Minutes of a meeting of the Town Council held in the Council Chamber, Windmill Lane, Northam on Tuesday27th January 2004
PRESENT: Chairman - Town Mayor – Cllr A Barnes
Members - Cllrs Mrs S A Mounce, J A Bell, R D Bradford MBE,
A Eastman, Dr P Tamplin, P Waters
together with PC Tricker, Devon & Cornwall Constabulary
and 8 Parishioners
Apologies were recorded on behalf of Cllrs Mrs M M Cox and A Eastwood OBE.
The minutes of the Town Council meeting held on 16th December were approved and signed.
2. Public Forum
Mr Richard Miller advised the Council that as a result of a Millennium Tarka Award he had created a website for Northam and this included the creation of the Council’s website. He explained that he was anxious to receive more information about the area in order that this may be included. He had been able to enlist Radio Devon to help him launch the website and the Devon In Touch programme would be broadcast on Wednesday 25th February from the Kingsley Inn car park, Northam from 11 am to 4 pm. The Radio Devon Team would be interviewing local people and Mr Miller hoped that people would come forward from the Council, Youth Group etc to make themselves available. Notices and Posters will be displayed.
The Town Mayor and fellow Councillors thanked Mr Miller for his work in creating these websites.
3. Matters of report to/from Community Constable
PC Mike Tricker gave detailed descriptions of the various reported crimes over the past month. In response to previous questions he reported as follows:-
The mud on Churchill Way from Benson Drive had been investigated and the contractors visited. With regard to CCTV there was an open invitation for Members to look at the system in Bideford. It was finance that was preventing an extension of the scheme. It is estimated that the introduction of seven cameras would incur capital cost of £160,000. The speed camera at Heywood Road, Orchard Hill was commissioned on 27th November 2003. The camera in its previous position was last used in September 2002 and from April to September it had been operated for 55 days and 156 offenders caught.
Cllr Bradford MBE expressed his concern on how people use the lanes approaching the Heywood Road roundabout.
4. Town Clerk’s Report
(a) Parish Transport Grant – The Town Clerk reported that the Council’s application under the Vital Villages scheme for a Parish Transport Grant made at the end of 2002 had at long last been approved and the award was for £9914 of which the Council’s contribution was £677. It was RESOLVED to approve this expenditure. It was also RESOLVED to send a letter of thanks to Mrs Whittaker for her work in securing this grant.
(b) Monthly Financial Report – The Town Clerk presented the monthly financial report that included payments for this month and it was RESOLVED to accept.
(c) The Town Mayor proposed a vote of thanks to the Northam Residents Association for the Christmas tree at Bone Hill which had been a great success.
5. Northam Youth Group
The Town Mayor presented his Notice of Motion that the Council considers providing financial assistance towards the Northam Youth Group. Standing Orders were suspended and PC Tricker and members of the community were invited to put forward their views as to the value of the Group. The Youth Leader gave details of the Group’s financial problems and the range of expenses which they incur. It was established that the Group needed £10,000 in order to continue until the end of this calendar year by which time it was hoped that applications for grant aid from Children in Need and Leader Plus would have been determined. It was RESOLVED to make available immediately a grant of £5,000 and to offer a loan of £5,000, interest free and repayable over 3 years, this to be paid when the initial grant money has been spent.
6. Northam Burrows
(a) Management of the Burrows
The Town Council considered the correspondence with the District Council and the proposals of the Government to introduce Statutory Commons Associations. It was thought an opportune time to advise DEFRA of the history and current situation with regard to Northam Burrows with the object of ensuring that the management of the Burrows is formally placed in the hands of the Town Council. Cllr Waters had produced a brief history and statement of the current situation and it was RESOLVED to write to DEFRA setting out these details and requesting them to establish the Northam Town Council as the Statutory Management Authority for Northam Burrows.
(b) Members items
Cllr Mrs Mounce advised that the Burrows Advisory Committee was to be re-formed. From the Town Council’s point of view this would result in two persons being nominated to serve on the Committee.
7. Streetworks and related matters
Cllr Mrs Mounce reported that Kingsley Road was to be re-surfaced, Orchard Rise is currently being strengthened in order that it may be brought up to adoption standard and the footpath link from Hanson Park to Riverbank is currently under construction.
8. Market and Coastal Towns Initiative
Cllr Barnes and Cllr Waters reported on the current situation and advised that ten projects were being put together and a consultant appointed to write the necessary bids for funding. It was hoped that this was the last stretch of a very drawn out procedure.
9. Planning applications
2345/03 Proposed erection of a bungalow - land adjoining 31 Beach Road, Westward Ho! – Approval of reserved matters – RESOLVED – Recommend approval.
2352/03 Proposed extension to dwelling to include dependant relative accommodation - 29 Atlantic Way, Westward Ho! – RESOLVED - Recommend approval subject to the design ensuring that two dwellings cannot be created.
2360/03 Proposed double garage with bedroom over - 18 Glenfield Road, Bideford – RESOLVED – Recommend approval.
2366/03 Proposed extension to provide additional garaging and 1st floor bedroom - 56 Hanson Park – RESOLVED – Recommend approval.
2367/03 Proposed Retrospective application for replacement windows - 12 One End Street, Appledore – RESOLVED – Recommend approval.
2391/03 Proposed change of use from private dwelling house to residential care home for adults with learning difficulties - 2 Eastbourne Terrace, Westward Ho! – RESOLVED – Recommend approval.
Cllr Barnes declared an interest in this application and left the meeting. Cllr Mrs Mounce took the chair.
2392/03 Proposed conservatory - 32 Goodwood Park Road –RESOLVED -
2394/03 Proposed 2-storey extension to the side of Block 14 to increase Unit 27 to a 2-bed unit and apartment 28 to a 3-bed unit - Nautilus Apartments, Golf Links Road, Westward Ho! – RESOLVED - Recommend Refusal. Not in keeping with the overall design of the building.
2401/03 Proposed domestic garage extension - 22 Fordlands Crescent – RESOLVED - Recommend approval.
2402/03 Proposed demolition of existing workshop and erection of a dwelling - Land opposite 14 Eastbourne Terrace, Westward Ho! – RESOLVED - Recommend approval.
.0001/04 Proposed driveway - 9 Grenville Terrace, Northam – RESOLVED - Recommend approval.
1954/03 The Town Mayor circulated Members with his further thoughts about the proposal to build 62 flats on the Bath House Hotel site. It was RESOLVED to support the Town Mayor’s observations and to send copies to the Government Office for the South West and the District Council.
10. To establish dates for Planning meetings with Residents’ Associations
The Town Mayor advised that he intended to arrange meetings with the three Residents’ Associations and, hopefully, Mr Clive Jones, the architect from Appledore ,with the object of putting together a brief planning guidance document for each of the three villages, Northam, Appledore and Westward Ho! It was RESOLVED to approve this action.
11. Reports from Members on outside bodies
(a) Cllr Mrs Mounce advised that Northam Charities had installed new windows and doors to the property in New Causeway and had financially helped several local organisations.
(b) Cllr Bell reported on the recent meeting of the Taw/Torridge Estuary Forum and advised that the designation of Braunton Burrows and surrounding area including the estuary and Northam Burrows as a biosphere had considerable implications and would be a material consideration in respect of planning and green tourism. Andy Bell was the appointed Officer and it was RESOLVED to invite him to a future meeting of the Council to give a presentation on the implications of the biosphere designation.
(c) Cllr Bell and Cllr Waters reported on the consideration by the Forum on the problem of jet skis, more properly known as “personal water craft”. There had been a surprising and encouraging response from the users of these craft and it appeared that the problems associated with insurance and registration would be overcome. Cllr Waters expanded on the problems with the launching from Churchfields slipway in Appledore and put forward a detailed suggestion which the District Council would need to take on board in order to have control of the situation. It is suggested that persons wishing to launch from the slipway must be registered with the District Council and pay a fee in advance, or for casual users a fee per launch. It was RESOLVED to send the detailed suggestion to the District Council with copies to the Leader of the Council, Chairman of the Environment and Leisure Services Committee and the Chief Executive.
12. Reports from District Members
Cllr Mrs Mounce reported that the District Council were carrying out a housing appraisal which would consider selling off the housing stock. This process would take a long time with tenant and former tenant consultation.
The Devon Youth Games were to be held in Barnstaple in July of this year.
She reported on the recent Northam Burrows Committee meeting and advised of a difference of opinion between the Officers and Councillors with regard to the silting up of the Pill and Goosey Pool. A meeting was to be held on site at an appropriate time in the future.
13. Transfer of Justices Licences
(a) Transfer of Licence – Ye Champion of Wales, Meeting Street, Appledore – RESOLVED – No objection.
(b) Transfer of Licence – Local Plus – 2 Golf Links Road, Westward Ho! – RESOLVED –
(Vote – Unanimous)
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