Minutes 10th March 2022


Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on Thursday 10th March 2022 at 7.30pm the Village Hall

Present: Cllr Jonathan Baker, Cllr Gill Denny, Cllr Balavant Barber, Cllr Tom Scott-Malden

In Attendance:  Jane Thicknesse, Clerk, and 7 members of the public.

Item No.


Public discussion of items on agenda


Apologies / Declarations of interest / grant of dispensations 
Apologies were received and accepted from Cllr Yvonne Harris and Alex Bishop (PCSO)


Approval of Minutes of meeting held on 13th January 2022
The minutes of the last meeting were approved, and were signed by the Chairman. Proposed by Cllr Barber and seconded by Cllr Scott-Malden


Matters arising from Minutes of meeting held on 13th January 2022

a. Pipplepen Solar Farm Project
No progress to report. Both the Dorset Council and South Somerset District Council websites indicate that a decision is pending

b. Steps and Gate along Baileys Lane
New steps have been installed and the gate repaired and reinstated. Thanks were expressed to Russell Goff, Senior Ranger (West and Coast) Dorset Council and his team for their work and also to the Footpaths Officer for her efforts ensuring this work was carried out so quickly.

c. Noticeboard in Manor Close
After further surveying of residents, it was decided that there was currently insufficient support to install a noticeboard at the end of Manor Close.

d. Picket Lane
The Clerk reported that the work to repair parts of the road surface in Picket Lane had been completed. The River Warden reported that the gullies in Picket Lane had still not been emptied and were a matter of concern.

e. Bank Account
The Chairman reported that since the last meeting the Clerk had established that the Co-op were not accepting new clients and she had been working to enable more Councillors to have signatory rights on the current Lloyds account. Although time consuming and frustrating it was thought that progress was being made.

f. Road Sign on A3066

g. Litter Bin on the corner of Manor Close
The Chairman reported that having visited the site (with Cllr Scott-Malden and the Clerk) he thought that there was good reason to move the bin from its current location to a site further from the bench and closer to Picket Lane. This would have to be done by Dorset Council at a cost of £100 to cover work and materials.
This proposal was unanimously approved.





The Chairman reported that he, Cllr Tom Scott Malden and the Clerk had completed a walk around the village on Friday 25 February. Overall it was thought that the village was looking neat and tidy but possible work for a lengthsman might include:

  1. Painting the gateposts to the village
  2. Painting the railings along the river
  3. Restoring various footpath and bridleway signs
  4. Keeping The Pound in good order (sweeping, hedging, weeding)
  5. Maintaining pavements in School Hill (sweeping, weeding)
  6. General hedge trimming

They had all been concerned about how much regular work there would be and how to get best value for money from a lengthsman.

The Chairman went on to suggest that it might be better to employ somebody to do a specific task as and when it was required. A discussion followed after which the Chairman proposed that a lengthsman was not employed but that work was done on a piecemeal basis by individuals who were invited to quote for the work and had the necessary qualifications and insurances.

This proposal was unanimously approved.




a. Request from Village Hall Committee for commemorative mug to celebrate HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
The Councillors unanimously approved a donation of £200 for the Village Hall Committee to provide commemorative mugs for children of South Perrott.


b. Request from St Mary’s PCC for assistance with grass mowing costs
Jane Baker, Treasurer of St Mary’s, said that at the February PCC meeting the accounts for 2021 had been reviewed and that the costs of maintaining the churchyard had now risen to over £1000 a year.  She went on to say that the PCC does not want to reduce the amount of maintenance or mowing that is done as a lot of residents of South Perrott use the communal footpath through the churchyard when dog walking or just out exercising.  However the costs were proving debilitating, especially as due to COVID restrictions and lack of fund raising events, the finances were approximately £7000 below what they would usually be.

As a result she had been requested to write to the Parish Council and ask if they would be prepared to contribute to the costs of maintaining the churchyard. (Many other churches either split the costs of this maintenance with the Parish Council or receive a donation towards the costs).

A lively and informative discussion took place to consider various options for financing the church and churchyard which concluded with Councillors and members of the public being invited to St Mary’s PCC AGM on 30 March 2022 at 2pm.

The Chairman then reminded the Councillors that it was the duty of the Parish Council to maintain the assets of the village and asked if they would:

 a. support making a donation to grass mowing costs

b. the amount they were prepared to give.

The Council unanimously approved a donation of £250 towards the 2022 costs.

(It was suggested that if support was required for the future it should be included as an item in the SPPC budget.)




The Pound
The Chairman introduced Michael Stevenette who addressed the Council about the possibility of enhancing The Pound. His suggestions included a new bench, a new noticeboard showing footpaths, re-siting the rubbish bin, moving the PC noticeboard and some re-pointing and/or re-walling. Interest was expressed in his ideas and it was suggested that all the Councillors should meet at The Pound to discuss the ideas further.



Planning Matters

a. Applications handled since last meeting

b. Decisions notified by DC since last meeting
i. P/FUL/2021/03918 – Land at the western end of the village – erection of agricultural store – APPROVED
Full details of this application and the reasons for the decisions can be found at Planning application search – dorsetforyou.com (dorsetcouncil.gov.uk)

c. New applications to be considered
i. P/HOU/2021/02822 – The Old Post Office – erection of second floor extension and glazed link to the rear of the property – SUPPORTED

ii. P/FUL/2022/00470 – Land known as The Paddock, Baileys Lane -Erection of sheep shelter and store (agricultural)
The Clerk reported that this application had only just been received and to date there was no documentation available. It was agreed that this would be chased and a decision made (out of meeting) by the deadline of 31 March 2022.

d. Tree applications since last meeting
i. P/TRC/2022/01076 – Maple Cottage – fell two conifers for safety reasons – SUPPORTED

e. Other Planning Matters
i. Field along Bailey’s Lane see above (P/FUL/2022/00470)
ii. Planning Training – Cllr Gill Denny
Cllr Denny reported that the Planning Training provided by DAPTC had been useful and she had learnt some useful information although much of it had been more relevant to larger councils.



Highways Updates

a. Parking in The Pound

The Clerk reported that she had asked Blair Turner, DC Community Highways Officer, about imposing some parking restrictions in The Pound and he had replied:

“As long as those vehicles are taxed /have a current road fund licence in place or are not posing a hazard/obstruction to the passage of other vehicles there is very little that Dorset Council (DC) can do. To impose any form of enforceable parking restriction would require the creation of what is known as a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) on the site, the cost of under taking this is quite considerable; DC only impose a handful of TROs in any one year and their creation is based on a hierarchical system related to benefit and to be quite honest the cost/benefit ratio would never really figure for this site. There is then the issue of policing or monitoring the site, Parking Services are unlikely to send an officer out on a regular basis to South Perrott to enforce any TRO.

He had gone on to say that SPPC are entitled to put in a request for a TRO but in his experience, and for the reasons above, he feels it would be a pointless exercise.



Reports from Dorset Councillor, Police Officer, River Warden and Footpaths Officer

PCSO Alex Bishop sent his apologies and a short report which can be found at the end of these minutes.

b. River Warden
The River Warden gave a short report which can be found at the end of these minutes. He also reported that he had no update on when work would re-start at the reservoir as his meeting with the Environment Agency had been postponed until later in March.

c. Footpaths Officer
The Footpaths Officer repeated thanks to Russell Goff and his team for their work on the steps and gate along Baileys Lane. She and also thanked Ian Neal, owner of the permissive path for his work restoring the other gate. Full report can be found at the end of these minutes.

d. Dorset Councillor
No report.


Emails have been received/sent reference Highways (various), Planning, Banking, Hard copies of correspondence: Lloyds Bank Statement, Clerk and Councils Direct.



Financial Status

Payments made since 13th January 2022                

Clerking Work (Jan, Feb 22)


Rubbish Collection







Income since 13th January 2022                                                                 

Total £0.00


New cheques/payments for consideration



Bank balance as at 10th March 2022         £3867.97


Matters of report and items for the next meeting

a. Chairman
i. Date of Annual Village Meeting
Thursday 28th April 2022 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall

ii. Vice Chairman
The Chairman spoke of the benefits (although not a legal requirement) of having a Vice Chairman and asked Councillors to consider appointing one at the AGM in May.

b. Clerk
Nothing to report

c. Members
Nothing to report


Dates of Future Meetings

Thursday 26 May 2022 at 7.30pm, preceded by the AGM
(NB this is re-scheduled from Thursday 12 May)

The meeting closed at 8.50pm

Public Session to raise items for future agendas
No items raised.
Sue Coutanche reminded people that contributions for the next edition of the Pump and Pound needed to be received by 21 March 2022.

PCSO Report – March 2022
Fortunately I have nothing to feedback at this time in relation to incidents in South Perrott. I would like to urge vigilance amongst residents and urge people to report any suspicious activity, preferably at the time. You can either call 101 or report online at www.dorset.police.uk if the incident has already occurred, or call 999 if you believe a crime is in progress. Also, https://www.ourwatch.org.uk/thinkwiden this link takes people to the Neighbourhood Watch website and the latest campaign to help people target harden their property to help prevent burglary. Fortunately burglaries are rare in this area, but it is well worth spending some time considering crime prevention methods.
For people wanting further information about what is going on in the area they can follow our Bridport Police Facebook page and also register to our Dorset Alert system at www.dorsetalert.co.uk, to receive local information.
For info, my next surgery at Mosterton Village Hall (Post Office) will be on Monday 4th April, at 1.30pm.
PCSO Alex Bishop

River Warden Report – March 2022
Since the January meeting, we have experienced a very stormy period of weather, resulting in five named storms.
Storms Malik and Corrie, over the period 29 – 31 January, seriously affected Northern Scotland and Eastern England, but the South West escaped any damage. Storms Dudley, Eunice and Franklin affected the UK within the space of a week (16 – 20 February), resulting in rare Red Weather Warnings for South Western coastal areas from Storm Eunice. A 122mph gust at The Needles, IOW, set a new England gust speed record, and a gust of 90mph was recorded at Portland. Although this storm caused widespread traffic disruption, structural damage to buildings, fallen trees and power cuts, mercifully South Perrott seems to have escaped any serious damage.
There have been no incidents of flooding reported in the village since my last report in January 2022.

Martyn Gillingham
River/Flood Warden
Tel: 891931
Email: mcvgillingham@btinternet.com

Footpaths Officer Report
The fields as expected at this time of the year are still very muddy and some locals are making use of the recently laid hamstone tracks laid to carry heavy agricultural vehicles and machinery to the Legg’s fields. In particular the track of off Pipplepen Lane is frequently used by walkers as it follows Footpath No 1 which is then re-joined a couple of fields along.
Further to my previous report:

  • Steps and Gate from the permissive path into Bailey’s Lane – Dorset Council has now installed steps and a handrail, to a previously hazardous section of this path. We are extremely grateful to the Council and especially to their West Dorset Senior Ranger who arranged for this work to be carried out. Thanks also go to Ian Neal, the owner of the Permissive path, who has restored and painted the gate at the entrance to the path at the Picket Lane end of Baileys Lane.
  • Way marker in Baileys Lane – this has broken and is lying on the side of the bank. It was probably erected by the now defunct Parrett Trail Trust. It will be reported to Dorset Council along with other footpath matters.
  • Langmoor Lane – The erosion to the headwall and sandbags at the SP end of the Lane has been reported to Dorset Council’s Senior Ranger. No further update since the last SPPC meeting.
As a reminder it is important that both farmers and other countryside users respect each other’s rights and safety for the benefit of both.
Sue Coutanche
SP Footpath Officer