Bloxham Parish Council Meeting - Monday 8 May 2017

at 7.30pm at St Mary's Parish Rooms, Bloxham

If you would like to download the pdf version of the draft minutes please click below.

Bloxham Parish Council (draft) Minutes – 3 April 2017




PRESENT:   Chairman, Councillor Jenny Yates; Councillors Steve Craggs, Mary Groves, Mike Hawtin, Gloria Lester-Stevens, Stephen Phipps, Gillian Roberts, Sue Slater and Andrew Taplin.


ALSO IN ATTENDANCE:  Theresa Goss (Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer) and District Councillor Christine Heath and no members of the public.


APOLOGIES:   Parish Councillor Tom Smith submitted his apologies because of family issues and these were accepted and the absence authorised.  Parish Councillor Nick Rayner submitted his apologies because he was on holiday and these were accepted and the absence authorised.


District Councillors Andrew McHugh and Mike Bishop and County Councillor Kieron Mallon also submitted their apologies.


The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and reminded the Councillors and the public that recording of the meeting was permitted.  However, she asked that should anyone wish to record the proceedings, could they please advise the Parish Council so that this could be facilitated.


153/16 DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST – There were no declarations of interest.


15416  MINUTES – The minutes of the meetings held on 6 March 2017 were taken as read and duly adopted and signed by the Chairman.


            Resolved that the minutes of the meeting held on 6 March 2017 be approved.


Proposed by Councillor Mary Groves

Seconded by Councillor Steve Craggs




Minute Number 144/16 – Councillor Sue Slater reported on her site visit to Water Lane to check the Bloxham School gate, which it had been reported, opened out over the footpath.  Councilor Slater felt that although the gate did open across the footpath and it could possibly be difficult for a group to get past, there was still some space.  When the gate was against the hedge, it was not impeding the footpath and it was suggested that this should be raised with Charlie Little, Bursar at Bloxham School at the next meeting with the Parish Council and a request be made for a catch to be fixed to stop the gate from opening over the footpath.  Action TG/SS/JY


The Chairman reported that along with Councillor Sue Slater, she had met with John Wyatt to discuss his concerns regarding his recent planning application and his decision to withdraw it. He informed them that he would be continuing to canvass for support for an employee living on the site. They advised him to seek pre-application advice from the Planning Department at Cherwell District Council.


156/16 CHAIRMAN’S ANNOUNCEMENTS – The Chairman reported on two recent meetings.

  • Extraordinary Parish Liaison Meeting held at Cherwell District Council (CDC) on 21 March 2017 – The Chairman reported that District Councillor Barry Wood, Leader of Cherwell District Council, had given a presentation of CDC’s view of devolution and the ‘Better Oxfordshire’ proposal. This could be viewed on the CDC Web site.


A possible impact of a unitary authority, or devolution where a Mayor was appointed, was that there would be a requirement for a Strategic Plan to obtain infrastructure funding and the Local Plan might not fit into this Strategic Plan.  The knock-on effect would be that the Bloxham Neighbourhood Development Plan (BNDP) might not fit into it either.  A letter had been sent to the Rt Hon Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government from the Parish Council outlining the concerns about the impact on the BNDP. Some residents and John Groves, BNDP Co-ordinator had also written to the Secretary of State.


  • Bloxham and Milcombe Parish Council’s Joint ‘Keep the Horton’ General Public Meeting held at Jubilee Hall on 23 March 2017 – The Chairman reported that over 40 residents had attended the meeting and people were still not clear about the consultation, how it would affect them and how to respond to the consultation. A proposed draft response from the Parish Council had been circulated and the Chairman asked Councillors for it to be approved for submission.


Resolved that the draft response be submitted to the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group.  Action TG/JY

Proposed Stephen Phipps

Seconded Gillian Roberts


157/16 RESIDENTS’ ISSUES – Councillor Gloria Lester-Stevens reported that when BT had installed new wiring from Tadmarton Road to Cumberford, the reinstatement of the footpath did not appear to have been completed to a very high standard. Rebeck was the company who had completed these works and this area needed to be monitored in-case of any deterioration.


158/16 REPORTS FROM COUNTY AND DISTRICT COUNCILLORS – There was no report from the County Councillor.


District Councillor Christine Heath asked for an update with regard to the progress of the legal agreements for Section 106 projects.  The Chairman reported that the Parish Council were continuing to liaise with CDC about the wording of the legal agreements and support from Councillor Heath would be helpful as this had been on-going since January 2017.


Resolved that Councillor Heath be asked for her support in the securing of the relevant legal agreements.  Action CH




  1. Planning Items (not covered within the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 14 March 2017) – Councillor Sue Slater reported there was nothing further to add to the minutes.


Resolved that the report be noted.




  1. Committee Minutes and Recommendations.


  • Environment Committee – There had not been a meeting of the Environment Committee since the last meeting of the Parish Council. The next meeting was scheduled to be held on Wednesday 17 May 2017.


Resolved that the report be noted.


  • Resources Committee – There had not been a meeting of the Resources Committee since the last meeting of the Parish Council. The next meeting was scheduled to be held on Thursday 11 May 2017.


Resolved that the report be noted.


  • Planning & Strategy Committee – Chairman of the Planning and Strategy Committee, Councillor Sue Slater, reported to the Parish Council, the draft minutes of the Planning and Strategy Committee held on 14 March 2017.  The agendas and minutes for the Committee were available on the Parish Council web site. The next meeting was being held on Monday 10 April 2017.


Resolved that the draft minutes be noted.


  • Staffing Committee – There had not been a meeting of the Staffing Committee since the last meeting of the Parish Council.


  1. Reports for the Parish Council – The following reports had been circulated to the Parish Council prior to the meeting.


  • Drop-In and Chat – Session held on 11 March 2017 – Issues raised included inappropriate parking, poor street lighting and potholes.

The Clerk was asked to contact Thames Valley Police to find out whether the Parish Council could fund visits to the village by a PCSO to monitor the parking problems and take any necessary action, which was within their remit.  Action TG

Poor Street lighting would be raised with OCC at the joint meeting on Friday 7 April 2017.

Pot holes had been reported via “fix my street” and appeared to have been done, this would be checked by Councillor Craggs. Action SC

  • Library – A meeting with the County Council and Bloxham Primary School Chair of Governors with regard to a proposed library in Bloxham had been held on 7 February 2017. During this meeting future plans for the Children’s Centre were raised. The Clerk was asked to write to Bloxham Primary School and ask for confirmation of its future plans for the Children’s Centre.  Action TG
  • Outstanding Issues – There was a meeting with the County Council on Friday 7 April 2017 with regard to the outstanding highways issues.
  • Parish Council Actions – These had been updated in Drop Box for Councillors’ reference.


Resolved that the reports and actions be noted.


161/16 FINANCE


  • Accounts for Payment – The Clerk submitted to the Parish Council, the accounts for payment.


Resolved that the following accounts be approved for payment:


Payments Amount Cheque No.
Theresa Goss – Salary for April 2017 £829.09 1135
Theresa Goss – Expenses for April 2017 £60.04 1137
HMRC Payment for April 2017 £350.89 1138
OCC Pension Fund – Clerks Pension April 2017 £259.18 1139
CPRE – Annual Subscription £36.00 1140
Community First Oxfordshire – Annual Subscription £70.00 1141
Bloxham Royal British Legion – Donation for 2016/2017 £400.00 1142 – Trees Works in the Village £1590.00 1143


Proposed by Councillor Jenny Yates

Seconded by Councillor Sue Slater


  1. ii) Bank Reconciliation – Prior to the meeting, the bank reconciliation as at 3 April 2017, had been circulated to the Parish Council.


Resolved that the bank reconciliation, as at 3 April 2017, be noted.


  • Section 106 Funds – The Chairman gave a report on the progress with regard to the projects at Ellen Hinde Hall, the Ex-Serviceman’s Hall, Jubilee Park and the Recreation Ground. As reported earlier in the meeting, the Parish Council was liaising with CDC about the legal agreements and this would also apply to the play equipment project at Bloxham Recreation Ground too.


Prior to the meeting, the quotes which had been supplied to the Parish Council for the works at the Ellen Hinde Hall had been circulated to the Councillors for consideration.


The Chairman also reported that Wicksteed had held their prices within their quote for the equipment at the play areas.  The quote for the fencing had increased slightly, but it had already been agreed this would be financed from the New Homes Bonus.


Resolved that:


  • the report be noted;
  • the quote from ACS Building Contractors be approved for the works at Ellen Hinde Hall;
  • Cherwell District Council be advised that ACS Building Contractors is the preferred contractor; and Action TG
  • Cherwell District Council be advised that the Parish Council will be issuing the contract with Wicksteed for the works to the play area at Jubilee Park on confirmation from the Jubilee Park Management Committee regarding the accuracy of the quote and timetable for the works to be carried out. Action TG


Proposed by Councillor Steve Craggs

Seconded by Councillor Mary Groves




  1. The Slade – Prior to the meeting, Councillor Stephen Phipps had circulated a report detailing the advantages, disadvantages and process for registering The Slade as a Local Nature Reserve (LNR).


The Chairman thanked Councillor Phipps for his report. After some debate, it was recommended that this report be referred to the Environment Committee for further discussion


Resolved that this be deferred to the Environment Committee for further discussion.  Action TG


  1. Annual Parish Meeting 2017 – The Chairman reminded the Parish Council about the arrangements for the Bloxham Annual Parish Meeting being held on Thursday 27 April 2017 at 7.30pm at Jubilee Hall.


Resolved that:


  • the report be noted; and
  • a further slide be included in the presentation, providing details on the Section 106 funds which had been ear marked for specific projects. Action TG/NR


  • Street Naming – The Parish Council considered a request from a resident with regard to naming a street on one of the new developments.


The Parish Council felt that although the resident had been very active in the village and contributed a lot to the community, it did not wish to deviate from its policy of using the names of those on the Bloxham War Memorial.


However, the Clerk was asked to start a list of names which could be used once the names on the War Memorial had been exhausted.


Resolved that:


  • the request be noted; and
  • the correspondent be notified of the Parish Council Policy and the name be added to a list for future reference. Action TG


  1. Bloxham Fun Day – Councillor Mary Groves reported on the Bloxham Fun Day which was being held on Saturday 10 June 2017 and the Parish Council discussed the arrangements for its stall. There had been a very good response to the day and lots of village organisations had indicated that they wished to be involved.


Resolved that:


  • the Parish Council’s insurance company be asked whether the Parish Council’s insurance policy could be extended to stall holders and their customers at the event, in case of accident or injury during the event; Action TG
  • the village be advised that the Parish Council Drop-In and Chat on 10 June 2017 will be held at the Fun Day; and Action TG
  • the Parish Council to purchase a Gazebo, tables and chairs for use at the event, if permission is obtained from the Jubilee Park Management Committee for them to be stored in the Jubilee Hall container. Action JY


163/16 CORRESPONDENCE – There were no further items of correspondence.




Resolved that in accordance with the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the minute numbered 165/16 on the grounds that it could involve the likely disclosure of private and confidential information which was not in the public domain.



165/16 CLERKS’ SALARY – The Clerk advised that NALC had approved the new NJC Pay Scales for Clerks for 2017 -2018. It was proposed that the Parish Council increased the Clerk’s Salary in accordance with this pay scale.


Councillor Sue Slater reported on the appointment of Olivia Williams as the Parish Council’s Administration Assistant and the salary scales for the post would need to be amended in line with the new pay scales.


Resolved that:


  • the report be noted;
  • the appointment of Olivia Williams as the Administration Assistant be approved;
  • the Administration Assistants’ hourly rate be approved as £7.804 (SCP 6); and Action TG
  • the Clerk’s salary be increased in accordance with the approved NJC Pay Scales.


Proposed by Councillor Andy Taplin

Seconded by Councillor Gillian Roberts




            Resolved that it be noted that, future meeting dates for Bloxham Parish Council are as stated below.


They would all commence at 7.30pm (unless stated otherwise) in St Mary’s Parish Rooms, Bloxham, and reference should be made to the agenda prior to the meeting:


  • 27 April 2017 (Annual Parish Meeting at Jubilee Hall)
  • 8 May 2017
  • 5 June 2017
  • 3 July 2017
  • 7 August 2017
  • 4 September 2017


(The meeting ended at 9.15pm)