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Highlights of Meetings in 2008

December 2008

Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes : The Parish Council was pleased at the recent announcement by Npower that Thrupp Lake would no longer be needed for pulverised fuel ash following an agreement between Npower and WRG. The Councillors congratulated Save Radley Lakes on the work it had undertaken over the last few years.

Litter: The District Council has had a useful meeting with Mr Colin Marshall, one of the District Council Environment Wardens, to discuss the litter problems in the Parish. The Parish Council would like to aim for litter bins by all the bus stops, but this will obviously have to be done gradually. In addition, the Parish Council feels that an additional dog litter bin is required in another part of the village. Dog Walkers note – I need your advice.

Additional Street Lighting: Additional Street Lighting has been requested to cover the area up to Park Farm, Kennington Road , and the Parish Council will be discussing this at its January meeting. However, Councillors are aware that any discussion to increase the street lighting will need to take account of climate change and the current thinking on light pollution.

Application for Certificate of Lawfulness (CLEUD), Tuckwells: The Thrupp Lane Residents Association is extremely concerned about this action, and the Parish Council is taking legal advice on how to object to this application.

Freedom of Information Act: The Parish Council agreed the Scheme to be adopted from 1 January 2009. This would be published on the website.

Speed – Oxford Road passed Radley/Sunningwell Turns and Chandlings Manor: The Parish Council continues to be concerned about the speed of traffic along this road, and has written to the OCC Speed Reference Group asking for serious consideration to be given to introducing speed restrictions.

 Parking at Radley Station: Concern has been expressed about the difficulty of parking at Radley Station. The Friends of Radley Station have referred the matter to the OCC/Network Rail, and users who cannot find parking spaces should contact the manager at The Bowyer Arms as he might allow cars to be parked in the public house car park.

November 2008

Radley College : Mr Andrew Ashton, the new Bursar at Radley College , and Mr David Anderson, the Buildings and Estate Manager at Radley College , attended the Parish Council meeting in November to introduce themselves to Councillors and indicated that they wished to work closely with the Parish Council.

Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes : The Parish Council decided that the Chairman of the Parish Council should attend the Judicial Review.

Precept: The Parish Council decided that the precept for 2009/2010 should be the same as 2008/2009, i.e. £49,500.

Parish Plan: A meeting to discuss the preparation of a Parish Plan was held on 31 October 2008, with members of village organisations. A further meeting will be held in the spring 2009 in the hope that this will result in a group willing to pursue the preparation of a Parish Plan.

Motocross, Culham: The motocross season starts in March 2009. Please contact me if you feel this is a disturbance to you.

Footpath 8: The widening of the footpath has now been completed, and provides a much better facility for users of this path. This work was possible because of the agreement of the landowner, Radley College , and the farmer, Bill Homewood, and with funding from the Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment (£10,000) and the Vale of White Horse DC (£10,000).

October 2008

Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The Judicial Review Hearing has been arranged for the 26 and 27 February 2009.
Village Hall Proposals: The Parish Council has asked me to stress that there are no detailed plans on the proposals put to the Public Meeting in July contrary to comments made in a recent circular around the Parish – the diagrammatical drawings put to the public meeting showed a possible site for a new building but the Bursar of Radley College made it quite clear that no detailed plans had been prepared and this is the case to date. As I mentioned in my last report, the Working Party is looking into all possible options for the provision of a new village hall over the next few months, and we look forward to receiving views from you.
Motocross, Culham: The Parish Council is concerned about the number of events being held, and has asked South Oxfordshire DC for advice on whether this is covered by the planning conditions.
Potholes: The Parish Council is concerned about the number of bad potholes in the Parish, and has drawn these to the attention of the Highways Department at the Oxfordshire County Council. There is a form for reporting bad potholes on the OCC website, and reports from the public via this method would be of great help.
Litter: The District Council has two officers who advice on Envirocrimes – Powers for Parish Councils, and the Parish Council has asked if these officers can meet Councillors.
Footpath 8: The Parish Council has just obtained a grant of £2,000 from the District Council towards the work to widen this path. This, together with the grant of £10,000 from the Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment, will enable the work to go ahead, and the work should be taking place early in November.

 

September 2008

• Village Hall Proposals: The Parish Council has asked the Village Hall Working Party to look into possible options for the provision of a new village hall. You will be kept informed of progress through the report I make in Radley News, or you can look details up on the Radley website. The Parish Council will be circulating details to all households once further information has been collated. I have had a number of letters giving opinions on the proposal put forward at the Public Meeting – I look forward to receiving more of your views.
 Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: Representatives of the Parish Council have met staff from Didcot Power Station, but it is not possible at the moment for the Station Manager to give an assurance that Thrupp Lake will not be filled in with ash.
• Parish Plan: Anton Nath from the Oxfordshire Rural Community Council will be attending a meeting in the Village Hall on Friday, 31 October 2008, at 7.30 pm to speak to local groups about preparing a Parish Plan. If you wish to attend please speak to one of the Parish Councillors.
• New Councillor: Mrs Joan Dutton has been co-opted on to the Parish Council to replace Mr Martin Wilson.
• School Crossing Patrol Person: School has started again and unfortunately no-one has shown an interest in the vacancy for a School Crossing Patrol Person. It could, of course, be filled by job share so that is not a daily commitment on one person. If you are willing to help, please contact the School Secretary at Radley Primary School (Tel: 01235 520814).
 Vandalism at the Play Area/Sports Pavilion: Nasty graffiti has appeared on the Play Area equipment and the Sports Pavilion wall – does anyone know anything about this?
 Litter Bins: Litter continues to be a problem in the village/Parish despite the very good work of our Village Cleaner. The Parish Council has asked the District Council to consider providing litter bins by each bus stop in an attempt to reduce the amount of litter – but this is likely to take some time to achieve. The Campaign to Protect Rural England is having a litter campaign – please visit www.litteraction.org.uk to find out more.

 

August 2008

• Adoption of Radley Station: The Parish Council is delighted that a Friends of Radley Station group has been set up.
• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The Parish Council is keeping the position regarding the Judicial Review under continual review. Meetings are taking place with representatives from Didcot Power Station, but it is not possible for a firm commitment that Thrupp Lake will not be filled to be given.
• Village Hall Proposals: The Parish Council has had a number of written comments following the meeting about the village hall and the proposals for a new village hall. It would be helpful, whether you are for or against such a proposal, for the Parish Council to know your views.
• New Councillor: Ms Lynda Pasquire has been co-opted on to the Parish Council to replace Mr Mark Wren.
• School Crossing Patrol Person: School is due to start soon after the summer break. If you are willing to help, please contact the School Secretary at Radley Primary School (Tel: 01235 520814).
• Rubbish Dumping: On a couple of times recently loose rubbish has been left in the car park, Church Road, the last lot being left by the entrance to the car park on the weekend before the District Council collections. It would be helpful if, in future, rubbish was not deposited in this area

 

July 2008

• Adoption of Radley Station: Now that the refurbishment work has taken place the Parish Council is arranging for people interested in the Adoption of Radley Station to meet with representatives from Oxfordshire County Council and Network Rail. This will be an ongoing project and if you are interested in joining in these discussions please let me know.
• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The position regarding the Judicial Review is under continual consideration but at the moment the Parish Council is pressing ahead with it.
• Village Hall Proposals: The Parish Council will be considering this further following the public meeting held on the 11 July 2008. The Parish Council would be interested to have your views on this proposal, and these can be sent to me at the details given below.
• Copse, Church Road: The Parish Council appreciates that this area needs to be cut back and has been in touch with the contractors who deal with the work. Bad weather has prevented them coming on planned dates, but the Parish Council has pressed for the work to be undertaken as soon as possible.
 Hedges: There are a number of hedges in the Parish which need cutting back to clear footways and roads. The Parish Council has regular complaints about the poor width of footways in the Parish, particularly down Foxborough Road. The OCC Highways have been approached but width improvements are not planned, so any help which can be given by trimming back hedges and shrubs to allow the full width of the existing pavements would be extremely helpful. Property owners do, of course, have legal obligation to ensure their own boundary tree or hedgte growth does not obstruct public footways and road.
• Motorcyclists Behind Stonhouse Crescent: There is a continual noise nuisance from motorcyclists on the field behind Stonhouse Crescent. The police have indicated that they will keep an eye on the position, but if you find the noise a nuisance please contact the Vale of White Horse DC Environmental Health so that they are aware of your concerns.
• School Crossing Patrol Person: The school is anxious to find a person willing to work as a School Crossing Patrol Person. A more detailed advert has been put up around the village, is on the Parish Council notice boards, and also in Radley News.

 

June 2008

• Chairman and Vice Chairman: The Chairman for the coming year is Mrs Jenny Standen, and the Vice-Chairman is Mr Guy Rogers. Details of the committees have been put on the website and the Parish Council notice boards.
• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The meeting took place with representatives from the Power Station. Although the Station Manager gave an assurance that Thrupp Lake would not be filled unless absolutely necessary, he could not promise that it would never be filled. In view of this the Parish Council has decided that it must continue with the Judicial Review.
• Village Hall Proposals: Following concerns about the present village hall, discussions with Radley College have resulted in an exciting idea. It has been suggested that there is a possibility of providing a new village hall, with integral sports pavilion, and two playing fields on a site next to the Radley Primary School. However, in order wholly to fund this project, there would need to be some new housing on the Gooseacre site. In order for this to succeed, the support of the people of Radley is needed. Please come to the meeting at the Village Hall, Gooseacre, at 7.30 pm on Friday, 11 July 2008, to hear the details.

 

May 2008

• Chairman and Vice Chairman: The Chairman for the coming year is Mrs Jenny Standen, and the Vice-Chairman is Mr Guy Rogers. Details of the committees have been put on the website and the Parish Council notice boards.
• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The meeting took place with representatives from the Power Station. Although the Station Manager gave an assurance that Thrupp Lake would not be filled unless absolutely necessary, he could not promise that it would never be filled. In view of this the Parish Council has decided that it must continue with the Judicial Review.
 Village Hall Proposals: Following concerns about the present village hall, discussions with Radley College have resulted in an exciting idea. It has been suggested that there is a possibility of providing a new village hall, with integral sports pavilion, and two playing fields on a site next to the Radley Primary School. However, in order wholly to fund this project, there would need to be some new housing on the Gooseacre site. In order for this to succeed, the support of the people of Radley is needed. Please come to the meeting at the Village Hall, Gooseacre, at 7.30 pm on Friday, 11 July 2008, to hear the details.

 

April 2008

• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: You may have seen the recent press release on this subject? In accordance with its resolution of 29 February, the Parish Council has now submitted an application to the High Court to undertake a Judicial Review of the decision of Oxfordshire County Council on 14 January 2008 not to register land around Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes as a Town Green* . The application was submitted on 1 April 2008 within the 3 month deadline. 
Since then, several other local councils have added their support to the campaign. These include Oxford City Council, who passed a resolution in support of the action on the 18th February; the Vale of White Horse District Council; Abingdon Town Council; Kennington Parish Council and Sunningwell Parish Council. Several councils have already pledged financial support, and others have promised to consider giving financial support in the future
The Parish Council has decided to re-opened discussions with Didcot Power Station, and a meeting of the Radley Local Liaison Committee (RWEnPower) will take place during May.
• Bus Shelters: The Parish Council has now agreed to ask the Oxfordshire County Council for a grant towards two new bus shelters in 2008/2009. The new bus shelters will be put on the Oxford bound side of Foxborough Road, opposite the current bus shelter, and on the Oxford bound side of Radley College. The actual position of the bus shelters at these bus stops has still to be agreed.
• Annual Parish Meeting: The Annual Parish Meeting is taking place on Friday, 9 May 2008, at 7.30 pm in the Church Room. This is open to the electorate of the Parish and the Parish Council hopes you will come along. A special invitation is being sent to local organizations – the Parish Council hopes that in future this might be a wider meeting, with local organizations giving a short report on their activities. What do you think about this – please give your views to me or to any of the Parish Councillors?
• Highway Matters: My annual plea – please ensure any hedges bordering on to the village footways are cut back to ensure the full width of the footway is available. So many of them are far too narrow but it is unlikely that anything can be done about this.
The Parish Council is very conscious about the amount of potholes in the Parish and the continual flooding outside Radley College. We are in touch with the OCC Highways about these matters regularly, and hope that our pressure will result in action.
• Parish Council Vacancy: Please see the notice regarding filling the vacancy which has been put on village notice boards. If an election is not requested, the Parish Council will fill the vacancy by co-option. If you are interested in joining the Parish Council, please let me know not later than 18 June 2008. Interested people will be invited to meet the Parish Councillors before the Parish Council meeting on the 26 June 2008.
• Conservation: The Parish Council has set up a Working Party on Conservation (Nature) following the publication of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act which gives a new legal duty to local authorities to protect and enhance wildlife.
The Parish Council also regularly reviews the footpaths in the Parish and has applied to register the footpaths around Radley Lakes and to alter the designation of Footpath 8 to that of a footway/cycle way. However, the news is not good. The Oxfordshire County Council takes ten years to consider applications!
Tree planting is continually reviewed and new planting is agreed each year. You may have noticed that more trees have been planted along Whites Lane, but this coincided with two trees being knocked down by unknown motorists.
Rubbish in the Parish is a continual problem. If anyone knows who dumped the cabinet in the unofficial lay by in Sugworth Lane, the Parish Council and District Council would be pleased to know. I know an appeal was made in the Oxford Times about this – but does anyone locally know anything about it?

* Following the application in 2006 by Mrs Jo Cartmell, a resident of Abingdon, to register Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes in Radley as a Town of Village Green under the 1965 Commons Registration Act, in order to protect the area of these lakes from being turned into a repository for waste ash from Didcot Power Station, a 7-day public inquiry was held in Radley during 2007. The inspector found that most of the land around the lakes had indeed been used for recreation as of right for an uninterrupted period of at least 20 years, which are the requirements for land to become a town or village green, but, on a controversial legal point, recommended that the land should not be so registered. The inspector argued that the use of the land was more in keeping with use as a right of way, a point which is disputed by Radley Parish Council and its legal representatives. Radley Parish Council and Save Radley Lakes pressed their counter arguments upon Oxfordshire County Council and, in doing so, got the backing of one of the most eminent barristers in the field. Nevertheless, Oxfordshire County Council’s Planning and Regulation Committee not only stood by their inspector’s recommendation, but chose not to seek further legal opinion as they were requested to do, and proceeded to reject the application outright at their meeting on the 14 January.

March 2008

• Adoption of Radley Station: Work continues on the refurbishment of the station, and a meeting regarding the Adoption of Radley Station will be called once this work has been completed.
• Abingdon Traffic: The Parish Council has been invited to send representatives to a meeting with the responsible Oxfordshire County Councillor to discuss the outcome of the new traffic arrangements in Abingdon on the 12 May 2008. Please let me know or any of the Parish Councillors have your comments if you wish any points made.
• Designation of Lower Radley as Conservation Area: The Parish Council has been pressing for Lower Radley to be designated as a Conservation Area for many years. Advice from the District Council indicates that it is possible for some of the preliminary work to be done locally. The Parish Council feels it would be useful to set up a Working Party in conjunction with Radley History Club, and we hope this idea will be accepted. Have you any views on the suggestion of Lower Radley being designated as a Conservation Area?
• Bus Shelters: The bus shelter at Pebble Hill has now been installed. The Parish Council will be considering the provision of more bus shelters at its next meeting.
• Lime Tree, Foxborough Road: The lime tree in Foxborough Road has been cut down.
• Highway Matters: The Parish Council is in touch with OCC Highways regarding the collapse of the bank outside Radley College.

 

February 2008

• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: The public consultation of the parishioners of Radley, (where every household in the village received a letter asking them to vote on whether the Radley Lakes ought to be saved, and whether Parish Council should undertake to challenge the decision made by Oxfordshire County Council) showed an overwhelming vote in agreement with the Parish Council taking action. At its last meeting, the Parish Council considered the result of the public consultation and legal advice, and decided that it would instigate the legal process which had been provisionally agreed at an earlier meeting. It also took into account the recent statement by RWE Npower that the lake would not be filled with ash in the immediate future, but did not feel this gave an assurance that the lake would never been filled in.
• Abingdon Town Council has already agreed to give financial support, as has Save Radley Lakes, and other local councils and organisations have been approached to see if they also will give financial support.
• Footpath 8: The Parish Council has received a grant of £10,000 from the Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment towards the widening of Footpath 8 from the top of Whites Lane to the roundabout. This will improve the path for use by pedestrians, cyclists, and the disabled.
• Bus Shelters: The bus shelter at Sugworth Crescent has been installed, and the one at Pebble Hill will be installed at the end of March. The Parish Council will be considering the provision of more bus shelters during 2008/2009.
• Lime Tree, Foxborough Road: The Parish Council has been pressing the OCC for this tree to be cut down as it had a lot of rot inside its truck. It is hoped a further tree will be planted in the village to replace it, although not on the same site.

 

January 2008 

• Town Green Application, Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes: Following an in depth discussion with a solicitor, following receipt of a detailed report prepared by this solicitor, the Parish Council agreed that in principle it is prepared to pursue a Judicial Review, subject to public consultation. Following this, a letter has been circulated to all households in Radley Parish asking for your views on pursuing a Judicial Review on the Oxfordshire County Council’s decision not to agree this area as a Town Green. The Parish Council will be discussing the results of this public consultation at its meeting on the 28 February 2008. 
• Planning Matters: Tuckwell & Sons Ltd has asked for a five year extension to its gravel works in Thrupp Lane. The Parish Council has strongly objected to this on the grounds that no gravel has been extracted over the period of the last planning application and therefore it is time this area was returned to the green belt. Thrupp Lane residents have supported these objections.
• Precept: The Parish Council agreed at its December meeting to precept for £49,500 for the year 2008/2009, the first increase for four years. This will allow the Parish Council to do things such as supporting the village hall due to its revised policy on bookings, building up a fund for a new village hall, improving the fencing around the village pond, and widening Footpath 8.
• Motorcyclists – Behind Stonhouse Crescent: The Parish Council has no further information on the possibility of a motorcycle club at Dalton Barracks, but you will be updated on this as soon as more information is available.
• Station Adoption: Following the installation of the new bridge, refurbishment work is taking place at Radley Station and, once this is completed, a meeting will be held of those who expressed an interest in adopting the station. If you are interested in joining this group, please let me know.
• Highway Matters: The number of Veolia Recycling vehicles using Thrupp Lane has been reduced since the meeting with representatives of the OCC and District Council, and the Parish Council has been told that Thrupp Lane will not be the depot for the recycling work when a new contract is negotiated.
• Footpath 8: An application has been made to Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment for a grant to widen this footpath to make it safer for its users – disabled people, pedestrians and cyclists.
• Bus Services/Bus Shelters: The Parish Council has supported the Oxfordshire County Council in improving the bus stops with the provision of Real Time Displays throughout the Parish. In addition, it has supported the provision of two new bus shelters at Sugworth Crescent and Pebble Hill Mobile Home Park, bus shelters which will be installed in the new future.
The two new bus shelters are being funded by the Oxfordshire County Council, so the Parish Council will be pursuing the provision of further bus shelters in 2008/2009, partly funded by the Parish Council.
• Parish Plan: The Parish Council is applying for a grant to help prepare a new Parish Plan.
• Councillors: Mark Wren has resigned from the Parish Council so a vacancy exists. The clerk has asked the District Council if the Parish Council can co-opt someone to fill the vacancy, and is awaiting the response. Watch the notice boards in case a notice is posted before the next Radley News report.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.radleyvillage.org.uk/highlights-of-meetings-in-2008/