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Parish Council Minutes - Wednesday, 8th July 2020

on Thu, 10/09/2020 - 11:18am


Minutes of the Meeting of Sparsholt Parish Council held on

Wednesday 8th July 2020 via Zoom starting at 7.00pm


Present: Councillors Barnes, Comyn, Jacobs and Jones, DC Barrow, the Clerk and 2 parishioners.





Apologies:  The RFO.



Co-option of new Parish Councillors:  Jon Coe has decided not to stand but Rupert Caulfield had also expressed an interest.  Mr Caulfield to be asked if he is still interested in joining the Parish Council.



Declaration of Acceptance of Office, Declarations of Interest & Reminder of the Code of Conduct:  None.



Minutes of the Sparsholt Annual Parish Meeting held on Wednesday 13th May 2020:  The minutes were proposed as a true record by Cllr Jacobs, seconded by Cllr Barnes and agreed unanimously.

Minutes of the Annual Meeting of Sparsholt Parish Council held on Wednesday 13th May 2020:  The minutes were proposed as a true record by Cllr Barnes, seconded by Cllr Jacobs and agreed unanimously.



Matters Arising: 

  1. Land registry number for the cemetery:  Ongoing.
  2. Triangle Woods:  Remove from the Agenda.
  3. Petrol/cordless mower:  Cllr Jones advised Cllr Barnes to purchase a Still battery operated strimmer which also comes with a spare battery.  This strimmer is lightweight and easy to use as well as being well built.  It costs approx. £440, Cllr Comyn proposed the purchase, seconded by Cllr Jacobs and agreed unanimously.  Cllr Barnes will purchase the strimmer and claim the expense back from the Parish Council.
  4. Cemetery Rail quotes:  Cllr Comyn measured the path and agreed that putting up a rail will cause problems getting the mini digger in to dig the graves.  Cllr Comyn suggested that there was no requirement for a rail and that it should be removed from the agenda, the other Parish Councillors agreed unanimously.  
  5. Cemetery Risk Assessment:  This was agreed at the last meeting and should have been removed from the agenda.
  6. Expenditure suggestions:  Cllr Jones reported that the verge cutting had been completed and the Parish Councillors agreed that it was a good job.  Cllr Jones suggested moving the OCC cut to September and he will inform BGG.  
  7. The ditch alongside the B4507 after the Sparsholt turn by Golden Acre:  Cllr Jones will investigate.
  8. Collapsed railings on the B4507 by Golden Acre:  Cllr Comyn will chase Lee Turner from OCC as this has previously been reported.  Cllr Comyn will also chase the footbridges on the north boundary of Sparsholt common and the bridleway bridge by Westcot Lane.


Cllr Comyn






Cllr Barnes










Cllr Jones


Cllr Jones

Cllr Comyn


Cllr Comyn




  1. Approval of the finance Report up to the 30th June 2020:  Cllr Comyn proposed acceptance, seconded by Cllr Jacobs and agreed unanimously. 
  2. Approval of any payments to be made: Cllr Comyn proposed payments for the Clerk’s salary for June, July and August  at £78.68 for each payment, RFO’s salary for June, July and August at £47.11 for each payment, expenses to Cllr Barnes for the Zoom subscription for May £14.39, Arrow Accounting for the 2019/20 Internal Audit £191.00, HMRC PAYE £94.20, seconded by Cllr Jacobs and agreed unanimously.
  3. Assets review:  Cllr Comyn read through the Asset Register prepared by the RFO and proposed acceptance, seconded by Cllr Barnes and agreed unanimously. Cllr Jones mentioned that the strimmer will need to be added after purchase.
  4. Approval of the Annual Return for the year to 31st March 2020:  The Clerk stated that the Internal Audit had been completed and no issues were raised.  The Parish Council need to resolve that it does not require an External Audit as Income and Expenditure are both under £25,000.  Cllr Comyn proposed that an External Audit was not required, seconded by Cllr Jacobs and agreed unanimously.

Acceptance of the AGAR was proposed and completed at the meeting by Cllr Comyn, seconded by Cllr Barnes and agreed unanimously.  The RFO will submit the AGAR and post the Public Inspection of records on the notice boards and website.

  1. Review the actual receipts and payments for 2019/20 compared to the budgeted figures and explain the differences:  Cllr Comyn read through and proposed acceptance, seconded by Cllr Jones and agreed unanimously.
  2. Any other finance matters:  Cllr Jones is now a bank signatory.





P20/V0955/HH 3 Eastmanton Cottages, Eastmanton Lane, Sparsholt, OX12 9PJ:  No decision.

P20/V0722 Summer Lease, Watery Lane, OX12 9PP:  Single storey timber framed garden room extension to rear.  Granted.

P20/V0526/FUL Westcot Farm, Westcot, OX12 9QA:  Application for planning permission for conversion of existing farm buildings to form seven family homes with associated parking, amenity areas, landscaping, and associated works.  No decision.  Cllr Comyn stated that the Transport Office had questioned why there was not a transport assessment included.  Cllr Comyn stated that this was a contentious application and a number of objections had been added to the planning portal.  DC Barrow has agreed to call the site into Planning Committee and will keep an eye on the application.












DC Barrow


Any other Cemetery matters:  Cllr Comyn reported that there has been two burials and has cheques to pass on to the RFO.  Cllr Barnes asked if he could learn the Cemetery procedures and Cllr Comyn thought this was a good idea, a meeting to be arranged.  Cllr Jones offered to obtain quotes for cutting the Cemetery hedge down to 7ft and taking back the sides to uncover the headstones and tablets.




Cllr Jones


Second draft of Sparsholt & Westcot Emergency plan:  Cllr Barnes agreed to speak to Angie Brown and Nick Price and to complete the rest of the plan.  Cllr Comyn suggested removing the Parish Council from the plan as concerned about insurance issues.  Cllr Barnes to adapt the plan to be a Community Plan only, removing the reference to the Parish Council.  Cllr Jacobs agreed to speak to Holy Cross church to get a contact name and details.  DC Barrow to ask the District Council what other Parish Councils have done with their Emergency Plans.    

Cllr Barnes



Cllr Barnes

Cllr Jacobs

DC Barrow


Correspondence sheet:  No comments.



Matters for future discussion:  DC Barrow asked if the Parish Councillors would like a written report prior to the meeting, it was agreed that this would be a good idea.  DC Barrow reported on the OX12 Health Provision Review and Wantage Hospital.  The report was not rejected but 14 recommendations had been suggested, no response as yet.  The plan is to reopen Wantage Hospital by January 2021.  Cllr Comyn thanked DC Barrow for his involvement in this group and for reporting back to the Parish Council.



Set dates, times and place of ordinary meetings of the full Council for the year ahead: Wednesday 16th September 2020 starting at 7.00pm at the Griffin Memorial Hall/via Zoom.

The Parish Council may need to change this date as necessary.


Meeting closed at 8.02pm.

Minutes prepared by Mrs D Lewis-Pryde, Parish Clerk


SPC 8th July 2020