A MEETING of HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL will be held on Tuesday 8 November 2022 at 7.30 pm in the Council Chamber, Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.
Parish Clerk – 2 November 2022
Members of the public are encouraged to come to the meetings and there is an opportunity for them to address the Council relating to the non-confidential items on the published agenda. A period of 15 minutes will be set aside in item 4 Public participation.
1.1 To accept Apologies for absence
2. DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS
2.1 To deal with any disclosure by Members of any disclosable pecuniary interests and interests other than pecuniary interests, as defined under Hassocks Parish Council’s Code of Conduct and the Localism Act 2011, in relation to matters on the agenda.
3.1. To accept the minutes of the
Parish Council meeting 11th October 2022
4. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
Up to fifteen minutes will be available to allow for the public to make representations, answer questions or give evidence in respect of any items of business included in the agenda, in accordance with Standing Orders.
5. TO ACCEPT THE FOLLOWING MINUTES
5.1 Planning Committee – to agree the minutes for the 24th October 2022
5.2 Grounds & Environment Committee to note the minutes for 19th October 2022.
5.3 Neighbourhood Plan Committee to note the minutes for 27th October 2022
6.1 To approve the Financial Report and authorise the list of payments in the sum of £25,895.77 issued between 1 September 2022 and 30th September 2022. (Appendix 1). To view Appendix 1 please click here.
7. Adastra Hall – improvement options (presentation – Chris Hobbs, Hassocks Community Association Chair).
Hassocks Parish Council own the land and building, but the hall is leased, run and operated by Hassocks Community Association through a committee of trustees, and volunteers, therefore authority is required from the parish council if any material changes improvements to the building are proposed to be undertaken.
At present the hall committee are exploring the option of extending the footprint of the existing building to enhance the halls current facilities which if progressed would impact on the conditions of the current lease agreement. In addition the current structure of trustees operating the hall is to be amended, therefore this change would also need to be reflected in any lease agreement.
Some of the proposals would require the parish council granting permission to extend the footprint of the existing building into the park, therefore members are requested to consider the options proposed and indicate whether they would agree in principle to giving up the areas of the park to enable the proposed schemes to be explored further and progressed if viable (see background papers to be circulated). If works are progressed they will be funded from external sources such as developer contributions etc., therefore the term of the lease would also need to be extended to enable them to access these funds.
If members are minded to support the proposed enlargement of the footprint of the building the existing lease would need to be redrafted, therefore the Council would need to instruct a solicitor to redraw the lease accordingly and cover any professional fees incurred by the parish council. As a minimum any lease would require amendment to reflect the proposed revised entity managing the hall.
Member’s views are sought.
8.1. West Sussex County Councillor
8.2. Mid Sussex District Councillors Report
8.3 Police Report
8.4. Rail Matters – oral Report (Leslie Campbell)
8.5. Youth Initiatives – presentation (Frances Gaudencio)
8.6. Reports from Councillors on meetings outside bodies where the Council
9. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT
9.1 Current matters (oral report)
10. CLERK’S REPORT
10.1 Committee Membership
Members were requested to consider Cllr Sewell’s request to join the Policy Resources & Communications Committee.
10.2 Precept This is to inform members that the Council has now received the second parish precept instalment in the sum of £156,151 from Mid Sussex District Council
10.3 Grants letters of thanks – The purpose of this report is to inform members that following the grants agreed on 13th September 2022 emails/letters of thanks have been received from the following.
– 4 Sight Vision Support
11. URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.
12. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
To note that the date of the next Council meeting is Tuesday 13th December 2022 at 7.30pm.
EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS
In view of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted Councillors will be referred to the Confidential Agenda. If any members of the public or press are in attendance they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting in the public interest.
FILMING, RECORDING OF COUNCIL MEETINGS AND USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
During this meeting members of the public may film or record the Committee and officers from the public area only providing it does not disrupt the meeting. The Confidential section of the meeting may not be filmed or recorded. If a member of the public objects to being recorded, the person(s) filming must stop doing so until that member of the public has finished speaking. The use of social media is permitted but members of the public are requested to switch their mobile devices to silent for the duration of the meeting
All members of the public are welcome to attend to attend meetings of the Parish Council and its Committees.
Item 4 – a period of 15 minutes will be set aside for the public statements and questions relating to the published non-confidential business of the Meeting.
It may be necessary to consider particular items in confidential session and where this arises, these items will be considered at the end of the agenda.
Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council held on 8th November 2022
at 7.30pm in Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks
Attendees: Parish Councillors Jane Baker (Chair), Sue Hatton, Kristian Berggreen, Leslie Campbell, Carolyn Barton, Frances Gaudencio, David Bunting, Claire Tester, Angus Neil, Alex Simmons, Kate Bailey, Robert Brewer and Dan Sewell.
Visiting Member(s): – County Councillor Kirsty Lord
Parish Clerk: Ian Cumberworth
PC22/89 APOLOGIES Cllr Ian Weir, Cllr Bill Hatton
PC22/90 DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS
Disclosure by Councillors of personal interests in matters on the agenda, and whether the Councillor regards their interest as prejudicial under the terms of the Code of Conduct. –
Cllr S Hatton and Cllr Barton in relation to item 7 – Adastra Hall Improvement options.
The minutes of the meeting held on the 11th October 2022 were accepted as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
PC22/92 PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
No members of the public were present.
93.1 Members accepted the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting on the 24th October 2022.
93.2 Members noted the minutes of the Grounds & Environment Committee for the 19th October 2022
93.3 Members noted the minutes of the Neighbourhood Plan Committee for the 27th October 2022
94.1 Members considered the finance reports and the supporting bank statements and reviewed the following payment list.
The Finance report and payments totalling £25,895.77 (Appendix 1) for the period 1st September to 30th September 2022 were considered and APPROVED.
Members sought clarification of a payment in the sum of £1,026 which the clerk undertook to clarify after the meeting.
PC22/95 Adastra Hall Improvement options.
95.1 The Chair introduced the item and then the Clerk provided a brief summary of the items members would be asked to consider prior to inviting Chris Hobbs (Hassocks Community Association) Chair to present the item. Members were reminded that some background papers had previously been distributed and that the Parish Council owns the land and hall which is leased to the Association to manage and run, therefore any proposed material changes to the building would require the consent of the parish council. In summary members were being asked to consider:
- the release of some additional small parcels of land within the park to enable a small enlargement of the halls footprint.
- to consider agreement to re-draw the lease to reflect any amended boundaries.
- Consider extending the term of the lease.
- To enter into an amended lease with the newly constituted association.
Chris Hobbs (HCA) was then invited to run through his PowerPoint presentation which is also produced as an attachment to these minutes.
CH took members through a range of proposals which the Association were looking to take forward and illustrating the potential benefits to the community and users. CH highlighted that at present the hall was struggling to meet the current demand of usage and the trustees were looking at ways to provide more flexible use within the facility and improve the current toilets facilities.
The building was conceived and built when the village was somewhat smaller and as the village continues to grow it would be beneficial to improve the current offer to meet the future needs of the village.
CH highlighted a number of funding sources that could be tapped into to fund these initiatives but to access these would require a lease over a longer period preferably twenty one years. As CH progressed through the presentation he set out the issues that the Association wished the Council to consider to support their proposals.
Members were then able to ask questions and seek points of clarification which were responded to, members overall were supportive of proposed improvements, however they expressed the view that the issue of funding would be one for the Association to consider in due course.
CH was thanked for his informative presentation and the clerk then invited members to consider the following proposals:
95.2 Members were requested to consider the release of designated pieces of land within the park to support the proposal to increase the size of the ‘green room’ and the improvement of the toilet facilities and to redraw the lease to reflect the enlarged building footprint.
Members RESOLVED to APPROVE the release of additional land within the park to facilitate the enlargement of the ‘green room’ and the toilet facilities and to redraw the lease to reflect the extended footprint.
95.3 Members were requested to consider entering into an extended lease of 21 years to facilitate the Associations ability to access funding.
Members RESOLVED to APPROVE the extension of the lease to 21 years
95.4 Members were requested to consider entering into a new lease with the amended constituted association.
Members RESOLVED to APPROVE the entering into a new lease with the Adastra Hall Community Association (CIC)
95.5 Members were requested to consider authorising the Clerk to appoint and instruct a suitable legal representative to enact these changes with the costs being met from the professional fees budget.
Members RESOLVED to AUTHORISE the Clerk to appoint a suitable legal representative to effect the agreed changes with the cost being met from the professional fees budget.
96.1 County Councillors reports: – Cllr Kirsty Lord (KL)
KL advised members that as part of the budget process the proposal for next year indicates there will be a £5M shortfall in 2023/24 with the potential of a £16M shortfall in 2024/25 however in the current financial climate there remains some uncertainty over these projections.
KL recently met with Mark Wignall (MW) Downlands school re the expansion this and next year in respect of the bulge classes. This has entailed creating some additional classroom space.
A meeting is scheduled in the near future with WSCC to discuss the school site at Ockley Park to see if their school pupil modelling numbers reflect reality. Cllr Weir from the parish council will also be in attendance.
Reports have been made that an unlicensed waste operator is operating in Shepherds walk and further enquiries are now being undertaken by MSDC Environmental Health.
Cycle improvements from Stonepound crossroads to Downlands are being progressed and initial approval has been obtained for a crossing near Station Approach and South Bank.
A number of community highways schemes are being considered:
- Stonepound road to mitigate the issue of the road being used as a ‘rat run’ therefore traffic calming measures are being explored.
- Beaconhurst to improve safe crossing and resilience.
- Potential crossing point between Budgens and Adastra Park area.
KL has also submitted reports to highways regarding the overgrown vegetation on both London Road and Keymer Road.
KL advised members that WSCC are looking to adopt the roads on the Saxon Millls development but county are awaiting for the developer to conclude some remedial works before doing so. Therefore if any queries are raised by residents at present they should be directed to liaise with the management company.
Public Rights of Way (PROW)
KL indicated that county are awaiting delivery of the fingerpost for the Golf course PROW diversion.
Cinder path is being discussed with highways, one of the challenges for any works is site access problems and may require a land closure, however discussions are ongoing.
KL asked the parish whether there was any update on the drainage within the park and in light of her frustration in being unable to secure a Safety Indicator Device (SID) would the parish consider buying one.
The Clerk advised Cllr Lord of the current position regarding the drainage and members agreed to consider the option of SID at a future meeting although it was noted that the council does not currently have the resources to install and maintain this type of kit.
Cllr Barton sought clarification on the frequency of gully clearing in light of the recent issues experienced in Parklands Road, Cllr Lord indicated that main roads were normally done annually with side roads every 4 years although this could be varied in specific known problem areas.
96.2 District Councillor Report (Cllr Sue Hatton) Cllr Hatton advised members that the District Plan is now out for Regulation 18 consultation and will run from 7th November – 19th November 2022.
Two Hassocks sites have been identified within the plan:
DPH 15- p523 – land to rear of 2 Hurst road ( previously application not supported by WSCC highways due to proximity to three lane element running up to Stonepound crossroads – WSCC now support the proposed scheme and will provide a right hand turning lane for access.) 25 properties
DPH 27 Byanda – p557
Although MSDC planning committee recently turned down the application for a care home on this site, the site remains in the allocated site plans.
The Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) recently met and it was raised the potential impact these developments and the other proposed 3,800 in the near vicinity of Hassocks and the potential impact they could have on traffic flow at Stonepound.
Cllr S Hatton indicated that she understood the Parish Council will be responding to the consultation and encouraged members to read the document and make representations as an individual as well as the parish council’s response.
SH indicated that she hoped as part of the consultation response the Parish Council would make representations raising concerns regarding the creation of a right hand turn in respect of the Hurst Road site due the impact it would have on the traffic flow.
The Clerk clarified that the Neighbourhood Plan Committee members had been requested to submit responses to the Clerk/Chair of the Neighbourhood Plan Committee to co-ordinate the parish’s response. These responses will be pulled together and considered by a future Neighbourhood Plan Committee (15th December 2022) and agreed prior to submission.
The Draft District Plan link https://midsussex.inconsult.uk/districtplanreg18/.
SH also indicated that she had raised concerns over the proposed WSCC cycleway scheme from Stonepound to Downlands school and in particular the shared pathway area for Keymer Road and Age Concern. The intention is that the pathway will be shared by both cyclists and pedestrians. The Parish had raised similar concerns as part of the consultation process however county have undertaken a desktop safety audit and believe the scheme to be viable. SH raised concerns with representatives from MSDC (Nick Bennet) who indicated the matter should be taken up by the Parish Council. Cllr Hatton requested that the PC consider raising their concerns again regarding the proposed shared space.
Members agreed that the Clerk should write to WSCC restating the parish’s position.
Cllr Lord (WSCC) indicated that county have deemed the scheme safe as experienced cyclists were unlikely to use the path and children going to school are likely to ride at slower speeds and when school run time, more likely to wheel their bikes.
It was felt that at non peak time’s resident access to Age Concern and the Health centre would not be a problem, although it was acknowledged that sometimes these evaluations don’t deal with reality.
County would review the scheme after six months and undertake a further safety assessment and modify the scheme if required
Members agreed to raise the parishes concerns again with county.
96.3 Police Report the Clerk advised members that a police beat meeting is scheduled for the 29th November in the Parish Centre 11.00 am where members of the public will have the opportunity to come in and raise any concerns directly with the police.
The Clerk and the Chair are scheduled to attend the quarterly Mid Sussex Police Focus Group meeting later this month with representatives from the police commissioner’s office.
96.4 Rail Matters – Cllr Campbell advised members that the Rail group had met. It was understood that Hassocks station ticket office was one of the sites facing potential closure.
Members were also informed that Gatwick station was well on the way to opening therefore this may have an impact on future services.
96.5 Youth Initiatives – nothing to report.
96.6 Report from Councillors on meetings of outside bodies where the Council is represented – nothing to report.
PC22/97 CHAIRMANS REPORT – Nothing to report.
PC22/98 CLERK’S REPORT
98.1 Committee Membership
Members were requested to consider Cllr Sewells request to join the Policy Resources & Communications Committee.
Members RESOLVED to AGREE Cllr Sewells appointment to the Policy Resources & Communications Committee.
Members were requested to note that the Council had received the second precept instalment from MSDC in the sum of £156,151.
Members duly NOTED the receipt of the precept instalment.
Members were asked to note that the Council had received emails/ letters of thanks from the grant beneficiaries – 4 Sight Vision Support together with a verbal response as part of the earlier presentation from Hassocks Community Association. NOTED
PC22/99 URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN – none.
PC22/100 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
To note that the date of the next Parish Council meeting is Tuesday 13th December 2022 at 7.30pm.