MINUTES OF THE ORDINARY MEETING OF ABERDYFI COMMUNITY COUNCIL HELD IN THE OFFICE IN THE COUNCIL CHAMBER, LITERARY INSTITUTE, ABERDYFI ON MONDAY,
26th JUNE 2017
Present were :- Cllr B Lloyd Chairman
Councillors :- J Bradbury Willis
AGENDA ITEM 1- ELECTION OF CO-OPTED OFFICERS
After receiving five applications for the three vacancies on Aberdyfi Community Council, interviews were conducted and after a secret ballot the following were co-opted.
James Bradbury Willis, Miriam O’Reilly and Dave Williams.
AGENDA ITEM 2 – PRESENTATION TO RETIRED CLLR. BRIAN BATES
After serving Aberdyfi for over 26 years, Brian Bates had retired from the Community Council in advance of the May 2017 elections. In recognition of his dedication to the community, Chairman Cllr Bryn Lloyd presented Brian, on behalf of the council, with a watercolour, painted by local artist Claire Davies, of his beloved Aberdyfi and the Dyfi Estuary.
AGENDA ITEM 3- APOLOGIES
There were no apologies or absentees
AGENDA ITEM 4- CHAIRMAN’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
Cllr Lloyd noted that prior to the next Council meeting on 17th July, there will be an EGM of the AA&I Committee at 6.30 in the Reading Room to make changes to the AA&I constitution. There will be official notification from Avril Richards.
The Wolverhampton to Aberdyfi charity bike ride was again a resounding success, with over 600 riders taking part. The event benefited from special guest Ellie Simmonds being present to greet all those completing the event. The Council thanks her for her significant contribution. Two local charities benefited from the event – the Richard Roberts Trust and the Neuadd Dyfi.
AGENDA ITEM 5 – RECEIVE AND CONFIRM AMENDED MINUTES OF AGM AND ORDINARY MEETING 15th MAY
It was agreed that the minutes were a true and accurate record of the ordinary meeting.
PROPOSED by Cllr Pugh and SECONDED by Cllr Reynolds
AGENDA ITEM 6 – MATTERS ARISING
- M/149/(20.02.17) Copperhill Street tree removal
Most of the logs have been removed and the Platform Cymru bill has been paid. Small balance for agreed fuel costs will be settled once the final clearance of the ‘monoliths’ has been completed. Overall a successful operation and to the best of our knowledge the community agrees it has been a worthwhile job well done. Cllr Tyrrell was advised by the Clerk that it was planned to finally cut the monoliths down to the height of the garage roofs.
- M/153/20.04.17 Village signposts
Cllr Tyrrell has asked Les Hunt to try to resolve this problem of finger replacement, which has been ongoing for over two years. The plan is to remove the signpost to his workshop to carry out the work.
- M/185/20.04.17 Village poop bins & Maesnewydd
In the absence of action from Gwynedd the Clerk is to ascertain purchase and installation costs of bins direct from supplier and then bin emptying costs through Gwynedd. The current agreed locations are Cemetery car park, slipway on Seaview Terrace and at Cllr Pugh’s recommendation, Maesnewydd.
- M/153/16.05.17 Car park and Playing Field leases
After suggested amendments by Cllr Richards during a meeting the Clerk, the draft leases have been lodged with Peter Brunton Solicitor. He will report back to the Clerk in due course. It is the intention to have the re-drafts ready in time for next Council meeting. If Council agree the amends the lease will be returned to Gwynedd solicitors for their response.
- CL/24/16.05.17 Invitation to Gwynedd Council Leader
After discussions with Cllr Owen, the Clerk will invite Dyfrig Siencyn to the October ACC meeting
- CL/30/16.05.17 Snowdonia meeting Monday 19th June
The meeting was attended by the Clerk Neil Storkey, and Councillor Kelly. Cllr Kelly updated Council and related that the main thrust of the evening was policy discussions, presentations and ideas exchange.
- CL/32/16.05.17 Coast deli & Dinner nuisance
Cllr Owen confirmed that a number of complaints had been received from residents regarding the extractor fan problems at Coastal Dining. The Environmental Health officers had visited the premises. Phil Thomas has agreed to take out the gas grill, change the extractor fan and install 3 phase electric supply to power the new equipment. It was noted that these were not new problems in the village. Cllr Lloyd hoped that the problems could be resolved to everyone’s satisfaction and the business would be in a position to go from strength to strength.
- CL/32/16.05.17 Allotment/Mrs Pearson’s trees
Cllr Lloyd has spoken with Mrs Pearson who has agreed to have the offending tree trimmed in accordance with aalotrment requirements, but that she would not be in a position to pay for the work. Cllr Lloyd suggested that price quotes for the work should be arranged, for the Autumn, and that the Council should pay for the work and that perhaps the allotment fees might be reviewed in the context of the costs incurred, to the benefit of the allotment holders.
- CL/32/16.05.17 Maesnewydd play area grass cuttings
The Clerk has arranged for Michael Barnes to attend to this matter and he has already taken action.
The problem of the poor grass cutting work on Morfa Gypsies was brought up by Cllr Jones. He suggested that perhaps Aberdovey Golf Club could be approached to help out.
Cllr Owen pointed out that Gwynedd were now cutting only three times a year instead of five.
AGENDA ITEM 7
Approval of annual returns
Clerk gave brief appraisal and explanation of the figures.
Proposed Cllr Owen Seconded Cllr Kelly
AGENDA ITEM 8 – AFFORDABLE HOUSING SCHEME – ABERDYFI SCHOOL SITE
Cllr Llloyd noted that, although there was disappointment regarding the lottery project, we now had an opportunity, through CCG to develop the site for social housing, initially for eight residencies. In this context, Gwynedd Council has instructed the Clerk to ensure all those currently using the site for storage, car parking etc., to vacate by the end of June. The project has the strong support of Snowdonia National Park . Cllr Lloyd felt, that in the context of bedroom tax, one bed flats would appear to be a sensible option.
The Clerk confirmed that the commercial value of the site has been negatively impacted by the necessity to satisfy social housing needs in the area, and that should help CCG to negotiate a sensible price for the site and enable the project to move forward.
Cllr Tyrrell enquired whether this Council had any say from where potential tenants might emanate. Cllr Lloyd confirmed that Council would have no say and that CCG controlled the selection criteria but that this Council could lobby on the community’s behalf. Cllr Owen suggested that the Clerk might ask CCG for information regarding the current waiting list.
Cllr Richards asked about the future of the Enterprise Trust. Cllr Lloyd said that the ‘object’ of the Trust could be altered in line with future plans and that as long as the Trust filed the annual returns with the Charity Commission on time we could hold the Trust in abeyance.
AGENDA ITEM 9 – ABERDYFI PUBLIC TOILETS
Cllr Lloyd outlined the essentials of this Council’s position regarding the toilets, and that they should not be closed, and that they should continue to be maintained by Gwynedd Council. The Clerk has applied for Tourism Amenity Investment Support (TAIS) through an initial questionnaire format for capital investment funding regarding public toilets on the wharf and also the Neuadd Dyfi. If the initial application is successful then we will move on to next stage. Clerk provided more information regarding the capital sum involved and also the draft plans as drawn up by architects George & Tomos.
Cllr Owen confirmed that he discussed our toilet issue with Gwynedd Cabinet Leader Dyfryg Siencyn. It had been confirmed that it was Cabinet’s intention to bring the toilets issue to a conclusion by October 2017. All Councils that agree to make a contribution to costs will secure the future of their toilets, and those council that refuse to contribute will see their toilets close. Gwyn Morris Jones, department head, has agreed to a meeting in Aberdyfi to discuss the matter of closure. 53 toilets in Gwynedd have either been taken over (not many) or made a financial contribution (the majority).
Cllr Jones enquired about the nature of ownership of the leases on the wharf, in the context of the Dwr Cymru pumping station. Cllr Owen was to check this issue.
Cllr Tyrrell suggested that if the toilets were to be closed, by implication, the car park would also have to be closed. Cllr Lloyd re-iterated his view that he felt that the toilets were not now fit for purpose and that the situation needed resolving.
The Clerk reminded the meeting that technically this Council as not in a position to make any payments as to do so would be in contravention of Wales Audit Office budgetary requirements.
It was confirmed, in response to a question from Cllr Tyrrell, that any contribution made would only fund maintenance and not capital investment.
AGENDA ITEM 10 – CYCLEPATH PROJECT
The Clerk has also applied for TAIS funding through an initial questionnaire format for the construction of the amenity cyclepath from the village on to the common land opposite the Trefeddian Hotel entrance, through to the gasworks conservation project across a wooden bridge, and then along the bank of the brook to the cemetery car park, a distance of just over one mile. Again, if the initial application is successful then we will move on to next stage. Clerk provided more information regarding the capital sum involved and also the draft plans as drawn up by architects George & Tomos.
AGENDA ITEM 11 – CCTV UPDATE PROPOSAL
It has become increasingly clear that the existing, out of date, village CCTV installation is becoming unreliable and is now not fit for purpose. The Clerk has sought advice from contractors Crime Prevention, who installed the existing system. Given that one existing lease has run its course, and that the second runs only until next year, it seemed prudent to present to Council a costing for a new digital system. In the context outlined it was agreed to approve the installation of the new digital system as specified and cost quoted by provider Crime Prevention.
Proposed Cllr Owen Seconded Cllr Jones
AGENDA ITEM 12 – GWYNEDD COUNCIL REPORT
Cllr Owen reported that the Council is now Plaid Cymru controlled and that there was some concern over the fact that the Cabinet comprises men only, although there were many female Councillors.
The number of County Councillors has reduced from 75 to 67.
Although there had been discussions possibly to cloister in Meirionydd, there had been change of mind and that Tywyn was to be divided into two wards.
Cllr Lloyd noted there has been much discussion about the alarming level of council tax arrears of £3.4 million in Gwynedd, (source Wales Audit Office) the worst in Wales. He wanted to know what efforts Gwynedd were making regarding these arrears.
Cllr Jones expressed his concerns over this situation, given the extent of the financial cuts being imposed across the County
AGENDA ITEM 13 – PLANNING
NP5/50/12L Trefeddian Hotel, Aberdyfi
Demolition of existing holiday let and construction of two new build holiday letting units
Cllr Lloyd declared an interest
NP5/50/712 Tyddyn Rhys, Aberdyfi
Conversion of barn to rural enterprise dwelling including installation of septic tank
Cllr Jones declared an interest
AGENDA ITEM 14 – TREASURER’S REPORT
The Treasurer’s report for April was accepted and minuted as a true record
PROPOSED by Cllr Tyrrell SECONDED by Cllr Reynolds
The Clerk suggested that a letter of thanks sent to Anna Grundy at the post office for help in providing the public with one pound coins for the community pay and display car park.
AGENDA ITEM 15 – COMMITTEE REPORTS
Cllr Owen commended Des George for his efforts in raising funding via RDF for the Neuadd Dyfi heating and ventilation system. Des is still looking for treasurer, cleaner and booking secretary – a situation that needs consideration for the future.
The AA&I is providing match funding of £31,000 for the Neuadd Dyfi project and also £18,000 Literary Institute urgent repairs.
The AA&I has taken over responsibility for the village Christmas Tree.
AGENDA ITEM 16 – CORRESPONDENCE
Dail Dysynni Thank you letter and accounts for Dail Dysynni
Gwynedd Advice of June grass cutting programme
Doris O’Keefe Complaint regarding drainage issues on Bryniau Uchaf footpath
A Fowles, Maesnewydd Complaint about Gwelfor Road and Maesnewydd hedges
Cllr Jones took the opportunity to note that trees on Gwelfor and Lover lanes needed attention, whilst they are small enough to remove.
Cllr Richards expressed concern over Burma Road and the Catholic Church
Meirionydd Access group Thank you letter
Joanna Kearney, Florida Letter informing Council of intention to construct decking at Cae Argoed
David Richardson Letter to Council after David’s 30 years as a Councillor
AON Insurance AON advice letter for Council insurance. Premium paid and policy now in place.
Seafarers UK Request to fly the Red Ensign on Marchant Navy Day 3rd September
Snowdonia e-mail explaining the problems in employing a Welsh speaker for the Tourist Information Centre (TIC) in Aberdyfi
AGENDA ITEM 17 – PUBLICATIONS
AGENDA ITEM 18 – ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Cllr Pugh reported that Sohail Rajput had sold the chemist business and that the new pharmacist would be taking over on Friday 30th June.
Cllr Reynolds reported that Bronglais is planning to shutting down its bowel surgery service.
Cllr Jones is still concerned about the hedges at Tai Clywdd. Cllr Owen suggested that we formulate a list of roadside hedges that require a tractor hedging unit to keep under control.
Cllr Tyrrell outlined his plan to renovate the milestones in the village, starting with the one opposite the post office. He informed Council that there is a milestone society that has specifications for renovation. There is a register of every milestone in the UK, online.
It was agreed to commence renovation of the first milestone.
Cllr Richards asked whether there was anything Council could do regarding the garden of remembrance in Aberdyfi cemetery. He expressed concern that space was running out. The matter was to be followed up.
Cllr Richards also asked whether we could arrange some form of barrier (rocks, posts etc) to prevent the parking of vehicles on Burma Road. Tom Jones was to be approached with prices for wooden posts installation. Care would need to be taken to avoid electric cables underground.
Cllr Lloyd informed Council of his filming of the empty waiting room at Tywyn, in the context of the difficulty of getting appointments because the doctors are fully booked up. He had been taken to task, in writing, by the Health Centre Manager for taking pictures without permission. A meeting has been arranged and Cllr Lloyd will report back at the next Council meeting.
AGENDA ITEM 19 ITEMS FOR RUSHLIGHT
ITEMS FOR PRESS RELEASE
- GP14 Championships
- Gasworks reserve
- Wolverhampton Bike Ride
- Commando Fun Run
- New chemists
- Village lunches
- Yacht Club life jacket safety checks
The meeting closed at 9.30