November 2019

Minutes of the Council meeting held on Monday 11th November 2019 at Mathern Village Hall.

Present: Councillors – D Harris (Chairman) C Ovenden (Vice Chair), D Merrett, J Anderson, J Harris, G Down, and C Morton

Also, in attendance: County Councillor L Brown
Clerk – Mrs J Kelley
No members of the Public
No Police representatives

The Chairperson welcomed Councillors to the meeting and thanked them for attending.
(i) Public Comment
Report from Community Police
18/10/19 – Report of vehicles parked up in Mounton Church car park. The caller believed that the occupants were smoking drugs. An officer attended but no offences were found. We will continue to monitor/patrol the area when able.

30/10/19 – Report of a male shoplifting candles from Pwllmeyric garden centre. Staff confronted him and he left in a vehicle. Enquiries are ongoing in a bid to identify the offender.

iii) Apologies
Apologies received from Councillors F Sainsbury, M McHugh

(iv) v) Declarations of Personal or Pecuniary Interest:
vi) Minutes of the previous meeting
Minutes of the meeting held on 14th October 2019 were agreed as true record.
There were no matters arising.

Payee Amount (£) Cheque number
SLCC Membership 122.00 102042
Stock It 90.00 102043
The R B L poppy Appeal 35.00 102044
Telephone and internet 46.49 102045
What’s on Leaflets 80.00 102046

D D Pension for October £80.48 Employee £44.71 Employer
Online Payment Salary for October £650.30
PAYE – October £187.60

Internet Payment £13.20 Stock it Ltd. License
Merlin Waste £37.50
Defib cabinet £502.80

Monthly Bank Reconciliation – authorisation by Cllr G Down

Discussion on 3 Year Forecast – A list of suggestions was distributed and updated with Cllrs ideas for future event-planning. This will be used at the December meeting when setting the precept for 2020/2021.

Budget sheets distributed for precept setting in December. Updated figures were distributed to enable to Cllrs to attend the December meeting with a good idea of spending to date.

Clerks pension: an invoice and report has been received from Albert Goodman the administrators of our Smart Pension. This report had not been requested. Cllr D Harris to ring them and ask why they completed the report without our prior agreement.

i) Response from MCC re Bus timetables at bus shelter, Pwllmeyric – Dog Waste Bin
Dog bin siting has been agreed and will be installed shortly.
MCC advised that bus time notices are not now installed as it expects the public to use Smart apps to check timetables. Cllrs were disappointed with this as most elderly passengers wouldn’t have the means to have such apps installed on their phones.

ii) Defibrillator connection – Mounton Brook Lodge.

Defibrillator now installed here and entered on Welsh Ambulance data base.
CPR training to be arranged at Mounton Brook Lodge for 28th November 2019 at 6.30 pm.

iii) Pricing from Gwent archive for storage of Archive material.

The service is free and once the digital copies have been produced, the archive box from Mathern School will be placed with them.

iv) Response from MCC re Community Council letter re. planning issues.

A meeting has been arranged with Head of Planning to discuss Community Council concerns re. Planners apparently inappropriate actions with certain planning applications. Meeting agreed for Tuesday 19th November at MCC Head Office in Usk.
Cllr D Harris, Cllr C Ovenden and County Councillor L Brown to attend.

v) Response from Police re public concerns re parking and speeding issues in Mathern Village.

CPO A Jones has forwarded issues to Graham Kinsella who is the traffic and road safety manager for MCC, as follows:
“He is going to investigate the flashing light / 20 speed limit side of things so if you want an update, it is probably best if you contact his department. The road layout is an issue where the Nursery is concerned as it is a narrow stretch of road with no restrictions on parking etc. If you do see an obstruction, please contact 101 at the time and if an officer is available he/she can attend. We will try to patrol at the peak times as stated going forward. “
vi) Quote for Bench repairs

Still awaited

57/19 Highways
• Footpaths Issues – Board Walks Bishops Mead very dangerous. MCC do not agree with this and do not have funds at present to carry out the repairs They have asked us if the Community Council would be prepared to contribute to cost. This item has been placed on the 3-year forecast
• Trees obstructing traffic calming, centre of Mathern.
• Barn Lane, opposite St Tewdric’s House – Hedges need cutting back.
• Pavement needs cleaning from Step Aside to under motorway bridge.
• Dangerous trees, Mounton – J Keech has agreed a site visit.
• Gullies – Mathern Athletic Club to Rose Cottage need clearing.
The gully cleaning in Barn Lane has not been completed as the road will need to be closed. Clerk to write to MCC Highways asking for this to be carried out.

a) One Voice Wales – Representative to be selected. Awaiting next meeting date. Lower Wye Valley Cluster Meeting Update
Next meeting is in January
Cllr D Harris attended the cluster meeting and reported that
The meeting mainly covered matter relating to Chepstow Community Hospital and local transport issues.
Chepstow Community Hospital
The future role of the hospital is seen as a Community Hospital and care centre. It will deliver services as close to home as possible with a greater focus on care packages. There will be 36 community beds only.
There will be a new Frailty Assessment Unit which will take the lead for more elderly patients. There will be four inpatient beds for this function. Blood testing facilities will be installed at the hospital.
More administration facilities will be housed at the hospital.
Welsh government has commissioned a study regarding High Beech roundabout and easing congestion in the short term. The results of this study will lead to solutions on site being carried out next year for which funding has been allocated.
Phase 1 study for the Chepstow by-pass has been carried out but there is no current funding for phase two. The estimated cost of the study is currently £1m for which Welsh Government have offered £50,000.
The A466 will again be closed for essential road works next year. It is anticipated the road will be fully closed for 6 weeks. Works are planned to start next April/May. The Council are currently looking at the possibility of keeping the road open due to adverse feedback from last years closure.

b) Defibrillator- Monthly Checking
Monthly check on the defibrillator carried out by Cllr C Morton for October. Fully functioning. Mounton Brook Lodge Defibrillator also checked and in full working order.

c) GAVO Proud of Your Community Gwent Awards scheme.
MMPVB advised that a bronze award was given in both categories entered.
Cllrs to read the reports issued by MMPVB and discuss any possible feedback to GAVO.
d)County Councillor’s Report
County Councillor Brown advised:
County Council on the 24th of October 2019
• The County Council covered various matters at the last county council meeting including a climate emergency strategy and modern-day slavery and exploitation protocol, the motion on Mounton House School was postponed due to being within the statutory notice consultation. The full agenda can be found in the following link:
Planning –Monmouthshire County Council’s approach in relation to future development
Monmouthshire County Council, in various documents, continues to put forward the desire and vision for ambitious growth both in relation to population, housing and employment sites. The Welsh Government (WAG) will currently not allow new settlements in any area except joint settlements across local authorities. Its draft National Development Framework consultation document did not see Monmouthshire as a high growth area and argued for growth being centred on Newport and Cardiff in the South East region of Wales. To make transport and jobs co-terminus, it had a green belt north of the M4. (Draft National Framework consultation-consultation extended to the 15th of November 2019).
However, the Welsh Government Minister would like to see 50% affordable housing on publicly owned land. The response from the council is that most of its publicly owned land is located within the proposed greenbelt and argues strongly against the green belt in our area. Most of the council owned farms are in the Shirenewton/Portkeswett area and the County Council says how these are used to assist them with its capital receipts for the 21st century school programme (which to date have not assisted Chepstow schools).
Individual Cabinet Member Decision 23rd of October 2019
• MCC Consultation response to the Draft National Planning Policy Framework
It can be found at item 2 including the map:
Appendix 1 gives the Council response which ends by saying that as currently drafted, Monmouthshire County Council cannot support the draft National Development Framework.
The theme of ambitious growth in our area is reiterated in the following Cabinet report on the 6th of November at item 3e:
Cabinet 6th of November 2019
• Vision 2040: Economic Growth and Ambition Statement (item 3e)
Planning – general supplementary planning policy:
• The Planning committee on the 5th of November are recommended to endorse the latest version of the supplementary planning guidance on infill development as detailed in the following link ( albeit that the date of March 2019, at the start of the document, has yet to be amended):

a) New submissions:
DM/2019/01702 – Valley Cottage – Mounton village
Rear extension and replacement of existing conservatory
No concerns with this application

b) Decisions and appeals – None

c) Enforcement – None

Service of Remembrance, Sunday 10th November 10 am at War Memorial.
This service was well attended. Chair asked the clerk to write to Chris and Carol Wheeler thanking them for their continued help with the memorial which looks amazing. Rev J White and Roz to be thanked for taking the service. Also Noreen Wall for letting us use the P A System. Cllr J Anderson and team were thanked fortheir help with the traffic management.

Renewal of Membership SLCC
This was approved.

Confirmation received that the defibrillator sited at Mounton Brook Lodge, Pwllmeyric is now registered on Welsh Ambulance data base.

Draft Framework for Development – responses by 15th November
The draft was discussed. Cllr Harris to let the clerk have a response to ensure that it is registered with Welsh Government before 15th November deadline.

Living levels Community Hub scheme (circulated 6.11.2019)
Councillors discussed this and all agreed thatan application should be made for 2 interpretation plaques, one for St Tewdrics Well and one for Mounton Village. Also to include application for a projector and for a Gwent levels plaque.

Damaged noticeboard – Pwllmeyric
A quote had been received from £227.48. Cllr Anderson felt that all the parts listed weren’t needed. Therefore, the Clerk to contact Greenbarnes and request a 1 off vertical door rail, hinged side of PDN door only.
Nomination for work within the Community.
Clerk to investigate possible awards (MBE) for community work.

Update Website.
This has been added to the 3-year forecast for next year.

Eddie Parry Plaque – Ivy Cottage Pwllmeyric . Councillor G Down to speak to the new owners – cost of plaque also added to the 3-year forecast.
The next meeting is the annual finance meeting on Monday 9TH December t 7pm in the small room of the Village Hall. This meeting is closed to the public.

There being no further business to discuss, the meeting closed at 9.35 pm.
Signed …………………………….. CHAIRMAN Date……………….