from 5 to 3 for the Dorney/Burnham/Taplow area with no direct representation for Dorney. Some local residents were surprised that it was minuted that Dorney Parish Council made no comment to this consultation. Mr Harris responded that the subject was discussed at some length, together with the district councillors, Cllr Dev and Cllr A Dhillon. The proposals included reducing the number of councillors from 40 to 28 in South Bucks and equalising wards to 12,000 electors in each. This means that Dorney must be included with other areas as it only has approximately 600 electors. Cllr Dev Dhillon will ask for the name of Dorney to be included in any future ward title, particularly as Dorney was the only Olympic venue in South Bucks.
(ii) The Tennis Club renewal of the lease. Concerns have been raised that Mr Coish has not been treated fairly regards the renewal of the lease with Dorney Parish Council as the Council has stipulated for a constitution to be in place before considering the renewal. There may be a danger of having no tennis court or all-weather play area. Mr Harris responded that the Parish Council has tried to act tactfully to protect the members involved in the Tennis Club and for the future of the Club. A constitution is required to ensure the financial affairs are managed correctly as well as legal matters such as having public liability insurance and carrying out the appropriate risk assessments. Mrs Kittel had approached the Tennis Club to look at installing an all -weather sports area and a tennis court with the offer of Playground4Dorney helping out with the management of the facilities. The Tennis Club did not want this and as a result Playground4Dorney lost its funding for the all-weather sports area. It is hoped that the matter can be resolved and Mr Easton is helping Mr Coish with the Parish Council’s request.
Bucks County Council Report- Cllr Dev Dhillon reported that:- (i) He has looked in to the matter of the M4 Smart motorway with the Highways Agency. Letters have been sent out to 21,000 residents between junctions 3 to 12 and there has been no mention of Compulsory Purchase Orders. Mr Harris responded that Dorney will be affected by the widening and lengthening of the bridges which could cause major disruptions. Cllr Dev Dhillon will organise for the Highways Agency representative to come to a meeting at Dorney to explain what is happening; (ii) Orchards Herb Farm – Cllr Dhillon has been advised by the barristers at Bucks CC against placing a Planning Contravention Order at this time due to the complexity of the matter. However, the Bucks CC Officer continues to work on the problems of this site together with the Highways Agency, Environmental Agency, Environmental Health, Police and Health & Safety Executive; (iii) Changes in Devolved Highways arrangements will mean a cut in future funding and for parishes and towns to work together in clusters. Mr Harris reported that a meeting has been arranged on 16th July to discuss this matter with Bucks CC Officers. Cllr Dev Dhillon will be attending and it is open to all parish councillors; (iv) There is a planning application for 300 dwellings at Skindles, Mill Lane, Taplow; (v) Cllr Dhillon asked if anyone would be willing to produce a witness statement to the Environment, Transport and Locality’s sub-committee regards the problem of the sewage on the Common after this year’s flooding? Mr Harris said it would be appropriate to ask James Palmer for this as he is effectively the owner of the Common. At this point Mr Harris went on to say that there was a strong belief in Dorney that the Jubilee River is leaking. After the floods, the water has never disappeared on the Common. The water is not coming from the stream but coming out of the ground which would indicate that the Jubilee River is leaking.
46. Apologies were received from Cllr Easton, Cllr Mrs Kittel, SBDC Cllr Dev Dhillon and the Press.
47. Resolved to receive and approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on the 10th June 2014.
48. Disclosure of interest in items on the agenda – None.
49. Clerk’s Report – None.
50. Chairman’s Report – Cllr Harris reported that:- (i) He has had a meeting with James Palmer as result of complaints about the dangerous parking on the roads when the car park at Dorney Lake is closed. Mr Palmer suggested double yellow lines may resolve this problem. Dorney Parish Council objects to the urbanisation of the village with yellow lines and believes that the Police should be enforcing any dangerous parking in the area; (ii) Mr Purdie displayed a copy of the new village sign and the artwork was agreed. Geoff Day was thanked for his input into the artwork.
51. Improved Broadband Services – As discussed during the Public Participation session.
52. Dorney Tennis Club:- (i) Any updates regards the lease renewal. Mr Easton has been tasked to liaise with Mr Coish and report back to the next meeting in September.
53. Playground4Dorney’s new all-weather sports area:- Deferred due to the absence of Mrs Kittel.
54. Any further updates regards the application to SBDC for funding of up to £300 to help fund activities and events to commemorate the conflict of WW1. Mrs Kittel continues to organise a small gathering with refreshments and planting of poppy seeds. Also the Garrison Players are organising a ‘Memoirs’ evening with readings and music to remember WW1. Mr Easton has offered the Village Hall as the venue for this.
55. New web site for Dorney Parish Council –Ms Foxley continues to work on this.
56. To discuss the changes in the Devolved Services arrangements with Bucks CC including the possibility of clustering. Deferred until after the meeting with Bucks CC on 16th July.
57. M4J3to12 Smart Motorway Development – Cllr Dev Dhillon will organise for the Highways Agency representative to come to a meeting at Dorney to explain what is happening.
58. Heathrow Expansion – Information can be found on www.southbucks.gov.uk/article/4481/Heathrow. The Airport Commission is intending to go out to public consultation in the Autumn following further work to develop the schemes. This matter will be raised at the next meeting once further information is available.
(i) Noted planning issues, decisions and appeals recently notified by South Bucks District Council – (as appended).
(ii) Resolved to consider and comment upon applications – (as appended).
a) Authorise payment of Accounts for July 2014 (as circulated).
b) To receive list of income for July 2014 (as circulated).
c) To receive recent bank statements and Chairman to sign reconciliations.
d) To receive the income and expenditure to date for 2014/15.
d) Mr Ormond, Chairman of the Finance Committee, reported that it would be beneficial to repay back some of the loan. The loan from the PWLB is based on a repayment annuity over 20 years and, for example; a £20,000 repayment would make a saving of £26,000 with the figures provided. However these figures do change on a daily basis and are likely to change further with the increase in interest rates. Also need to consider any changes in funding with Devolved Highways arrangements before a final decision can be made before the next loan repayment in November. Mr Harris asked for a statement of accounts from the Village Hall as the Parish Council is a guarantor for its loan. Ms Foxley reported that the accounts were healthy with £7,000 in reserves.
61. Correspondence- (i) Neighbourhood Policing Newsletter for June, (ii) Chiltern and South Bucks Strategic Partnership Annual Report (correspondence has been emailed to councillors prior to the meeting).
62. Member’s Reports – None.
63. Resolve any complaints/comments received from residents – (i) Trailer locked to post in Oak Stubbs has now been removed Lane; ii) Mr Purdie reported that the police had removed a truck from the polo field in Marsh Lane as illegal parking on the Waterboard’s land.
64. Maintenance and Highway employee/work – Nothing to report.
Date of next meeting – 8pm on 9th September, 2014 at the Eton Dorney Centre
Meeting ended 10.03 pm.
Chairman …………………………………………………… Date ………………………………….