Meeting of Holmer and Shelwick Parish Council at 7:00PM on Wednesday 9th February 2022 at Holmer Parish Centre, HR4 9RG
Present: David Cooper (Vice-Chair), Paul Stevens, Neil Flanagan, Neil Duggan, John Phipps, Frank Cornthwaite (from 7:02PM)
In attendance: David Hunter-Miller (Clerk), Mark Millmore (Ward Councillor), representatives from Bloor Homes, members of the public
1. Apologies for absence
Apologies were noted from Andy Coultas and Marc Mohan.
2. Declarations of Interest
Neil Flanagan declared a non-pecuniary interest in items 9.1 and 9.2 (P214011/F and P220021/F).
It was resolved to co-opt Frank Cornthwaite onto the Parish Council and he joined the meeting from 7:02PM.
Frank Cornthwaite declared a non-pecuniary interest in items 9.1 and 9.2 (P214011/F and P220021/F).
5. Open Session
The meeting was adjourned for the open session.
5.1. Ward Councillor
Mark Millmore provided a report on the activities of Herefordshire Council as follows:
• There had been support for a tougher approach to river betterment across the River Wye.
• A proposed increase of 2.99% in Council Tax was being debated.
• Details of Herefordshire Council reserves were provided, including detail on both allocated and unallocated reserves.
5.2. Footpath Officer
The Footpaths Officer’s annual report is available in full on the Parish Council’s website.
5.3. Bloor Homes: To receive comments regarding a proposed residential development at land to the north of Hedgerow Way, Holmer, Hereford.
Representatives from Bloor Homes provided a presentation on a proposed residential development in the parish and plans were circulated. It was noted that further details were available on Bloor Homes’ website. A short question and answer session followed.
5.4. Public participation
A number of members of the public raised concerns regarding item 9.1 (P214011/F), summarised as follows:
• It was suggested that the application might be unlawful, being in contravention of previous planning conditions placed on the structure.
• There were concerns over noise pollution and overlooking of adjacent properties.
• It was suggested that restrictions should be placed on hours of use for the proposed outdoor area with no loud speakers to be used.
• It was suggested that suitable screening should be provided.
A number of members of the public raised concerns regarding item 9.2 (P220021/F), summarised as follows:
• There were continued concerns relating to excessive speed and anti-social driving along Cleeve Orchard and it was thought that the proposals would likely generate additional vehicle movements and exacerbate these issues.
• It was thought that Holmer Park Spa should be encouraging more sustainable means of transport, rather than providing additional car parking capacity.
• It was suggested that the rear access could be used on a permanent basis to provide an additional entrance/exit or one-way system.
• It was suggested that traffic calming measures should be utilised on the car park and entrance.
• It was suggested that there is not currently a capacity issue with the current car park.
• Concern was raised regarding the possible detriment to nearby trees as the plans appear to encroach on root protection areas.
• Concerns were expressed over the existing inadequate drainage provision, which regularly results in surface water run-off reaching Cleeve Orchard.
• It was suggested that if approval was given then no further permissions to extend the car park should be granted in future.
The applicant for item 9.1 and 9.2 (P214011/F and P220021/F) was also in attendance to provide additional detail and allay concerns over the application, summarised as follows:
• It was stated that the proposals were not specifically looking to increase the number of visitors to the site, but to provide capacity to meet the needs of existing members.
• The additional car parking spaces would reduce the overspill parking into adjacent public roads.
• Efforts were being made to encourage staff to use sustainable means of transport.
• Regular updates had been circulated to members to encourage more considerate driving when accessing the site.
• Permeable paving had been specified for the car park to fulfil drainage requirements.
The meeting resumed following the open session.
6. To consider and adopt the minutes from the Parish Council meeting on the 12th January 2022
It was resolved to adopt the minutes as a true record and they were duly signed by the Chair.
7. Progress reports
7.1. Councillor vacancies
It was noted that there was now one vacancy on the Parish Council and enquiries from parishioners were welcomed.
7.2. S106 schemes
It was noted that a further meeting had been arranged with Herefordshire Council’s Interim Service Director for Highways, Environment and Waste, to review the various S106 projects for the parish.
7.3. Allotments, Holmer West
Bloor Homes agreed to provide an update regarding the size and number of allotment plots to be provided at Holmer West.
7.4. Pond, Coldwells Road
No update was available.
7.5. Holmer Park Aviary/Summer House
No update was available.
7.6. Notice board repair, Shelwick
No update was available.
7.7. Traffic concerns, Cleeve Orchard
Concerns were raised during the open session in relation to item 9.2 (P220021/F).
8.1. Association of Democratic Services Officers: Petition for Councils in England to have the choice to meet remotely.
The above petition was noted.
8.2. Herefordshire Council: Herefordshire Local Plan 2021-2041 Strategic Spatial Options consultation.
It was resolved to promote this consultation via the Parish Council’s online newsletter facility.
8.3. Herefordshire Council: Invite to future ‘Talk Parish’ events 2022 (previously called Parish Council Summits).
The above invites were noted.
9.1. P214011/F: Holmer Park Spa and Health Club, Holmer Park, Holmer, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 1LL. Retrospective application for creation of a patio area/ outdoor dining area over an existing flat roof.
It was resolved that the Parish Council object to this retrospective application.
There are concerns over the lawfulness of the application given previous application history for this site. It is understood that there are conditions placed on the use of this roof area in relation to previous planning applications and the Parish Council would urge close scrutiny of this to ensure that this application is valid.
The proposals are likely to generate a significant increase in traffic to the site. There are serious concerns regarding the use of Cleeve Orchard as the sole access to this growing business. The Parish Council continues to receive numerous complaints regarding excessive speed and anti-social driving relating to visitors to the spa. The Parish Council would ask that consideration is given to opening up a secondary entrance/exit to Holmer Park Spa to allow some traffic to travel via Church Way. Traffic calming measures should also be explored to slow traffic using the car park, so that vehicle speeds are moderated at the point when vehicles leave the site and travel onto Cleeve Orchard.
The Parish Council would ask this this application is considered concurrently with P220021/F as the proposals have a direct impact on the car parking requirements for this business.
If Herefordshire Council are minded to approve the application it should be conditioned that suitable screening is provided both to act as an acoustic barrier and also to provide privacy for adjacent residents. The existing trees do not afford sufficient acoustic or privacy protection. Similarly limits should be placed on the hours of use for the outdoor areas with restrictions on loud speakers.
Conditions should also be sought to restrict development and use of the remaining roof area.
9.2. P220021/F: Holmer Park Spa and Health Club, Holmer Park, Holmer, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 1LL. Proposed extension to the existing car park at Holmer Park Health Club.
It was resolved that the Parish Council object to the proposals.
There are serious concerns regarding the use of Cleeve Orchard as the sole access to this growing business. The Parish Council continues to receive numerous complaints regarding excessive speed and anti-social driving relating to visitors to the spa. The Parish Council would ask that consideration is given to opening up a secondary entrance/exit to Holmer Park Spa to allow some traffic to travel via Church Way. Traffic calming measures should also be explored to slow traffic using the car park, so that vehicle speeds are moderated at the point when vehicles leave the site and travel onto Cleeve Orchard.
There are known drainage issues with the current car park, with the general topography of the site causing surface water run-off that travels down the entrance and onto the public highway. It is feared that the additional surface area of the proposed car park extension will exacerbate these issues, consequently, a full review of the drainage needs to be undertaken taking into account existing issues.
The proposals would likely generate additional vehicle movements by making travel by private car more accessible, this is at odds with sustainable transport objectives.
Concern is raised regarding the possible detriment to nearby trees as the plans appear to encroach on root protection areas.
If Herefordshire Council are minded to approve the application restrictions should be placed on illumination of the car park to ensure that it does not impact on nearby residents.
10. Parish matters for discussion/decision
10.1. Laptop: To consider the purchase of a replacement laptop for use by the Clerk.
It was resolved to defer discussions on this item until a future meeting.
11. Burial Ground
11.1. To receive an update
There were no matters to report.
11.2. Tree planting: To consider planting a tree for the Queen’s Green Canopy in honour of the Platinum Jubilee.
It was resolved to accept a donation of a Holmer Perry Pear Tree to be planted at the burial ground and to arrange a suitable tree planting ceremony.
12.1. Budget expenditure
It was resolved to approve the budget expenditure.
12.2. Bank reconciliation
It was resolved to approve the bank reconciliation.
12.3.1. David Hunter-Miller (salary and expenses): £834.65
12.3.2. HMRC (PAYE): £32.56
12.3.3. Worcestershire County Council Pension Fund: £262.53
12.3.4. HALC (subscription): £1,543.21
It was resolved to settle the above invoices and cheques were duly signed.
12.4. Direct Debits
12.4.1. 16/01/2022 Information Commissioner (registration): £35.00
The above direct debit payment, made between scheduled meetings, was noted.
13. Councillors’ reports and items for the next agenda
It was noted that the meeting agenda had not featured on some of the Parish Council noticeboards and this would be reviewed before the next meeting.
14. Date of the next meeting
The next scheduled meeting is at 7:00PM on Wednesday 9th March 2022.
A resolution was passed to exclude members of the public due to the confidential nature of the following item.
15. Clerk’s grievance complaint: To formally note a grievance complaint raised by the Clerk in relation to the handling of confidential information.
The Clerk attempted to raise a Grievance Complaint with the Parish Council regarding the unauthorised sharing of confidential payroll information, including payslips and pension forms, with members of the public by a Councillor. Further details of the Grievance Complaint are recorded in a confidential addendum to the minutes.
The meeting closed at 10:05PM.