Parish Council Monthly News

The Parish Council met on Tuesday 6th February with 8 Councillors present, and Mike Fox-Davies Oxfordshire County Council Councillor and a number of members of the public being present. Apologies had been received from the missing Parish Councillor.

Dr Stork, Chair of GARD gave a short update regarding Thames Water future water plans. In all options considered the option of a reservoir is a constant feature.

Subsequent to this Thames Water have launched the start of the public consultation on their draft Water Resources Management Plan and they want to hear your views. Thames Water state: ”A safe and reliable water supply is essential for all our customers, a healthy environment and a prosperous economy. Our draft Water Resources Management Plan sets out how we propose to meet our customers’ needs for water until the end of the century, supporting housing and economic growth, whilst protecting and improving the environment.  
It includes our proposals to further reduce leakage, install more water meters and give more assistance to our customers to manage their water use. It also outlines which new water supply schemes will be needed, and explains how our draft Plan aligns with those of other water companies to provide an overall solution to the water needs of the South East of England.     
To read our full draft Plan and find out how you can participate in the consultation visit
The public consultation is open until Sunday 29 April 2018.
Your comments will help us shape, refine and finalise our draft Plan. We’ll carefully consider all the responses we receive and at the end of the consultation we’ll publish a report setting out how we have taken the comments into account in revising our Plan”.
Note that Thames Water does not mention the reservoir once in their statement. There are no planned Thames Water Local Engagement Forums organised in our area for March and April.
Oxfordshire County Council have suddenly woken up to the fact that members of the public are rightly concerned about the state of the roads in Oxfordshire by stating “ January has seen a dramatic increase in the number of Fix My Street (FMS) reports being registered on the system due to the severe weather events in December 2017 and January 2018, where repeated freeze, thaw and snow has caused considerable damage to the road network.
The average January sees nearly 2000 reports coming in whilst January 2018 has seen over 7000 reports. The vast majority of these reports relate to safety defects on the highway, potholes, potential flooding issues and tree damage. We anticipate that the February and March figures will also rise well above average as a result of the bad weather. An additional £1m to fund highway repairs has been received from Central Government and it could not have come at a better time.
To deal with the issues the Area Operations Teams  are prioritising potholes, flood sites and vegetation issues blocking the highway in the first instance.............The rise in the number of Fix My Street shows how well the public are supporting the Fix My Street system and we are keen to ensure that we respond to issues as quickly as we can. Any assistance that the public can give in providing photos of the sites would be very helpful as we may be able to prioritise work from the photos rather than visit each site individually. Please do not compromise your own safety by taking photos if it is not safe to do so. If a defect has paint markings around it then it has already been scheduled for repair and does not need a new report.
What you will see:

  1. More inspectors on the network to prioritise work and deal with short term safety issues
  2. More defect gangs fixing these potholes.
  3. An increase in structural patching and minor patching programmes to deal with sites with large clusters of pothole during the late winter and early spring period. These repairs last longer but take time to arrange.
  4. An additional Dragon Patcher on the network from mid-February operating as “Inspect and Fix” on the rural network”.

We will wait in anticipation if anything happens in Steventon. We have been waiting now, for some 3 months, for an inspector to visit Hanney road! However one message is clear the more residents contact Fix Street the more likely we are for them to “fix” Steventon.
In a related issue the Police have logged a call with fix my street to look and see if some signs are a viable option for improving parking outside the shops on High Street. On discussions with the Police they again stress the importance of ringing them on 101. Again, the same message more residents reporting issues the more likely Steventon will receive more attention.
Recently the question of reserving a plot for burial has arisen. The procedure is for residents of Steventon to contact the Clerk of the Parish Council to book a new plot in the graveyard but not to reserve a specific  plot. This is because of pressure on future available space.
Yet again may we remind you about dog fouling in the village. There have been yet again many cases recently of dog fouling within the village. If you see a dog owner allowing their dog to foul and not picking it up, take details of anything you see and take a photo and send details to the VWHDC Environmental Protection Team. They can be contacted by: Tel 01235 422403 or e-mail Remember dog fouling could lead to a fixed penalty notice of £50 or prosecution. Have pride in your village.
The next Parish Council meeting is on Tuesday 6th March at 7pm in the Village Hall. Please do come along and have your say during public participation.

Dr Chris Wilding - Chair


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