Welcome and Apologies
The Chair, Cllr Richard Searl, welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Apologies were received from Cllr Elizabeth Evans.
Declarations of Interest
There were no declarations of interest.
Police Sergeant Richard Edmunds of South Wales Police was expected to be in attendance but did not join the meeting.
PCSO Gareth Perry provided the following email report:
PACT figures from 10/11/2020 – 08/12/2020:
10/11/20- Theft of JCB equipment from Wales & West, Upper High Street.
20/11/20- RTC bus hit and damaged a car on High Street. Resolved without police intervention.
10/11/20- Threats made, Tudor Court
22/11/20- Theft of vehicle, Park Terrace High Street
23/11/20- Theft of number plates from vehicle, High Street
26/11/20- Damage to vehicle, scratched with key. Glynbargoed Road
27/11/20- Damage to wooden fence B4255 Trelewis-Bedlinog
28/11/20- Further damage to wooden fence B4255 Trelewis-Bedlinog
01/12/20- Theft from vehicle, Foxglove Close
22/11/20- ASB youth annoyance, Cherry Tree Way
25/11/20- ASB youth annoyance again, Cherry Tree Way. *4 youths identified and dealt with through ASB referrals and schools’ involvement.
30/11/20- ASB youth annoyance, Ivy Close
30/11/20- ASB youth annoyance, Highfield Rise *3 youths identified and dealt with through ASB referrals and schools’ involvement. Different youths to the incident above.
Minutes of Previous Meeting
Cllr Searl proposed that the minutes were a true reflection of the last meeting, this was seconded by Cllr Matthews.
Council resolved to approve the minutes of the previous meeting.
No requests were received from electors in the Trelewis Community Ward to hold an election for the casual vacancy, a NOTICE of Co-option has now been published and is open until 12pm Monday 21st December.
Keep Wales Tidy will be onsite at Bedlinog Community Centre on the 17th and 18th December to complete work on the Wildlife Garden.
Cllr Searl updated Council on his site meeting with a member of the Street Lighting Team from MTCBC, Cllr Searl advised that there will be two new lights put up by the end of the financial year near the roundabout at the end of Hylton Terrace. All the lights on the right-hand side of Hylton Terrace will be removed because they were disconnected many years ago when LED’s were put on the left-hand side. The roundabout light is not working again and a report has been logged with street lighting for repair. Cllr Searl stated that Street Lighting Team have advised him that the lights outside of the support living accommodation in Bedlinog do not belong to MTCBC. Cllr Preston stated that the landlord is Hafod Housing and Cllr Searl advised that he would contact them to advise of the broken lights.
ACTION: Cllr Searl to contact Hafod Housing to discuss broken light issue.
MTCBC have been unable to source quotations to date for the fencing to be extended to help control the anti-social behaviour at the Kick-about area. The Clerk has engaged with a local builder who is obtaining prices for the Community Council.
Street Lighting have confirmed that some errors have been made with the Christmas Light installations and will be working to rectify these this week.
The consultation has ended for the sites identified for works as part of the Local Places for Nature grant. MTCBC have issued the appropriate licences to the Community Council and work can commence in the new year. The works to Bedlinog Allotments has been confirmed and will commence in the new year.
RJ has been in contact with Bedlinog Miners Welfare Association for an update on how they plan to proceed with their request for BTCC to take on charitable guardianship of the recreational land around Bedlinog Community Centre – the Area Manager was waiting on a response from their CEO and will chase this up. Mrs Yvonne Wood is finalising the accounts for FY19-20 so that these can be shared with BTCC for Councillors to review pending a decision on how to proceed is made.
The Planning department at MTCBC were notified of the Community Council’s objections to planning application P/20/0242.
Work will be starting on the installation of the solar panels on Bedlinog Community Centre in the new year. A digital media company has been engaged to work on the Social Media campaign and a site meeting has taken place at Parc Taf Bargoed and The Climbing Centre to look at locations for the water re-fil stations. RJ has requested that Cllrs participate in the social media campaign ... view the full minutes text for item 64.
County Councillors Report
Cllr Ian Thomas advised Council that the audited statement of accounts was approved at the last MTCBC Full Council. There is a revenue surplus of 2.98m.
All secondary schools and Greenfield are closed from 14-12-2020 and all primary schools will close from 15-12-2020. Children will be expected to complete online virtual learning until the last day of term.
Cllr Sherelle Jago advised Council that a new strategy was approved at MTCBC Full Council, ‘Raising Aspirations Raising Standards’ (RARS). The purpose of the strategy is to ensure that there are the best outcomes for all children and young people across the County Borough.
Another week has been agreed for the COVID-19 Mass Testing in Merthyr Tydfil – testing will continue at Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre from 14-12-2020 until 18-12-2020.
Cllr Malcolm Colbran was invited to the meeting but did not attend – Cllr Colbran provided the following email update:
Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council:
During November I attended two Full Council meetings, meetings of the Neighbourhood Services Scrutiny Committee, the Planning Committee, the Licensing Committee, two Independent Group meetings, two Councillor updates on the Covid-19 mass testing programme and a Councillor workshop on play sufficiency. All other Council meetings were postponed due to officers assisting in the Covid-19 testing centres.
South Wales Fire & Rescue Authority:
I attended meetings of the HR Committee and the Finance & Performance Management Committee.
Brecon Beacons National Park Authority:
It's been a busy time for the BBNPA as we try and catch up with a backlog outstanding work caused by both Covid-19 and the cyber-attack. There were meetings of the Policy Forum, the Sustainable Development Fund, the Appointments Committee, Full National Park Authority, a meeting of the Local Authority members and a meeting to discuss Planning Appeals.
As well as the Autumn Term meeting I attended meetings of the Finance Committee and the Staffing Committee.
I arranged for all pupils to receive a selection box for Christmas
There was also a briefing for all Merthyr Tydfil School Governor Chairs/Vice Chairs.
I Chaired a virtual meeting of the Merthyr Tydfil Biodiversity Partnership.
Along with Park Warden I planted trees in Park Taff Bargoed, these were donated by the Stephens and George Charitable Trust.
I helped the Community Action Group finish the Spring flower bulb planting programme. Over 2000 bulbs have been planted in ten locations across the Ward this Autumn. The Community Action Group also donated bulbs to the Trelewis Playgroup.
I met with Rachel Morton of Restore the River for a socially distanced walk around Park Taff Bargoed and get an update on her project, I also met with Taff Bargoed Angling Association and officers from the Council to discuss various issues while I was in the Park.
I have met with several local businesses to advise them of the support the Council can offer during the pandemic as well as meeting with the Taff Bargoed Development Trust and Rock UK. The Community Improvement Fund donated some dog waste bags to Rock UK to be ... view the full minutes text for item 65.
There were no planning applications to consider.
MTCBC are required to consult with the Community Council on the Borough Wide Dog Fouling Public Spaces Protection Order. Councillors confirmed that they fully support the PSPO proposal and believe that dog fouling is a serious issue within the community.
A complaint was made to MTCBC Planning regarding Gabion Baskets erected at the rear of 56 Hylton Terrace. This land is the responsibility of the Community Council and we have been informed that the baskets require planning permission, so the Community Council is in breach of its licence for allowing this work to commence. RJ has contacted the resident at 56 Hylton Terrace who confirmed that he carried out the work – this was because the drain/culvert in the area keeps flooding and he has lost some of his garden due to land erosion etc. MTCBC have advised that the lease can be amended if the resident is interested in purchasing that part of the land and can then apply for retrospective planning permission. A Council decision was needed to be made as to whether Council were happy for the lease to be amended and for this part of the land to be excluded from the lease. Cllr Jago proposed that Council agree to the lease amendment, this was seconded by Cllr Frayne. Council resolved to agree to the amendment of the lease.
Bedlinog Community Centre has re-opened, guidance states that it is up to a maximum of 15 people allowed and it must be an organised activity. It must be organised by a business, a public body or a charitable or educational institution, a club or political organisation, or the national governing body of a sport or other activity. Track and trace must be in place and RJ must be notified of any use of the community centre.
All Community Council’s in Wales were contacted at the end of November by Repair Café Wales about some WG funding to set up pop-up reuse and repair projects around Wales. Deadlines were quite tight and the application had to be submitted by 1st December.
Repair café takes items destined for landfill and they make them available for people to borrow at low cost e.g. lawn mowers, hedge cutters, tools sewing machines, household items, clothes etc.
Also volunteer-led classes where people can bring their items and learn how to repair them, e.g. microwaves/kettles/other electrical items, clothes, bycicles encouraging communities to work towards a circular economy, creating a culture of repair and re-use.
Repair Café Wales will manage the project for us, 180k project that would run initially from March-June with the setup and planning taking place Jan-Mar.
Recruitment of Project Manager, Project Officer and Head of Repairs and Maintenance will be required.
Repair Café Wales will work on the setup of the project, the recruitment of staff, volunteers etc. Project could entail the hiring of an electric van also to offer a mobile service to those people who are isolated.
RJ has made initial enquiries with Bedlinog Miners Welfare Association about ... view the full minutes text for item 67.
Cllr Searl expressed concern that some families will be struggling at this time of year and proposed that the Hardship Fund is reinstated and the maximum number of payments per household is increased from two to three. This was seconded by Cllr Preston and Council resolved to reinstate the Hardship Fund until the 22nd December 2020.
Standards Committee Representative
Cllr Richard Searl put his name forward to sit on MTCBC Standards Committee.
No vote was required as there was only one nomination.
ACTION: RJ to inform MTCBC that Cllr Searl will be the Community Council Standards Committee representative.
RJ advised that the external audit had been completed. RJ presented the Annual Governance Statement and Issues Arising Report to Council.
Cllr Searl proposed that the Annual Governance Statement and Issues Arising Report be accepted and approved by Council. This was seconded by Cllr Beard.
Council resolved to accept and approve the Annual Governance Statement and Issues Arising Report.
Cllr Beard requested that in the next financial year, the Internal Auditor attends Council to present the findings of the Internal Audit Report.
Date of Next Meeting
The next meeting will be held virtually, Monday 11th January 2021, 6.15pm.
Cllr Searl closed the meeting and wished everyone a happy Christmas.