News from BATCOMBE
Playing Field - Zip Wire
The zip wire has been repaired with Mainstay Projects reconcreting the stays to prevent the flexing of the timber supports. And following the annual RoSPA safety inspection of the Play Field the zip wire can now be used again. Please note that the zip wire should only be used by one child at a time.
Ravenswood Planning Application
The planning application for extensions to Ravenswood in Westcombe would have been considered at the June Parish Council meeting on Wednesday June 7th. The Parish Council meeting took place after the deadline for public consultation but the case officer at Mendip District Council had agreed an extension to the deadline to allow the Parish Council to consider the application without calling an extraordinary meeting. This is standard practice as the consultation period is 21 days and the Parish Council meets monthly. The District Council has 8 weeks to make a decision.
Unfortunately, the Parish Council discovered shortly before the meeting that a decison to approve the application had already been made that day. The Parish Council has made a complaint to the District Council and received an apology.
Publication of Unaudited Accounts
and Commencement of the Period for the Exercise of Public Rights
The Annual Governance Statement and the Accounting Statements for the year ended 31st March 2017 were approved by the Parish Council at its June meeting and have now been published on the Audit and Transparency Code Requirements page. The Annual Return has been sent to the external auditor and the period for the exercise of public rights has commenced. This allows any interested person to inspect the Parish Council's books, invoices and receipts on reasonable notice on application to the Clerk during the period from June 16th to July 27th.
Please contact the Clerk to arrange this if you wish to do so. The Parish Council has also published its Financial Statements which give more details of the accounts than the Accounting Statements and a number of items required under the Transparency Code for Smaller Councils, which includes a list of any items of expenditure over £100.
Parish Council Vacancy
The vacancy on Batcombe Parish Council was filled by the co-option of Mary Comley at the May Parish Council meeting. The Parish Council is grateful to those willing to serve on the Council.
August Parish Council Meeting
A meeting of the Parish Council will be held on Wednesday August 3rd at 8.00pm in the Old School, Batcombe if there are planning applications to consider. Otherwise the next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Wednesday 6th September. Residents are welcome to attend. The Agenda and Minutes of the previous meeting can be downloaded from the Minutes and Agendas page a week before the meeting.
Annual Parish Meeting
The Annual Parish Meeting was held on Wednesday April 5th in the Jubilee Hall, Batcombe. A good turn out of residents came to hear a variety of reports on the previous year and to participate in our own version of "Question Time" with our MP David Warburton, County Councillor Nigel Woollcombe-Adams and District Councillor Dick Skidmore answering a range of residents' questions regarding topics of concern for Batcombe.
Icy Roads - No Pre-Salting in Batcombe
The road through Batcombe was not included on Somerset Highways' pre-salting network this winter despite the great difficulty of getting in or out of Batcombe on untreated roads in icy weather. The decision will be reviewed for next year, but results from difficulties in getting past parked cars in Kale Street.
Batcombe Telephone Kiosk
The telephone kiosk in Batcombe has not been used for a year and so BT are proposing to remove it. The Parish Council adopted the telephone kiosk in Westcombe, which is now a listed building - but do not plan to adopt the Batcombe kiosk, which is a modern replacement.
Housing Needs Survey Meeting
A parish meeting was held at 2.30pm on Saturday November 26th in the Jubilee Hall to publicise the results of the Housing Needs Survey and answer any questions that parishioners may have. A copy of the report on the Housing Needs Survey produced by the Community Council for Somerset can be downloaded by clicking on the icon below. The Survey reveals a housing need for seven people/households with strong connections to the parish, six of whom currently live in the parish. Those present at the meeting indicated their support for more affordable housing for those with connections to the parish.
Batcombe Parish Housing Needs Survey - F[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [1.3 MB]
There is still one vacant allotment and if anyone in Batcombe or one of our neighbouring parishes is interested in renting these allotments, please contact the Clerk. The rent for an allotment is £35 for the year and a copy of the allotment holder's tenancy agreement can be downloaded from the Allotments page.
Somerset County Council - New Telephone Number
0300 123 2224 is now the single telephone number for all enquiries to Somerset County Council. This number replaces the previous 0845 numbers including the number for reporting safety defects on the roads.
Priority Services Register
Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution have a Priority Services Register for anyone who needs electricity for home medical equipment, or who is disabled, has a young baby or receives a state pension. Those on the Register are promised support during a power cut. To register call 0800 294 3259 from a landline or 0345 072 1900 from a mobile or see the webpage for more details of the Register: www.ssepd.co.uk/PriorityServices/
Details of all applications the Council considers can be found by following the link to the District Council's planning search page from the Planning Applications page.
Guide to Information Available from the Parish Council
The Freedom of Information Act requires the Parish Council to publish "A Guide to the Information Available from the Parish Council." Now that the Council has a website, this guide is available to download from the Parish Council Documents page along with the Parish Council's Standing Orders and other policies and papers that the Parish Council is required to publish.
Playing Field - Zip Wire & Basket Swing
The zip wire in the Playing Field had to be immobilised for safety reasons. Repairs have now been made and the zip wire will be back in use once a safety inspection has taken place in June.
Unfortunately the Parish Council has had to remove the basket from the basket swing as the frame (re-used from the original swings installed in the 1950s) is unable to cope with the strain caused by the basket swing being used by large numbers of people.