MAY 2014



The 2014 Annual Meeting of Mark Parish Council was held in the Village Hall, Mark on Tuesday, 6th May 2014 at 7.00 p.m.


Present:- Councillors Mrs D. Bayliss, Mrs E. Corkish, S. Emary, G. Francis, Mrs C. Gibson, M. Schollar, N. van  der Bijl, and Mrs J. Weekes with the Clerk.


1. Election of Chairman


Proposed Councillor Mrs Corkish, seconded Councillor Emary and unanimously agreed that Councillor N. Van der Bijl BEM JP be elected Chairman for 2014/15. The Chairman signed a declaration of acceptance of office.


2. Election of Vice-Chairman


Proposed by Councillor Mrs Weekes, seconded Councillor Emary and unanimously agreed that Councillor Francis be elected Vice-Chairman for 2014/15.


3. Declarations of Interest


Councillors Mrs E. Corkish, and Mrs J. Weekes declared personal interests in matters relating to Mark Village Hall, Councillor Francis declared a personal interest in issues relating to National Grid as a shareholder.


4. Minutes


The Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 18th March 2014 were confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.


5. Report of the Police


PC Wills reported upon crime statistics and significant forthcoming changes in the Avon & Somerset police service. It was agreed that the priorities for Mark in the Police Plan should be support for community speedwatch and patrolling the area affected by National Grid when any work commences.


6. Play Area


Councillor Schollar reported upon three estimates obtained for new dog proof fencing and gate. The favoured estimate was from GB Sport & Leisure in the sum of £6,000 + VAT. £3,000 had been included in the budget, £2,557 was available as RLT2 funding and Mark Community Association had now agreed to meet the shortfall. After a full discussion it was agreed to accept the quotation received from GB Sport & Leisure and to assist with the removal of the existing fence. Councillor Schollar was thanked for his work in connection with the matter.


7. Finance


a) Balance of Accounts

It was reported that the balance of accounts at 1st May were as follows:- Current £550.26, Reserve £12,978.82.


b) Insurance

The Council reviewed their insurance cover for 2014/15 and agreed no changes were deemed necessary.


c) Authorisation for Payment

It was agreed that the following payments be made:-

DD       SDC                                 dog bin servicing                        £83.62

000774 SALC                               subscription                             £318.57

000775 Zurich Municipal             premium                                  £580.93

000776 G. Bickers                        grass cutting                            £786.00

000777 Mark N. Watch                grant                                        £100.00

000778 Parish Clerk                     expenses                                  £407.23


d) 2013/14 Accounts


Members formally approved the following:- a Risk Assessment for 2013/14, a Statement of Internal Control for the year ending 31st March 2014, the Parish Accounts for 2013/14, Financial Statement and Annual Governance Statement required by the external auditors.


8. Highway Matters

It was agreed to report a pot hole at the southern end of Harp Road. Councillor Schollar reported upon recent activity regarding Community Speedwatch and SID Statistics. It was agreed to apply to the County Council for a SID for Mark and Councillor Schollar undertook to be responsible for erecting it. It was agreed to seek an update from County Highways regarding the extension to the School yellow hatching to The Croft at Mark Causeway. It was agreed to refurbish the former British Telecom kiosk at Laurel Farm with voluntary assistance during the summer and also to refurbish the historic finger post directional signs in the village through voluntary assistance. No response had been received from County Highways regarding problems caused by overhanging trees in Dutch Road.


9. Planning Matters


An update of planning applications received together with the recommendations of this Council and the decisions of the District Council was submitted. The following planning applications were considered:-

009 & 010 Erection of agricultural building to cover yard, Court Farm, Mark Causeway – R. Puddy & Son.

012 Erection of agricultural livestock building, Reed Farm, Southwick Road, Mark – CL, AE & RC Sweet.

013 Erection of agricultural worker’s dwelling, Reed Farm, Southwick Road, Mark – CL, AE & RC Sweet.

It was agreed to recommend permission in each case.

It was agreed to report a curtain sided lorry used as a container at the Stables, Harp Road to the Planning Enforcement Officer. Issues relating to the White Horse Inn were discussed at it was agreed to seek an amendment to future Entertainment Licences to require a Midnight finish instead of 1.30 a.m. due to complaints of noise nuisance. It was noted that the display of advertising signage would be controlled by a new policy document currently under consideration. It was also agreed to keep a watching brief on the land currently used by Mark Cricket Club.


10. National Grid


Councillor Mrs Corkish reported that it was likely that National Grid would to submit a planning application to the Planning Inspectorate later this month. The Parish Council would then need to register as an interested party. It was agreed that the Chairman and Councillors Mrs Bayliss and Mrs Corkish represent the Parish Council at meetings with PINS. Following observations received from a parishioner, it was agreed that enquiry be made to ascertain National Grid’s plans for a fibre optic cable which it was understood to be attached to the Western Power line.


11. Village Hall /Football Pitch Area


It was reported that bollards had been installed to prevent vehicles from being driven onto the pitch and it was planned to refurbish the bar area in the hall.


12. Affordable Housing


It was agreed that Councillor Emary contact Duncan Harvey to discuss initial work in connection with tackling the unmet affordable housing demand suggested in the Mark Housing Needs Assessment and report back to the next Meeting.


13. First World War Centenary Commemoration


It was agreed to consider purchasing a further replacement seat for Jubilee Green and dedicating it to “Fallen Heros” to commemorate the First World War Centenary at a future Meeting.




14. Parish Council Web-site


The Chairman reported that he was meeting the Chairman of Burnham Without Parish Council to discuss a possible joint venture on 8th May 2014.


15. Cemetery Benches


Councillor Mrs Corkish reported that two memorial benches at the cemetery were decaying. The donor families had both left the village. It was agreed that if the families could not be traced, the benches be removed on safety grounds but the plaques be retained.


16. Somerset Association of Local Councils


Councillor Emary reported that he was currently a representative of the North Area on the Somerset Association of Local Councils County Committee. It was agreed that Councillor Emary be appointed to represent this Council at meetings of the Somerset Association of Local Councils.


17. Church Floodlighting


It was agreed to clarify the current policy for floodlighting Mark Church.


18. Next Meeting


It was agreed that the next Meeting be held in the Village Hall on 1st July 2014 at 7.00 p.m.



The Meeting closed at 9.05 p.m.                                                             Chairman

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