WEDNESDAY  25 th July  2018  AT 7.30PM.  Held at Four Elms Village hall.


Present:  Cllrs., John Hodson (JH) (Chair), Angela Haydon (AH), Bonnie White (BW) Joanna Wade (JW), Christine Thompson (CT), Stephen Sadler (SS), Rick Brookes-Smith (RBS)

Also in attendance: Charlotte Cole (CC, Clerk), Peter Lake (PL), Matthew Dickins (MD), and 7 members of the public.  The meeting commenced at 7.35pm.


1. To receive apologies – Stephen Lark (SL) away, Duncan Leslie (DL) family commitment – these apologies were accepted and noted.

2. To receive declarations of interest in respect of items on the Agenda. To be specified per item.

3. To approve accuracy of minutes from the previous meetings (AGM 15th May 2018, Annual Assembly meeting 15th May). Approved by all and signed by JH.

4.  Public Forum

PL updated that school transport appeal won and requested any other parish wide transport appeals to go to him (Peter.lake@kent.gov.uk).  KCC consulting about rural buses and noted already on HPC agenda.  Would like to propose 20mph speed restrictions to FE village during the 2019 – 2020 financial year.  This would cost ~ £ 7,000 to HPC which PL would reimburse.  Deadline is April 2019 for submission and requested HPC support in doing so.  A number of queries from Cllrs. and pubic regarding effectiveness, Timeline, signage, enforcement, geography of boundaries etc.  Would Hever and Markbeech be considered too?

Clerk post meeting amendment; as this proposal was not on the agenda, any such items can only be treated as an information item i.e. as an update/idea in principle – no decision or action possible.  This proposal will therefore be added as an Agenda item on the meeting scheduled 18th September.  PL left 7.45pm

MD updated from Sevenoaks District Council (SDC) – Local Plan (will write a guide in The Link magazine, liaising with Hever Residents Assoc.) Parish not directly significantly affected but note Edenbridge Health & Housing scheme (and potential traffic impact).  Neverworld licensing hearing – sound levels modified at 35dbA and breaches will be monitored.

(Gavin Missons (SDC Housing) arrived 7.45pm)

KCC proposal to charge for householders (DIY) waste – consultation to follow.  Other County’s already do.  Concerns over Flytipping risk and MD strongly opposes.

Query from the public to MD re; parents obstructing pedestrians with cars on the footpath outside Four Elms primary.  MD explained complexity of responsibility / enforcement (between SDC, Police, Highways).  Will speak to resident to explain and share with CC.  Cllr. BW has also been involved to encourage school again to liaise with parents.

MD left 8.05pm

5.  Community Led housing – JH summarised the work to date and results of the parish wide housing needs survey (summary attached to agenda) and future options.  Thanks to SS for work so far and Gavin Missons (SDC).  One option is to now identify potential sites (minimum build is ~6) and instruct a specialist housing association, who would then work with SDC (who test the sustainability of every proposed site).  This would lead to a priority list and secondary survey to be undertaken to every household (shorter and more focused) plus parish wide consultations.  There is no financial involvement or risk to HPC.   GM explained the new local priority criteria in the SDC Local Plan, affordable definition, housing benefit procedure and tenancy conditions. updated from meetings regarding Housing needs survey / Community Led Housing meetings with Clerk, SDC and Rural Housing Kent.  The time frame and options / possible implications discussed at length.


The Council voted and resolved to proceed by inviting a core group (SS, CT, CC, GM) to meet with SDC and 2 of the proposed Housing Associations.

6.  SDC Local Plan – GM answered queries about the SDC Local Plan.  All Cllrs. were encouraged to visit one of the public displays and Cllr. to reports any comments to CC by 20th August for CC to respond to SDC Consultation.

HPC to encourage locals to view and respond to consultation via facebook, website and contact list.  To ask SDC / MD how new NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework) may impact on Local plan.

GM left at 9.05pm

7.  Footpaths – JW reported on local interest / concerns over public footpath cutting.  Clerk tried to clarify the role of KCC (Kent County Council Public Rights of Way), landowners etc. in this responsibility and other options and groups involved in volunteer cutting.  Discussions were had about cost, liability, relative impact and duties.  HPC declined to commit to a regular cutting programme to supplement KCC work or to take on devolved work.

8.  Possible village party 2019 – JW will d/w DL.

9.  Post HPC Annual Assembly review – Cllrs. felt it was a good effort but relatively poorly attended.  Possibly as no major contentious issues..?  Plan for 2019 – Four Elms village hall, a Wednesday or Thursday in early May. 7.30pm start.  Not on same day as AGM.  Try to book MP.

10.  Local Broadband – report read out by CC, received from Airfast.net (trading name of Crockham Hill Broadband CIC).  Main item of interest is the new transmitter station at Chiddingstone Church and higher ground towards the Weald.

11.  Swathe and Visibility cuts (that we share a contract with Chiddingstone, Leigh and Penshurst PC) – A further cut was required this year.  Some concerns (from other parishes) about reduced wildflower areas.  Discussions were had and not felt to be a concern locally.

12. Family fun days – 1st August Four Elms, Hever 22nd August.  Advertising and banners used for promotion.

13.  General Data protection regulations – Clerk updated on action to date and still required (new PC and to complete data map / risk assessment).

14. Four Elms playground update. 

New grants secured from £ 3,000 SDC Community Infrastructure Levy, further £ 3,000 from Kent Community Foundation.  Total of £ 15,030 raised from grant applications to date.  Costs to date ~ £ 20,000.  Playground due to open in next 2 weeks and formal opening party / thanks to follow.

15.  Gatwick – No report.

15i.  Grant applications – £175 agreed towards WW1 Commemoration.

16.  Matters arising from previous minutes –no outstanding actions.

17.  Planning and Licensing – update attached to agenda. 

18. Financial update – attached to agenda.  Chair suggested that new PC purchased this financial year.  All agreed.

19. Urgent / other issues.  None.  Update from Clerk re; Four Elms Pond – entrance from front and side towards back of pond blocked off to reduce chance of campers.

20.  Other correspondence for noting –attached to agenda.

KCC Bus consultation – CC to check if local routes affected.

KCC Rights of Way Improvement plan – deadline 12th September. CC and JW to study.

AONB Management Plan – no comment.


Meeting ended 9.40pm