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Newton St Cyres Parish Council

Minutes of Newton St Cyres Parish Council Meeting held remotely via Zoom on Thursday 1 April 2021 

The meeting commenced at 7.00pm 

Members present via Zoom

Cllr J Enright (Chair)                       Cllr S Parker

Cllr R Cashmore                             Cllr G Scopes

Cllr D Hodge                                  Cllr C Southcott

Cllr L Ouldridge                              Cllr P Taylor

In attendance:  Cllr G Barnell, MDDC, 5 members of public (2 remained to the end of the meeting), J Hole, Parish Clerk

Public Participation

A parishioner reported that the old school path was used frequently and was a major asset to the parish.

Could the speed sign on the A377 at Half Moon be moved further away from the houses and could a sign be put up to warn that a 30mph zone is coming up? 

Could the cost of paint for the road be confirmed (this was mentioned at the APM)?

A parishioner noted that there was a climate change initiative meeting on 7 April and requested the Parish Council consider sending a representative to the meeting or to look at co-opting someone to work with the Parish Council on climate issues.  Clerk to put on next agenda

A parishioner noted how useful the old school path was and said it was still used by children to get to and from school

A parishioner asked if there had been any further contact with James Anstee since the Annual Parish Meeting and had any of the issues raised at the meeting been addressed?  Cllr J Enright reported that there had been no response from James Anstee.

A church representative outlined the reasons for the church application for a new car park; the church building is at risk of closure if it’s not well used and this is a once in a life time opportunity to acquire land at a peppercorn rent.  The proposed car park would now be a private car park to be used for church events only and would be chained off when not in use so no extra traffic would be generated.

A parishioner noted that the community needed to support the church otherwise it may not survive.

Two parishioners outlined their objections to the proposed car park which included increased traffic on Church Lane, development in a conservation area, no robust proof of the need for extra parking and support for a green agenda.

Cllr J Enright thanked everyone for expressing their views and suggested the Church and local residents may be able to compromise on the number of parking spaces being offered. 

Formal Business 

01/04/21     Apologies

Cllr M Squires, DCC (another meeting) 

02/04/21     Declaration of Interest

Item 4.2 – Cllr D Hodge – Personal Interest (PI)

Item 9.3 - Cllr G Quicke – PI

Item 4.4 – Cllr J Enright – PI

03/04/21     Minutes of the last meeting held on Thursday 4 March 2021

Agreed and to be signed as a true record 

04/04/21     Mid Devon District Council

4.1              Planning Applications:

21/00392/FULL - Alterations to existing access and creation of additional parking for the Church at The Vicarage, Church Lane, Newton St Cyres  

After discussion a vote was taken and a majority were in favour of “no comment”

4.2              Planning Decisions:

21/00220/CAT- Notification of intention to remove 3 Ash trees within a Conservation Area at Coburg Cottage, Pump Street, Newton St Cyres – grant permission

20/01678/FULL - Conversion of barn to dwelling and erection of extension to side at Bodley Farm, Newton St Cyres – grant permission

4.3              Report from meeting with Crediton Town Council re future planning for Crediton

Cllr J Enright gave a brief report from the meeting which he had attended together with Cllr R Cashmore and the Clerk.  Points raised by NSC included a park and ride in Crediton and support for the Boniface Trail.  The number of houses built in the last 5 years in Crediton had exceeded targets so a proportional reduction over the next 5 years was suggested.  It was stressed how developments in Crediton impact the A377 in general and Newton St Cyres in particular.  Cllr G Quicke asked if new builds would be required to have electric charging points?

4.4              Update on tankers/trailers along Langford Road – to agree any action

Cllr J Enright reported that daily tractor and trailer journeys had increased from 5am to 10pm, making the use of the road by local residents difficult and dangerous and subject to delays when vehicles met on narrow lanes.  Cllr R Cashmore suggested a public meeting once restrictions are lifted and a possible media campaign?   Two campaign groups had been set up to address issues planning issues and traffic generated.   Cllr J Enright asked the Council to support the residents in their endeavours to restrict traffic movements and this was agreed unanimously

4.5              District Councillor, Cllr G Barnell, to report on MDDC business relevant to the Parish

Cllr G Barnell reported that a change to national planning policy was required in order that builders built environmentally friendly houses and include things like electric charging points and solar panels.

Cllr G Barnell would be calling in the planning application for the church car park so this would be decided by a committee rather than an officer.

MDDC would be holding a public consultation in the Autumn for the Local Plan

The appeal by Winscott Barton against the refusal for the CIL would be heard in May.

Cllr G Barnell was hoping to set up a meeting with the Head of Planning and the Crediton Mayor to discuss the formulation of an integrated transport plan to include the Boniface Trail.

Cllr G Barnell encouraged the Parish Council to support the Devon Climate Emergency forum with the appointment of a representative for environmental issues.                  

05/04/21     Finance

5.1              Parish Council Receipts Current Account:

VAT refund - £481.64

5.2              Parish Council Payment Current Account

These were agreed as:




Amount £


Ian Salter

Bus shelter cleaning



J Hole

Reimbursement for Defib battery



J Hole

Salary and expenses







Since the agenda had been sent out, two invoice had been received for grass cutting: £160.00 for the parish grassing cutting and £120.00 for the churchyard grass cutting.  It was agreed unanimously to pay these. 

5.3              To approve signatures for this month’s cheques 

Cllr G Quicke and Cllr S Parker

5.4              Balances (after above transactions)

5.4.1           Parish Council Current Account balance: £14,591.09

5.4.2           Footpath Account: £268.02 

5.4.3           Car Park resurfacing fund balance: £6,014.18

5.5              Financial Statement and Budget Monitor


5.6              To consider if the Parish Council should renew its membership of the Plunkett Foundation at £240.00 and to consider joining CPRE (Minimum membership fee is £36.00)

After discussion it was resolved not to renew membership of the Plunkett Foundation and to join CPRE      

06/04/21     Matters raised by the Chair 

6.1              None

07/04/21     Councillor’s Reports    

7.1              Update on Coronavirus and NSC PC community response

There was nothing to report

7.2              Areas of Responsibility reports

Parish Hall – hoped to be opening in May

Allotments – it was agreed that Cllr L Ouldridge, Cllr G Scopes and the Clerk would meet at the site together with a contractor who would be able to give a price for tidying up the allotments.  Cllr J Enright suggested that new tenants could be given 3 months rent free if they took on a plot that required tidying.

7.2.1           Risk Assessments (Assets assessment carried out in September 2020)

Agreed no further action required at this time

7.2.2           To note and agree update to Community Resilience Plan following discussions with Environment Agency (EA)

The updated plan had been circulated and was agreed.  Thanks were given to the parishioner who had written the plan. There was a further meeting with the EA in May after which letters would be sent to residents identified by the EA of being at risk from flash flooding.                  

08/04/21     Clerk’s Report     

8.1              To note VAT course (£30.00) booked for 6 April (previously agreed). 


09/04/21     Parish Council

9.1              Review of Annual Parish meeting   

The meeting had gone well given the circumstances (i.e. the main speaker not being present).  Clerk to forward notes of the meeting to James Anstee with a request to hold a face to face meeting once restrictions are lifted.

9.2              To consider electronic speed signs and to note a quote has been requested for a radar speed sign

It was agreed to purse this further and Cllr R Cashmore agreed to look for other providers.  DCC had recently agreed a policy which allowed the use of electronic signs.

9.3              To discuss if the Parish Council should retain the old School Path.  If yes, to agree replacement of fencing posts as required

Cllr S Parker noted that under the licence agreement with the land owner the path is only for use by children (and their parents) going to and from school and that dogs are not allowed.  The path was not a right of way or a permissive path.  Parishioners were using the path as a safer alternative to using the pavement up School Hill which was overgrown and restricted in width, meaning walkers were closer to the road than felt comfortable given the speed of traffic.  The possibility of making the path permissive would be considered further.  It was resolved to try and clear the pavement up School Hill, possibly with the help of the newly trained Road Wardens and Cllr S Parker would investigate further.

9.4              BT Kiosk by Belluno.  To agree either i) to relocate the defibrillator, ii) to relocate the books or iii) to agree daily/weekly checks to ensure books are kept tidy.

Cllr S Parker reported that a sign in the kiosk asking people not to dump books had not made a difference and items were still being dumped.  A parishioner had emailed expressing concern about accessing the defibrillator. A vote was taken and a majority were in favour of removing all the books and covering up the book swap sign.

9.5              To note Chapter 8 training has been booked for 3 volunteers.  To agree payment of travel expenses and PPE equipment

Estimated costs for PPE had been circulated and it was agreed to purchase the PPE and cover travel expenses to Tiverton

9.6              Update on “Gateway to Mid Devon” proposal

There was no update – add to list of outstanding highways issues

9.7              To discuss meeting arrangements from June 2021.  To consider response to Government call for evidence about how remote meetings may be used to inform any potential future legislation regarding their use beyond the coronavirus pandemic – see DALC note circulated

Clerk to book the Parish Hall for the June meeting.   Clerk to respond to the Government survey regarding the use of remote meetings. 

10/04/21     Devon County Council

10.1            Outstanding Highways issues

There were no updates on any highway issues except the request for parking restrictions in the layby near Godolphin Close which had been referred to a yearly HATOC waiting restrictions review.

10.2            New Highway issues

None noted

10.3            County Councillor, Cllr M Squires, to report on DCC business relevant to the parish

There was no report 

11/04/21     Miscellaneous Correspondence         

Connecting Devon and Somerset new contracts update - circulated

Update to lockdown protocol for Operation London Bridges 

“Life on the Verge”, presentation on 22 April 2021 – all welcome

Draft Resource and Waste Strategy for Devon and Torbay

Correspondence re train service between Exeter and Okehampton - circulated

Devon Climate Emergency Council Support Network - Survey Findings and 1st Meeting on 7 April 2021 – details circulated                                   

12/04/21     Minor Matters and Items for Future Agenda

None noted                  

13/04/21     Date of next PC meeting: Thursday 6 May 2021, 7pm – via zoom                  

End of Formal Business 

Public Participation 

A parishioner would have liked more wider parish consultation by the Church on the planning application

The old school path was considered by many in the village to be an asset and parishioners would like it to remain

A parishioner expressed their disappointment that no correspondence had been received from James Anstee following the Annual Parish Meeting