Corscombe, Halstock and District Parish Council

Minutes for the Parish Council meeting 7.30pm on
27th November 2023

Meeting held at Halstock Village Hall.

Councillors present: Elizabeth Southern (ES), Deborah Childs (DCh), David Clary (DC), Richard James (RJ). Henry Lovegrove (HL), Debbie Rix (DR), John White-Hamilton (JWH), David Hallett (DH) Jez Hodesdon (JH) and Grant Prior (GP)

8 members of the public were present.

The meeting started at 7.30pm and was chaired by the chairman Cllr. James.

  1. To receive and accept apologies and declarations of interest.

Apologies received from Cllr. R. Hallett and Cllr. Clarke

Cllr. Rix  declared an interest in item 15 and Cllr. Southern declared an interest in item 7.4. 

  1. To approve the draft minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 26th September 2023 (A)

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Rix.  Approved 7/10 

  1. To discuss matters arising from the minutes not covered in this Agenda.


Public period for comments on issues on the agenda

Diana Staines presented the report from the PROW see item 7.3

Tony Hill presented a report for Speed Watch  see item 7.5 

Reports from Dorset Council Councillor and Police Liaison

Cllr. Penfold discussed the change in the naming of AONB, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty(AONB) will now be referred to as National landscapes. Round four of the household support fund is now open and changes to the Dog Related Public Space Protection order will come into effect early in the new year.  Further information can be found on the Dorset Council website. The PC raised its continued concern over the lack of feedback from planning regarding enforcement issues.  The PC was encouraged to ring Dorset Council and speak directly to enforcement as emails appear to be ignored. Cllr. Penfold offered to help with making direct contact with enforcement.

Police liaison – No incidents to report at this time. For information, if people would like to see what is going on around the area, or receive information from Dorset Police around many subjects, please feel free to register with Dorset Alert, the Police messaging system.  You can go to, register your details and sign up to various watch schemes, such as home watch, farm watch, etc.

You can also follow Bridport Police on Facebook, or other various Police accounts, such as the Dorset Police account, Rural Crime Team, or Cybercrime team.  They provide lots of information and advice pertaining to various specialist subjects.

  1. To note the statement of expenditure to date and bank reconciliation (B) and to approve the schedule of payments since the last meeting. (C)

Statement of expenditure noted and approved 10/10

Scheduled payments approved, proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Prior. Approved 10/10 

  1. To note addition of new signatory TS

It was noted that Cllr. Rix has been added as a new signatory to authorise bank payments. 

  1. To approve the 2024-2025 Budget and Precept (D) 


  1. Resolution to approve the draft 2024-2025 budget

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Rix. Approved 10/10

  1. Resolution that the end year earmarked reserves be as shown.

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Rix. Approved 10/10 

  1. Resolution that the precept for 2024/2025 be set at £20,000

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Rix. Approved 10/10 

Action: Clerk to submit the precept request to Dorset Council. 

  1. Highways and Rights of Way

7.1  Update on request to Dorset Council re  speed signage Mill Corner Corscombe TS

The request was turned down as current signage was considered to be adequate. Action: Clerk to contact the owners of Stable Cottage informing them of Dorset Council’s decision and to also ask if the hedges abutting the road could be trimmed back to improve visibility. 

7.2 Salt bins update TS

The placement of three new salt bins in Halstock was refused as they failed to meet the required criteria.  A request was made to clarify which criteria they did not meet as this would help when proposing any further salt bin locations Highways have yet to rely to this request.

Action:  Clerk to ask Cllr. Penfold to help with accessing the criteria list.

7.3 PROW report  (E) D Staines

Points raised  were

  1. Remaining monies ringfenced for walking guides should be re allocated to Devolved services and used to buy two further self-closing gates. Approved 10/10
  1. Cutting back vegetation/hedges on several Rights of Way including Common Lane – in principle it was agreed that the PC would finance hedge cutting where required but it was noted that landowners are responsible for cutting their own hedges and this should be followed up with Dorset Council if this was not happening. There  was also a request that hedge cutting should ideally be less drastic to protect the hedges.

Cllr. Child declared an interest.

Action: Cllr. James to contact relevant farmers if required.

Approved 8/10

  1. It was noted that there were issues with the state of parts of Common Lane and this will need to be addressed in 2024/2025. 

7.4 Sewage Works and Common Lane (Verbal)  ES

There has been a large number of tankers recently going up Common Lane to the Wessex Water Sewage Works. This has been a result of oil entering the sewage works which has had to be removed from the site. This has also been complicated by the recent high rainfall level.

Action: Clerk to contact Wessex Water and ask them to clarify the situation and explain what had happened and what was being done to ensure this does not reoccur. The Clerk should also ask them to reinstate the damaged section of Common Lane to its previous condition. 

7.5 Speed watch  – purchase of a Bushnell Handheld Radar Gun for the Speed watch team. (Late addition J)  T. Hill

It was agreed that the Parish Council would fund the purchase of a speed gun for £100. Approved 9/10 

  1. To consider and note planning applications and decisions. (F) TS


8.1 Enforcement update (verbal) TS

No response from planning regarding two enforcement issues raised. Action: Clerk to ring planning and speak directly to enforcement as we have had no emailed response to concerns raised. 

  1. To note/receive a maintenance update for the playground and outdoor gym (Verbal) TS

Remedial work on the playground has now almost been completed. Also see item 20 and appendix I.

  1. To receive and note training update (Verbal) TS

The Clerk will attend a webinar on the 30th  of November regarding the accounting software Scribe, to see if this would be an appropriate tool for the Parish Council.

  1. To approve the adoption of the Armed Forces Covenant (G)

The Parish Council voted to not adopt the Armed Forces Covenant. 7/10 

  1. To approve the adoption of the Civility and Respect Pledge (H)

The Parish Council voted to not adopt the Civility and Respect pledge as it was felt to not be necessary as this is a fundamental duty of the Parish Council.  10/10. 

  1. Correspondence to be discussed and noted. (Verbal) TS


  1. Climate and Ecology action to be noted

14.1 Brief report on the AONB forum (Verbal) DCh


14.2 Selection of bare root native trees for distribution in the parish.(Verbal) DCh


  1. Flood Warden Programme for Corscombe (Verbal) DR

Flooding  – over tarmacking was contributing to this issue as it prevented water from flowing to the nearby culvert.  Dorset Council needs to be asked to plane the road so that the correct flow is restored.  The other issue was the fact that drains were blocked with silt and rainwater could not flow through the system.  It was felt that a map detailing Corscombe’s drainage system would help with understanding recent flooding issues in the village and the sewage works issue raised in 7.4. It was agreed that there is a need in the village to consider setting up a flood warden programme.  The Environment Agency (EA) manage the flood warden programme and contact has been made with Lisa Milton from the EA who can assist in setting up a flood action plan template for the Parish.  It was also felt that sandbags should be made available to the public when required.  Contact has been made with Mandy Stubbs (FRM Team); Mandy organises sandbag stores in Dorset.   The PC may wish to consider a store in the community where bags can be collected by flood wardens and residents in advance of flood events.  It was proposed that this could be accommodated at Corscombe village hall.

Action Cllr. Rix to present to the council a report on Flood Warden progress at the next Parish Council meeting in January 2024. 

  1. To consider urgent matters to report from members and items for the next meeting.

Flood Warden program update. 

  1. Date of next Parish Council meeting will be the 30th of January 2024 at Corscombe Village Hall.


  1. Resolution to exclude members of public for item 20 due to commercial sensitivity of the following discussion

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Hodesdon, approved 10/10 

  1. Resolution to exclude members of public for item 21 due to confidential nature of the following discussion

Proposed Cllr. Lovegrove and seconded Cllr. Southern, approved 10/10 

  1. Staff working group report on the proposal for the update of the Corscombe playground. (I) ES 

To ratify the staff working groups choice of  supplier for new playground equipment. 

  • to approve the Playground Working Group’s recommendation to accept Outdoor Play’s quote to provide four new items of play equipment at a cost of £10,000 (net of VAT)

Proposed Cllr. Rix and seconded Cllr. Child, approved 10/10

  • to agree to the award of contract to Outdoor Play by 5th December 2023 in order to secure the price

Proposed Cllr. Rix and seconded Cllr. Child, approved 10/10

  • to approve the additional revenue works outlined in paragraph 13 of £200 net of VAT.

Proposed Cllr. Rix and seconded Cllr. Child, approved 10/10 

  1. Clerks Pay award 2023/2024 

To ratify the Nalc pay scale published for 2023/2024 backdated to April 2023

Ratified . Proposed Cllr. Hodesdon and seconded Cllr. Rix, approved 10/10 


Meeting closed at 9.15 pm.

Appendices available upon request to the Clerk. 

Clerk to the Council: Tessa Safadi, Tel: 01935 579783      



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