Parish Council report up to March 2019

The Parish Council met on 13th February in the Village Institute supper room, the first public meeting since November 2018, following the introduction of the new meeting timetable.

The Parish Council is pleased to welcome Tom Lovatt as a newly co-opted councillor.

Cllr Lovatt’s tenure will, however, be short lived in the first instance as all existing councillors (wishing to continue) and any other interested parishioners who may wish to join the Parish Council will need to seek nomination for the election of Parish Councillors on May 2nd.  Nominations must be received by Craven District Council no later than 4pm on Wednesday April 3rd. Please contact the Clerk for further information as soon as possible - as this may (or may not) result in an Election being required, dependent on the number of nominations received.

The Parish Council has continued with its routine business, including planning applications and follow up requests on outstanding issues such as redundant street furniture.

Concern about the continuing presence of warning cones at the exit near Brackenley Lane has been referred to County Councillor Quinn for her attention. The VAS sign is now also in place on Kirk Lane near to the church. This is addition to the random police speed checks to be conducted in Eastby. Please be mindful of your speeds throughout both villages, as it has been reported by Speedwatch that some drivers are still exceeding the statutory 30 mph limit.

A parishioner was formally thanked for his persistence in contacting North Yorkshire County Council regarding the lighting (or lack of it) on East Lane and the difficulties experienced in reporting such issues. It is hoped that some resolution to the website reporting system can eventually be reached.

Councillors have been frustrated recently by difficulties encountered when trying to contact other outside bodies such as NYCC and CDC with queries concerning issues that arise within the parish. It seems that these may be as a result of changes in communication policy or technical difficulties.

Whilst the Parish Council acknowledges that departments are busy and in some cases are also understaffed, the Parish Council intends to send a letter of dissatisfaction with the service to both the County and District Councillors for their consideration. The matter will also be raised by the Clerk at the next Parishes Forum due to be held in March.

The co-mingling bins in the car park are working well. New stickers have been requested that make it clear what is accepted and the Council asks that waste be dealt with appropriately or we may face losing the facility.

Whilst the Parish Council did note in the last edition of the News that new volunteers would be welcomed, there has been little take up to date. (Although, neither has there been any notifications of retirement). The Parish Council is extremely grateful to all volunteers for the assistance that they provide – without which the parish would not look as well kept as it does. This voluntary assistance also helps to keep general maintenance costs down which can ultimately have a bearing on the precept. Obviously the more of us there are the less there is for any one person to do, so if you have time, a little energy and a sense of community please let the Clerk or Chair know. A Spring get together for all volunteers will be arranged shortly.

The Parish Council would like to acknowledge the enormous contribution made by the Friends of Embsay-with-Eastby Nature Reserve over the last four years with particular mention of John Oldfield, Tom Lovatt, Roger Henderson, Sarah Copeland, Simon Midgley with staff and students from Craven College, the Yorkshire Dales’ National Park Rangers and volunteers and Cllrs David Hill and Stella Kirkbride. The Parish Council congratulates them on their nomination for a Craven Community Champion’s Award – the results of which will be known after this report goes to the editor.

Frank Stokes, a parishioner who served in our Armed Forces took an interest in the upkeep of the War Memorial before his death in 2018.With the cooperation of his family a donation from Frank to the village was used to support the improvements to the Memorial and Garden at the time of the Armistice Centenary. The Parish Council is please to say that a plaque recording Frank’s support has been installed in the Memorial Garden

The defibrillator pads have been renewed in both the Embsay and Eastby Defibrillator boxes as they have an expiry date. Thankfully they have not had to be used. The Parish Council has been advised of a website “Heartsafe” which can be accessed to show the position of your nearest public accessed defibrillator, nationwide. Thanks to Cllrs Ayrton and Hill for their assistance in this.

The Parish Council has been approached by CDC’s Cleaner Neighbourhood Team to identify any known ‘hotspots’ for areas of dog fouling. Whilst the Parish Council recognises that most local dog owners take ownership for their dogs responsibly in all areas of care and upkeep unfortunately there are some who do not. This unsociable behaviour then has repercussions for the whole community. CDC’s CN Team has notified the Council that it intends to use CCTV to gain evidence of dog fouling and will prosecute where necessary.  Our parish has a considerable number of dog and multi -use waste bins so there is very little excuse not to use them… please do not be the one to set the first example of prosecution.

The Parish Council would prefer to see Planning Applications where the applicant has taken advantage of the pre-planning advice service offered by the Local Planning Authorities. The Parish Council wishes to thank those parishioners who consult with it about proposed planning applications, prior to submission, and would encourage others to do so. In this way issues that raise queries via the Planning Policy framework may sometimes be easily answered and avoid the need for the Parish Council to seek clarification from the Planning office thereby - in some cases - holding up the application. Whilst the Parish Council has no direct influence on any planning outcome (this is determined either by the Craven District Council or Yorkshire Dales National Park Planning Committees.) The Parish Council is a Statutory Consultee and as such is asked by the Planning Authorities to comment on applications considering their compliance and suitability, with regard to Planning legislation, the Guidelines and the ‘fit’ in the community

The next meeting of the Parish Council will be on the 13th March in the Village Institute. As ever all parishioners are invited to attend and, if they so wish to, speak in the agended item “Public Participation”.

Cllr Judith Benjamin

Chair