January 2018


Minutes of the Council meeting held on Monday 8th January 2018
at Mathern Village Hall.
Councillors – C Ovenden(Chair), D Merrett, D Harris , C Morton, F Sainsbury, G Down, J Harris.

Also in attendance:
Clerk – Mrs J Kelley
County Councillor L Brown
1 member of the Public
2 Police representatives

The Chairperson welcomed all to the meeting and thanked them for their attendance.

(i) Public Comment
A public member came with concern that the enforcement work at Border Waste has still not been completed.
He is very concerned that the site re-instatement will now remain incomplete and it will remain dangerous as the owners are unlikely to comply with the enforcement notice.
He is also concerned that the owner will remove the large stones from the site.

Please see 76/17 c) Enforcements for an update.

ii) Visit by Community Police

Here is the Police Crime Report for the Mathern area for between the above dates :

25/11/17 – Report of a barn on fire at a rural location along Hayesgate Lane . Horses were removed from a nearby building in case the fire spread . The fire service attended to put out the fire .

27/11/17 – Report of a drive-off without paying for fuel from Pwllmeyric petrol station .

30/11/17 – Report of a large lorry causing damage to a garden wall at a property in Mathern Village . Details were exchanged .

28/12/17 – Report of a tri-colour collie dog bitch going missing from a farm along Hayesgate Lane around Christmas day . The owner has been looking since then for the dog and contacted the police as he believes the animal has been stolen .

30/12/17 – Report of a drive-off without paying for fuel from Pwllmeyric petrol station .
Councillors explained to the Police officers attending the meeting that they would like to see more foot patrols – or car patrols within the village. The officers agreed that, time allowing, they will endeavour to do this in 2018.
Councillor Sainsbury updated the officers on a cold calling incident in November which he had reported to the police by telephoning 101. They will look into this.

iii) Apologies
Councillors M McHugh and N Bailey.

v) Declarations of Personal or Pecuniary Interest:

(vi) Minutes of the previous meeting
Minutes of the meeting held on 13th November and Financial Minutes from 4th December 2017 were read and agreed as true records.
There were no matters arising.


County Councillor Brown reported the following:
Pwllmeyric Speed Limit
· Pwllmeyric speed limit now reduced to 30mph. Many thanks go to residents for supporting her campaign;
· MCC Highways have decided to restrict the 30mph limit to the built up area of Pwllmeyric rather than the whole of the previous 40mph zone;
· VAS sign near Chapel Lane junction is awaiting re-adjustment to 30mph and MCC expect that the 40mph road markings will soon fade.
· Speed-watch volunteers waiting to hear from the police about their training. PCSO in attendance asked if he could chase this up.
Chepstow Hospital
· County Cllr. Brown has submitted a strong opposition to the consultation by the Health Board to the proposal to close St Pierre dementia ward at Chepstow Hospital. She has spoken against it at Adults Scrutiny committee asking for the status quo to remain for the foreseeable future.
· Budget areas of concern for the Chepstow area are the sharing of a mechanical sweeper with Caldicot as opposed to each town having its own. Also bus services on Sundays and Bank Holidays being cut including the Newport-Chepstow service. She has argued against this in Adults Select Committee because of the need for the services for hospital visiting on a Sunday.
· Monmouthshire County Council receives the lowest level of funding from the Welsh Government, in position 22 out of 22 Welsh authorities. This means that it gets about £1000 per head of population, compared to the best funded local authority which gets about £1500. (average £1300). Council tax is currently proposed to rise by 4.95% with budget gaps and a number of budget pressures such as pay.
· MCC is hosting two budget engagement meetings for the public at County Hall Usk on the 23rd of January the first from 2-4pm and the second from 6-8pm.
Local Development Plan Draft Review Report
• The LDP Draft Review Report is an important public consultation. The closing date for representations is Monday 5 February 2018.
• It can be accessed at the Community Hubs at Chepstow, Caldicot and Monmouth, with forms available there for making representations. It can also be found and responded to online at the MCC website (search current consultations) or comments emailed to planningpolicy@monmouthshire.gov.uk
The focus appears from her current brief scan of this 44 page report appears to be on the lack of a 5 year supply of housing, with a review both of undelivered sites and of policy. Additional sites will be included to reflect strategy.
• Appendix 1 of the report provides a tabled summary of the LDP Policy Review. No additional sites are mentioned at this stage.
• Major concern here is a policy review of Green Wedges and revised boundaries as necessary to ensure designations are justified. The protection of green wedges between towns and villages, and villages and villages is vital to maintain village identity, stopping urban sprawl and preventing villages merging.
Other Local Issues
• Concern has been expressed about a camper van/mobile home being parked under the Motorway Bridge in Mathern village. Environmental Health and Housing Support are attempting to contact the owner.
• The Border Waste (Crick) site is for sale and the County Council has asked the owner to comply with their Enforcement notice within 28 days. Welsh Government Highways representatives have been asked about their annual report, the last one being in January 2017. The response indicated that, although a recent survey has been made in relation to the motorway, no actual report has been made as yet.

Councillor Down asked for an update on the current position on the LDP consultation and MCC Budget setting. He also felt that the markings installed at Texaco garage were incorrect. Clerk to agenda for the next meeting.
Clerk to place details on the Website re the consultation which is due to end on 5th February 2018.
Councillor Down asked that the Community Council be informed re consultations as our next meeting is after the Feb. 5th deadline for representations to be made.
County Councillor Brown left the meeting to attend the Shirenewton C C Meeting.
i)Progress with defibrillator delivery – cabinet costing – CPR and Defib Training
Defibrillator is now installed in its cabinet outside the Millers Arms, Mathern
Training: Clerk to contact Peter Richards, local First Responder, regarding providing a training session on defibrillator and CPR. Date agreed was 8th March in the small room of the Village Hall. Once confirmed, Clerk and Councillors to advertise the training.

ii) Actions on matters raised at Oct. 2017 Coffee morning
The Clerk has contacted Caerwent Clerk to investigate the running of a Community Council Facebook page to advertise forthcoming events. Also to enquire about how successful their Trim Trail is and how Health and Safety matters are covered.
Caerwent confirmed that the land where the trail is set up is leased to the CC but in the process of being transferred to them. The trail is covered for insurance by Caerwent C C.
The facebook site is run by Caerwent C C on a closed access site.
Councillors agreed that they would not introduce a Facebook page and would continue to just use the Website as its main advertising site.

Clerk to email Village Hall Committee re. a joint End of World War 1 commemoration event next year. A tea dance was suggested.
This to be agended for the next meeting

iii) Response from Mathern P C C re dog waste bin near St. Tewdric’s churchyard
No response as yet. New bin has been ordered from MCC so that it is ready for installation once a suitable site has been found.

iv) Response from MCC re. Barn Lane signage for HGVs
MCC response: “I would be happy to provide 2 “Unsuitable for HGVs” signs within this area i.e. 1no. either end of Mathern Road (as shown in the photo’s below and drawing attached), in order to further reinforce to motorists the potential need to find a more suitable route for their classification of vehicle. As such, the signs will be provided in the early part of the new year.
I would note that whilst this may discourage a number of motorists from using this route in the future, there may still be occasions where HGV’s traverse this road for legitimate access reasons.”

v) Camper van under Motorway Bridge, Mathern
See County Councillor’s Report.
vi) Speed Watch/reduction of speed Pwllmeyric Hill
See County Councillor’s report
vii) Dog Fouling signs for Wyelands View
Still awaiting posters from MCC.

Projects from Three Year Plan
viii) Ancient slipway and ownership of St Tewdric’s Well.
Councillor Morton to investigate the status of this slipway and also ownership of St. Tewdric’s Well (via CADW) prior to any restoration.
(ix) Restoration of Mathern War Memorial
One quote for £8537.00 already received. This would involve grinding back stone-work, which councillors felt might be unnecessary. Clerk to obtain two more quotes as per our Financial Regulations.

(i) Mounton roundabout is in desperate need of attention. A lorry has hit one of the keep left signs on the roundabout and pushed the concrete base out of the ground. A second Keep Left sign there has had a bracket removed and the bolt is also missing/damaged so that the sign is pointing up in the air
Drains/gullies need clearing
(ii)Mathern Athletic Club – the road to the side of the club – both gullies need clearing.

(iii)Drains/gullies – under motorway bridge and below all need clearing following recent floods
(iv)Road sweeper and drain/gully clearing needed through Mounton village.
(v)Pot Holes: A48 in centre road, Parkwall, on the bend. Also near Texaco garage. Mathern Road (Barn Lane)
(vi)Crick to Shirenewton road– left hand side needs clearing and litter pick

a) One Voice Wales : Next Meeting Thursday18th January at Sessions House Usk at 7 pm – Apologies to be sent for Councillor Sainsbury – Councillor Ovenden to attend.
b) Governors meeting – Dell School: report submitted by Carole Oakes
Meeting held on 17 Oct. Mrs Ann Holloway was re-elected chair of governors .W
e need to appoint 4 new governors. We have a new Terms of Reference for the Dell. As it is detailed 3 Governors will review it by Christmas and decide on the version of the skills audit to be used. Donaldsons Successful Futures report has identified 6 areas of learning, Expressive Arts, Health and Wellbeing, Humanities, languages and literacy, Maths and numeracy, Science and technology. The rest of the meeting was used to link Governors with these areas. The lowering of the school to the yellow band is being appealed.

c) OVW Review of Community and Town Councils event. 5th Dec. 23017.
Attended by Chairman and Clerk. A brainstorming session to answer questions 1)What should Community and Town Councils be responsible for? 2)How should they operate? 3) What is their standing in their way to deliver to the local community? 4)How do councils ensure they best represent their local community?
OVW to produce a detailed summary of responses by the end of February. A composite response will be used by OVW in formulating its business plan and will also contribute towards plans on the future of Town and Community Councils.

76/17 Planning
a) New submissions: None
b) Decisions and appeals – None
c) Enforcement –
Border Waste Crick.
Update from Guy Delamere , MCC Planning, received on 8th January 2018.
“I visited the site just before Christmas & noted that the notice hasn’t been complied with & much work remains to be done to comply with its requirements.
I have subsequently written to the owner informing him that we would take prosecution action should the notice not be fully complied with within 28 days. I have also been told that the landowner is in the process of selling both this site & his adjoining property but the notice runs with the land & any future owner would also have to comply with the notice. “
Councillors voted and unanimously agreed that this ongoing matter to be referred to the Local Government Ombudsman – Councillors Harris and Down to work on this.


Cheque Number Details Amount
101787 Stamps 14.52
101788 Telephone + internet 38.99
101789 Rialtus – Accounts package 192.00
101790 M C C – Elections Costs 333.35
101791 A Goodman:Annual Pension-running Fee 120.00
101792 Merlin Waste – Dog waste collection 27.12
101793 Telephone and Internet 38.99

D D Pension For December £ 98.47
Online Payment Salary for October £ 536.04
PAYE – NI £104.02
Internet Payment – £13.20 Stock it Ltd. License
Monthly Bank Reconciliation for November and December authorisation by Councillor Jayne Harris.
Confirmation that annual precept request be received by MCC by 22nd Jan. 2018
All agreed for Clerk to submit our request for £17,800.00 as was set at the Dec.2017 annual Finance meeting.

1)Chepstow and surrounding Area Committee meeting – 17.01.2018 at
6pm Chepstow Hub. – Councillor G Down agreed to respresent us on this committee.
2)Email received re Pre application consultation for major Planning applications
Responses by 20th January.
Clerk to respond with a request that Mathern C C should be advised of major planning applications and suggest either Mathern Village Hall or Athletic Club as suitable meeting places.
3)Lower Wye Area Committee – Meeting 17th January 2018, 10 am. Venue to be confirmed. (in Chepstow Area)
Councillor G Down agreed to attend and report back to the Community Council.


Christmas Meal – all agreed for this to take place at the Millers Arms on Sunday 18th March at 1.15. Clerk to book.

The next meeting will be held on Monday 12th February at 7pm at Mathern Village Hal.
There being no further business to discuss, the meeting closed at 9.15 pm.

Signed …………………………….. CHAIRMAN Date……………….