August 30, 2023
MINUTES OF HARLECH COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING HELD AT THE OLD LIBRARY, HARLECH AT 7.30 P.M. ON 03.07.23
Cllrs. Ceri Griffiths, Mark Armstrong, Gordon Howie, Thomas Mort, Gwynfor Owen (Gwynedd Council).
Cllrs. Edwina Evans (Chairman), Christopher Braithwaite (Vice Chairman), Tegid John, Rhian Corps, Emma Howie, Huw Jones, Martin Hughes, Wendy Williams, and Cllr. Annwen Hughes (Gwynedd Council).
The minutes of the meeting held on June 5th 2023 were found to be correct.
DECLARATION OF INTEREST
Nobody declared an interest on any matters.
GWYNEDD COUNCIL MATTERS
The following report was received from Cllr. Annwen Hughes – Cllr. Annwen Hughes reported that since that last meeting that she had contacted the Officers to voice concern that the charger points were still not working in Bron y Graig Uchaf car park but a note stating this had been placed on them. She had received information that those working on Morfa Road had opened a hole in a private garden and near the entrance of the house and she had contacted Gwynedd Council about this and had been informed that these works had carried out without the permission of Gwynedd Council or the owner of the house and an Officer from Gwynedd Council had stated that he would be keeping an eye on these works. She had contacted the Environment Department, Gwynedd Council after receiving information that the himalayan balsarn growing near the entrance to the Church originated from the lake at Bron y Graig Uchaf Park and she had asked them to remove this plant from the lake and she had received a reply stating that an Inspector was going to visit the site last Friday to assess the situation. She had also contacted Network Rail asking them to cut back overgrowth that had grown near the Nant crossing after receiving an email and pictures. Also this was the reply she had received from the Highways Engineer - in relation to issues in Harlech. I would like to inform you that discussions have been taking place between the Highways Department and Welsh Water regarding the situation near Morfa Garage on the A496. As it turns out the dip in the road follows the route of the Welsh Water pipeline into Y Waun. This situation has previously arisen in Y Waun and Welsh Water denied responsibility until the Highways Department had to prove that the damage was caused by a problem with the water pipe. As a result of our discussions, Welsh Water has scheduled an on-site CCTV inspection this week and we will have further discussion once Welsh Water has received the result of the audit. If the result doesn't show anything, our intention is to research the site when burrowing down. In relation to the Ty Canol estate, this part of Harlech is level ground on sand and any surface water runs into ditches which is acceptable on the tide or into the sewer. When installing any water system on a surface to sewer the system requires a "swan neck" so that any smell from the system disrupts the area. This slows the flow of water from the surface leaving the road which can unfortunately create a situation like Ty Canol. I would like to inform you that arrangements have been made that the gullies of Ty Canol and the rest of Harlech are to be cleaned up this week. Any deficiency will be identified and addressed. I would like to inform you that the Inspector has visited the manhole located on Bron y Graig housing estate and is following this matter. She had received a reply from the Footaths Officer regarding the gate on the path going from Ystad Castell y Morfa to King George playing field and stating that he had been to take a look at this gate and because it was rusty it would be replaced.
It was reported that the Council had spent £9,509.24 (which included bank charges) since the start of the new financial year and this was £25,518.76 less expenditure than what was earmarked in the budget for the year.
King George V Playing Field
Cllr. Christopher Braithwaite informed the Members that that he had a meeting with a representative from MacVenture about the zip wire to see if a single side ramp can be installed to make the equipment work better and that he was waiting for confirmation of the prices. It was agreed to pay the invoice for the play equipment but not for the zip wire. He also informed the Members that he was waiting for a price from North Wales Fencing and a company from Conway for a new fence along the side of the road, and the development of a path from the road to the play area. Cllr. Emma Howie agreed to look into quotes for big ball golf equipment.
Cllr. Wendy Williams reported that she had been advised that the Council can apply for a grant to the Sports Council of Wales to have the above upgraded and it was agreed to wait and see what the specialist that is due to come to the Council to discuss this site would have to say before making any further decisions. It was agreed to invite the person that wants to carry out this work to the next meeting of the Council on the 4th September at 7.30 p.m..
Cllr. Christopher Braithwaite reported that he had found a company that could renovate the present bus shelter and he was waiting for a quote from them.
The Chairman reported that she had attended the meeting with HAL on the 29th of last month and that there was good representation there. The Chairman reported that a copy of the minutes of this meeting had been sent to all the Councils and the Clerk stated that she had already forwarded these to the Members. The Members went through these minutes and it was agreed that the Council was not willing for HAL to send a financial report every three months and that they were required every month. Cllr. Christopher Braithwaite agreed to draw up some questions and send them to HAL. It was made known that a further meeting between the Community Councils and HAL would be held on the 27th of this month and the Chairman agreed to attend this meeting.
The Clerk reported that she had received an email from one of the Board Directors along with a copy of the centre's profit and loss account for May and a copy of the monthly breakdown of the use of the pool from January to May. Also stating that the climbing wall is still closed and the cafe is running at reduced opening hours schedule due to staffing issues. She had also received another email along with a copy of the income and expenditure that had been cut down which had been made and received in May and she had forwarded this email to all Members. The Clerk further reported that she had received a letter from the Clerk of Llanbedr Community Council inviting 2 members of the Council to meet at the village hall, Llanbedr on the 3rd of August at 7.00 hours to discuss the way forward between the Community Councils of the area and HAL. The Chairman and Vice Chairman agreed to attend this meeting on behalf of the Council.
Cllr. Martin Hughes reported about a way forward with the above and he stated that he had found a copy of the Harlech Strategic Plan and he thought this document needed to be revisited. It was agreed to establish a sub-committee to discuss this matter and the Chairman, Cllrs. Martin Hughes, Rhian Corps and Emma Howie agreed to be part of this committee and they would meet on the 24th of this month in the Old Library at 7.00pm.
Retrospective application for the conversion of derelict farmhouse to holiday let accommodation and creation of access track - Cae Du Farm, Harlech (NP5/61/L189E)
Support this application.
Erection of two storey extension to rear, addition of external chimney and repositioning of existing chimney stack, new dormer and first floor balcony on front elevation and patio area. Engineering works to create new parking bay and retaining wall - Aelfor, Ffordd Isaf, Harlech (NP5/61/657A)
Support this application.
The Treasurer reported that there was £83,420.78 in the current account and £31,316.66 in the reserve account.
Invoices needing payment since last meeting
Mrs Yvonne Jones - £315.50 – clean toilets by Memorial Hall
Customs & Excise - £109.80 - tax on Clerk’s wages
Mr. G. J. Williams - £152.00 - cut grass on football field and King George playing field
Japanese Knotweed Removal Wales - £150.00 – removal of himalayan balsarn near the Church
Japanese Knotweed Removal Wales - £150.00 – eradicate himalayan balsarn near the Church
MacVentrue Playgrounds - £17,862.00 - King George field play equipment (minus the zip wire)
The payment to MacVenture Playgrounds had to be made in two installments because the Council's maximum to pay online payments is £15,000.
The above payments were processesed by the Chairman, Cllr. Edwina Evans and Cllr. Tegid John approved the payments and permission was granted to the Clerk/Treasurer to make payment on line or by cheque at the end of the meeting.
Monies received since last meeting
Pritchard a Griffiths - £1,746.00 – burial of the late Ms Dawn Lynne Foulkes (new grave for one)
Pritchard a Griffiths - £907.36 - burial of the late Mrs Eifiona Williams (reopen grave)
Applications for financial contributions
Harlech & Ardudwy Leisure - £1,750.00 – precept proposal (monthly payment).
Gwynedd Council – Environment Department
Received a letter from the above informing the Council that Twtil road will be closed on the 10th of this month so that works to connect a new supply pipe on behalf of Welsh Water can be carried out. This work had been postponed from the 31st May.
Mrs Stephanie Evans
Received the following e-mail from the above with regards to Bron y Graig Park - I'd like to make a comment about Parc Bron y Graig please. The grass is now knee high and there is WaterHemlock on the sides of the stream. This is very poisonous. I also came across a Giant wasp (2cms) it looked quite like the Asian ones that are invasive too. Also, Judith had a fall in May and broke her ankle on the path between the trees. Looks like the Parc needs quite a bit of attention. Please bring this up as other people are also complaining about the state of our lovely area. The Clerk reported futher that this is the answer she received back from Gwynedd Council stated that although they were trying their best within the budget that is available and with arrangements in hand to sort out the problem with the hemlock, we are coming back to what was discussed at our site meeting last year with the Community Council whereas asking the Community Council to contribute towards cutting the grass more often than what our budget allows. It was agreed not to contribute towards cutting the grass at this Park and to ask them when the grass would be cut next.
ANY OTHER MATTER
It was reported that the tree twigs overhaning the public footpath going from Bron y Graig Park up to Pendref needed to be cut down and it was agreed to ask Mr. Meirion Griffiths to carry out this work.
Concern was raised about the area surrounding the story telling chair in King George playing field being untidy and agreed to ask Mr. Gareth John Williams to tidy it up.
It was reported that there was concern that some were speeding down the Nant road towards Tan y Castell school and it was agreed to ask if it would be possible to put up 20 mph signs there.
Residents of Penyrhwylfa and Bronyrhwylfa housing estate have asked if it would be possible to have 20 mph signs the same as the ones that have been installed at the entrance of the Ty Canol estate road.