Happy New Year to you all and I hope you have survived all the festivities to date.
We will all remember December 2017 for the many seasonal images in our Parishes and I enclose a few from myself and local residents. As ever the build up to Christmas is a busy time in the community and I was pleased to meet up with many of you although due to the snow I failed to get to the Titley village lunch. In Pembridge 59 lighted trees lined the roads in the village and provided the usual spectacular sight. Like all community events none of this can happen without the commitment of local people and business. A special thanks to Julie Mifflin who originally thought of the concept and is the driving force in making it happen every year.
Hopefully in 2018 we will see a new rector appointed to the Arrowvale parishes. It has been nearly two years since Brenda left and it was good to see the Bishop of Hereford take the Lyonshall communion service on Christmas Eve. The Poppies weeping window will be at Hereford Cathedral from 14th March to April 29th sponsored by Herefordshire Council.
We are very lucky living in such a beautiful part of the county but we also need a local economy and jobs. Starting next month I will be featuring a local business in each update demonstrating the increasing diverse and changing times we live in. I will also be reporting my annual village traffic figures.
In this month`s update I cover Highways including my pothole nominations for 2017 and a summary of the Planning process..
As ever if I can be of help please do not hesitate to contact.
Throughout the year I keep in regular contact with our Balfour Beatty steward Lara who is a great asset to all my Parishes. I am concerned and keep pressuring my council colleagues to review the Highway contract on the repairs of potholes. I understand that given the high mileage of roads we as a county have, and the lack of funding we will always be challenged in the maintenance of our roads. But these potholes have to be inspected and categorised by an initial visit then repaired according to the category with a timeframe which differs according to the seriousness of the pothole. This is why you see various visits to the same road. I make the point that one visit with material and fill it in has got to be the most efficient way and better for road users and their vehicles. I have also continue to make representations on utility and builders trenching, and claiming compensation from accident damage.
Frost and water are a real danger to the fabric of our roads please report any problems on highways or footpaths using the links below or phone 01432261800.
if you wish to make a claim as a result of damage to your vehicle please use https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/info/200196/roads/206/highway_claims
Report fly tipping it will be dealt with in a much quicker time frame. by either calling the Contact Centre on 01432 261800 or by logging the fly tipping via the
council website on the links below as your enquiry https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/info/200226/report_a_problem/98/fly_tipping
A rough guide to Planning
We have a new planning officer for our parishes Fernando Barber-Martinez and I have arranged a meeting between him and all my parish clerks in the new year.
Planning is effectively the control of development in our parishes and can be a controversial matter . While there are minor developments and extensions to your home and outbuilding that are permitted without the need for permission my advice is always to check first.
What is allowed and granted permission by Herefordshire Council, as the statutory planning authority, is determined by it`s officers or the planning committee in accordance with the Government`s National Planning Policy Framework ( NPPF) , the Herefordshire Council core strategy ( adopted in October 2015) and the local adopted Neighbourhood plan.
In my Parishes I have seven settlements where development is favoured otherwise the rest of the huge area is designated as open countryside, with residential development limited to the conversion of existing well structured redundant buildings, or for Agricultural/business need which then has a tied occupancy clause.
The villages of Pembridge, Shobdon, Lyonshall and Eardisland have long since been identified as settlements for development but Titley, Staunton, and Holmes Marsh were added in 2015 (the latter two were upgraded by the Inspector from hamlets to settlements). These smaller settlements were there are no historic development lines around them are particularly problematic at the moment till the Neighbourhood plans are matured.
Other hamlets like Knill, Staunton Green, Broxwood, Bearwood, Weston, Marston, Uphampton, Ledicot, Hardwick, Whittern, Stansbatch etc are all considered as open countryside. Pembridge, Lyonshall and Eardisland have conservation areas within which there are much tighter rules including the cutting down of trees and large shrubs.
If you are considering a planning application you can get pre application advice from the planning department. You will have to pay for this but I recommend it as they tell you what you can do or not do and that saves you time and money. After an application is submitted it will be registered, a yellow notice placed on or near the site and it will be placed on the Council`s website. The Parish Council and the local County Councillor are statutory consultees and their views in accordance with planning policy are sought. The website will have full details and plans of the application and all correspondence of support or objections are placed there as well.
These days over 98% of applications are delegated to the planning department and the planning committee will only make the decision where a determination of policy is required or where there is significant local objection. Most applications when granted usually come with conditions attached . If your application is refused you have the right to appeal to the Planning Inspectorate and in rare cases on significant application the matter can be determined by the Secretary of State at DCLG.
The above is very much a general guide but I hope helpful and as I have said earlier always enquire with planners before your start development. If your development is deemed not according to planning laws you can be taken to court and forced to demolish it. If everyone else is playing by the rules that is only fair.
If you ever want to look up planning applications or the various legal development plans go on the Council website and click on planning . Put in the parish name or the application number and all the current application will come up together with all plans and representations.
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