Ordinary meeting minutes 5/11/2012





Minutes of the Ordinary Meeting of Penshurst Parish Council held on Monday 5 November 2012 at 7.30 pm in Fordcombe Village Hall



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






2. MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 1 October 2012, having been circulated, were approved and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of interests in agenda items


If a Member has a disclosable pecuniary interest in an item of business this must be declared at the start of the meeting, unless dispensation has been granted. The member may not participate in any discussion, vote or discharge any function related to that business.
Non-pecuniary interests may be declared at this point if not already registered. Members with a non-pecuniary interest may speak on the subject if members of the public can do so but may not vote. NONE




KCCllr Lake confirmed the salt bin for Glebelands had been ordered and would be delivered, the provision of one for Smarts Hill was being discussed, either the existing unit half way down the hill would be re-sited or a new unit would be provided at the top of the hill. The post was in for the interactive road sign which would be delivered as soon as possible, Cllr Lake had requested a unit that indicated the speed of the vehicle but was unsure which model was being provided.
Photos of problems with local roads were tabled at the meeting and would be emailed to the clerk to pass to Highways for action.
Clerk to contact Jim Latheron regarding the standard of the surface on the pavement in Glebelands which had recently been treated for weeds but no further work undertaken.






SE/12/02634: Gate Cottage, The Lane, Fordcombe: Demolition of existing shed and garage, erection of new garage and garden room. PC Support


SE/12/02710: 1 Well Place Cottages, Penshurst: Single storey rear extension. PC Support


SE/12/02795/LBC: Old Surrenden, Walters Green Road, Penshurst: Replace flat roof on existing rear dormer window with pitched roof, repair pitched tile roofing, replace metal windows to two front dormer windows with hardwood windows, replace plastic rainwater goods with metal rainwater goods.


SE/12/02792: Tall Trees, Smarts Hill, Penshurst: Demolition of existing dwelling replaced with a proposed single dwelling with detached garage.




SE/12/02109/110LBC: Finches, Chiddingstone Hoath, Edenbridge: Minor alterations to Finches, the demolition of a side garage and the erection of a two storey extension and glazed entrance hall. Creation of new access, driveway and carport off Coldharbour Road. LBC & Planning Permission




SE/12/01565: 5 Bottle House Cottages, Coldharbour Road, Penshurst: Demolition of existing rear single storey extension. Erection of new larger single storey rear extension. GRANTED


SE/11/02258: Land SW of Forge Garage, High Street, Penshurst, Kent TN11 8BU: Erection of Six Affordable Dwellings with associated access and landscaping works as amended by revised plans and documents received on 13.3.12. GRANTED


SE/12/00946: 1-8 Beckets Field, Penshurst: The erection of 10 affordable dwellings at Beckets Field, Penshurst. REFUSED


SE/12/02301: Yew Tree Cottage, The Lane, Fordcombe: Demolish existing conservatory. Erection of single storey conservatory to be located on side of property. REFUSED


Re: SE/12/02005: Place Farm Barn, Penshurst: Notification from SDC of change of Case Officer, now being dealt with Joanna Russell.


Re: SE/12/02184: St. John The Baptist Church, Rogues Hill, Penshurst: Erection of single storey extension to the north wall of the tower, improvements to existing drainage and adjustment to paving levels to the south. Application no longer valid.




a. Warren/Bottle House Allotments: In view of the poor condition of some of the plots a further inspection would be undertaken and clerk would write to the allotment holders of those considered to be in need of attention.



b. Play Area: Forge Field Affordable Housing Site (Planning Ref: SE/11/02258): Discussion deferred until timing of programme for project known in view of possible judicial review in relation to planning permission granted.



c. Broadband: Survey finalised, Fordcombe and Penshurst Primary Schools circulating to parents via email system, both village magazines including survey in centre of November publications as ‘pull out‘, hard copies made available in Penshurst Post Office and Doctors’ surgery. Collection facilities agreed with Penshurst Post Office and Fordcombe Chafford Arms available until end November. Councillors asked to circulate to any clubs/associations they have email access to.






a. Kent County Councillor: Cllr Lake confirmed he would continue to oppose the possible expansion of Gatwick, he would arrange for paperwork relating to this to be provided for the Clerk to distribute to the council who would discuss the issue at a future meeting. The drains had been cleared in Glebelands but this would need to be repeated in view of the number of leaves having subsequently fallen, it was noted that the road had sunk which increased the problem. Cllr Lake had met with Alan Riley and the clerk regarding the swathe cutting contract. Lengthsman would be provided for one day for the parish. KCC would be recommending the planning application relating to Fordcombe School for approval, the provision of zigzag lines outside the school area was being suggested, the police would be responsible for the enforcement relating to these. An article to be placed in the parish magazine regarding this. High friction surface not yet completed in Penshurst. Defibrillators were being provided for both village halls, it was hoped these could be purchased from the Fire Brigade who also provided training.



b. Sevenoaks District Councillor: No report



c. KALC: Meeting scheduled for 9 November 2012.



d. Alms Houses: The current vacancy was being advertised in the Penshurst News. An order had been placed for maintenance work to a window in one of the units, quotes were being sought for further work.



e. Neighbourhood Watch: Although no crimes had been reported to the police in either Penshurst or Fordcombe it was noted that a electric fence unit had been stolen from one farm, the landowner had not reported this to the police due to the fact he felt it was a waste of time to do so. Crops of apples had been stolen from orchards in Penshurst, Fordcombe and Bough Beech during a night in October. The ability to steal items from cars accessed via use of equipment cloning remote control units had been reported, although not locally. Parishioners were reminded not to provide bank or credit card details over the telephone to cold callers.



f. Speedwatch: Cllr Broadhead confirmed that 22 people had now been trained, SDC now provided training which made the process easier. Six areas were being covered as follows, team leaders in brackets: New Road (Dianne Broad), Glebelands/Fordcombe Road (Claire Rees), Penshurst School (Rowena Turrell), Rogues Hill (Peter Johnson), Doubleton Lane (Michaela Gall), and Fordcombe (Dick Fry). An allowance to fund the equipment had been made in the precept figures.





Highways Seminar (8 October): Meeting held to provide opportunity for parishes to register comments on current quality/level of work provided by county, parish representatives explained clearly their opinions! Current level of complaints regarding swathe cutting was advised by county officer as standing at 1%, ie with 300 parishes in Kent, only three had registered a complaint, the accuracy of this figure was questioned! The negativity of responses by officers to requests for help was unacceptable, request was made that problems be solved with common sense and practical basic solutions which could be funded rather than automatic refusal to act. Direct contact for clerks with their ’Stewards’ (previously called Highway Engineers) to continue, this was welcomed as many of them had many years experience and knew their areas.



a. Penshurst School Access: Clerk to contacted county for extra signage. (Reported under Ref: 49300) Response received from Steven Noad that he would visit site on Wednesday to see what signage might be available to use to warn drivers of pedestrians in the road.


b. Reported Faults Update:


Ref: 43360: Culvert outside Alms Houses, Rogues Hill. Work scheduled for completion during week commencing 4 November 2012. Detailed information provided regarding location of problem and telephone number of contact for assistance if required.


Ref: 46452: Hedge cutting Speldhurst Road. Highways officer confirmed landowners had been contacted to cut back overhanging hedges, resident had contacted highways regarding outstanding work required.


Ref: 46441: Poundsbridge Church Parking: Posts installed to deter parking, parishioner advised.


Ref: 46053: Potholes/poor road condition near Palmers Farm, Coopers Lane. Website indicates work completed.


17419697: Coach Road Bridge Public Bridleway SR546: Slight movement of 9mm measured. Movement on bridge and loss of brickwork from underneath culvert reported to highways Ref. 17419697. Mr Munn, PROW Manager for Kent confirmed all relevant affected landowners written to with suggested way forward, issue being monitored, Parish Council to be advised of any further progress by Mr David Munn, PROW.


Ref: 49302: Missing cat’s eye reported to KCC, website indicates being investigated on 30 October. Clerk to advise a number of cat’s eyes were now missing from the stretch of road.


Ref: 49751: Lack of zigzag signs outside Fordcombe Primary school reported. Confirmation received from Steven Noad that he would be happy to progress issue if funding could be secured, to assist provision consultation with local residents and the school would help.


Ref: 49299/49750: Fordcombe Road junction with Glebelands – Primary School: puddling adjacent to pavement causing problems for pedestrian using route to school. Website indicates issue being investigated on 11 October. Further photos forwarded the highways.


Ref: 49301: Poundsbridge Lane edging/gravel replacement and possible plastic warning posts adjacent to deep ditches. Website indicates on 30 October that works being planned.




The following accounts were presented and approved for payment:
Mr I Streeter Lengthsman £86.00
RIP Cleaning Services Dog Waste Removal £43.20
South East Water Public Convenience Water £13.86
South East Water Warren Lane Allotments £2.80
Southern Water Public Toilet Wastewater Drainage £36.89
Sevenoaks District Council Public Toilet Rates £435.00
Complete Weed Control Fordcombe Village Weed Clearance £170.80
Oast & Oak Services Churchyard Mowing/Maintenance £1,765.00
Goldservice Contract Cleaning Ltd Public Toilet Cleaning Contract £243.28



a. Precept 2013/2014: Preliminary figures provided for members with a breakdown on the costs of the public toilets, fun day and bulk freighter.
Information received from SDC that attendance at last bulk freighter was 12 for Fordcombe and 6 for Penshurst, allowance made in precept figures for three visits, Leigh interested in increasing visits to four per annum but Penshurst consider three sufficient at present.
A discussion took place on the future of the public toilets and the high cost to parishioners. Clerk to provide article for parish magazines requesting opinion from parishioners on retaining the facility, general consensus of councillors was that cost of unit was too high with little local use.
Consideration to be given to build up of fund for future repairs/renewal of play equipment, also appointment of inspector to regularly inspect site (Pallet Handling). Clerk to check costings with Playdale for inspection/repairs.
Possible purchase of rubbish bin to aid Lengthsman’s duties, clerk to check with Dunbrik they will collect sacks from new site behind gate.
Clerk to include funding for Play Place youth facilities ie use of Fordcombe Village Hall.
Clerk to provide list of items requiring storage in the KCC Archive facility to county office. Cllr Campbell would assist with catalogue of minute books/ledgers.



Future Parish Swathe Cutting: Meeting held with Alan Riley (Jacobs for KCC), KCCllr Peter Lake, representatives of Leigh, Chiddingstone Causeway, Hever, Cowden and Penshurst Parishes on 9 October. Current KCC contract due to expire, exact date not known. Existing costs for one swathe cut for Penshurst £710 per annum. Preliminary discussion indicates possibility of parishes taking over contract themselves either by
a: appointing new KCC contractor to do extra cuts if quality of workmanship acceptable or
b: appointing own contractor to carry out work under parish authorisation.
Contractor, if appointed by parish must hold necessary insurance cover and work would be subject to inspection by county to ensure standard is maintained! Further information to be provided by Mr Riley when available.




a. Parishioner: Acknowledgement of letter of welcome to parish after recent boundary alteration.


b. KCC: Public Consultation Document in respect of Lady Boswell’s Primary School.


c. KALC: Notification of 65th Annual General Meeting


d. SDC: Information relating to the current problems with ash trees can be found on http://www.forestry.gov.uk/chalara




a. 2013 Meetings: Penshurst: 4 February, 2 April, 3 June, 5 August, 7 October, 2 December. Meetings to commence at 7.45 pm at Penshurst venue only.


Fordcombe: 4 March, 8 April (Annual Parish Assembly), 7 May, 1 July, 2 September, 4 November.



b. Penshurst Rectory Hedge: Clerk to write to Diocese providing information on highway requirements relating to hedgecutting, current hedge overgrown to such an extent, despite repeated requests for same to be cut back to original line, no safe walking area available to pedestrians.



c. Fordcombe Village Hall: Meeting scheduled for Thursday, Cllr Townsend to attend.


Meeting concluded at 9.05 pm                                                    Next Meeting 3 December 2012