Meeting of Holmer and Shelwick Parish Council at 7:00PM on Thursday 9th December 2021 at Holmer Parish Centre, HR4 9RG
Present: Marc Mohan (Chair), Paul Stevens, Neil Flanagan, David Cooper, Tanya Walshe, Neil Duggan, John Phipps
In attendance: David Hunter-Miller (Clerk), Mark Millmore (Ward Councillor), members of the public
1. Apologies for absence
Apologies were noted from Andy Coultas.
Gitta Fergusson had not attended meetings for a six-month period and so had forfeited the right to hold office. The vacancy notice had been posted accordingly and was due to expire on the 20th December 2021, at which point the vacancy could be filled by co-option.
2. Declarations of Interest
Neil Duggan declared an ‘other declarable interest’ under the Parish Council’s Code of Conduct for item 10.4 (P214046/F).
John Phipps declared an ‘other declarable interest’ under the Parish Council’s Code of Conduct for item 10.4 (P214046/F).
4. Open Session
The meeting was adjourned for the open session.
4.1. Ward Councillor
Mark Millmore provided a report. The Ward Councillor for Pipe and Lyde has been contacted to discuss P214046/F (item 10.4) and to request support in bringing the matter to Herefordshire Council’s Planning Committee to allow further scrutiny of the proposals.
4.2. Footpath Officer
Duncan Smart (Footpaths Officer) had submitted a report and this was available on the Parish Council’s website.
4.3. Public participation
A number of residents reported ongoing concerns relating to anti-social driving and speeding in Cleeve Orchard (item 7.4).
A member of the public reported that a terraced food and beverage area had been constructed at Holmer Park Spa and it was suggested that planning permission should have been applied for. Enquiries would be made with Herefordshire Council accordingly.
A member of the public queried why concerns had been raised at the previous meeting regarding wall pier caps that intruded into the footway. It was suggested that there were more pressing hedge/tree obstructions throughout the parish that could be reported to Herefordshire Council.
A member of the public reported concerns regarding P212756/O (item 10.1), it was suggested that visibility from the proposed access is still an issue and that the current plans show the visibility splay encompassing private third-party land.
A number of members of the public raised queries and concerns relating to P214046/F (item 10.4), as follows:
• The size of the proposed airstrip and high number of daily flights (30) were queried.
• It was suggested that the current airstrip had been utilised for more than the permitted 28 days per year under permitted use regulations (or 56 days for 2021 due to Covid recovery measures) and therefore had been in breach of planning.
• It was suggested that the site was a difficult one for planes to navigate safely and would require low flights over nearby properties.
• It was suggested that the proposals were not environmentally friendly and conflicted with sustainable travel objectives.
• It was suggested that the proposals would have a negative impact on biodiversity.
The applicant for P214046/F (item 10.4) was in attendance and offered the opportunity for a site visit and demonstration of the airfield. It was confirmed that the number of flights quoted (30 per day) had been suggested by Herefordshire Council at the pre-application stage and was open to further negotiation (it was noted that a take-off and landing constituted two flights). The take-off and landing arrangements and flight paths were clarified. It was noted that an unlicensed airfield does not need to be inspected by the Civil Aviation Authority. It was suggested that there was no immediate urgency for a decision on the application as the consultation window could be extended.
The meeting resumed following the open session.
5. To consider and adopt the minutes from the Parish Council meeting on the 11th November 2021
It was resolved to adopt the minutes as a true record and they were duly signed by the Chair.
6. Progress reports
6.1. Councillor vacancy
It was noted that there was one vacancy on the Parish Council and enquiries and applications from parishioners were welcomed.
6.2. S106 schemes
A meeting was due to be arranged with Herefordshire Council’s Interim Service Director for Highways, Environment and Waste, to review the various S106 projects for the parish.
6.3. Allotments, Holmer West
No update was available.
6.4. Pond, Coldwells Road
It was noted that a pond depth warning sign had been installed following the recent dredging works.
6.5. Holmer Park Aviary/Summer House
No update was available.
6.6. Notice board repair, Shelwick
No update was available.
6.7. Ditch repair, Munstone crossroads
No update was available.
6.8. Road markings, College Road
It was noted that works to reline the junction had been programmed by Balfour Beatty Living Places but no start date had been made available.
6.9. Footway obstructions, Church Way
It was noted that Herefordshire Council had inspected the site and considered that the new wall pier caps were not a significant hazard warranting intervention. It was noted that there were more urgent obstructions to the footways in the parish from overgrown hedges and trees.
6.10. HO3 footpath closure
It was noted that the Footpaths Officer had requested an update from Herefordshire Council regarding the ongoing closure of this footpath.
7.1. Herefordshire Council: Local Plan update and pre-consultation engagement.
A response to the survey was considered and approved.
7.2. Herefordshire Wildlife Trust: Wilder Herefordshire initiative.
The above initiative was noted.
7.3. Taylor Wimpey: Street lighting requirements for the Canon Pyon Road development.
It was resolved to defer a decision on this item until the next scheduled Parish Council meeting.
7.4. Resident: Traffic concerns relating to Cleeve Orchard.
It was resolved to contact Holmer Park Spa regarding the proposed mitigation measures relating to traffic concerns on Cleeve Orchard.
It was thought that future S106 contributions might be used to provide traffic calming measures in Cleeve Orchard, but Herefordshire Council had not yet provided an update on this.
8. Parish matters for discussion/decision
There were no matters to report.
9. Burial Ground
9.1. To receive an update
There were no matters to report.
10.1. P212756/O (re-consultation): Fayre Acres, Roman Road, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9QW. Outline application for the erection of 2 no. dwellings on land at Fayre Acres with all matters bar access reserved.
It was resolved to maintain the Parish Council’s previous objections and to reiterate the need to provide adequate visibility from the proposed access. It was thought that the visibility splay on the current plans encompass private third-party land.
10.2. P213892/FH: Hillmarton, Roman Road, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9QW. Proposed single-storey rear extension and conversion of garage.
It was resolved that the Parish Council had no objections or concerns.
10.3. P213911/F: Land at The Highway, Pipe Cum Lyde, Hereford, Herefordshire. Proposed creation of a new vehicular access, extinguishing of the existing 3 no. vehicular accesses and the conversion of the traditional agricultural buildings to 4 no. residential dwelling houses.
It was resolved that the Parish Council had no objections, but it would be commented that the proposed visibility splay should meet the relevant design standards to ensure the safety of highway users.
10.4. P214046/F: Land at Lyde Court, Lyde Cross, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 3AE. Proposed change of use of land, as an aerodrome consisting of the continued use of a grass airstrip, re-use of an existing barn as hangarage and for maintenance and associated landscaping.
Neil Duggan and John Phipps had declared an ‘other declarable interest’ under the Parish Council’s Code of Conduct for this item and did not participate or vote.
It was resolved that the Parish Council object to the proposals.
The Parish Council note, and are supportive of, the significant local concern that has been expressed regarding these proposals. In particular, the Parish Council would highlight the following:
• The proposals conflict with Core Strategy Policy SS4. Increased use of the airstrip would generate a significant number of additional vehicle movements along unsuitable, single track country roads.
• The proposals conflict with Core Strategy Policy SS6. The proposed increased use of the airstrip would severely negatively impact the tranquil rural amenity of the area. The excessive maximum number of flights would generate significant, regular noise pollution issues for nearby residents and visitors to the area.
• The proposals conflict with Core Strategy Policy SS7. Light aircraft are considerably more polluting than regular terrestrial forms of transport and an increase in the number of flights from this site is clearly at odds with sustainable transport objectives. Additionally the area is not serviced by bus or rail and so users of the facility will generate a number of additional vehicle movements (most likely private car or taxi) to get to the site.
• The proposals risk further damage to a scheduled ancient monument (SMR Number 4046 at grid reference SO 51 43).
• There is considerable concern at the high number of flights requested. It is reported that the difficult topography and orientation of the site does not lend itself to a high number of flights per day. A reduction in the number of flights permitted would also lessen the environmental impact of the proposed facilities.
• Full disclosure of Herefordshire Council’s pre-application advice is requested as this would be helpful in assessing the application, especially in respect of advice regarding the proposed number of flights and time restrictions.
• There is concern that adequate provision has not been made for access for emergency services in the case of an incident at the proposed airfield. This needs to be considered in some details to ensure the safety of future users of the proposed facility, visitors to the area and nearby residents. Similarly clarification is sought on the proposed fuel storage requirements and safety arrangements.
• The design and access statement should be clarified in respect of the take-off / landing directions and proposed flight paths as the current statement is open to some interpretation on this point.
• The proposals would likely impact nearby designated sites and areas of high habitat value. The scope of the ecological survey should be widened to encompass a much wider area in line with Civil Aviation Authority recommendations.
• It has been reported that the proposed flight path may conflict with established flight paths used by the Ministry of Defence. This should be verified and, if necessary, the application should seek to address this issue.
• It has been reported that the current airstrip has been utilised for more than the permitted 28 days per year (or 56 days due to Covid recovery measures) as allowed under Schedule 2 of the General Permitted Development Order and therefore has been in breach of these regulations.
11.1. Budget expenditure
It was resolved to approve the budget expenditure.
11.2. Bank reconciliation
It was resolved to approve the bank reconciliation.
11.3.1. David Hunter-Miller (salary and expenses): £838.13
11.3.2. HMRC (PAYE): £32.56
11.3.3. Worcestershire County Council Pension Fund: £262.53
It was resolved to settle the above invoices and cheques were duly signed.
12. Councillors’ reports and items for the next agenda
It was resolved to add the following items to the next agenda:
• Street lighting on new estates (including the Canon Pyon Road development)
• Re-wilding tree planting projects
• Obstruction of footways by street furniture and vegetation
• Cleeve Orchard traffic concerns
13. Date of the next meeting
The next scheduled meeting is at 7:00PM on Thursday 13th January 2022.
The meeting closed at 20:45PM.