Summary Minutes of Council Meetings

This page carries a summary of the last three month's minutes

  The following is a summary of the main points discussed at the Council meeting on 4th April.

Items for decision

Business in Progress (Report 4)

a)      Council’s mowing contractor cannot clear verge in Downsview Lane as too overgrown. Eastbourne to be asked to carry out one-off clearance after nesting season is over.

b)      Quotes obtained for clearing dead wood from trees at the bottom of Micheldene Rd. Again work delayed until after nesting season.

c)      Downlands Way “No Parking” notices delayed due to production difficulties.

d)      Pavilion repairs to be begun on 9th April. Water usage to be monitored following increase in bill.

e)      Village Car Park site map to be queried regarding registered ownership of triangle adjacent to Gilberts Drive.

Media Policy Update (Report 5)

National Association of Local Councils’ media policy to be adopted with warning to be added to future PC meeting agendas concerning recording of public session.

Annual Village Meeting (Report 6)

Progress on arrangements for this event on 17th May reviewed. Main topic is to be launch of Neighbourhood Plan process.

Village Fete

Council to donate £250 towards costs of staging this. Two pitches to be requested, one for PC regular stall and one for Neighbourhood Plan Information Centre.

Insurance 20129/20

Three year deal for Council Liability Insurance accepted. Additional cover for cyber crime (recommended by auditor) to be taken up.

Final Accounts 2018/19

These have been completed and are due for internal audit on 13 May.

Urgent items

Residents had queried if landscaping work adjacent to Fridays was compliant with Planning conditions. Matter referred to Planning Committee.

Councillor Reports

a)     County Councillor

ESCC negotiating with bidder for Seven Sisters Park contract. Cllr. Shing was aware of bidder and was opposed but was unable to publicly name.

b)     District Councillor

Following a nightime accident in the village car park, Wealden were being asked to consider low level lighting. PC would not object in principle to this provided it was appropriate and complied with Dark Skies.

c)     Chair of Council

New charity of the year to be chosen at PC meeting next month. As this was the last PC meeting before election of a new council, Chair thanked all members for their hard work and support during the past years.

d)      Bank Account  End of year bank balance was £57,168.23

e)      Fund Raising

Grant of £425 obtained from WDC for litter clearing equipment. Application for £13,000 for relocation of cricket square lodged with SDNPA.

f)      Rights of Way

The next County liaison meeting will be held on 16th April.

g)     Recreation Ground

Quotes to be obtained for replacing play area fencing.

Next Meetings 

Parish Council meeting; 16th May

Planning Committee: 21st May


The following is a summary of the main points discussed at the Council meeting on 7th March.

Items for decision

Business in Progress (Report 4)

a)      Deed of Easement for drain on recreation ground agreed by County Council.

b)     Information on Friston build-out still awaited from ESCC highways.

c)     Further quotes to be obtained for strimming verge in Downsview Lane now that EBC are refusing to do this.

d)     Documents signed off including Village Hall and Cricket Club hire agreements.

e)     Annual Village Meeting invitations to village groups and clubs to be sent out shortly.

Neighbourhood Plan (Report 5)

Inaugural meeting of Steering Group had been held and minutes issued (these are available on PC website). Terms of Reference for the group have also been agreed and Cllr. Bryant elected chair with Cllr. D’Urso as deputy. Formal application to SDNPA to register the Parish as a Neighbourhood Plan area will now be made.

Trees at south end of Micheldene Road (Report 6)

Tree Warden reported dead branches on these trees which could be a health and safety hazard. These are on Crown land following demise of original property development company. Agreed to obtain quotes with a view to removing dead branches once the nesting season is over.

Councillor Reports

a)     District Councillor – Local MP has sent out survey including suggestions for village Post Office. Wealden Council have turned down request for funding to move the cricket square. The new housing units obtained by WDC at The Fridays have now been occupied. A new waste contractor (Biffa) will take over from Kier in the summer. A £50 annual charge is to be introduced for all garden waste collections.

b)     Planning – Application for an access track at Crowlink Corner is to be heard by SDNPA planning committee on 14th March. Cllr. D’Urso to attend and speak on behalf of the PC.

c)     Bank Account – the end of month balance was £58775.36.

d)     Rights of Way – Councillors have had a meeting with Mr Davies-Gilbert regarding closure of the Drove. As there is now a proper footpath linking Lower Street with the recreation ground, the safety issue of access to the play area has been addressed. The council still believes that the Drove should be considered a public right of way but feels it would not be a good use of public funds to pursue legal action at this point. However, the council would not oppose any residents who wished to continue independent action for recognition of a right of way.

e)     Recreation Ground – Quote of £800 has been received for repair of the pavilion kitchen ceiling and damaged wall panels in the male changing rooms. Agreed to proceed without delay. Further work to bring insulation up to modern standards would cost £3500 and this should be deferred pending applications for community grant funding.

Next Meetings 

Parish Council meeting; 4th April

Planning Committee: 16th April


The following is a summary of the main points discussed at the Council meeting on February 7th.

Public Session

5 members of the public were present. Concerns expressed:

a)      failure of the number 12 buses to pick up passengers at Downsview Lane request stop where there is no marker present. Brighton and Hove Buses have taken action to ammeliorate the problem. The matter will be raised at the next county liaison meeting in April as East Sussex Highways have refused permission for the marker to be replaced on safety grounds.

b)       the verge on the south side of Downsview Lane has become overgrown. (See progress below)

c)       PC awaiting Tree Warden Report before considering how to address the concerns around the state of trees at the entrance to Micheldene Road.

d)       report by a resident of SDNPA Enforcement Officer visit

Items for decision

Business in Progress (Report 5)

Progress since January meeting: Downiands Precinct 4 small notices to be affixed to fences of Wayside properties backing onto car park.

The Drove: Acting Chair to set up meeting with the Gilbert Estate Friston

Build Out has been approved by ESCC and will be run by them.

Downsview Lane Verge Two more quotes for strimming being sought

Village Hall Hire Agreement — resolved to be signed by PC and returned to Village Hall Trust

Asset of Community Value (Report 7) PC resolved to apply to Wealden District Council for re-registration of the Horsefield car park as an asset of community value.

Storage Facility at Recreation Ground (Report 8) PC resolved not to approve the installation of a storage container at the recreation ground.

Insurance against cyber crime (Report 9) Quotation to be requested and considered at next PC meeting.

Annual Village Meeting 2019 (Report 10) Date confirmed as May 17' Proposed structure and timetable confirmed. Topic to be offered by PC is Neighbourhood Planning

Urgent Items None

Correspondence (Report 15) Fresh timetables for Cuckmere Bus service 41 to be posted on notice boards.

Councillor Reports 

a)      County Councillor — Council has approved an increase in council tax of 2.99% Savings of £5.1 million must be made. ESCC expect to be running a £21.2 million deficit until the end of 2022. ESCC Country Parks. The council has decided to divest itself of its country parks including the Severn Sisters to save management costs. Negotiations with the SDNPA are in progress.

b)      Planning — the council took note of the draft minute of the meeting January 15th

c)      Bank Account — the end of month balance was £61519.61.

d)      Rights of Way and Highways: Closure of Jevington road February 18th to 22nd - utility works.

e)      Recreation Ground — no further update at present

Next Meetings: Parish Council meeting: March 7th. Planning Committee: March 19th followed by a Neighbourhood Planning Steering Group Meeting.