March Minutes 2018


Minutes of the Council meeting held on Monday 12th March 2018
at Mathern Village Hall.
Councillors – C Ovenden(Chair), D Merrett, , C Morton, D Harris, N Bailey. F. Sainsbury. M McHugh arrived at 7.20
Also in attendance:
Clerk – Mrs J Kelley
County Councillor L Brown
No members of the Public
No Police representatives

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

(i) Public Comment


ii) Report from Community Police
There is very little crime to report thankfully for the Mathern , Pwllmeyric and Mounton area since the last report apart from the following :

9/2/18 – Report of suspicious activity in Mathern village where a resident saw a male and a female shining a torch into gardens around 9.30 pm. The pair then walked off under the flyover bridge in the church direction. No other calls were made to us that evening.

17/2/18 – Report of the rtc near the entrance to the Wylands estate .This has had wide media coverage and is still being investigated to try and find the cause. Appeals for information have been put out.

6/3/18 – Report of a drive-off without paying for fuel from Pwllmeyric petrol station.

Please remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity at the time via either 101 or 999 if you deem it an emergency.

iii) Apologies
Councillors Down and Jayne Harris.

v) Declarations of Personal or Pecuniary Interest:

(vi) Minutes of the previous meeting
Minutes of the meeting held on 12th February 2018 were read and agreed as true records.
There were no matters arising.


County Councillor Report March 2018
· On the County Council, a 4.95% increase in Council Tax was agreed. Unfortunately, the budget is not helped by Monmouthshire County Council (MCC) receiving the lowest amount of money in Wales per head of population from the Welsh Government (WG). MCC is placed 22 out of 22 Welsh authorities in terms of the money it receives from the WG.
· In the New Year, C Cllr Brown successfully made representations to take the mini sweeper out of the financial cuts. Also to save the Sunday bus services running between Chepstow and Newport so that local residents can use the bus to visit patients at the Royal Gwent Newport.
· A later consideration of the budget means that there is a £3million gap due to staff pay pressures. Regrettably this has led to an increase in school meal charges of about 35p per day and “before school” club of £1per day. Those eligible for free school meals will not have to pay and the impact of the increase will be monitored.
. Rather than reduce opening hours of household waste sites to 2 days per week at some sites, it has instead been decided instead to reduce opening hours at all sites. New hours will be 9am to 5pm in summer and 10am to 4pm in winter. Green waste is to be collected from March to the end of November instead of throughout the year. The final collection date at the end of November will depend on households’ normal collection day.

· The revised Local Development Plan is expected to go to full Council on 19.3.18. A report by the Democratic Services committee on the 12.3.18 recommended a full review of the Plan. In view of the expected removal of Severn Bridge tolls, developers responding to the review were in favour of additional housing, especially in the Chepstow area. Main villages, which includes Mathern, are a target for development, stated County Cllr. Brown, and this is a real concern in view of the current lack of infrastructure in Chepstow and surrounding area.
· On Feb. 25th 2018, Pwllmeyric Speedwatch volunteers received their training from Police Officers from the Newport area, to whom they expressed thanks..
· The proposed closure of the Dementia Ward at Chepstow Hospital is expected to be considered by the Health Board at its meetin on 21st March 2018.
. Monmouthshire has recently been chosen as a 5G test bed to improve rural connectivity. 5G should help with Broadband coverage in the area.

i) Feedback CPR and Defib Training – Arranged for Thursday 8th March 2018
19 individuals attended. Training was carried out by Peter Richards, local First Responder.
The Clerk asked the trainer that, if there was more local interest , could another session be arranged. Mr. Richards told her he would be happy to run another event in about 6 months time. This has now been booked for Thursday 29th September.
Mr. Richards recommended that annual “refresher” training sessions should be held.
He also advised the Clerk that our defibrillator has a 3 year battery life but its function should be checked monthly. These regular safety checks should then be recorded in Community Council minutes with the name of the individual who had carried out the check.
Councillors decided that this safety procedure would be auctioned. It will be discussed further at the April meeting. (Clerk to contact St Arvans C C to find out what safety checks they currently undertake on their defibrillators.)
N.B. The Clerk checked the apparatus on 13th March and, after assistance, found the defibrillator to be fully functional.
If the machine is used, new replacement pads and emergency pack will need to be ordered. Welsh Ambulance will supply these.
Publicising the location of our defibrillator was discussed. It was decided that the Clerk should record this on the Community Council the website and place notices on all noticeboards. Also information should be included in the new What’s On leaflet which Councillor J Harris is currently producing. Clerk to try to get an article about the training session in the local Forest Review newspaper.
At the training session, volunteers suggested that a defibrillator should be located in each of the 3 villages – Mathern, Mounton and Pwllmeyric. Clerk to investigate further grants for this.

Councillors agreed a Donation of £50.00 to Welsh Ambulance for the Training.

ii) Response from Mathern P C C re dog waste bin near St. Tewdric’s churchyard
St. Tewdric’s PCC members, an MCC representative and the Clerk met on site to discuss where to locate the bin. A suitable site was agreed and the bin will be fitted shortly.
St Tewdric’s PCC are very grateful for the Community Council’s assistance with this.

iii) Speed Watch/reduction of speed, Pwllmeyric Hill
(See County Councillor’s report)
Training took place on 25th February. 6 volunteers attended. County Councillor Brown will keep us updated on the success of this initiative.

iv) Ancient slipway and ownership of St Tewdric’s Well.
Councillor Morton has investigated the status of this slipway and also ownership of St. Tewdric’s Well (via CADW) prior to any restoration.
Update: CADW have no interest in the slipway – Councillor Morton to chase Conservation Officer at M C C for any further information.
Monmouth District Council refurbished the Well in 1977 and erected the current plaque at the same time. Councillor Morton to check with Estates at MCC to seek confirmation of its present ownership..

v) Dog Fouling signs for Wyelands View
Clerk to advise residents that these will be delivered once received by MCC.

vi)Update Actions Mathern War Memorial Maintenance
Councillor Ovenden confirmed that the last time the memorial was cleaned (and extra names engraved) was 2009.
Councillor Merrett to obtain a third quote for cleaning. Councillors felt that the Memorial needed cleaning and the names re -painted only, rather than grinding down the existing stone to remove some of the weathered surface.
Clerk to request 2 quotes (Tim Lewin and Steve Smith) for having the fence around the memorial repainted.
vii) Signage Barn Lane
Still not in place.
Clerk to Chase.

viii) Update Dog Waste Bin – Barn Lane
M C C will notify us when they have enough requests to place another order for more dog waste bins, so that one can be sited here.
ix) Update fly tipping
The bags in the field near the Athletic Club are on private land and MCC cannot gain access to these.
Builders rubble reported opposite Anglecot – MCC were unable to trace.


Road Markings, Texaco Garage – Councillor Down is progressing this as Councillors do not feel that the present markings are adequate or that the pathway is safe.
MCC responded as below
I can advise having visited the site, that whilst I appreciate that the carriageway within this area appears to have been overlaid previously; there is still approximately 20mm upstand on the kerb leading into the Texaco garage.

Therefore, it is considered that there is clear separation between the carriageway and the footway and the application of a white line adjacent to the existing kerb is not required.

Gullies need clearing Barn Lane/under motorway bridge Mathern
Pot Holes – Mounton Church to roundabout
Pot Holes – Barn Lane as a result of recent flooding

a) One Voice Wales
No report
b) Governors meeting – Dell School: Mathern Representative place.

Report from Carol Oakes (our Governor representative) of School Governors meeting held on January 30th 2018:
“Chepstow schools are being let down in regard to building funding. Nick Ramsey AM was asked to visit MCC and talk to the Budget Forum. He said that he had limited influence over the Welsh Assembly but would pass it on to the Minister of Education.
Each child is now scored individually and put into a percentile ranking. The Dell has received “green” rating in several fields.
More time was taken up with allocating link governors.

Carol Oakes also wrote to the Community Council as follows;
“I have told Steve that I will finish my time as governor at the end of the summer term. My term of duty should end in October but it seemed more sensible to finish at the end of the school year.”

Clerk to email Anne Holloway at the school re the possibility that St Arvans Community Council will take over their term for providing a local CC representative Governor early to replace Carol.

c) Risk assessments – Mathern Mounton and Pwllmeyric
Councillors Ovenden, Mc Hugh and D Harris have been given the relevant
Risk Assessments forms for completion.

d) Health and Safety and Equality policies for consideration and adoption.
Councillors voted unanimously to adopt these two policies.

96/17 Planning
a) New submissions:
DM/2018/00398 – Alteration to glazing, new flue, new timber gates to existing carport.
7 Mounton House Park

Application not visible on the Website so unable to comment.

b) Decisions and appeals –
Clerk was asked to contact M C C planning re the lights which have been installed on the New Inn Pwllmeyric.
c) Enforcement –
County Councillor Brown advised that MCC Enforcement has now issued a
Summons to the owner of Border Waste, Crick. Court proceedings are due to take place in April.
Councillors decided to postpone contacting to the Local Government Ombudsman about the poor handling of this issue by MCC Planning until the outcome of the court case has been decided.


Cheque Number Details Amount
101801 O V W Membership 133.00
101802 Rent Village Hall 131.25
101803 Telephone and Internet 38.99
101804 Merlin Waste 27.12
101805 M J Trading (paper/Ink) 74.59
101806 Training – CPR 50.00
D D Pension for February £ 123.09
Online Payment Salary for February £ 646.17

PAYE – NI £181.39
Internet Payment £13.20 Stock it Ltd. (Licence)

Monthly Bank Reconciliation for February – authorisation by Cllr Morton.
Spending to Budget was reviewed as this is the final CC meeting before end of financial year. Councillors were satisfied with the balance sheet and the following changes to funds were accepted as follows:
Proposed carried forward or transferred to EMR ( earmarked reserves) as per the December finance meeting.
(4068) Publications £4000.00 – “Walks” leaflets
(4100) Street Furniture £3500.00 – plaque and work to St Tewdrics Well
(4110) Village Upkeep £1000.00 – painting of the War Memorial Fence
(4111)Other repairs £1700.00 – Code to be removed for next year. Transfer to General Reserves.

Clerk was asked to contact Councillor J Harris to ask for costings for the end of World War I 100 year celebration tea dance/party so that monies can be allocated for this.

Clerk to purchase a new Office Chair.

A payment of £50.00 to Welsh Ambulance was agreed for the CPR training on 8th March 2018

The purchase of further defibrillators was discussed and Clerk to investigate any grants or donations which may be available. £1500.00 for this still held in EMR.

Virement of £450.00 from 4068 Publications into 4065 Subscriptions was agreed.

Rhewl Farm Community Benefit Monies – The Village Hall committee, who may request part of this, have still not received costings for the proposed new disabled toilets. This matter to be mentioned at Coffee Morning as other groups may wish to apply for assistance.

a)Coffee Morning Saturday 24th March 2018 at 10.30.
Topics to discuss:
Renovation of War Memorial and garden
More CPR training ( date set for – 29th Sept. 2018 ). Purchase of further defibrillators.
End of WWI celebrations.
New What’s On leaflet.
CC Grants allocation (next time for consideration – May 2018.)

b)Community and Town Council Review – 15th March St Mellons Cardiff.
No representative able to attend.

c)Councils communicating in Welsh –
Local Councils have reported to OVW that the need for Welsh language use by Community Councils in Monmouthshire is low. Also that the cost implications would out way any advantage.

d)Footpaths Notification – Boardwalk, Bishops Mead Ref 14339 logged 13/2/2018

e)Chepstow Area Town and Community Council Cluster meeting workshop: Wednesday 18th April from 4 – 6 in the Chepstow Community Hub
Clerk to check with Councillor Down if he can attend this.


Mounton Village noticeboard
Clerk to Chase Clive Jones

Village Green, the Church Mathern
Clerk to chase Amy Longford at M C C

Update GDPR Data Protection
Information and clarification still ongoing.

Councillor J Harris advised that the What’s On Leaflet is nearly ready for circulation. Community Council to pay for printing and distribution.

Footpaths problems
No70 Moynes Court – St Pierre: impassable – field ploughed
No 19 Coastal Path: impassable – field ploughed
No 44 in poor repair (short cut from Pwllmeyric Meadow)

Clerk was asked to place GAVO Best Kept Village and Best Kept Garden (as seen from the roadway) competitions on the Agenda for April so that Councillor Morton can arrange for details to be up and running.

The next meeting will be held on Monday 9th April 2018 at 7pm at Mathern Village Hall.
There being no further business to discuss, the meeting closed at 8.50 pm.

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