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Newton St Cyres Parish Council

Minutes of Newton St Cyres Parish Council Meeting held in the Main Room of the Parish Hall on Thursday 7 October 2021 

The meeting commenced at 7.00pm 

Members present

Cllr J Enright (Chair)                              Cllr G Quicke

Cllr R Cashmore                                     Cllr G Scopes

Cllr L Ouldridge                                      Cllr C Southcott

Cllr S Parker                                            Cllr P Taylor


In attendance:  Cllr G Barnell (left 7.55pm), 3 members of public (1 left after the public session), J Hole, Parish Clerk

Public Participation

A query was raised by a resident from New Estate as to who was responsible for cutting the hedge along the road at the bottom of the New Estate gardens?  Cllr G Barnell agreed to look at this issue with MDDC Housing Officer during the estate walk due later this month.

Concern was expressed that dog walkers and pedestrians who are out and about either early in the mornings or late at night cannot be seen unless they are wearing reflective clothing and this poses a danger to them and to motorists.  It was suggested that the resident write to the Newton Wonder to raise awareness

Request for an update on the new salt bin for Kingfisher Close – Clerk to chase

Formal Business

01/10/21      Apologies

Cllr M Squires, DCC (unwell)


02/10/21      Declaration of Interest

None Noted 

03/10/21      Minutes of the last meeting held on Thursday 2 September 2021

Agreed and signed as a true record


04/10/21      Mid Devon District Council

4.1                 Planning Applications:


4.2                 Planning Decisions:             

21/01022/FULL - Installation of 4 antennas, 1 GPS antenna and 1 electrical meter cabinet at Church of St Cyr and St Julitta Church Lane Newton St Cyres – grant permission

21/01429/FULL - Erection of a roof over existing silage clamp at Five Elms Lane – grant permission

4.3                 To note air quality consultation by MDDC

Details had been circulated.  Clerk to enquire about results from the air quality monitor in the parish

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

Cllr G Barnell updated the meeting on the planning application for the old school site.  The application has been referred to independent arbitration to consider the developers request not to pay S106 contributions.  Cllr G Barnell noted that he would try to ensure that the various requests made by residents and the Parish Council are addressed in writing on any planning consent.

Cllr G Barnell noted that if the planning application at Bidwell Barton was granted, no S106 contribution would be due either to the Affordable Housing fund or to public open spaces but there would be a contribution to a conservation fund.

Cllr G Barnell was continuing discussions with East Devon District Council re planning issues relating to the biofuel industry.

The A377 Action Group had met and discussed rail plans with a representative from Network Rail and the proposed Crediton to Exeter cycleway with representatives from DCC.  DCC stated that the cycleway needs to connect Crediton and Exeter and has to include place of interest along the way.  Design requirements have been updated and would need to be met.  DCC are going to report at the next meeting in November whether or not they will fund an outline feasibility study.                      

05/10/21      Finance

5.1                 Parish Council Receipts Current Account:  MDDC - 2nd instalment precept: £6,715.50; DCC maintenance grant for rain gauge: £300.00

5.2                 Parish Council Payments Current Account

These were agreed as:




Amount £


NSC Parish Hall

Hire of Hall



Ian Salter

Bus shelter cleaning



Asbestos Solutions SW

Removal of asbestos shed roof at allotment



Simon Saunders

Grass cutting – Green and Churchyard



Creative Solutions

Signs for old school path



J Hole

Salary and expenses







5.3                 To approve signatures for this month’s cheques 

Cllr P Taylor and Cllr R Cashmore

5.4                 Balances (after above transactions)

5.4.1               Parish Council Current Account balance: £16,682.86

5.4.2               Footpath Account: £268.02 

5.4.3              Car Park resurfacing fund balance: £7,514.53

5.5                 Update on changing to Unity Trust banking

The Clerk reported that ID checks were ongoing.

5.6                 Financial Statement and Budget Monitor


06/10/21      Matters raised by the Chair

6.1                 To consider a Neighbourhood Plan

A meeting had been held with a Neighbourhood Plan consultant on 22 September and notes had been circulated.  After discussion it was resolved that the Parish Council would develop a Neighbourhood Plan and the Clerk would contact MDDC to get the parish designated as a Neighbourhood planning area.  Once confirmed by MDDC, a NH planning committee would be formed made up of volunteers from the parish together with 2/3 Councillors and a decision taken as to whether to engage a NH planning consultant.  It was noted that grants are available for Neighbourhood planning so there should be no cost to the parish council.

6.2                 Update on A377 Action Group meeting

Notes from the last meeting had been circulated and an update had been provided earlier in the meeting.  A regular train service between Okehampton to Crediton would start later this year but it was unlikely that any extra trains would stop at Newton St Cyres at the present time.

6.3                 Update on Affordable Housing

Cllr J Enright reported that the land that had been under consideration had been withdrawn.  Enquiries were being made for other potential sites.


07/10/21      Councillor’s Reports            

7.1                 Areas of Responsibility reports

7.1.1              Allotments – update and to consider cost of removing dead elms and old shed

Following the removal of the asbestos shed roof, Cllr L Ouldridge had asked allotment holders if they wished to make use of the wood from the old shed and was planning to meet with allotment holders in November.  Two more plots had been let on a no-rent basis as the new tenant would need to remove the grass to create the allotment plot.  A quote to remove 18 dead elms in the bottom hedge had been received and it was agreed that this work could wait.  Following Cllr S Parker suggestion it was resolved to hire a chipper to assist with the work to remove various trees as agreed at the last meeting.  No progress had been made with the untidy plots and this would need addressing shortly.

Neighbourhood Watch – Some copper piping had been stolen from a property in West Town and there were reports of possible targeting for dog thefts

Defibrillator – Cllr C Southcott reported that the system for reporting the status of the defibrillator had changed and was now on a three monthly basis or as requested by the new provider, Circuit. The Clerk was asked to label the defibrillator near Belluno with the postcode 

7.1.2              Surgery - Report from September surgery and to confirm attendance at surgery on 9 October

Cllr G Quicke reported that the bad farming smell around Sweetham had been mentioned

Cllr P Taylor would attend the surgery on the 9 October

Cllr R Cashmore noted that he was now a member of DALC County Committee and a member of the Climate Change Group


08/10/21      Clerk’s Report - none          


09/10/21      Parish Council

Minuted here but taken at the start of the meeting during the public session

9.1                 Climate – update from Climate Officer

Zoom invitations had been circulated to Cllrs for the first of the MDDC workshops to be held next week focusing on what actions the Parish Council could take related to the climate emergency.

An energy efficiency survey had been completed for the Parish Hall and the list of suggested improvements would be considered by the hall committee.

An investigation into possible electric car changing points at the Recreation Ground and the Parish Hall had concluded that the scheme available at the present time was not suitable and this project was on hold for the time being.

The DALC annual conference had held some interesting sessions on Climate related issues and notes would be circulated shortly.   A session on planning issues with wildlife in mind noted a new concept of Biodiversity Net Gain which will require all developments over a certain size to provide up to 10% of the area to compensate for loss (e.g. provide woodland) and to fund and manage for 30 years.   This may be challenging for Planning Officers to assess especially as MDDC do not employ an ecologist and have to rely on consultants who may not have a detailed knowledge of the local area.  

A Wildlife Network specifically for Parish council has been set up and this could provide information and advice.

N.E.W Group is continuing its project to map who, what and where areas in the parish that parishioners value.

9.2                 Road Warden Scheme – to note submission of grant for £3,704.00.  Grant will not be considered by DCC until December.  To discuss storage options for trailer (if funded by DCC)

Storage options were discussed and Cllrs agreed to make some enquiries and to report back at the next meeting.

9.3                 Update on Langford Road TRO and issues

Residents reported that traffic regularly starts at 5am and continued to midnight.  If the ombudsman does not find in favour of the complaint submitted by residents, Cllr R Cashmore suggested that residents produce evidence to show that harm to the public was taking place, and then East Devon District Council would be obliged to consider the complaint.

9.4                 To consider grant request from NSC Football Club

Details had been circulated.  After discussion it was agreed to grant £200.00.  Clerk to request that NSC Football Club confirm in writing that portable goals are available for use by anyone

Minuted here but taken in the public session at the end of the meeting

9.5                 To note report from Building Community Resilience Meeting on 27 September

A report had been circulated and was noted.   It was agreed to give some thought to applying for a grant for portable radios.  Research was required as to the type of radio required.


10/10/21      Devon County Council

10.1               Outstanding Highways issues

There were no updates.  Clerk to chase up Western Power with regard to the broken street lights on the A377

10.2               New Highway issues  

Complaints had been received about the overgrown hedge by Belluno which made pulling out onto the A377 dangerous.   Clerk to contact Belluno.

10.3               To confirm agreement for DCC contractors to use Village Green to store equipment etc whilst installing the pedestrian crossing as long as they restore the green afterwards

Noted.  The date for installation of the crossing had been put back to 25 October

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

A report had been circulated and was noted. 

11/10/21      Miscellaneous Correspondence

Various newsletters; Complaint about parking on the pavement at Half Moon and an email re speeding traffic had been circulated and were noted.


12/10/21      Minor Matters and Items for Future Agenda

None noted


13/10/21      Date of next PC meeting: Thursday 4 November 2021, 7pm in the Club Room, Parish Hall 

End of Formal Business 

Public Participation

As noted above at 9.5

The meeting closed at 9.08pm