Minutes of the Monthly Meeting of Hanborough Parish Council
At the Annual Meeting of the Hanborough Parish Council held at 7.15 pm on Tuesday 14 June 2011
in the Methodist Church Chapel, the following were present:
Mr Peter Brittin (Chair)
Mrs Gill Battams Mr Hugh Burton
Dr Peter Hacking Mr Steve Griffiths
Mrs Laura Rostron Mr Michael Rogers
Mrs Janet Witcomb Mr Colin Dingwall (District Councillor)
In Attendance: Mrs Frances Hancox, Clerk; Mr Adrian Edwards, Finance Officer.
Members of the Public Attending: 15 members of the public were present.
20. Apologies for Absence.
Mr George Gasiorowski, County Councillor Mrs Louise Chapman. District Councillor Mr Toby
21. Declarations of Interest.
Mr Michael Rogers: (personal) as PC Representative on the HPFA Management Committee.
Mrs Laura Rostron: (personal) in respect of membership of the HPFA.
Mrs Janet Witcomb: (personal) in respect of Cottsway Housing Association garage tenancy,
Allotment tenancy, family member application for Hanborough Affordable Housing.
22. Minutes of the Last Meeting.
Agreed: Members approved the Minutes of the Meeting of 11 May 2011 as an accurate record of
the meeting with the amendment that Mr Hugh Burton and Dr Peter Hacking were not present:
their apologies had been correctly recorded.
23.1. Mr Trevor Askew, Head of Environmental and Commercial Services, WODC.
The Chairman welcomed Mr Askew who had recently taken up this post with WODC.
Mr Askew explained that he was committed to meeting local councillors in as many different wards
as a priority in order to introduce the range of his department’s responsibilities which included the
Disposal of waste and recycling materials now achieving an increase of 66% in recycling
rates. The new service contractor was May Gurney,
Street cleaning and grounds maintenance
Responsibility for assets including building maintenance and planning maintenance
District engineering services which included more focussed work since 2007 in clearing
ditches as flood prevention.
23.2. District preparation for extreme winter weather conditions:
John Parkinson had contacted parishes about ways in which they and WODC together could
become more proactive in dealing with effects of severe winter weather. If parishes installed extra
grit bins obtained from OCC, then WODC could offer cheap wheeled bins in which to store grit
during the main part of the Year.
The District Council was looking to support communities responding to the challenge of ‘The Big
Society’ in becoming more self sufficient
Mr Askew hoped to learn what services the parishes received and areas in which parishes provided
their own or extra services such as grass cutting.
WODC now offered parishes extra services as a contractor.
23.3. Recycling Issues.
A number of communities in addition to Hanborough had issues about the location and
maintenance of a Bring Site.
Mr Askew’s task was to make sure all sites were maintained in good order to preclude
complaints about loose, unsightly rubbish.
WODC would be reviewing all sites and issues in order to frame a new policy.
Residents of Riely Close pointed out that they not only had to look at a messy environment
but were disturbed by dumping of bottles late at night.
Mr Rogers reported that a recent deposit of cardboard was clearly marked as trade waste.
Mr Askew emphasised that WODC would pass detailed complaints to the enforcement
team which was committed to following up any dumping contravening regulations.
Residents reported that bags of clothing were being left by the Riely Close shoe bins.
Members noted that the clothing bin had been removed to create more space. Because it
was not a WODC recycling bin it could be moved at short notice.
District Councillor Mr Dingwall was taking forward his initiative to find an alternative site.
Mr Askew wished Bring Sites to function in such a way that did not cause problems to the
communities hosting them. He would be reviewing the disposition of site over the whole of
24. Report of District Councillor.
Councillor Mr Dingwall reminded members that during the past few months collection rates of
waste for recycling had improved from 31% to 64% which raised the question whether bring sites
would need to be retained if household waste was taken at the kerbside collections. Trade waste
was arranged separately.
Cottsway was including a space for a bring site in the plans proposed for a development on the field
site on the west of the station. This would be presented to WODC in September.
The site owned by Blenheim on the south west of the village adjacent to the A4095 had been
available but the cost would have been £90,000.
Agreed: Mr Askew confirmed that he would arrange a site visit to Riely Close and invite a
representative of Riely Close Residents’ Association to attend.
The Chairman thanked Mr Askew for attending the meeting.
Mr Askew left the meeting.
The 2011 Country Landowners Game Fair Traffic Management Plans: Report presented by Mr
Harry St-John (North Leigh Parish Council)and Mr Brooks-Ward, (CLA Game Fair).
The Chairman welcomed the speakers.
Mr St John and Mr Brookes-Ward were visiting parishes located on the route to Blenheim Palace to
inform them about the traffic management plans designed to free up routes to the Game Fair and
prevent a repeat of the traffic gridlock at the Fair of 2008.
The Game Fair contributed some £13 to £14 million to the local economy.
Traffic problems in 2008 had created wide-ranging problems for local businesses,
commuters, visitors and residents with hospital appointments.
A review of all aspects of traffic management had been held in 2009.
The new plan was designed to free up the key pressure points on the routes to Blenheim.
For instance visitors would be directed away from Witney as a through route and from local
The Swinford Toll Bridge would be free for the three days of the Fair.
Game Fair notices would be installed on the A4095 only between Witney and Hanborough.
In 2008 Organisers had unsuccessfully applied for Police Traffic support.
This time the CLA had paid for a considerable police presence to ensure rapid problem
Traffic lights would control flow at the Bladon end of Lower Road and opposite North
Oxford garage, providing a unified system.
Cameras and helicopters would provide extra monitoring of traffic flow.
Extra parking would be provided at the end of Lower Road with linking buses.
Gates to the Park would be wider to speed up access.
More routes had been provided. There would be main access routes but in addition more
Leaflets would alert residents to avoid traffic hot spots during the period of the Fair.
Councillor Dingwall identified two other fields might be suitable as extra park-and-ride facilities.
The organisers agreed to follow this suggestion up; they believed they had done all possible to
prevent the Game Fair causing unreasonable disruption of communities in the area.
The Chairman thanked Mr Brookes-Ward and Mr St John them for taking the time to visit
Hanborough PC and put councillors in the picture. Clearly a great deal of work had been done to
provide solutions to anticipated problems.
Mr Brooks-Ward and Mr St. John left the meeting.
26. Request from young people for improvements to the Skatepark and BMX Trail
The Chairman welcomed a group of young people interested in improving the Skatepark and BMX
In response to a letter from Charlie Atkins as the group Spokesperson, the Chairman had arranged
a site meeting to discuss the young people’s ideas.
As Spokesperson Charlie Atkins made the following points to the PC.
The Group had consulted Skatepark manufacturers about designs before contacting the PC.
The Skatepark was very popular as a facility, attracting youngsters of all ages.
However wear and tear meant that there were cracks in the concrete creating problems for
bikers, resulting in jarred wrists.
The dirt jumps on the BMX Trail were inadequate and the wrong shape.
BMX biking skills had overtaken skateboarding as the activity most enjoyed by the older
group of young people.
BMX riders expect to complete longer jumps and needed more space than skateboards.
Mixing cycling with younger skateboarders could create hazards; extending the area would
Upgrading the Skatepark to satisfy the needs of bikers would involve extending the
concrete area and installing an extra quarter pipe or half pipe such as installed in Witney
Members noted that the Supporters’ Group was keen to fund raise towards the cost of
The Group had already approached the Co-op for support from the Co-op, pointing out to managers
that improving the park would attract even more youngsters to Hanborough and further increase
the Co-op’s customer base.
Asked whether there had been accidents as a result of the space restrictions, the Group confirmed
that although bikers had experienced collisions, usually bikers and skateboarders timed their
activities organising alternative time out to share the space.
Mrs Battams had observed the number of youngsters using that the area and agreed that it needed
to be extended so that younger and older groups children did not get in each others way.
Members noted that:
The Group’s requests reflected the benefit of having the area where youngsters had been
able to build performance skill.
The Health and Safety work required would need costing and completing as soon as
Mr Griffiths pointed out that trends ten years ago delivered a Skatepark as the facility most
required; now the Parish needed to keep up with new trends. However the difference was that
Witney had more funds available from Council Tax to draw on.
Members agreed that the Group had shown admirable initiative and that the Chill-Out Fund was
designed to help initiatives for young people.
Councillor Dingwall suggested that WODC funds might be available for projects supporting
sporting activity; he would be happy to lend his support. Football clubs which were chartered could
apply for funding from Sport England: a Long Hanborough Sports Federation could be formed with
the Skatepark users as part of the membership.
The Chairman of the HPFA proposed that if the Group wanted to use the Pavilion facilities to hold
fund raising events they could use the Pavilion free of charge. The Pavilion facilities included disco
lights, MP3 system, a state of the art sound system.
The Chairman and members congratulated the Group for attending the meeting and arranging for a
Spokesperson to present their case.
On behalf of the PC the Chairman thanked Charlie and the Group for their presentation.
Agreed: The PC would follow up these requests and would keep in contact with the Group through
The group of young people left the meeting.
27. Matters Arising.
27.1. Repairs to a section of St Peter and St Paul’s Churchyard Wall. (6.2.)
The Chairman and Clerk had installed barrier fencing around the problem area in the garden
abutting the damaged section of wall. This would not prevent the wall collapsing but meant the area
was cordoned to prevent children playing near the dangerous section.
Mr Edwards was waiting for the surveyor to forward the names of 4 contractors from the to provide
quotations. Mrs Witcomb hoped that local people would be given the opportunity to bid for the
work. Mr Edwards asked Members to let him have the names of any dry stone wall specialists well
known for their work in Hanborough.
27.2. Cemetery Grey/Household Rubbish Bin. (6.5.)
The bin had been delivered.
24.3. Transfer of PC Insurance to New Provider. (8.2)
Mr Edwards confirmed that Ansvar’s quotation had been accepted as Best Value and provided
cover for the same areas of risk as the previous insurer.
27.4. Affordable Housing: Blenheim Allotments Proposed Development. (12)
Councillor Dingwall would contact Adrian Miller of Cottsway to remind Cottsway that copies of the
proposed plans for the Blenheim Allotments Development should be available for residents of Riely
Close immediately the planning application was submitted.
28. Parish Council Matters.
28.1. Resignation of Councillor: Vote of thanks to Councillor Peter Thorn.
The Chairman reported that Mr Thorn had resigned from the PC following the May meeting for
health reasons. The resulting vacancy had been known in time to be advertised in the Hanborough
and by request included in the forthcoming election. The Herald had reported Mr Thorn’s
resignation together with an appreciation of his service on the Council. Mr Thorn had offered to
remain the Parish Representative on the Woodstock NAG if that would be helpful.
Agreed: Members welcomed Mr Thorn’s offer to remain on the NAG and recorded their
appreciation of the considerable contribution he had made to the parish in his role as a Councillor.
28.2. Parish Council Election: Election Arrangements.
Members noted that the PC had arranged for the four candidates to make a brief statement about
their candidacy for display on the Parish Board. Normally candidates would arrange their own
election communication out of election expenses, but residents had contacted then Clerk pointing
out that they did not know the candidates. In the short time available before the election a 100
word statement from each candidate was the most practical solution.
28.3. HPFA Project Development Working Party matters.
28.3.1. Progress Report.
Members noted the following points:
The Development Working Party had held a total of 4 meetings to date.
The minutes of the meetings were available to read on a blog
The decision had been made to appoint a contractor/professional on behalf of the Group to
provide drawings and costings of the current plans.
These would then be presented as part of the consultation with the parish.
On the basis of this more detailed information the residents would be asked whether or not
they wished the project to go forward.
The Working Party Minutes referred to a building cost of £260,000, but that was not the
whole cost of the Project. There would be other professional costs.
The grant would be reduced in proportion to the costs
Mr Dingwall commented that WODC could be approached to agree retention of the whole
28.3.2. Proposals for PC to Approve.
A background paper from the Working Party, previously circulated, presented two proposals for PC
approval and action:
a.The PC to take advice from its solicitors on the manner in which the ownership of and
responsibility for the land, buildings and HPFA funds are currently dealt with and how that can and
should be altered given the proposed building works on the pavilion.(this advice might cost in the
region of £700.
This would clarify the position of the PC in relation to improvements to the Pavilion and liability of
the PC in relation to any loss if the Trustees PC) were to face a claim arising a s aresult of steps
taken by the HPFA Management Committee to ensure personal liability of Councillors and
members of the HPFA management Committee.
b. The PC to sanction the drawing down of some of the funds currently in the PC Village Hall
Reserve account to enable the Working Party to commission professionals such as an architect
/quantity surveyor before the WODC grant or PWB loan were available. (The amount could be
between £5,000 and £10,000).
Two firms of architects had been short listed. The Working Party wished to enter into a contract
with a selected firm for early preparation work.
Members noted that as the Working Party needed funds to be available for a forthcoming meeting
the background paper had been circulated to members with the Agenda in order to facilitate a
decision which was urgently needed.
Agreed: Without dissent the PC approved release of funds up to £5,000 to the Working Party to
enable commissioning of professional services to prepare project derails for a Parish Consultation:
relevant paper work would be submitted to the PC finance and Administration Group.
Agreed: The PC would forward the Playing Fields Trustee documents to the NALC legal team for a
Mr Griffiths confirmed that the uncertainty about the role of the full trustees and the HPFA had
existed for the past 20 years.
28.4. Facilities requested by the PC for inclusion in the design of the new village hall.
The Chairman reminded the meeting that the PC did not require an exclusive space set aside as a
parish office rather a room which could provide storage for PC papers and a space for meetings.
This could be shared equally with the HPFA but provide a regular base for the PC which could be
staffed on a number of sessions each week.
28.5. Good Neighbour Scheme.
The recruitment and publicity evening had been very timely. A disabled resident and carer had
attended and discussed the proposed Carer’s Support Group with Mrs Braybrooke-Tucker.
28.6. WODC information relating to Council Elections 2012.
Keith Butler had reminded Parishes that full council elections would be held in May 2012. Should a
casual vacancy arise during the six months prior to the elections a Parish Council was not required
to fill the vacancy by co-option. In addition at that point there would be no option for the electorate
to request an election to fill a vacancy.
29. Financial Matters.
29.1. Monthly Schedule of Accounts for Approval.
Agreed: Members approved the following schedule of accounts for payment.
29.2. Vote of Approval of the Audit Report Section 1 and 2.
a. Section 1: Accounting Statements for the Annual return.
It was proposed and seconded that the Accounting Statements be approved.
Agreed: This proposal was unanimously approved.
b. Section 2: Annual Governance Statement.
It was proposed and seconded that the Annual Governance Statement be approved.
Agreed: This proposal was unanimously approved.
29.3. Pit Area Safety: PC to retrospectively approve the Chairman’s Emergency Health and Safety
Agreed: Members retrospectively approved the payment of £480 by the Chairman to Mr Higgins,
Building Contractor, for essential emergency safety re-profiling of two areas of the adventure play
area earth bank.
The Clerk had alerted the Chairman that the Pit bank had been ‘excavated’ significantly in two
places by young people to provide more challenging runs for BMX cycles. Both areas excavated had
created a safety hazards and needed urgent rebuilding. The areas had been protected by barrier
fencing and made safe within a few days of the Chairman’s assessment.
29.4. Hanborough Show: Request for PC to underwrite the cost of booking the ‘Petting Farm’
Members noted that in addition to a new emphasis on visiting charity supporters such as ‘Help for
Heroes’, the Show had committed £595 on booking a ‘Young Animals’ Petting Farm’ to attract
families with younger children. A £505 deposit had already been paid. The Show was run as a ‘not
for profit’ community event with income from donations. Profits were donated to charities and
HPFA funds. It was unlikely that any underwritten funds would be required but it was prudent to
arrange underwriting support.
Mrs Battams reported that the attraction was professionally presented with all due insurance,
washing facilities and safety measures. Community events such as the village fireworks had initially
received underwriting support.
Agreed: The PC would underwrite the Show to the amount of £595.
29.5. Other Financial Matters for Report.
The Finance Officer confirmed that the PC had not yet received the bill for the forthcoming
Election. This was an unexpected outlay and the cost of repairing the Church Yard wall would be
significant. However, transferring the PC to a different Insurance Provider had saved over a
thousand pounds available towards defraying these extra expenditures.
30. Village Amenities.
30.1. Leisure Areas Management Report.
a.The Pit. Damage and repairs to the bank had been discussed.
b.Temporary Contract to provide holiday cover for the Play Areas Assistant.
The Clerk usually acted as substitute Play Areas Assistant to provide cover for Tom Skelly during
his holiday absence. She asked if the PC could advertise for another resident to provide the
The Clerk reported that two young people had offered to take on the task. She was taking advice
from WODC and OALC on issues relating to employing young people in order to prepare a
temporary contract. Mrs Hancox would provide a health and safety induction and the job had
already been fully risk assessed.
1. The PC would draw up an appropriate contract and provide training and induction for a
2. The PC would check whether the Parish Play Areas Inspector might be able to provide cover but
meanwhile the PC would advertise in the Herald for an interested resident willing to act as a
c. Report of an unofficial ‘Den/Shelter’ in the Pit.
Members noted the photograph circulated showing an unofficial tree and branch shelter
constructed by a group of young people next to the Skatepark. The structure was impressive and
demonstrated considerable effort and careful design to give height and strength.
However, as it was unofficial the Clerk had asked OPFA Community Development Officer for advice
on PC liability if it were retained on site or whether it should be dismantled to comply with health
and safety regulations for public play areas.
OPFA advice was as follows:
If the PC had assessed the safety of the structure and was prepared to monitor it regularly,
it could remain.
Current guidance on play areas design included an awareness that more scope for young
people’s imagination should be considered as valuable.
The provision of industrially produced, pre-formed structures as the basis for play areas
was practical but had reduced the opportunity for extended imaginative play and initiative.
The Chairman had inspected the structure and judged that it was strongly constructed and
he saw no problem with it in its present condition. Members requested that no new
branches should be torn from other trees to maintain the structure.
Agreed: Given the OPFA advice the structure would be monitored and remain on site while in a
d. Children’s’ Playground.
No high risk problems had been reported. A number of features were identified as low risk but
would need attention.
e. Multi Sports Court.
No problems reported.
Nothing to report.
30.2. Playing Fields Matters.
The HPFA had arranged another ‘It’s a Knock Out’ fund raising Competition to be held on
the Playing Fields. 10 teams had already signed up to take part.
HPFA Committee was drawing up a leaflet directory as a guide to the activities regularly
taking place in the various parish halls.
30.3. Other Village Initiatives: Community Responders’ Team.
A member of the Community Responders’ Team had recently left the village. The team was looking
to recruit a replacement member. If members knew of interested residents they should contact Mr
30.4. Digital TV Switchover Programme.
ORCC had arranged to work with Digital UK, an independent not for profit organisation formed by
broadcasters to assist Oxfordshire consumers in the conversion. The information would be posted
on the Parish Board.
32. Highways and Footpaths.
32.1. Parish Roads.
a. A 4095.
Members were concerned that cars parked on the east side of Church Road were once more
obscuring visibility for cars entering Church Road from Bladon; it was creating a hazard when cars
needed to pause at the Co-op roundabout junction.
Agreed: The Clerk would ask the PCSOs to check for parking problems and post advisory notices if
b. Proposed fencing at the Station Terrace bus stop verge.
Mr Lee J Turner, OCC Principal Traffic Technician for Traffic Advice & Design, was now in charge
of this project. He had informed the PC that the bump rail project would cost £3.5 to £4,000 and
regrettably was not yet ordered. New to the Project he found himself in a new financial year with a
very limited budget for this type of work.
Nevertheless Cllr Rodney Rose was happy for the project to go ahead the provided that the local
residents, Parish Council, and County Councillor were in support. Mr Lee had heard that providing
fencing on the Station Terrace verge would displace parked vehicles to the north side of the A4095
potentially causing a bigger problem. Given the limited budget he would not wish to have to fund
the removal of the fencing in the future.
Members were asked to confirm the support of residents and the PC for the intended work.
In discussion Members were concerned to note the cost of the project but confirmed that they
wanted the project to go ahead. District Councillor Colin Dingwall reported that an application to
develop an overflow field car park was imminent and might be submitted in September this year.
With that in mind Members made a number of suggestions.
1.The Clerk would confirm the PC’s support for installing the fencing.
2. The fencing project funds should be reserved, to be retained but deferred until the projected
overflow car park was available for commuters. The fencing could be installed at the time the car
park was installed.
3. Perhaps fencing costs could be reduced with a few smaller free standing verge wooden posts just
as outside Maws Barn, Church Hanborough, two more trees planted.
c. Lower Road.
Nothing to report.
d.Church Hanborough Matters.
Highways was installing extra verge bollards by Maws Barn at the residents’ request.
e. Footpaths and Footways.
Nothing to report.
33. Affordable Housing.
A rumour suggested that two bungalows for disabled applicants would be built on the Myrtle Farm
development. This was completely unfounded.
33.1. Steve Methven of Sovereign Housing forwarded the final plans for the development and
confirmed the following:
The development did not include bungalows.
There were 4 flats.
The one new feature in the development currently being set up was to extend and adapt a
ground floor flat to accommodate a disabled young resident.
33.2. Lesley Sherratt at WODC Housing Services confirmed that her department was exploring the
above allocation to meet a special need.
No further allocation of homes - ie those from the general needs housing list had yet been
The Housing Department would like the PC to remind residents that there was still the
opportunity for residents to put their name on the housing list to apply for a Myrtle Farm
WODC was particularly interested in applications from residents applying for shared
34. Suspension of Standing Orders.
Members voted to suspend Standing Orders so that the main business remaining on the Agenda
could be completed.
Nothing to report.
36. Cemetery Administration.
No extra matters to report.
37. Community Police Matters.
Copies of the monthly report had been distributed at the Meeting.
38. Transport Matters.
No report received.
39. Report of Clerk.
OCC would be carrying out a new survey of the trees in the Pit.
The Clerk would circulate information from OALC relating to changes in the Code of
40. Report of County Councillor.
No report received.
The Meeting ended at 9.40 pm.
Date of next meeting.
A Reminder: No ordinary meeting of the PC would be held during August.
The next ordinary meeting of the Parish Council would be held at 7.15 pm in the Welcome Room at
the Methodist Church on Tuesday 13 September 2011.
12 July 2011.