Minutes April 9th 2024 at 7:00pm

Tuesday 9th April 2024 at 7:00pm

Present: Cllrs Skeaping (Chair), Cook, Lenton K, Moyse, Hulett, Lenton L, Gilpin. Cllr Mott (WDBC)

1.     Public Session (15 minutes) 

2.     Apologies for absence

3.     Declarations of Interest

4.     Minutes of the meeting 12th March 2024 

It was resolved to agree the minutes, proposed Cllr Moyse, seconded Cllr L Lenton. All in favour.

5.     Matters arising from the meeting 12th March 2024

·     Clerk informed the council that the Lengthsman Jim Jeffrey had been working in the village for two days, primarily focused on the verge and overgrown footpath of Gorge Hill. 

·     Clerk reported that following the council’s invitation for expressions of interest in receiving training in the use of the installed defibrillator, there had been no responses. Cllr K Lenton stated that she has received an offer from Chris Blackmore who will run some informal training should there be any requested. 

·     Clerk informed the council that – thanks to Cllr Gilpin – the parish council domain (www.lydfordparishcouncil.com) and the Clerk’s email address (clerk@lydfordparishcouncil.com) have been relocated to a different (and much less expensive) provider and continue to operate. The Wix subscription for these facilities has not been renewed and will expire next week.

·     Cllr Hulett has removed all signs from the toilet block relating to opening times.

6.     Dog waste in the village

·     Discussions on the purchase of a dog waste bin for the entry to the field between sports field trustees and the group of local users who have volunteered to empty the bin on a regular basis are ongoing.

·     The management of the Castle Inn have offered to sponsor a dog waste bin in the village have offered to sponsor / fund a dog waste bin. Cllr Gilpin is in contact with Jared. Cllr Gilpin considered that he will be able to provide Cllrs with an update on the outcome of discussions at next month’s meeting (AP1 – Cllr Gilpin to prepare update for May meeting).

7.     Council website

·     Cllr Gilpin gave Cllrs a brief update on his construction of the new Lydford Village website (www.lydford.co.uk) which has pages for all the village amenities (Church, Nicholls Hall etc.). Work on the site is still in progress.  

·       The council agreed that its online presence would be best provided by becoming a part of the community website rather than funding its own commercially built site. Councillors offered their congratulations to Cllr Gilpin for his work so far on the website.

·     The Clerk will work with Cllr Gilpin on publishing the minutes and agendas on the village website (AP2 – Clerk to arrange time with Cllr Gilpin)

8.     Playground 

·     Councillors agreed that the equipment identified by RoSPA as being at high risk should remain closed until it can be repaired.

·     Morwellham Sheds did a good job with the previous timber repair. It was agreed that they should be invited to repair the jungle gym. (AP3 – Cllr Gilpin to arrange for the company to undertake the repair, AP4 – Clerk to arrange return visit from RoSPA or similar once repairs have been completed).

·     It was agreed that the parish council will continue with the present service arrangement whereby the council arranges and pays for servicing and repairs if funds are available to do so. The profits from the summer fayre have already been allocated to the repair fund, other sources might become available, possibly including funding from the council precept in future years.

·     Cllr Gilpin took issue with an apparent lack of consistency in the assessment of risk between the 2023 and 2024 inspections. In 2023 the RoSPA inspector identified rotting timber stepping posts. On examination these posts were found to be almost completely rotted through, the inspector identified the risk as Medium with a risk score of 10. In 2024 a different inspector identified rot in a much larger beam but only to a depth of one inch and the beam remains solid. The inspector identified this risk as Serious with a score of 16. AP5 – Clerk to contact RoSPA) 

9.     Lydford Emergency Plan

·     The council has received £1,154.02 in grants from Devon County Council’s Resilience Fund to support purchases of equipment necessary to put the council’s emergency plan into operation. It was agreed that Cllr Hulett could make the necessary purchases and reclaim the costs from the grant funds.

10.  Finances

a.     Councillors resolved to approve the payments:

                       i.   J. Bright                            £368.44           April salary

                      ii.   HMRC                                £87.40           PAYE April

                     iii.   RoSPA                               £93.60           Annual playground safety inspection.

                    iv.   Nicholls Hall                     £110.00           Room hire 2023-24

                      v.   J Jeffery                           £384.00           Lengthsman (x 2 days)

                    vi.   DALC                               £148.46           Membership

Proposed Cllr Cook, seconded Cllr Hulett. All in favour

b.     Banking reconciliation for financial year 1.4.23 to 31.3.24


Opening balance 1.4.23         £10,015.25                              Bank holdings at 31.03.24

Add receipts                            £10.882.15                  Deposit Account         £10,663.59

Less payments                       £10,192.10                  Current Account                 £41.71      

                                                £10,705.30                                                      £10,705.30

c.       Actions taken under the Scheme of Delegation 

           27.3.24 Transfer to savings account £1,154.02


11.  Planning

·     Application 0122/24 – Lydford Gorge dismantle the ice-cream hut from its existing location in the Devil’s Cauldron car park and re-erect at a different place on the same site.

Councillors resolved to give their approval to this application.

12.  Annual Parish Meeting and Annual Council Meeting.

·     Councillors decided that these two meetings should take place on Tuesday 14th May, starting at 6.30pm. To be followed by the regular monthly meeting. Tea and biscuits to be provided. 

·     Representatives from around the community – Nicholls Hall, Lydford Foxes, Lydford Sports Field, Lydford Gorge, Lydford Primary School to be invited to speak. AP6 – Clerk to arrange invitations.

13.  Urgent business not listed on the agenda, by permission of the Chair.

·     Cllr Gilpin stated that he had visited Lydford Gorge together with Paul Brookes with a view to seeing how community volunteers might potentially work together with the Gorge to improve facilities / opportunities at the site. 

·     Cllr Moyse announced that the petition organized by Geoffrey Cox MP, urging the Government to provide extra funds to Devon for the repair of minor roads in the county has achieved over 5,000 signatures and will be formally placed before parliament.

            Meeting closed 20:25

Action points from the meeting
PointAction byAction requiredOutcome
1Cllr GilpinPrepare report / feedback to the council on siting of dog waste bin at the sports field for May meeting 
2ClerkArrange time with Cllr Gilpin to further the transition of council’s online presence from existing website to new community site. 
3Cllr GilpinArrange for Morwellham Sheds to undertake repairs to the jungle gym as identified in latest RoSPA report. 
4ClerkArrange inspection of repairs to jungle gym when completed. 
5ClerkContact RoSPA for an explanation of the differences between degrees of risk identified in two consecutive appraisals of the playground. 
6ClerkInvite representatives from Hall, Lydford Foxes, Lydford Sports Field, Lydford Gorge and Lydford Primary School to send a representative to speak at the Annual Parish Meeting.