REPORT OF THE FARRINGDON ANNUAL VILLAGE MEETING - 7th APRIL 2010
The meeting was attended by 34 persons.
Cllr Tony Amery (Chairman, FPC) summarised the events of the last year, making special mention of the new Children's Playground at Shirnall Meadow and the recently-introduced 30 mph limit on A32. There were concerns about enforcement of the latter, and the PC was trying to extend the northern speed limit to minimise traffic braking and possible accidents due to the bend which stopped south-bound traffic seeing the speed limit until the last minute. He was also in dialogue with Bahnstormer Motorcycles regarding safety concerns about customers and suppliers parking on the road outside the showrooms.
He congratulated the pantomime participants for the "sell-out" run in December which provided badly needed funds for the Village Hall and expressed gratitude to FIG and NHW for their continued efforts. Thanked also were Bob Stevens who maintains the village website and Chris and Denise Maugham who tend the Memorial Gardens.
Cllr Mark Kemp-Gee (HCC) confined his remarks generally to the up-keep of roads, which he accepted were, in parts, in appalling condition - though no worse than other counties. He undertook to see that potholes in Gaston Lane received priority treatment.
Cllr Patrick Burridge (EHDC - and now Deputy Leader) referred to severe cuts in funding of District Councils by central government; this was hurting local councils and all efforts were being made to address the shortfall without swingeing increases in Council Tax. To this end, EHDC were sharing the services of its new Chief Executive with Havant. The new SDNP became effective on 1 April and from next year will be responsible for planning policy and development control. He would be happy at some future date to speak to Farringdon about the role of the SDNP, but welcomed hearing from anyone with problems in the planning area, as he held this portfolio.
Cllr Oakley pre-circulated detailed balance sheets and a full financial report from the PC. There were no questions.
The Village Hall Management Committee also presented their balance sheets for the year. Sally Oakley, Chair, was indebted to the three speakers, jumble sale and the pantomime for very welcome income to the Hall. She was pleased to report (for the first time) that there had been no leaks from the roof and that the windows to the back of the |Hall were due to be repaired when weather conditions allowed. The heating system had been overhauled and was now maintained with an agreement with British Gas; it was hoped that a timer would soon be fitted so that the Hall would be warm and welcoming to users. The Massey's Folly Preservation Trust was now dormant.
The meeting heard that the waste collections contract was due for review next year and it was possible that a contract might be taken out with Winchester City services.
Asked about the relevance of the Village Design Statement, Cllr Burridge confirmed the value of such a document and that it was still considered when dealing with planning applications. He advised that such documents should be reviewed at intervals and, where necessary, up-dated. He confirmed that planning appeals could overturn all local opinions.
Cllr Amery welcomed PCSO Andy White to the meeting; we have still to meet Simon Dear's replacement as beat officer - PC Louisa Whatmore. Andy White reported that recently there had been a spate of burglaries of garden equipment and tools from garden sheds in surrounding areas.
The meeting was told that since the new playground had used all available funding, there was no money to refurbish the Parsonage Close play area and a decision, however regretful, to de-commission it would have to be made in the near future.
The PC hare in the process of buying the telephone box at the crossroads; it is to have the telephone service removed soon as this is unprofitable. A village competition would be held with a small prize to the best practical suggestion as to its future use.
The PC and FIG have agreed to participate in a pilot scheme to plot all cases of fly-tipping (on private and public land) in the Parish; also participating in the scheme would be NFU, EA and EHDC.