SINGLETON PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Meeting of the Parish Council
Held at Singleton Village Hall on 13 June 2023
Present: – Cllrs Ibbotson (Chair), Cllr Cholmondeley (Vice-Chair), Bailey, Clifford and Lee and the Parish Clerk, Verena Henderson, who took the Minutes. Twelve residents also attended.
|Apologies for Absence County Councillor Singleton
|Police Matters – “In The Know” bulletin received showing that £60K had been seized from criminals across Lancashire, which is being invested across the county with projects funded through the Community Fund Strand and Police Innovation Fund. Projects include CCTV, lighting, a shop and pub watch scheme alongside projects tackling anti-social behaviour.
|Open Forum Many concerns had been expressed via Singleton Chat and directly to parish councillors over the last couple of weeks about the sale of land opposite the Miller Arms public house. Because of this and the fact that twelve residents were in attendance, the meeting was opened up to them for a longer period this evening. For ease of reference, the concerns are listed in bullet points below: – A major concern expressed about the future of the public house. The pub had struggled in recent years but with a new landlord 12 months ago was now flourishing. However, the main attraction in the beer garden was the view of open countryside. This was now going to be built on and the view would be lost. This would adversely affect the pub whose outgoings are currently £10,000 a week. The pub is the main community hub. People do not want it to go. Because of its importance to the Community, it is also registered with Fylde Borough Council as an Asset of Community Value to help safeguard its future. Cannot understand why this place has been chosen for development. Why is the Trust selling this land when it has always built its own properties? The Trust should have a public meeting so that people can come along and find out why the land is being sold for development. No information is coming from the Trust. The Dumbreck Trust has always helped people to get an affordable home in the past. These houses will not be affordable homes and will not be for people who really need a house. There are other private homes in the village which are available for those with more funds to buy. The Chairperson commented that in the past there had been regular meetings between the Parish Council and the Trust, but these had become less frequent since Covid but that both parties now wanted to meet regarding this matter. Cllr Lee told the meeting that when the Trust first went for outlying planning permission, the Parish Council had objected, and 12 other objections had been received. He had spoken about this at the Planning Committee meeting for 1 ½ hours but unfortunately the Committee voted in favour of it. The only way forward now was to appeal to the Trust. The strength of feeling was truly clear about this. When Richard Dumbreck left the land, it was for the benefit of the community – health, education and well-being. The rules of the Trust clearly state that they are not allowed to dispose of land or assets except under “wholly exceptional circumstances”. Rule no. 6 (i) states: – The Trustees shall retain any property at Singleton (including the farms and the park of Singleton Hall) which comes to be vested in them unless wholly exceptional circumstances require any part of it to be sold. Some land from Singleton Trust was recently compulsory purchased for the new by-pass. This would come under “exceptional circumstances”. Sale of their land to a third party for development would not. Recent developments at Dumbreck Court and Worsicks Farm have been sympathetic developments and fit in well in the village. When the Trust produced its plan for the village a few years ago, it identified a need for 15 new houses. Since that time 12 have been built and there is permission for a further 7, making a total of 19, so there is no need for these extra houses. In the Trust’s statement about this land, they gave their reason for sale as “keeping a sustainable ratio of rented to privately owned properties within the village.” Because these new builds were all for private ownership, to keep the ratio there should in fact be more properties for rent rather than for sale. The Chairperson thanked everyone for their contribution and the Open Forum was closed.
|Proposed Meeting with the Trust The Chairman of the Trust had requested a meeting with the Parish Council to discuss the proposed development opposite the Miller Arms. Three dates were to be put to the Trust – 19th, 26th and 27th June. In the event of none of these being convenient, then a request would be made for them to provide three further dates.
|Minutes of previous meeting held on 16 May 2023 and any matters arising – The Minutes of the meeting held on 16 May 2023, having been previously circulated and agreed, were signed as a true and correct record by the Chairperson. Matters arising Reminder needed for headed quotation for the repair to the grass verge fronting Mains Lane.No response received from Lancashire Police’s Engagement and Communications Assistant, who had been given the Chairperson’s contact details.
|Declarations of Interest – None
|Planning matters and decisions – None
|Traffic and Highways issues – Pathway from Garstang Road to Windy Harbour. This had been closed by Kier during the roadworks, but the alternative route was overgrown and impassable. Cllr Clifford went down there and cut the hedges back himself after nothing had been done following a request to Kier. Although this was not Kier’s responsibility, he felt they should have checked on the condition of the alternative route before closing the public footpath.Reminder from Cllr Singleton that the speeding meeting with the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner is on 15 June at Staining Village Hall. Cllr Lee attending.Shard Road footway – LCC unable to make any changes to existing road layout. Once the bypass is opened the traffic volume will lessen. Highways have reassessed the bus stop location and agree it requires improvements. The bus stop will be relocated near to Mains Lane and the sign will be located on lamp post T396. This will be reviewed by Highways when the bypass is completed.Overgrown hedges at Lodge Lane. Engineers will inspect and write to owners to ask if they will cut their hedge. If the hedge is not cut back, Highways will take enforcement action.Highways will inspect gullies on Grange Road which have been blocked.Mains Lane grass verges. Cllr Singleton has requested LCC investigate the highway verges on Mains Lane, Singleton.
|New By-Pass The Chairperson wants to arrange a meeting in July with Kier regarding the junction with Shard Road. She wants this meeting to take place before they start building it. Nothing has been done to improve the signage about the road closure of Lodge Lane. Residents are missing out on deliveries as people don’t know if they can get to Barnfield Manor or Singleton Hall. The road closure has also affected Singleton Gala with the Police so far not agreeing to an amended route for the procession.
|Correspondence Mick Smith has now done the welding work required to the car park barriers. The Parish Council very much appreciated this.Letter from Fylde BC. Public spaces protection orders are in place across the borough for the enforcement of dog control. Dogs need to be kept on leads in certain locations, dogs to be excluded from certain locations and the immediate removal of dog faeces. Failure to comply can be dealt with by a fixed penalty notice of £100 or by prosecution (maximum fine of £1,000). Consultation is taking place to extend these orders for a further 3 years. Noted.
|Update from Fylde Borough Council All nil return election expenses forms signed and will be returned. There will be a statutory fee for the uncontested election of £100 and an invoice will be sent out by Fylde BC shortly.
|Watering of Flowering Tubs The handyman had requested help with the watering of the 24 flowering tubs around the Parish and one resident had also put out an appeal on Singleton Chat. The handyman would be asked to let the Parish Council know of any tub which was being neglected and a further appeal would be put out in that particular area.
|Accounts and Any Invoices to pay – The Clerk informed the meeting that the Internal Audit had been carried out successfully and that all formal documentation had been sent off to the Official Auditor. Thanks were expressed to the Auditor and Cllr Ibbotson will organise a thank-you gift for him. Notices had been put in all notice boards and on the website giving the dates of the period for the exercise of public rights from Monday 5 June to Friday 14 July. Any interested person can inspect the accounts during this period. Copies of the accounts have also been displayed. Litter-picker – New rate. 4 weeks £411.00. Proposed Cllr Ibbotson, Seconded Cllr Clifford. Agreed.Handyman, planting out 24 tubs – plants and compost – £768.00. Proposed Cllr Cholmondeley, Seconded Cllr Lee. Agreed.T A Pawson – Grass-cutting – New rate. This is paid monthly by BACs and the total including VAT is now £517.68.T A Pawson – Applying weedkiller to car park – £34.50. Proposed Cllr Ibbotson, seconded Cllr Clifford. Agreed.Clerk – Salary and expenses for May/June – £382.79. Proposed Cllr Ibbotson, seconded Cllr Bailey. Agreed.PEI Delta – Flood lights and leads for car park – £600.00. Proposed Cllr Lee, Seconded Cllr Ibbotson. Agreed.Fylde BC – Poppy Wreath at Remembrance Day Parade – £25.00. Proposed Cllr Lee, Seconded Cllr Clifford. Agreed. VAT repayment of £484.17 received from HMRC for 2022/2023 financial year.
|Any Other Business Station Road. Now that the railway bridge works have been carried out, could the iron plate be removed? This is raised and could damage tyres. This will be referred to Cllr Singleton.Station Road. As the speed limit on parts of Lodge Lane is to be reduced to 40mph, could this not also apply to Station Road? The number of accidents and near misses down there is increasing, and the road is not fit to travel down it by speed. Also, the number of high vehicles experiencing difficulty when encountering the bridge remains a problem. More signage is needed. This will be referred to Highways.Memorial Benches. Cllr Clifford would mention the possibility of residents buying and siting memorial benches in memory of loved ones to see if there is an interest in this initiative. This will be put on the next Agenda and, if there is an interest, he and Cllr Ibbotson will tour the parish to see the best spots to place these benches. There will then need to be a plan drawn up to put to LCC for their permission.
|Date and time of next meeting – Thursday 20 July 2023 at 7.15pm. As there was no further business, the meeting closed at 8.50pm. The Chairperson thanked everyone for their attendance and organisation of this meeting.
Signed ……………………………………………… Dated ………………………………
Verena Henderson, Clerk to Singleton Parish Council,
Tel: 01995 670455: email: Clerk@SingletonParishCouncil.org