Yet again the PC held a virtual meeting. With the circumstances as they are, it seems unlikely that this will change in the near future. The upside is that meetings, by necessity are more disciplined with the only downside being the occasional intervention from family pets. This month’s meeting was attended by two members of the public.
There was only one planning application to consider, which described a request to install Velux windows in the extension to a listed property in Meare Green. The PC supported the application.
The PC was updated on the Covid situation in the county. While cases remain at a relatively low level there has in recent days been a significant uptick in cases reported. Emphasis was placed on continuing vigilance, and that the apparently naïve attitude that it cannot happen to me is responsible for an unjustified complacency.
Further discussions around the proposals for one or several unity authorities, were like similar previous discussions inconclusive. The publication of the ‘Stronger Somerset’ case by the District Councils does provide a counter view to the single unitary authority proposed by SSC under the ‘One Somerset’ banner. The PC is in no doubt that change is necessary but the sentiment is that as a small parish, represented almost entirely by volunteers, we will be left to work with any circumstances that devolve from the final decision, whatever form that takes.
In response to the request last month for views on changing the speed limit in Meare Green to 30mph from 40mph, there was an almost overwhelming response, with over twenty expressions in favour of the proposal. The next step, which has already been actioned, is to request SCC to gather data from a fixed radar installation, the location of which on the long straight has been agreed.
It was also agreed that the PC will fund a plaque to be mounted on wall of the new pavilion which will carry the same inscription as that on the memorial stone at the entrance to the playing field. This will be installed in time for Memorial Day service in November.
It has been agreed that Stoke St Gregory will take advantage of the offer to provide a travelling Post Office. It is anticipated that this service will start using the conference room at the Village Hall between 10:30 and 12:30 on Oct 1st and weekly thereafter. All Post Office services will be available. If there is sufficient demand consideration will be given to extending opening hours.
In February 2020, the Leader of Somerset County Council announced that £1 million would be made available for city, town and parish councils to support local communities. A new grant scheme is now available to help local communities take positive action to help Somerset become carbon neutral and mitigate the impacts of Climate Change has now been announced. From 1 October projects submitted through the PC can bid for between £5,000 and £75,000 for innovative projects that can make a real difference in reducing carbon emissions and can contribute to making Somerset resilient to the effects of Climate Change. The scheme will be open from 1 October for six weeks and applications for funding of projects are invited from city, town and parish councils and community groups. Qualifying projects will include those to reduce carbon emissions, reduce consumption and to implement activities around climate change mitigation and adaptation. If you have creative ideas, we would like to hear from you.
Commenting on input from a member of the public, the PC noted concerns around the issue of dogs not under the control of their owners. While not a direct responsibility of the PC, it was emphasised that dogs should always be on a lead or under close control particularly around children.
Finally, we have a world record holder in our midst. Hannah Taunton, participant and winner of the Stoke Stampede, recently broke the world record for the women’s T20 5000m. Many congratulations to Hannah on this amazing achievement.