Challock Parish Council Meeting minutes




Memorial Hall, Audrey Allen room


Thursday 21st September 2017, 7.30pm




Members of public present: 8









Councillor Emma Fox & Councillor John Ramsden








Michael Fisher (Chairman), Annabel Burden (Vice Chair), Trevor Smith, Anthony Aitken, Max Thomas, Di Sandy (Clerk) & ABC Ward Downs West Councillor Larry Krause








Michael Fisher thanked everyone for attending.




Declarations of Interest




Councillors no new changes to the declarations of interest.




Minutes of Last Meeting




Minutes of 20th July 2017 meeting were signed by Michael Fisher as an accurate record




Clerk’s Report








Clerk has reported to Highways the overgrown vegetation along Buck Street.  Part of the footpath near the notice board along Buck Street has been cleared by Highways.  Clerk has reported again to Highways for overgrown grass and vegetation along Buck Street between Chestnut Cottages and entrance to Blind Lane.  Clerk has reported overgrown conifers on foot path between Zetland Lodge and Springfield House.




Clerk has reported overgrown vegetation blocking directional roundabout sign near Halfway Restaurant.




Clerk has reported damaged island traffic sign along Help Hire Garage/Canterbury Road.




Clerk has reported damaged Chapmans Close sign to ABC.




The annual highways village inspection is due to take place in October.  Parishioners who wish to report concerns to inform the clerk who will pass onto the Highways Officer.










A theft from a motor vehicle occurred in the White Hill area of Challock, Ashford between the times of 1100 hours on the 21st August and 1420 hours on the same day.  Entry was gained and a handbag, purse and bank cards were stolen.








Clerk has completed grants scheme monitoring and evaluation form for the salt bin and salt spreader which was purchased and paid for by KCC grant.








The grounds man has cut the hedge on strip of Lees, Portulacea, Canterbury Road.




Strimmed edge of play park, around dog bin on cricket ground and notice board.




Play Park




The Play Park inspection was carried out in July with an overall risk rating for the play space as LOW. The following findings for action are:




Monster Rocker – spring base is loose in the ground.  This has now been repaired by the grounds man.




Junior Swing - There is decay to timber components which may affect structural integrity. Due to the increased problem of timber rot, especially in posts in contact with the ground, we do


not recommend replacing rotten supports with timber posts which are directly set in the ground.


Timber supports becoming soft at ground level - monitor.  It is noted that the junior swing may need replacing during 2018.




Wobble Boards - Replace. There is decay to timber components which may affect structural integrity.  Due to the increased problem of timber rot, especially in posts in contact with the ground, we do not recommend replacing rotten supports with timber posts which are directly set in the ground. The wobble boards have now been replaced by the grounds man.




Notice Boards




Grounds man has completed re varnishing the notice boards and replaced back board, Perspex and posts.  A new notice board has been installed adjacent to double notice board at the Post Office.  This is available for parishioners to display posters of interest and to avoid using the telephone box.  A number of posters have started to be displayed.




Clerks Conference




Clerk attended the Clerks Conference on 14th September at Canterbury Cricket Ground.  Consisting of a financial update regarding audit issues and best practice, Defibrillation: saving life presentation by John Rivers KALC, the importance of land law for local councils and advice from Came and Co regarding insurance.  During the afternoon Clerk attended a presentation “The local council clerk: developing professionalism from Alison Burton, Clerk of Dover Town Council.










  • Received email from Sarah Williams regarding the defibrillator cabinet informing the parish council when Molash PC bought their cabinet last year they were advised by ambulance staff and the KALC representative not to go down the lockable route on the grounds that when you are already in state of flux because someone has had a heart attack the last thing you will be able to remember is a number to release the machine out of the cabinet, which only goes to
    add more stress if you can’t get the machine. Molash defibrillator has been in situ in a heated cabinet for over a year; just don’t forget to mark the machine up with a permanent marker stating Challock Parish Council.  Clerk has checked with Insurance and the Defibrillator and Cabinet are covered up to £5,000.  Clerk has added Defibrillator and Cabinet to the Asset Register.
  • A request for new members to join neighbourhood watch committee meet as a Committee approximately 5 times a year at Ashford Police Station;  looking for representatives from all corners of our vast geographical area to give a local perspective from where they live.  Posters have been displayed on the village notice boards.
  • An email from KALC regarding reform data protection legislation coming into force May 2018.
  • An email from David Cox requesting the Parish Council’s support for proposed 15 dwelling at Clock house.
  • An email from Girlings regarding new lease for relocation of sub-station in wooded area at the top of the Lees.  New lease has been signed by Parish Council.
  • An email from KCC providing weblinks to further information and how to provide comments on their Public Rights of Way and Access Service.  Foot ways improvement survey closing date 17th September 2017.
  • An email from South East Water concerning water metering coming to Ashford and surrounding areas. The aim is to have 90 per cent of households on metered charges by the end of the scheme, scheduled for 2020.  A Come and Meet Us session, where their staff will be on hand to talk about the programme and answer any questions. It will take place from 10am to 3pm on Thursday 28 September at the County Square Shopping Centre when there will also be a chance to win a water butt packed with goodies.
  • An email from John Segust South Eastern Power Networks as the preparation and completion of the new lease will take some time as a temporary measure requests that Challock Parish Council sign Wayleave Agreement for the substation Challock woodland, the Lees. Challock Parish Council approval for Clerk to sign agreement.
  • An email from Police Sargent Jasmine Bloomfield informing that Kent Police changed in structure on 12th November 2017. The new model has introduced specialised roles to address key issues such as helping vulnerable people and those suffering with Domestic Abuse. Staff for the new roles has come from existing officers and I have therefore had to adjust my team’s deployment. The community police officer for Downs West is Lee Sinden replacing Angie Burden.
  • Received an email from Alex Collyer regarding the poor field and willing to take over the lease.  Alex is willing to arrange and pay for the new lease to be drawn up and a rent review to take place.  Clerk has contacted Tom French regarding the rent review and obtaining a map of the area.










Finance for July & August 2017 attached.




The current account balance on 31st August 2017 £11,229.71




Received Repayment of VAT £1,893.34




The NS&I account balance is £11,684.65




  1. Annual Return


    PKF have now completed the review of the Annual Return for Challock Parish Council for year ended 31 March 2017.


    The Annual Return has been certified with no matters arising.


    A notice of conclusion of audit and Section 1, 2 and 3 Statements has been displayed on the notice boards and website.  Annual Return will remain available for public access for a period of not less than 5 years from date of publication.


    Cheque Payments signed by Michael Fisher and Annabel Burden for the following:-


    Chq No: 102500 D Sandy for purchase of Defibrillator Signs for Telephone Box £109.44

    Chq No: 102501 Kent PCs for Laptop Repair £150.00

    Chq No: 102502 D Sandy for stationary £39.77





    The following applications were discussed:


    17/01321/AS Land at Holly Dene, Buck Street, Challock
    Erection of detached chalet bungalow with parking


    Decision: Parish Council supports this application.


    17/01310/AS Land between Tollgate Cottage and The Firs, Buck Street, Challock

    Erection of two dwellings (revision to design of plots 2 &; 4 on planning permission 16/01169/AS)


    Decision: Parish Council supports this application.


    The following Planning Applications were ratified:


    Application No: - 17/01042/AS Lords Poultry Farm, Canterbury Road, Challock Kent TN25 4BB

    Proposal: - . The removal of 2 no former chicken huts and replacement with 2 no log cabins for use as holiday let accommodation (resubmission of withdrawn application 17/00518/AS)

    The replacement buildings will be timber and painted black not unlike the existing buildings and they will be using the existing access to the farm. If support is given the holiday accommodation aspect should be made permanent so that the only further change to its status in the future is to revert. I support with conditions. We simply can't support the change of use from agricultural to residential without setting a risky precedent. I do not think we should ever support the change of use on agricultural land, therefore I do not support.


    Challock Parish Council support this application providing conditions are included


    Application No: - 17/01088/AS Challock Health and Fitness, The Old Vicarage, Canterbury Road, Challock, Kent


    Proposal: - Variation of conditions 1 &; 4 of planning approval 16/01111/AS (retrospective change of use of empty outbuilding and part of external builders office into fitness/yoga studio into, treatment room and coffee shop) to allow the use of the coffee shop as a restaurant and extend opening hours to 9am-11pm daily.


    Challock Parish Council commented on this application. If it is a condition free license the parish council have concerns by the idea that it will be a licensed premise running until 11pm every night. Although the current occupants may be respectful of their locality, it is a permanent permission for all future users of the building. The parish council have concerns regarding parking facilities are adequate.  Customers may choose to park on Canterbury Road or opposite at the Post Office. Would like to know more details of their plans for the site and what warrants such late opening hours.


    Local Plan Consultation


    Ratification of Challock Parish Council Comment to the Changes to the Local Plan


    Challock Parish Council has concerns regarding omission site MC97 Policy S54 – Challock, Clockhouse.  The site is in an area of outstanding natural beauty and has until now afforded protection as with the ancient woodland.  The Parish Council does not have confidence in Cox Developments as to their proposal of 15 dwellings.  There is doubt whether 15 dwellings would be the maximum built.  There is additional plot beyond the proposed plan which we have be told by Mr Cox that he has no plans to develop this land.  However, Cox Developments have been pursuant of developing land over a number of years in Challock.  Since the village envelope has been approved by ABC Cabinet during 2013/14 planning applications decided has resulted in approximately 70 new dwellings being built.  Our parishioners have told us that they do not wish to have any more new developments as they feel Challock have done enough to contribute to the local plan.  The Parish Council has concerns regarding the infrastructure of the village.  The primary school is filled to capacity and therefore new residents moving to the village may not be able to get their children into their local school.  The road system is very poor the village endures 2 major A roads with a speed limit of 40.  The A roads are narrow with speeding traffic; emergency vehicle sirens are a weekly occurrence.  There are limited/no footpaths and our parishioners do not feel safe walking around our village.  The small children’s play park with a growing village population is no longer adequate. 

    If Clockhouse, Challock is approved what measures does Ashford Borough Council has in place to deal with other developers challenging this site as it would classified as being outside of the village envelope.  We have received conflicting views from ABC regarding whether the proposed site should be included into the village confines. 

    Regarding the consultation process…  Having your say via the online portal which is the preferred choice for ABC may not be easy accessible for some of our residents.  The consultation held at our local village hall between 4 pm and 6 pm limit to a number of people attending for those people working full time was unable to attend. 


    Forester Magazine


    The forester magazine has been under the parish council control for a number of years, previously run by the church.  The Forester is non-profit making community magazine running at a loss of £2077 on average per annum.  Molash Parish Council makes a contribution of £450 on average per annum.  Loss to Challock Parish Council is on average £1625 per annum.  Both Molash and Challock Parish Council are working towards reducing the loss by looking at ways to increase revenue through its advertising.  A Forester Sub-Committee was formed in September 2016 consisting of representatives from Molash and Challock Parish Council with Challock parish clerk as minute taker/administrator.  Estimated forecast for advertising revenue is £3018.  Potentially there is an extra £480 in advertising revenue due but is not confirmed.  This is for 2 x full page colour advertising.  Therefore potentially £3498 advertising revenue an increase on previous year £672 cumulatively forecast loss estimated at £1405.  One of the colour full pages has been allocated to Kent PCs (Editor of the Forester) for advertising at no charge.  The Post Office and Barn Shop have free advertising space. This is because the post office takes in the mail for the Parish Council and the Barn Shop provides storage for the forester magazines prior to distribution.  With the need to increase advertising revenue and reduce losses the Forester Sub-Committee recommends that all full colour page advertisements should be chargeable and not allocated to free advertising space.  Kent PCs would like to keep their colour advert and do not wish to move to another page in the magazine.  The Sub-Committee prior to next meeting would like to have Councillor’s comments regarding Kent PC’s advertising space and whether to invoice for the full charge of £240 or to charge an extra £40. 


    The Parish Clerk has recently carried out research in village magazines and how they are run and has also been in contact with Clive Powell Adviser from K.A.L.C.

    Not all villages run magazines but choose to put newsletters on their website.  Villages that do run magazines are primarily run by the church, Westwell Parish Council have recently taking over the running of their magazine and hope to break even with the balance of advertisements v printing costs.  Many villages charge a subscription i.e. 60p per issue paid in advance.  Some editors are volunteers and are not paid. 


    The Parish Council to consider the Clerk or Councillor to attend the Social Media Learning Event at Lenham Village Hall afternoon on 27th September which covers aspects of social media and the correct medium for parish councils.  K.A.L.C says that this training event would be useful for our Parish Council as we run a village magazine. 


    With the Clerk’s research findings and attendance at Social Media Learning Event to arrange a Forester Sub-Committee Meeting for October to report findings and for the committee to review the forester and terms of reference.  Sub-Committee to report back to their respective parish councils.




    The Parish Council agreed all full colour page advertisements should be chargeable and not allocated to free advertising space.  Clerk to notify Kent PC’s that an invoice for £240 will be issued.  The Parish Council agreed for the Clerk to attend the Social Media Learning Event.


    Adoption of Safeguarding Policy


    Councillor Emma Fox and Councillor Anthony Aitken and Clerk has completed on-line safeguarding course.


    Decision: The Parish Council adopted the Safeguarding Policy


    Items for Information



Faversham Road and Buck Street Footpaths Update




As agreed at 20th July’s Parish Meeting the Clerk distributed letters to residents of Faversham Road and Buck Street enquiring if they are willing to donate 1.5 metres width of land for foot path to be installed. 




Residents from Faversham Road have agreed to donate some of their land for a footpath. However, Clarendon Homes have declined to donate land for a footpath as this would be detrimental to their development.  Clerk has replied to Clarendon Homes and asked why it would be detrimental to their development and to reconsider.  No response has been received.  Ward Councillor Larry Krause has been informed and is looking into this.




With residents from Buck Street there has been a mixed response with 5 declining and 3 willing to donate land.  Without 100% willing to donate land the footpath cannot go ahead.  One resident suggested a footpath be installed on the opposite side at Victoriana Nursery.




ABC Ward Councillor Larry Krause suggested for the Parish Council to approach the new residents when they move into the new homes (Claredon Homes) and ask if they will be prepared to give up 1.5 metres to allow for the footpath.




ABC Ward Councillor will make enquiries to ABC planning regarding the condition place for Claredon Homes to re-install the hedge and to check the width allowance from the edge of the road. 








Instruction from Girlings Solicitors have arranged for a deed of variation to the new access for Hurstwood. 




Telephone Box – Defibrillator




Defibrillator cabinet and accessories have been received and electrician John Dowden will be shortly installing the cabinet. Once completed defibrillator will then be put in cabinet.  Clerk to arrange for training session in the village hall for October. 




Memorial Seat




Discussion took place to have a memorial seat for parishioners of the village who have made a contribution to the village and to be placed up the top end of Lees near Haverbrack.  The Parish Council agreed to consider further and to welcome comments from parishioners regarding the memorial seat. The Parish Council agreed to discuss at the next Parish Meeting in November. 








Containers – Cricket Ground




Clerk requested for parish council equipment i.e. salt spreader, telephone box old parts be stored in the lockable container.  The Parish Council agreed for the grounds man to store Parish Council equipment in the lockable container.




Public Bridleway AE118, Mill Lane, Challock




Received a letter from KCC, Public Rights of Way and Access Services giving authorization for the structures of two pairs of bollards erected in public bridleway Mill Lane under section 66 of the Highways Act 1980 with minor amendment to the width between the bollards – minimum width between the bollards is 5ft or 1.525 metres.  Mr Ransley has agreed to move the bollards so that the minimum width is available.


It is pointed out that the public bridleway AE118 is also known as Mill Lane and approximately 200 metres from Faversham Road the route is also recorded as being a publicly maintainable highway on the Kent Highway Gazetteer.  This means that higher public rights than bridleway use exist for this section of the route and if challenged the bollards at the end of the bridleway may have to be removed.


Chairman Michael Fisher explained due to recent break-ins the reason for the installation of the bollards was to prevent unauthorised vehicles gaining access to the Lane.




Open Forum




Hegdale Quarry




Parishioner enquired for an update on the Hegdale Quarry and the recent scoping opinion.  ABC Ward Councillor Larry Krause said that the next step would be an application for change of use will be submitted to KCC.  This is likely to take place once surveys/investigations stated in the scoping opinion have been carried out. 








Parishioner raised his concerns regarding speeding of traffic in particular motor cycles driving through the village at over 100 mph.  Chairman Michael Fisher responded that the Parish Council is considering writing to the Police Commissioner.




Parishioner enquired about an extension to the footpath along Canterbury Road to continue up to Pony Park. 




The meeting closed at 8.50 pm




Parish Council Meeting dates for 2017




Thursday 16th November





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