Agenda and minutes

Venue: Henstridge Village Hall, Ash Walk, Henstridge, Templecombe BA8 0QB. View directions

Contact: LCN Team Email: 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Henry Hobhouse, Councillor Claire Sully, Mark Helyar of Take Art, Paul Chadwick of Lamyatt PM, Howard Ellard of Wincanton TC and Sue Crisfield of the Rural Practice Network.


Declarations of Interest

To receive and note any declarations of interests in respect of any matters included on the agenda for consideration at this meeting.


(The other registrable interests of Councillors of Somerset Council, arising from membership of City, Town or Parish Councils and other Local Authorities will automatically be recorded in the minutes: City, Town & Parish Twin Hatters - Somerset Councillors 2023 )


There were no declarations of interest made by the Somerset Councillors present at the meeting.


Notes from the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To approve the notes from the previous meeting.


The notes of the previous meeting held on 22 June 2023 were approved as a correct record by those present.


Public Question Time

The Chair to advise of any questions, statements or petitions received that are not covered by items on the agenda for the meeting on which members of the public have requested to speak.


Christopher Le Hardy of Rimpton PC advised that they were not receiving notification of the LCN meeting and asked that they be added to the circulation list for the South East (Wincanton) LCN. (Subsequent to the meeting it was noted that Rimpton is a member of the Yeovil LCN).


Jane Rose of Henstridge PC asked how a PC could ask for an item to be included on the agenda of a future LCN meeting.  She also asked if it was possible for parishes with similar issues to group together to form a stronger voice to represent themselves to the Somerset Council on issues such as Planning Section 106 Agreements.


It was clarified that issues were collectively discussed at each LCN meeting and these formed the items for the future meetings however there was the opportunity to add other topical issues.


Robin Bastable of Charlton Musgrove PC said that given the financial status of the Somerset Council, what was the future for Parish Councils?


It was noted that finance officers could be invited to a future LCN meeting to clarify the financial position of the Somerset Council and any effects this may have on Town and Parish Councils.


Highlights of themes discussed at the previous meeting

To discuss matters arising from the notes not covered in later agenda items.


Ewan Jones advised that following the discussions at the first LCN meeting there had been a broad grouping of the issues raised into: Planning and Enforcement, Flooding, Highways, Health and Wellbeing, Environment, High Street Development, Public Transport, Anti-Social Behaviour, Young People, Road Safety.


From this list the 3 main themes had been identified as:


·       Footpaths

·       Highways

·       Flooding


He advised that these 3 themes would shortly be discussed in smaller groups to ascertain what data and information was needed and to list possible actions for all LCN members.  He noted that planning had been raised as an issue and that would be discussed later in the meeting under Hot Topics.


Introduction to the data available


Kate Hellard introduced a slide of statistics which related directly to the South East (Wincanton) LCN area.  She advised that some of the data could be misleading and the Census 2021 data would now be 2 years old.  The school census data was updated twice a year and the Somerset Intelligence Network could provide data on a parish by parish basis:


She explained that the data gave an insight to the area but if the LCN wished they could make enquiries in order fill in gaps or clarify anomalies with the data. There were ongoing opportunities to build data for the LCN area and to gain further information.


Judi Morison advised that could provide statistical information on crime reported within the last month in a single postcode area. 


Andy Keys-Toyer advised that North Cadbury had just completed their Neighbourhood Plan in which they had to ensure that their data was up to date.


Ewan Jones advised that a Somerset Prepared Conference was taking place the following day at Wincanton Racecourse and it would be useful to receive some feedback from that event.



To consider 3 themes, identify data information needed and actions for all LCN members:

a)    Footpaths

b)    Highways

c)     Flooding



The LCN members present were invited to join 3 break-out groups to identify what data and information would be needed and list possible actions for the following identified local issues:

a)    Footpaths

b)    Highways

c)     Flooding

At the conclusion of the debate, the feedback was:



There were two identified uses for footpaths; local walking for local people and longer walking route footpaths between counties like the Macmillan Way, Leland Trail etc.

Investigate briefing and further funding for the Rail to Trail Project Home (

Data on maps and what was being proposed within the LCN area.

Resident surveys to ask what they wanted from local footpaths.

Notification of repairs, closures and the priority of repairs to footpaths.

A list of providers who could provide footpath maintenance.

Access to the qualifications to maintain footpaths.



Advice on the best way to report speeding traffic – either by telephoning 101 or on the website: Report | Avon and Somerset Police

The Police worked closely with Highways and would advise on any speed limit changes.

There were new Speed Indicator Devices (SIDs) which cost in the region of £500 which could take photos of car registration numbers and report speeding vehicles to the Police.  They were in areas where speed camera signs were in place.

Queen Camel PC felt that the traffic calming measures in their village were not working as traffic ignored the priority pinch-points and the white lining on the road was wearing – report to Gary Warren at Highways.

20's Plenty for Us is a campaign  - raise awareness in towns and villages. 20's Plenty for Us (



There had been a flash flooding event in the locality on 09 May 2023 and a report into this event including drainage and causes was currently being compiled by SC.

Rimpton PC had done a lot of work to identify flooding issues within the parish and ways to resolve them.


Wincanton Catch – a local group who maintained the river through the parish and kept it clear.

Blackford had suffered a flash flooding event recently from the river Cam.  The Civil Contingencies Officer had agreed to visit the area shortly.



Discussion on the two way transfer of data regarding flooding.

Discussion on how to support victims of flooding with the possibility of a Victims Network being set up.






Hot News


Kate Hellard asked if the LCN members would consider setting up a sub-group for a further in-depth discussion on one of the priority topics. 


Following a short discussion it was agreed to ask for LCN members to put their name forward to join three sub-working groups: Planning and Highways,  Flooding, Footpaths.  The following people agreed to join the sub-working groups:-


Planning and Highways 

Ann Lee, Clerk to Henstridge PC

Jane Rose, Henstridge PC

Christopher Le Hardy, Rimpton PC

Robin Cave, Abbas & Templecombe PC

Tim Carty, Milborne Port PC



Ewan Jones, Bruton TC

Christopher Le Hardy, Rimpton PC

Jane Monk, Blackford & Compton Pauncefoot PM

Margaret Capon, Milborne Port PC



Andy Keys-Toyer, North Cadbury PC

James Hood, Bruton TC

Tim Childs, Wincanton TC


It was proposed that Highway officers be invited to a future meeting and questions be submitted in advance of the meeting to assist the debate.


Sue Place, CEO of the Balsam Centre in Wincanton provided a short presentation on the work of the Centre both in Wincanton and their outreach work in Castle Cary, Bruton, Queen Camel, Templecombe and Henstridge.  She advised that she was an Area Champion within Connect Somerset and she worked with 11 other Area Champions to go out into the community and provide support to young people and to link up both community and voluntary services. Contact:


Emma Hix of Wincanton TC spoke regarding the Youth Connect South West who would be providing a full-time youth worker and a part-time youth worker to link with local schools and the Town and Parish Councils to work out the needs of young people in the area and recruit volunteers to deliver 44 youth sessions over a 12 month period.  Other parishes may be able to join the project.


Sam Flounders of the Honesty Jar in Henstridge spoke of their community swap shop which provided donated or exchanged practical items to families in need.  These included shoes, school uniforms, curtains and any other household item.  The scheme was run on a pop-up basis with 40 volunteers and they were open 6 days a week.  She said they had been self-sustaining for 15 years and received referrals through GP Surgeries and safeguarding teams. Those who could afford to, contributed donations in a jar. She said they were expanding into grant funding and any group using their service was encouraged to leave a review on their social media page as this helped towards applying for more grants. 


Ewan Jones spoke regarding the Creating Places for People consultation which was currently live on the SC website.  This was the first step towards a new Local Plan for Somerset.  The consultation would close on 16 October. Creating Places for People (



Dates for next meeting

The date of the next South East Local Community Network meeting has been set for Wednesday 06 December 2023 at 7.00pm.  Venue to be confirmed.


The provisional dates for future meetings were noted as:


·       Wednesday 06 December 2023 – venue to be confirmed

·       Thursday 22 February 2023 – venue to be confirmed.


Following a brief discussion it was agreed to start future LCN meetings at 6.30pm.   The LCN team had worked hard to minimise diary clashes but asked that they be contacted on if there were any issues.