Notes from a Parish Councillor

The Parish Council has met twice since I reported upon our May meeting in the June/July issue.

At our June meeting, we were met with a situation many of us could not recall; and was the fact that we had no planning applications before us for comment! There were five applications for comment at our July meeting. Only one caused some concern which related to traffic issues at Eastcombe along the A358. A number of local residents attended the meeting and made their case for objecting on the grounds that there had been a number of accidents in the vicinity and the property involved was on a dangerous bend. The Council resolved to support the residents and object to the application.

The matter which has exercised us most is the forthcoming development by David Wilson Homes (DWH) on Taunton Road and Hither Mead. By the time these Notes are published DWH and its planning consultants will have held a public consultation in the Village Hall. I anticipate that this consultation will be very much of an initial affair, in that all that the Parish Council has seen to date is a simple landscape drawing which purports to show the areas of green/open space which will be allocated together with the proposed positioning of the roads and paths. No detail of any house type or any other form of building has, to date, been presented to us. Indeed, DWH is unable to tell us at this time how many units they are planning to build other than to say it is likely to be between 160 and 175. DWH and its advisers have been firmly informed that the Parish Council expects that there will be very close adherence to our Neighbourhood Plan. I shall be very interested to learn of the views of residents who attend the public consultation. Please come along to the next Parish Council meeting on the 9th August and let us know your views.

At very long last, the roundabout on the A358 has been (more or less) completed although a good deal of work remains to be done on the surrounds and the sorry to report that we have heard nothing from the County Council with regard to safety and security measures I referred to in my last Notes. We understand a safety audit is under way, but when we will know the outcome is anyone's guess! The Parish Council will continue to press for progress. The Council is also very concerned that no work has yet started at the Station Green/Greenway junction and will do what we can to ensure that this will happen sooner rather than later.

In my last Notes, I reported that the Parish Council was exploring the installation of a bus shelter at the junction of Hither Mead and Mount Street. I am pleased to report that a decision has now been taken to proceed. The next step is to apply for planning permission and his will be unlikely that we shall know the outcome for a couple of months.

As many will know, the yellow Dorset & Somerset Ambulance recycling clothes bank has, for some time now, straddled the pavement outside Mount Street Garage. The decision was taken at our July meeting to relocate it on the car park adjoining the surgery and the pharmacy on condition that it is placed so as not to cause any problem to the parking of cars. I anticipate that this move will take place shortly.

Also at our July meeting, we agreed to make a grant to the Village Hall of £1000 towards the cost of replacing the gate to the Play Park. The existing gate was installed in 2010. It can no longer be repaired and needs to be replaced for safety reasons.

Finally, the 2017 Flower Show has just taken place and was as brilliant as ever. My hearty congratulations to the organisers (I know how much work goes in to organising the Show) and the exhibitors. It was hugely enjoyable.

The next meeting is on Wednesday 9th August at the Village at 7.00 pm.

Henry Davenport (Tel: 01823 433342)
Chairman, Bishops Lydeard & Cothelstone Parish Council

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Bishops Lydeard
Bishops Lydeard