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Council Meeting – 4th April 2023

Modbury Parish Council Meeting

Tuesday 4th April 2023, 7.00 pm

The Pavilion, QEII Recreation Field


Present     Cllrs Pete Watts (PW), (Chair), Rob West (RW) Vice-Chair, Barry Keel (BK), Helen Nathanson (HN), Barbara Price (BP), George Rosevear (GR), Phil Smith (PS), Dave Trigger (DT), Ann Turner, (AT), Andy Walker (AW), Jo Woodcock (JW)

Also present: Cllrs Rufus Gilbert (RG)(DCC) and Bernard Taylor (BT) (SHDC)

 18 members of the public were in attendance


2023 42          There were no apologies for absence.

Public Forum

  1. A member of the public requested Council support for an application for BBC4 Radio’s “Any Questions” to be hosted in Modbury – Council agreed support

 2. A representative from the Church Lane Allotment Association requested Council action in the light of the recent announcement that the allotment land was to be sold. Statistics were provided that illustrated the area of land given over to allotments per resident in Modbury already does not compare favourably with neighbouring parishes and further loss would exacerbate this lack of provision.

 Council agreed to bring the agenda item 2023 51(3) “To consider the written communication received regarding the Church Road allotments” forward.

 Proposed by AT, seconded by BP and agreed by all that a working group comprising AT and BP review this as a matter of urgency.

BT to investigate an order from SHDC to extend the decision period.

 3. A member of the public thanked the Councillors standing down and anyone new joining for their work. He asked why, in this period of austerity and when DCC and SHDC had kept their increase below 5%, MPC precept had risen by 5.3%

Council responded:

  • Increasing responsibilities being passed down from DCC and SHDC to parish councils
  • Inflation rate of 11% when the precept was set
  • The 5% actually only equates to £3.35 per annum (£1.85 stated at the meeting)
  • Despite this minimal increase the agreed budget was in deficit and relied on using some reserves.

The room was reminded that DCC and SHDC, by law, would have to go to referendum and this would prove to be an expensive exercise

The member of the public stated he was not happy with the response


Report from Devon Councillor (RG)

  • RG will produce an annual report for the next meeting
  • Highlighted that DCC has been awarded £9.4m for pothole repair
  • Hoped his email clarifying DCC position regarding the proposed Penn Parks development had been helpful
  • Devolution Deal for Devon is progressing:

Outline approval has been given for a Devon-wide devolution deal which could bring greater local control and allow partners to tap into additional resources to help tackle key local priorities such as affordable housing, better public transport and connectivity, and providing for the skills that the local economy needs


Report from SHDC Councillor (BT)

  • Congratulated the Neighbourhood Plan team on the successful outcome for Modbury Neighbourhood Plan
  • SHDC finances are looking healthy
  • The community housing project in St Ann’s Chapel has a target completion date of August / Sept. 2023. House will not be occupied until it is complete. There is already a waiting list.
  • Thanked the Parish Council for their work over the last 4 years
  • PW thanked BT for his support


2023 43          There were no declarations of pecuniary and other interests


2023 44          Minutes of Meetings held on 7th March 2023 and 27th March 2023

Proposed by BK, seconded by AT that both sets of minutes be approved as a true and accurate record.


2023 45          Planning

The following planning applications were considered:

  1. 0384/23/OPA READVERTISEMENT (Amended Description) Outline

Planning Application (with all matters reserved apart from access) for demolition of existing

buildings and a residential redevelopment of up to 40 dwellings, including the formation of

access and associated works on land at Pennpark, Modbury Sx 652 5172.

BK reminded Council that there had been a full debate and input from the public at the extra-ordinary meeting on 27th March. He read out the response prepared by the Planning Committee for full council consideration following that meeting:

  1. The Council accepts that the site was allocated in the JLP and generally agrees with the principle of housing on this site subject to certain conditions. These conditions would ensure the quality of housing as well as the drainage, environment and pedestrian and vehicular access. We are not yet in that position.
  2. Pedestrian Access . — We generally agree with the objections to the application raised in the letter from the Devon County Highway Engineer dated 22.3.23. Specifically we would make the following points:—

I). The site is very poorly connected to the Town and particularly the Primary School. The pedestrian route is tortuous (569m) and the natural desire lines for pedestrians and children are unsafe.

II). Bus stops on both carriageways and on right angle bends will lead to severe vehicular conflict at a point where pedestrians are crossing. This is on a road that carries over 10,000 vehicles per day in summer. This vehicular conflict will further exacerbate the safety of pedestrians.

III). The footpaths alongside the highways are the minimum widths of 1.15m. Satisfactory safe havens are not provided for pedestrians, wheel chair users, mobility scooters, or buggies. This further exacerbates the safety of highway users.

IV). The conclusion of both ourselves and the County council is that an alternative access via Green Lane is essential before the application is approved. This access needs to be well lit, drained and hard surfaced. (Hard surfaces and not ‘hoggin’ as ’hoggin’ will wash out on the slope of the path.)

  1. In short the community safety should not be compromised because the developer ‘is finding it difficult’ to secure a pedestrian access.
  2. Vehicular Access. — As a result of the poor pedestrian access people will be forced to use vehicles to access the Town and school. This is contrary to the policies contained in the Joint Local plan (JLP) and the Neighbourhood Plan (NP). This will lead to further pedestrian/vehicular conflict as outlined in the County Highways letter dated 22.3.23 .

We do, however disagree with the comments of the highway engineer that his concerns on vehicular access have been mainly addressed. The combination of the desire lines, vehicular movements, proximity of the school and lack of pedestrian access via Green Lane all combine to make the proposed development unacceptable and unsafe. The Highway Engineer even summarises the situation himself as “far from ideal”.

General Points

It is suggested by the applicant and the Highway Engineer that it could prove difficult to condition any of the above points. This should not be used as a reason for not providing satisfactory conditions on developments. Indeed it is essential that the community is protected by both conditions and a legal agreement as the development progresses.

This is the crux of the matter. Despite housing being agreed for the site this application is premature until such time as issues are satisfactorily dealt with.”

Proposed by BK, seconded by GR and all in favour that Council object to this application for the reasons as detailed in the statement above and that AT, BK, BP and PW have delegated responsibility to make any minor adjustments and amendments as the matter progresses.

  1. Planning appeal APP/K1128/W/22/3307997 Ludbrook Manor.  Ivybridge PL21 0LJ  Change of use from residential with ancillary offices and holiday annex use to a mixed use of residential with ancillary offices and holiday plus occasional event venue (max 10 events per calendar annum)

MPC made no comment on this application originally as it was outside the parish. However it is now at appeal stage and there have been several representations from Modbury parishioners and a request for MPC to support them with their concerns.

Proposed by BK, seconded by AT and all in favour that MPC object to the appeal.

  1. 11 Broad Street. Modbury.

To consider the application for a pavement licence for outside seating

Proposed by BK, seconded by GR and all in favour of supporting this application

  1. Grass verge on Galpin Street, Modbury, South Hams, Devon PL21 0QB

To consider the installation of a telecommunications equipment cabinet

Proposed by BK, seconded by GR and all in favour of supporting this application.

  1. Palm Cross Green

To consider the request from the Time Team to explore a sample spot on The Green

Proposed by BK, seconded by BP and all in favour of supporting this request.


The following application was received after the agenda was published and the closing date is before the May meeting. (This will be ratified at the May meeting)

  1. 0250/23/FUL A new high quality three storey dwelling with private amenity space Land At Sx 656 515.   Moon Lane  Modbury  Devon

It was agreed that this application made no improvements on the 2 former applications in 2019 and 2020. MPC objected to both previous applications and the objections remain: traffic and access, proximity to the Church, overdevelopment of the site, drainage concerns.

Proposed by BK, seconded by GR and all in favour of objecting to this application


2023 46          Finance

  1. Proposed by GR, seconded by RW and all in favour that the payments as listed in Appendix 1be approved
  2. The financial statement Appendix 2 was received
  3. The quotations for work to repair the track surface on the entrance to The Pavilion. were considered and it was agreed to employ the company who quoted £3,950


2023 47          Annual Parish Fair

The Fair will take place on Tuesday 25th April – open to the public from 7 – 8.30 and to people erecting and dismantling displays from 6.30 – 9.00pm.

Groups and organisations and representatives from the Traders Association will be present and the aim is for members of the public to learn about leisure and recreation opportunities in the parish and opportunities for volunteering. Guest speaker will be Ian Sherriff

(Academic Lead for Dementia Plymouth University) to support all groups, organisations and businesses to work together to help make Modbury a dementia friendly parish.


2023 48          Maintenance

  1. The minutes from the Committee meeting were received and RW summarised the contents: Marigold’s Day, Play Areas, Grass-cutting, Road Maintenance, The Patch.

MPC thanked the residents of Tuckers Brook for work done to date to clear The Patch.

  1. A quote of £500 to refurbish the corn-ginder at the entrance to Poundwell car park and keep in situ was considered.

Proposed by RW, seconded by PW, 10 in favour and 1 against progressing the work.

  1. Footway at the top of Church St – we are waiting to hear from DCC to ensure we get the specification correct and 3 companies are lined up to submit a quotation.
  2. The creation of a footway across the grassed corner of Barracks Road and Dark Lane.

It was agreed to progress with this and to request the safety audit from DCC and attain 3 quotations for the work

  1. RW volunteered to continue as Road and Snow Warden if required by the new Council and was thanked.
  2. RW offered to attend the first maintenance meeting of the new Council to do a hand-over.


2023 49          Community Engagement Committee

  1. The minutes from the Committee meeting were received. It was noted that the Committee are liaising with other organisations to look at ways of engaging with young people
  2. Modbury Warm Space – BP delivered a review of the initiative

It was agreed that this had demonstrated a need for a visible and accessible community space in the town and that the Committee will continue to explore any opportunities that arise


2023 50          MARS

  1. The minutes of the meeting held on 21st February were received
  2. The Legionella and Pitch inspection reports were received and PW reported that action had been taken to respond to priority actions in the Legionella report.
  3. It was agreed that MARS lead on the revision of the Open Space Sport and Recreation Assessment policy


2023 51          Sustainable Modbury

  1. AT delivered an update from the Committee
  2. Public transport service to Ivybridge

It was agreed that this was an important issue and that this would be deferred for the new Council

  1. Church Road allotments – dealt with earlier
  2. Multi- parish River Erme environmental group

Proposed by BP, seconded by AT and all in favour of the Council agreeing in principal to contribute financially to initiatives proportional to the precept.


2023 52          Committees, Sub-Committees and Working Groups:


  • The drainage project is almost complete
  • The AGM is on Tuesday 11th April – All welcome

Memorial Hall

  • AGM is Tuesday 18th April – all welcome

Health and Safety

  • There have been no accidents, injuries or dangerous occurrences reported in the last three months.
  • During the period January to March the following work was undertaken:
    • The outstanding method statement for Modbury Litter Pickers has been drawn up and approved.
    • The risk assessment and method statement for Marigolds Day have been reviewed and approved.
    • PAT testing of electrical equipment in the Parish Office has been carried out.
    • The fire extinguisher in the Parish Office has failed its test and is being replaced.
    • A Legionella risk assessment has been carried out at the QE2 Pavilion and new management arrangements implemented, including training for two individuals.




  • During March repairs have been carried out to two sleeper bridges and brambles have been cleared on FP4.
  • A parishioner has raised the issue of old rights of way which are the subject of a national campaign by the Ramblers Association. They ask whether the PC set up a team to build a case for the resurrection of the approximately 18 former public footpaths located within the parish. It was agreed that PS would map those paths for Council to consider further

Homes for Ukraine Support Team

  • The team has publicized the need for more local families to volunteer as sponsors
  • The team has liaised with the Education Department at DCC to request additional help for two Ukrainian children at Modbury Primary School and this is now being provided.
  • The team has also assisted two of the Ukrainian adults into employment in Modbury
  • A private rented home in Kingsbridge for two of our Ukrainian families who were coming to the end of their sponsorship arrangement has been secured

Parish Online

  • The planning application site at Penn Parks and the alternative pedestrian access routes have been mapped
  • The next planned task is to map all land holdings and all trees to inform a programme of future tree surveys.

Modbury Litter Pickers

  • As well as team members own patch work, group litter picks have been undertaken on the following roads in the last month:
  • The Bigbury road from Harraton Cross to the parish boundary.
  • Pennymoor to Beech Lane
  • Modbury to East Leigh
  • The group has contributed to the Keep Britain Tidy ‘Great Spring Clean’ by pledging to pick for a certain number of hours and pick a certain number of bin bags of litter.
  • The group has also lobbied Tesco to clean the area around the store at Lee Mill and the local authorities and MP about the state of the A38.


2023 36          Correspondence received:

  1. Communication from Devon and Cornwall Police regarding Neighbourhood Beat Managers

It was agreed that this would be deferred for the new Council to choose a Councillor advocate.


BT reminded everyone that content from each committee and representative was required for the Annual Review by 9th May 2023


PW thanked everyone for their support during his time as Chair of The Council


AT thanked PW for his work as Chair.


2023 37          To agree the Saturday Rota:

8th April         Helen Nathanson

15th April        George Rosevear

22nd April       Phil Smith

29th April        Ann Turner


Meeting closed at 9.21pm








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