Follifoot news by John Chilton

The Church of St Joseph and St James: The service on Sunday, May 4 will be Morning Prayer at 9.30am. Nancy Shaw will be responsible for church cleaning and flowers.

Mobile Library: The mobile library will visit Follifoot on Friday, May 9. At the school at 2.40am and Rudding Park caravan site at 3.05pm. Please note that the times have changed.

Follifoot with Plompton Parish Council: The Follifoot Parish Council Annual Parish Meeting was held on Thursday, April 17 2008. Present were parish councillors: B Fisher (chairman); B Butler; E Bolton; M Mitton; C Florance; district councillor C Bayliss and eleven residents. Apologies were received from parish councillors: U Cansfield and T Martin. Mrs Alex Rankin, Recycling and Promotions Officer for Harrogate Borough Council gave a talk about the progress made and future plans for recycling in the area. She informed the meeting that of 68,500 properties in the district, 90% were now provided with kerbside boxes for glass, tins and paper. In addition there were 140 mini recycling centres. Much awareness raising activity was centred on schools with the aim of educating the next generation to recycle. For the future, the council planned to introduce doorstep cardboard and plastic bottle collections in 2009. There will be an appraisal of the suitability of properties to accommodate wheelie bins for mixed recyclables also planned for 2009. It was acknowledged that they may not be appropriate for terraced houses and flats and other solutions were under consideration. Harrogate Council consider it will be able to meet the government recycling target of 40% by 2009/2010. There were questions about the high level of packaging used by supermarkets and a need for consumers to change their shopping habits for change to be effected.

The chairman explained that The Emergency Plan for Follifoot and Plompton had not, yet, been completed because of difficulties in arranging meetings of the working group. The chairman agreed to contact group members with a view to reconvening the group and appraising the level of interest in completing the task. Summer bedding plants had been placed around the namestones at the entrance to the village and it was planned to plant more spring bulbs during the year. In his Annual Report, the chairman referred to two extra meetings of the parish council which arose from the need to engage local residents in making a response to proposals for an affordable housing site in Follifoot contained in the Harrogate Council Local Development Framework. As a consequence an action group of residents opposed to the proposal had been formed. The chairman thanked his fellow councillors and the Clerk for their work and support to him during the year. He especially thanked Mike Mitton who had decided to stand down as a parish councillor.

Residents who contributed to upkeep of the village were thanked including Mrs J Butler for maintaining the Horsepond Beck area and David Hinchley for ensuring the flag was flying on special days. The death of the former clerk, Mrs P Hubbard in October 2007 was mentioned together with her outstanding contribution to the life of the village over many years. A paper outlining the budget and outturn for the previous year was circulated to all present. The clerk reported that the sum of 7361.77 would be carried into the current financial year. The parish council had resolved to donate part of this to the proposed village hall developments to the benefit of the whole community.

As part of agenda items proposed by residents. Mr J Shann thanked the council for their support regarding the damage to the grass verge outside his property caused by parking. This was largely caused by parents on the school run. Councillor Florance stated that the school governers and headteacher were aware of this and had written to parents but no long term improvement to the situation had resulted. The Radcliffe Arms had offered use of their car park but this had not been taken up widely. It was suggested that the landlord of the Harewood Arms be approached on the same basis. Some residents have complained about having their sightlines impaired by parked cars when exiting from minor roads. On April 17 passage along Main Street was impossible for some time because of parking by cars and lorries. The parish council would not support a suggestion that double yellow lines should be put in place. A resident expressed concern that some vehicles are driven at speed past riders in the vicinity of the Riding Stables on Pannal Road and said that a horse had been killed. It was suggested that NYCC be contacted and asked to conduct a survey with the view to a possible speed restriction.

Follifoot with Plompton Parish Council: The meeting of Follifoot with Plompton Parish Council was held on Thursday, April 17 2008. Present were parish councillors: B Fisher (chairman); E Bolton; M Mitton; B Butler; C Florance; district councillor C Bayliss and eight residents. Apologies were received from: parish councillors U Cansfield and T Martin. A correction to the previous minutes was that Mr and Mrs M Mackaness had offered to pick litter in Spofforth Lane and not Mr and Mrs S Mackaness as stated. The minutes were then signed as a correct record, proposed by C Florance and seconded by E Bolton. The planned tree works at hillside had been delayed by high winds. The remedial works to the road and pavements had also been delayed. NYCC Highways would now programme the work for the first quarter of this financial year. There were only one nomination for parish councillor for Plompton (E Bolton) and five for Follifoot.

This would not necessitate an election as there were insufficient nominations. The parish council have the power to co-opt a councillor and this will be discussed at the May meeting. It was noted that there will be an election for a district councillor for the Ribston ward. The chairman reported that there had been a recent site meeting with Yorkshire Water.

A camera survey had been conducted down Main Street to the Kitty Corner pumping station and no defects had been detected. However, the chairman believes there is a problem caused by the angle of the pipe from Main Street into Spofforth Lane and this causes the problem of back up of effluent during heavy rainfall. It is understood that a stream used to flow down Main Street and it is unclear whether it is incorporated into the sewage system as there are no maps available to clarify this. In an attempt to establish the course of surface water, Yorkshire Water will supply a non-toxic dye to apply to a watercourse during heavy rainfall. The chairman requested assistance from another councillor in completing this task. It was noted that the Rudding House complex was arranging to chemically ‘dose’ effluent from the site in an effort to mitigate the foul odours. The chairman referred to the engagement of residents in a review of the Follifoot conservation area by Harrogate Council in August 2007. He informed the council that the report would be published shortly and copies made available.

The recent litter pick had revealed evidence of drug taking and dumping of asbestos in a Plompton Road lay-by. The police and Harrogate Council will be informed. Some dog owners were allowing their animals to foul on the pavements in the village. This is unlawful and the owners could be subject to prosecution. It was thought that there were sufficient notices around the village to inform people of the implications. Questionnaires were distributed by the clerk for completion by councillors. The clerk was asked to request some spare daffodil bulbs from Harrogate Council. District councillor Bayliss proposed a vote of thanks to the chairman for his work for the parish council over the previous year. This was endorsed by everyone present. The date of the next meeting will be Thursday, May 15 at 8pm.