Minutes 23/02/11

A meeting of the parish council was held on Wednesday 23 February 2011 at Diddlebury Village Hall. 

Present:  Councillors Linton, Bellamy, Mrs Fowler, Mrs Husband, Longmore, Povall, Thomas, Mrs Worthington, and six members of the public. Apologies had been received from Councillor Hedgley and Shropshire Councillor Mrs Motley.

 Apart from matters described in paras 5 and 7 below there were no declarations of interest.

In the public forum the Parish Plan was discussed. Councillor Bellamy (who is the chairman of the Parish Plan Steering Group) explained that David Francis and Ross Stokes were working on the Parish Design Statement which would in due course set out desired characteristics for new buildings.  He described briefly how the current Parish Plan had been prepared. There would be a new version and a flyer would appear in the March edition of the Corvedale News, to be followed by an article in the April edition. There would be a Parish Plan meeting on the following night.

The council then moved to the formal agenda.

Minutes of the previous meeting

1         Draft minutes of the previous two meetings had already been circulated. In para 3 of the minutes of the meeting held on 26 January 2011 the third sentence should read “Shropshire Council will set up a Rural Toolkit which will deal, inter alia, with the “hub” concept and a consultation for the Parish Plan, and this will probably be in May”. Para 10: in the last sentence”in Mill Lane” should read “on the B4368”; para14 should read “….there were 26 households in Shropshire which have Corvedale connections and are seeking affordable housing in the area”. Subject to these amendments the minutes of the meeting held on 26 January and the extraordinary meeting held on 3 February were approved as being correct and were signed by the Chairman.

Matters arising

2         Generally: the clerk had had no response to his questions about various highway matters although members noted that the pothole in the car park outside the village hall had been filled in and the 30mph sign in Bache Mill Lane had been repaired (para 10). Para 18: the clerk had written to Royal Mail but to date had received no reply. Para 19: Councillor Longmore had attended to the bus shelter.


Unitary Council Report

3         Mrs Motley was not present to give a report but she had telephoned the clerk earlier that day. She had referred to the Rural Toolkit mentioned in para 1 above. The Local Joint Committee meeting on 20 July would be in Diddlebury and it was hoped that this could be held out of doors if the weather permitted.  It would deal inter alia with sustainable housing.

She was concerned about the future of Corvedale School. Although this was “safe” under the current review of schools she feared that it might not be in a few years’ time if there were a further review. She thought it would be a good idea if the school explored the possibility of a “Federation” with Onny School, which is scheduled for closure.


4         The balance at the bank as at 14 February 2011was £6,090.97 (no adjustment required).


5         No objections were raised to applications for consent for extensions and alterations to Mill House, Bache Mill Lane (11/00277/FUL). Councillor Mrs Fowler declared an interest in this application. 

6         Members were content with a proposal to erect a new garage block with room over at The Old Vicarage, Diddlebury (10/00488/FUL) and a new garage and stores at Forge Cottage, Westhope, but, in respect of the latter application, asked for a condition to be imposed to prevent these new buildings from being converted to living accommodation (11/00524/FUL).

7         Whilst members had no objection in principle to the erection of a new agricultural building at Corfton Farm, Corfton, they considered that the siting of the building was inappropriate and should be moved to the north-west side of the existing complex and therefore objected to the proposal. Councillor Povall declared an interest in this application (11/00150/FUL).

8         Councillor Mrs Husband suggested that when planning applications were made the clerk could spread the plans and other documents out on tables for about ten minutes for members to examine before the formal meeting started. It was agreed that this should be done in future.

Environment and Highways

9         Councillor Longmore had met Chris Jackson from Shropshire Council Highways the previous day and had been told that there would be no changes to infrastructure to alleviate potential flooding problems.

10     Shropshire Council had sent the clerk a copy of a poster which asked for volunteers to become “Flood Monitors”. Whilst Members thought this was a good idea they thought it would be helpful if SC could indicate where they required monitors: as flooding was such a localised issue it would not be very helpful if these monitors lived some distance from known trouble spots. The clerk pointed out that the Flood Forum had already identified these places for SC and he will write to SC accordingly (AP – clerk).

11     Mr David Mason had produced a survey of the road signs on the B4368 at Diddlebury which showed that altogether there were no less than 61 of them. He, and members of the council who live in Diddlebury, will examine these in detail with a view to making recommendations as to which could be removed or consolidated (AP – relevant members).

Other Reports

12     Councillor Bellamy reported on the recent Local Joint Committee meeting which had taken place at Craven Arms. The main issue discussed had been safety on the B4368. The new police inspector had been there, and he had said, inter alia, that it would not be possible to introduce a 40mph section before the 30mph section going in to Craven Arms. As for the more local section of the road there were now signs indicating farm exits near where the most recent fatal accident had occurred. An education campaign was to be introduced for bikers. Councillor Bellamy’s general impression was, however, that little progress had been made since the last public meeting on the subject some 5-6 years ago.



13     The following correspondence has been received:

  • A letter from Phillips & Co solicitors about money held by them. It is thought that this had probably come from the Diddlebury Village Hall Committee and not the council: the clerk is obtaining clarification.  The Chairman undertook to provide the Village Hall Treasurer with copies of any relevant correspondence held by the previous treasurer.
  • The clerk had written to Philip Dunne MP about the proposed capping of parish councils’ precepts (see minutes of meeting for 3 February at para 2) Mr Dunne had replied to say that he had in turn written to the Minister on the council’s behalf.
  • A request from Mr Dunne to write to Ofcom about their proposals for increasing completion in the supply of broadband. Member commented that the most important restriction on connection speeds in rural areas was the relatively poor quality and length of lines from the local exchanges.  The clerk will write to Ofcom accordingly.
  • An email from SC about the holding of street parties


Other matters

14     Councillor Mrs Fowler said there had been two thefts of oil from houses in Bache Mill Lane. There was contradictory advice as to the advisability of locking oil tanks.

15     Councillor Longmore said that the bus shelter in Mill Lane required maintenance: in the past Mr Brian Griffiths had done this and the council had reimbursed him for materials. The bus shelter at Corfton also required attention (the clerk would look into this) and there had been complaints about the parking of vehicles in the lay-by there which had meant that the school buses had had to stop in the road.

16     Members agreed that the way that the room was now laid out for meetings was an improvement.

17     Next meeting

18     The next ordinary meeting will take place on Wednesday 23 March 2011 at Westhope Village Hall. The public forum will be at 7 30pm and will be followed by the formal meeting.

As there was no further business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 9 20pm.


A member of the public had requested hard copies of minutes. After a discussion a Member offered to provide them.