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Be Involved Blog

 

Bleadon Be Involved Blog is for anyone who would like to raise an issue about, affecting or concerning Bleadon Parish Area. Please send your information for a new blog item to us using the normal contact us page and we will add it as soon as possible then anyone can add comments to it. These comments can be made in your name or anonomously but we reserve the right to take down anything we consider inappropriate or likely to offend.

 

You may be interested in other Bleadon BOB pages: Parish Council , Parish Council Precept , Parish Plan and Issues. Also remember that historical posts can be viewed by selecting the drop down menu at the top of the blog home page. More Blogs on Whats New, Neighbourhood Watch, Events and Classified/Lost and Found. Also see new Action Group page

 

For convenience, you can subscribe to RSS feeds from this page via email or by your own RSS reader, click for detail.

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Latest Posts

Sanders Appeal Dates Confirmed

Posted on 19th June, 2019

 

 

UPDATE: BristolLive pubish the Appeal in their newspaper

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North Somerset Council has sent out a letter to all interested parties in the appeal of the Land Off Bleadon Road - "Outline planning permission for the erection of up to 200 dwellings, a Health Centre, a Doctors Surgery, retail outlets and office/employment space with all matters reserved for subsequent approval." Application Information 

 

"The Inquiry will commence at 10 o'clock on 23 July 2019 and will be held at: Town Hall, New Council Chamber (Old Town Hall Entrance), Walliscote Road, Weston-super-Mare, BS23 1UJ.

 

The Inquiry is scheduled for 6 days (23 to 26 and 30 and 31 July). If you want to, you can attend the inquiry. You can also ask the Planing Inspector to allow you to give your views ..."

 

Below is a video guide that gives an overview of what happens and how to take part.

 

 

"If you are disabled, or anyone you know who wants to attend the appeal is disabled, please let ... [NSC, Rob Worgan, Appeals Officer] know. ... [he] will then make arrangements to ensure that access is provided.

 

Copies of statement and other appeal documents submitted by ... [NSC] and the appellant, as well as any further comments submitted, are available for viewing ... [on the NSC website]. You may also inspect the planning file at ... [their] offices (08:45 - 17:00 Mondays to Thursdays, 08:45 - 16:30 Fridays). Due to the volume of work, it is advisable to make prior arrangements.

 

If you require further information about the process of an appeal the Planning Inspectorate has a booklet entitled "Guide to taking part in planning appeals"..." 

 

More information can also be found here.  Information about Bleadon Action Group (BAT), BPC, and their Appeal/Rule 6 activities summarised here

 

NB Openness and transparency (Appeal & Rule 6 Guides) "Inquiries are open to journalists and the wider public, as well as interested people. Provided that it does not disrupt proceedings, anyone will be allowed to report, record and film proceedings including the use of digital and social media. Inspectors will advise people present at the start of the event that the proceedings may be recorded and/or filmed, and that anyone using social media during or after the end of the proceedings should do so responsibly"

Two Resignations and a Job Advert

Posted on 19th June, 2019

 

 

At the end of the July Parish Council meeting the Clerk announced that Bleadon Parish Council (BPC) had received the following correspondence (not on the agenda) :

(Min 323.12) The Clerk Resignation letter from Cllr Anne Selway (effective 13th June). Chairman to write on behalf of the council.

 

(Min 323.13) Resignation letter from Clerk Marian (effective 31st August). Chairman to write on behalf of the council.

Reasons for their resignation were not minuted.

 

If you are interested in becoming the new Parish Council Clerk the advert is here.

 

There are now two parish councillor vacancies, if you are interested please contact BPC.

Bleadon Fracking Talk Update

Posted on 12th June, 2019

 

Link to PEDL licences in and around Bleadon

 (Click map to enlarge image)

 

The following are my draft notes on the Frack Free North Somerset (FFNS) public meeting held on the 11 June 2019 at the Coronation Hall in Bleadon.  

 

About 40 people attended the open meeting. There was an interesting, calm and informative discussion about potential 'fracking' in Bleadon. This was followed by a number of questions raised by the public and discussed with FFNS, Frack Free Exmoor, Quantocks & Sedgemoor (FFEQS) and by a local caver from Axbridge Caving Group .

 

Some points covered included:

  • A map of the 7 current Petroleum Exploration & Development Licences (PEDL) in the area, including Bleadon.
  • Information that at least two Bleadon residents on Roman Road had already received oil and gas exploration survey letters 
  • Broad explanation about the process of 'fracking', tight oil, acidification, and associated issues that a 'fracking' site could create e.g. the number of potential drilling rigs and chemicals used, drilled well integrity issues, HGV traffic, etc.
  • Information about Gerwyn Williams, his companies, offshore company in Luxembourg, imminent stockmarket activity and shareholders financing this potential fracking project (See "Potential resources of unconvential oil in Somerset" on p31 of the Infinity Energy Circular)
  • Suggestion that residents watch a 6 minute video called Don't Frack Our Future (also Doreen's youtube comments on her experience of fracking coming to her community).
  • Results of the FFNS survey in Hutton - 87% of people surveyed were opposed to fracking in their parish.
  • Some of the known effects of fracking e.g. visual and audible effects, community safety, health issues, earthquakes, contribution to climate change, carbon dioxide emmissions, 
  • Use of water in the 'fracking' process, where it may come from, polluted/contaminated waste, the need for water extraction licences. (See also Bristol Water
  • The planning process and current concern over proposed permitted development  (See also NPPF and potential Neighbourhood Plan influence)
  • Developer insurance and end of contract/decommissioning concerns (including potential land owner cleanup issues) 
  • Alternative solutions, renewable energy, need for energy storage
  • Geological and palentological significances of the caves in and surrounding Bleadon, an explanation of international importance of these sites including registration as an SSSI. E.g. Upper Canada Cave, Canada Coombe, Bleadon. NB A local landowner has left land to Avon Wildlife Trust with certain permissions for caving.
  • Potential for contaminated water seepage through limestone and any connected caves affecting Bleadon and surrounding villages.
  • The importance of bats in the area.
  • A resident commented, and posted,  "... having moving into Bleadon at the end of May, I/we were aware of the potential for fracking in this area from the Fracking Report we got with the rest of the information regarding the house" (See comments section below)

What can people do? The more that developers, shareholders and public representatives hear comments against fracking the less likely it will happen, so:

  • Encourage Bleadon Parish Council to pass a motion to either be 'Frack Free' or 'Let Communities Decide'
  • Write to your parish and district councillors and MP either directly or via "They Work for You/Write to Them" which will track responses. (John Penrose MP has indicated that he will represent the community's decision)
  • Personally visit and speak to your elected representatives, let them hear your views on this local 'fracking' issue.
  • Let FFNS know if you, or your neighbours, receive a request to survey your land for 'fracking'
  • Contact FFNS and/or FFEQS if you're interested in being involved in a Bleadon Committee/Action Group to tackle this issue and/or would like another public meeting on this issue to be held.
  • Write to local newspapers

Two councillors attended as residents:

  • Cllr Mary Sheppard, Bleadon Parish Council Vice Chair, attended the whole meeting. At the end she thanked FFNS  for hosting the meeting and presenters for sharing information with the community.
  • Cllr Gill Williams, Chair of BPC's Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP), attended part way through the meeting and confirmed, when asked by an attendee, that BPC had not yet received a letter from the developer Gerwyn Williams regarding potential fracking in Bleadon.

Hopefully BPC, and its Neighbourhood Development Plan sub-group, will now reconsider its stance on fracking to protect Bleadon's future, and decide to be 'Frack Free' or 'Let Communities Decide'

 

NB: Kingston Seymour Council, near Clevedon, declared its Parish a 'frack free zone' in September 2018.

 

For more information visit BOB's fracking page 

 

Previous fracking blog 

 

BPC 200 Houses Public Meeting Update

Posted on 12th June, 2019

 

 

On the 11 Feb 2019 (Min 319.7) Bleadon Parish Council (BPC) resolved to "

a) to a arrange a public meeting on 6th June (7pm, Coronation Hall) to let residents know the process regarding the Appeal (200 homes off Bleadon Road) and to seek their views in order to craft the Parish Council’s response, and to include documented statements.

  • UPDATE: BPC have published minutes of the 06 June 19 public meeting. NB: It is not recorded which parish councillor officially convened and/or chaired this BPC meeting or whether any other councillors attended, only naming one lead resident.

b) Nominate one councillor to speak at the Appeal on behalf of the parish.

  • UPDATE: At BPC's 10 June 2019 council meeting (Min 323.15) councillors deferred this decision making until the July BPC meeting.

c) BAT and BPC to co-ordinate regarding their responses, in order not to duplicate"

  • UPDATE: BPC are yet to inform residents how they will interact in the appeal process with Bleadon Acting Together (BAT) as a Rule 6 party (Min 316.3). At BPC's 10 June 2019 council meeting councillors reiterated the decision to work with BAT.

--

Link to 200 Houses Planning Appeal

 

Link to Bleadon Acting Together 

 

 

 

 

UPDATE 12 June 2019: Meeting notes

 

 

Bleadon Fracking Meeting Poster

 

Frack Free North Somerset are holding a meeting in Bleadon Coronation Hall, B24 OPG, on

Tuesday 11 June 2019 at 7:30pm.

 

Incredible though it sounds South Western Energy LImited is planning to drill for oil in Bleadon.

 

Come and find out about fracking, tight oil and extreme energy. A short film, open discussion and action.

 

Warning, fracking licences have been issued covering North Somerset.

 

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Link to BOB fracking information page 

 

John Penrose letter to a member of the public re: fracking

 

Previous Fracking Blog

Bristol Airport Expansion Update

Posted on 24th May, 2019

 

 

Bleadon Parish Council has changed its decision on the Bristol Airport Expansion from no response, to NEUTRAL to OBJECT (May 19 Min 322.17

"18/P/5118/OUT. Bristol Airport. Revised expansion plans to support an increase to 12 million passengers per year by the mid-2020s (currently 8 million). The council accepted the view that the Airport provides employment for many people in the area and provides local access to air transport. However, this is outweighed by concerns of climate change and pollution both local to Bleadon and globally. AGREED TO OBJECT." 

Bristol Airport Plan Background 

"In 2011, Bristol Airport Limited was granted outline planning permission by North Somerset Council to expand its capacity to handle 10 million passengers per annum.In 2017, Bristol Airport handled over 8.2 million passengers, making it the ninth busiest airport in the UK and the third largest regional airport in England. Passenger demand is forecast to reach 10 million passengers per year by 2021, beyond this passenger numbers are projected to rise further to 15 million passengers per year by the mid-2030s and 20 million passengers per year by the mid-2040s.

 

... As part of the approach set out in recent Master Plan documentation published in 2018, Bristol Airport Limited are seeking permission for an initial phase of growth beyond 10 million passengers per year to 12 million passengers per year. This would allow for growth in passenger numbers up to at least 2026."

Other information: 

Bristol Youth 4 Climate Rally 24 May 2019

 

World Map of Pollution 

 

"UK flights: Number of planes using British skies to reach all-time high. The number of flights using British skies on one day is set to reach an all-time high of 9,000 on Friday. More than than six per minute are expected, exceeding the previous record of 8,854 set on 25 May 2018."

Link to previous Airport Expansion blog

Fracking and how it could effect Bleadon

Posted on 20th May, 2019

Link to PEDL licences in and around Bleadon

 (Click on map to enlarge image)

 

Frack Free North Somerset (FFNS) are currently leading the public awareness of the potential of fracking in and around Bleadon.

 

This month, May 2019, FFNS published an article in the Bleadon Village News #112, page 12, "Fracking and how it could effect Bleadon", inviting residents to a village meeting in Bleadon Coronation Hall at 7:30 pm on Tuesday,11th of June.

 

FFNS has delivered letters to residents on Roman Road and has asked Bleadon Parish Council to post notices on the village notice boards asking for information regarding energy company land surveys

 

FRACKING AND HOW IT COULD EFFECT BLEADON

 

Petroleum Exploration and Development Licences (PEDLS) have been granted for the whole of the coastal area of Somerset (see map). ln 2012 an application to drill in Keynsham was withdrawn after geologists said that it was almost certain to contaminate the Roman Baths. Now the company is looking to do the same thing at the end of the Mendips.

 

At least two Bleadon landowners have been approached by Infinity Energy for permission to do a walk-over survey. lf the results of this are favourable, it will be followed by an exploratory drill, which currently needs planning permission but this layer of authority may be removed. There have been objections to this proposal from many local authorities, including North Somerset but the oil industry can be very influential. Finally a planning application for extraction would be made to North Somerset Council. lf NSC objects, the Government may override local democracy, as it has done in the North of England. 

 

One of the problems for the Mendips is the high probability of pollution of the interlinked cave system from chemicals and the hydrocarbon product. The pristine environment of the caves might lose unique flora and fauna, including bats. Caving itself might become prohibitively dangerous if large amounts of gas (associated with the oil) mix with the air.

 

And then there is the matter of climate change. lt is counter intelligent that Government can be considering opening up new and dirty ways of extracting yet more fossil fuel when scientists and concerned people are pleading with them to leave fossil carbon in the ground.

 

This battle is winnable. Weston's MP, John Penrose, has said that if local communities are against fracking, he will oppose it, and a sample survey in neighbouring Hutton showed 87% of residents are against the threat of fracking. Our MP, District and Parish Councillors need to know what localfeeling is like.

 

There will be a village meeting in Coronation Hall at 7:30 pm on the 11th of June to bring us all up to speed on this serious, but solvable, issue.

 

FFNS contact details: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/frackfreenorthsomerset

Email: FFNSomerset@gmail.com

Website: FFNS.co.uk

 

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Link to BOB fracking information page 

 

John Penrose letter to a member of the public re: fracking

 

Previous Fracking Blog

Annual Parish Meeting 2019

Posted on 3rd April, 2019

 

 

The APM, by law, is supposed to be a resident's meeting, not a Council meeting. For example a council's interpretation of the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) guidance,

"An Annual Parish Meeting is an effective forum for parish councils to engage with the local electorate.  Even if the Parish Council disagrees with the issues raised, or related arguments, the council members’ attendance and involvement in the Annual Parish Meeting would demonstrate that the council is prepared to take account of local residents’ views, which they must hold strongly if they have gone to the trouble attend the Annual Parish Meeting in the first place." 

Last year BPC ran the APM as a council meeting with residents' questions remaining  unanswered, we hope that with new councillors that this will be corrected this year.  Questions that you may wish to raise at the meeting:

  • 2019 APM incorrect minutes re: resolution and outcome 
  • What is happening to the Settlement Boundary and BPC councillor`s 10% expansion suggestion?
  • Resident complaint to NSC re: Openness and Leadership upheld - will residents now have more open access to BPC decision making and expenditure?
  • How are Bleadon's brownfields and potential fracking in Bleadon being considered in BPC's Neighbourhood Development Plan, why the lack of public discussion over the last 21 months? NDP
  • How do BPC inform residents of any NSC and other public consultations that they may wish to respond to?
  • How will the agreed Bristol Airport expansion and Joint Spatial Plan consultations affect Bleadon e.g Joint Local Transport Plan March 2019 Min 320.10

 

Possible 1 Million Brownfield Homes

Posted on 3rd April, 2019

 

Do Bleadon's green field sites really need to be built on? How are NSC's Local Plan and BPC's proposed Neighbourhood Development Plan identifying and considering any brownfield sites in Bleadon? According to a CPRE 2019 report, which is based on analysis of council's brownfield registers ...

"- Every local planning authority now has a brownfield register recording brownfield land considered to be suitable for housing led development.

- Brownfield registers continue to show enough suitable brownfield land is available for more than 1 million homes across over 18,000 sites and over 26,000 hectares."

Also Inside Housing article states:

"England has enough derelict or vacant land to build more than one million new homes – two-thirds of which are ready to start immediately, new research has found"

More Brownfield and sustainability and dark sky information can be found on BOB

Wentwood Drive Proposed Pre-School

Posted on 3rd April, 2019

 

 

"Change of use of land from agricultural use to use as a woodland pre-school. Erection of pre-school storage building with sedum roof, compost toilets and associated car parking and access arrangements "

 

Comments deadline is 15 Apr 2019. Here is the link to the application 19/P/0525/FUL on North Somerset Council Planning website.

 

If you prefer to post your comments then the postal address is:  

North Somerset Council

Development Management

Post Point 15

Town Hall

Weston-super-Mare

BS23 1UJ 

If you do make comments on this BOB blog (below), please also make sure that they are made to, and appear on, the North Somerset website link as above. As otherwise they will be ignored by NSC.