Ordinary Meeting Minutes 4/07/2011



Minutes of the Ordinary Meeting of Penshurst Parish Council held on Monday 4 July 2011 at 7.30 pm in Fordcombe Village Hall

1. PRESENT: Cllrs J Cass (Chairman), Mrs D Broad, J Broadhead, A Campbell, I Carson (Part), J Horsford, J O’Shea, B Townsend


APOLOGIES: Cllr S Frederick, SDCllr P Cooke, KCCllr P Lake (Cllr Carson advised late arrival)


2. MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 6 June 2011, having been circulated were approved and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of Interest in Agenda Items
If a Member has a prejudicial interest, this should be declared at the start of the meeting.
Personal interests may be declared at this point or alternatively can be declared at the time when the specific item is being discussed, if a Member wishes to speak on an item in which s/he has a personal interest. NONE


In response to a question on the affordable housing project the Chairman advised no date had been given for submission of the planning application but it was proposed the documentation would be made available to the parishioners following its publication. This display would be in Penshurst Village Hall for a period of time – hopefully a day or two – prior to commencement of the meeting. One hour of the meeting would be made available for comment.
Members were asked to be aware of the possibility of WKHA making provision for further development of Forge Field to facilitate targets they were required to meet for affordable housing.
Faulty handrailing on the bridge leading from The Warren to Salmans Farm was reported.




SE/11/01437: Bridge House, Rogues Hill, Penshurst: Removal of existing single storey rear extension and erection of two storey rear extension with covered balcony and single storey side entrance hall. No Comment


SE/11/00994/5: Lakesview, Penshurst Road, Penshurst: Revision to planning permission and LBC SE/10/02239/42LBC – Demolition of existing house, construction of replacement house, refurbishment of outbuildings attached to walled garden to form ancillary accommodation, incorporating the construction of a partial basement for storage, and three underground car docks. GRANTED
SE/11/01045: Lane Cottage, The Lane, Fordcombe: Extension to house replacing existing extension, replacement of existing double garage and stable with new in slightly different location, change of use of garage to pool room. SDC advise application no longer valid, therefore not currently under consideration.


SE/10/03360: Sapperton, Chafford Lane, Fordcombe: Remodelling existing bungalow to include removal of existing conservatory to rear and porch to front. Erection of single storey rear extension and new porch to front. New pitched roof with raised ridge height to provide 3 bedrooms and a bathroom with two dormer windows to the rear elevation and four roof windows to front elevation. (PC Planning Application Response – No Comment)


SE/11/00600: Clifton, Chafford Lane, Fordcombe: Demolition of existing garage and erection of replacement garage. (PC Planning Application Response: The PC have no objection to this application, especially in view of the condition of the existing garage which appears unstable.)


a. The Bottle House: Cllr Campbell advised clerk site visit had taken place, members agreeable to permitting introduction of gate under condition that it is used only for emergency access and Bottle House are liable for use of same. Clerk had written to public house representative advising conditions required and approximate cost of legal agreement, response was awaited.


b. Leigh Barrier: Options of 12 and 14 July provided for visit dates, Clerk awaiting confirmation of final date and time


c. Hedges: Clerk was given the name and telephone number of the landowner for the area from Mitre Farm to the hospital, clerk to check on Fordcombe Lodge ownership and approach owner to cut back hedging. Land between the two bridges in Penshurst now cleared of vegetation to provide pedestrian access.


d. Speedwatch: Cllr Broadhead reported messages had been left with Tonbridge Police for Nigel Rowe to contact him but a response was still awaited. KALC had advised that a nation wide speed review had been undertaken the previous year in connection with the proposed 20MPH limit in villages. Cllrs Broadhead and Carson had arranged for speeding to be on the next agenda for the KALC meeting and they would also be meeting with councillors from Hartfield who had undertaken a project in their parish.


e. Library Bus: Cllr O’Shea advised Judith Wilson would speak with mothers regarding the parking arrangements on Library days, situation to be monitored.


f. Bottle Bank: Cllr Campbell advised that the public house was no longer able to provide space for the bottle bank and collection lorry due to heavier demand on its car park. Cllr Mrs Broad to speak with Ben Thomas to ask if another site could be made available.


g. Paddock Close: Cllrs O’Shea confirmed that the complaint by residents regarding the electricity/ telephone poles was justifiable. Cllr Townsend provided contact detail information of Open Reach for Cllr O’Shea to action the matter.


h. Footpath: Cllr Mrs Broad confirmed the footpath at Walters Green by the cottages was blocked and a sign was missing, one indicating private property had been introduced. Clerk to report to PROW. Cllr Mrs Broad had reported problems with the footpath near Ring Time to Nicky Biddall and noted that the surface works required to the bridle path bridge had still not been undertaken.


a. Swaylands: Mr Sellings advised sales were good with only one unit left in the main house and two of the four remaining units in Woodgate under offer. The Monkey Puzzle tree was being felled, this had honey fungus. The builders had virtually finished, there being one small office left. There were ongoing problems with the car parking arrangements for the NGS open days. The sewage works were being upgraded.


b. Kent County Councillor: Cllr Lake offered apologies for the meeting and provided email information for clerk. Further information awaited on double white lining near Doubleton Lane, it was reported that the current white lines/cats’ eyes did not appear to be in the centre of the road.


KHS have issued notification of ditching, verge repairs and patch in Poundsbridge Lane starting 24 October. Cllr Lake also approaching the new team regarding an inspection of the other lanes affected by the road closures.
Rural swathe grass will be cut by KHS once a year in future, visibility splays will be cut 2-3 times a year. Urban grass will be cut eight time a year, it is possible PC’s will have to arrange additional cuts and pay a contractor for the work. Chairman to drive the parish with Mike Gilbert and provide list of visibility problem areas for clerk to report.
Cllr Lake advised he had received a number of complaints from residents regarding the closure of the toilets.


Cllr Carson arrived.


c. Sevenoaks District Councillor: No report


d. KALC: Cllr Broadhead reported that grant monies were still available and that it was beneficial for parishes to include projects as part of their neighbourhood plans and include discussions of same in the minutes when applying for grants. With regard to public toilets, he noted that other parishes in the same situation had obtained the cheapest contractor available and covered the charges via the precept.


e. Alms Houses: Residents’ problems continued to be addressed.


f. Neighbourhood Watch: Cash had been stolen from a Penshurst property. Access over a stile for an elderly angler had been a problem, a nearby gate had been removed which could be used instead.




Interactive Road Signs: Clerk advised Paul Thrower would advise on provision of temporary unit. Data received from previous installation of temporary unit in Fordcombe Road, Penshurst. Permanent unit at Fordcombe reported for repairs to LED display under Ref. 10005497 – website indicates issue resolved, data still awaited.


White Lining: 10004831/32 (Colliers Land and Rogues Hill) due to be completed by August. Aziz Jiwaji confirms that the roundels will not be provided due to the fact that KHS are only able dealing with issues on safety critical sites where further casualties are to be reduced, this is not considered to be such a site and neither is Long Bridge.
It had been noted that road marking introduced in Fordcombe since the resurfacing appeared to be incorrect. White lining was not in the right place, new cats’ eyes were coming unstuck, yellow lines at the exit of The Lane appeared to be the wrong length ie 6 metres up the road and 12 down. Some drain covers were up to four inches below road level. (Reported under No. 29233).


Glebelands: Problems with pavement surface running adjacent to numbers 11 – 16 reported to Jim Latheron’s department, SDC checking whether work had been completed.


Overgrown Hedges: Letters forwarded to residents with properties along Fordcombe Road asking that overgrown hedging be cut back to improve safety of pedestrians, at date of preparation of agenda this area had been cut back.


Pavement: Length from Glebelands towards school reported as difficult to negotiate with push chairs/wheelchairs due to uneven surface – Ref. 28134. Highways officer had attended site to measure levels on pavement, these were within allowable limits. Highways Officer would be happy to meet resident/clerk on site to discuss issue.


The following were presented and approved for payment.


Mr I Streeter Lengthsman 86.00
RIP Cleaning Services Dog Waste Removal 54.00
Oast and Oak Penshurst Churchyard Mowing 900.00
D Geal Contractors Ltd Fordcombe Play Equipment Installation 2458.38
Pallet Handling Ltd Fordcombe Play Equipment Installation 3283.20


a. Public Conveniences: Clerk contacted SDC requesting access to facility for councillors. Cleaning costs obtained plus estimate of utility costs. A number of individuals and organisations had contacted the clerk and other parish, district and county councillors regarding the closure; these include private individuals from within the parish and outside (Sevenoaks, Bromley, Dartford), ramblers/walkers, cycle organisations together with feedback via parishioners from bus drivers, lorry drivers etc. At the time of the survey of village facilities, of those submitting returns approximately 75% felt the parish needed public toilets, this was based on 141 returns.
Estimates indicate an annual cost of the facility of approximately £5000. Allowance had been made in the precept for the current year of £3K to be paid to SDC in an attempt to keep the facility open, it was therefore financially possible to open the unit for the remainder of the year. Meeting arranged for 11 July at 10 am to inspect premises.


b. Quarterly Accounts: Circulated for information together with copy of current precept calculations for new councillors information. These were noted.


c. HMRC: Clerk advised members that the HMRC had instructed all Parish Councils to treat clerks, whether self employed or not, as employees. It would therefore be necessary for the clerk to set up an account with HMRC and deduct tax at source during the year from her salary rather than as previously with the clerk being responsible for her own tax and national insurance.




a. SDC: Local Development Framework – Core Strategy Adoption published document. Available on www.sevenoaks.gov.uk/ldf


b. KALC: Information regarding Councillors’ Conference at Lenham Community Centre, 23 July 2011.


c. KCC: Information regarding Superfast Broadband Pilot Fund


d. Kent Fire & Rescue: Service Performance Plan 2011/12 www.kent.fire-uk.org


e. Kent Highways: Email providing information on recent staff restructuring.


f. KCC: Consultation on Kent Minerals and Waste Development Framework – proposed sites. www.kent.gov.uk/mwdf




a. Salt Bins: The Spotted Dog were willing to fund the provision of a salt bin at their site, clerk to check situation with regard to provision of salt for forthcoming winter.


b. Penshurst Church Path: Cllr Mrs Broad noted that the repairs had been undertaken and anticipated they would improve visually as they weathered in.