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Hurstpierpoint & Sayers Common
Parish Council

Hurst Meadows Management Committee

March 19, 2019

Hurst Meadows Advisory Board 

MINUTES of Meeting 7.30pm  Thursday 21 February 2019 at the  Village Centre,  

Hurstpierpoint  BN6 9UY 


Stephen Hand – Chairman   David Evans   Patrick Haworth Claire Majsai  Michael Nailard   David Brown   Georgina Judd  Helen Brangwyn   Steve Whitehead   Donna Willis   Tony Whitbread 

In attendance:   

Stephen Hoyles (Clerk) 

Nick Sinclair (Facilities Manager)  

The Board noted with sadness the death of Cllr Amanda Geel in December, and recorded the considerable loss to the Council’s work.  

HM18/23.  Apologies for absence and declarations of interest:  The following apologies for absence had been received prior to the meeting and were accepted:  Rachel Felton,  Adrien Bischoff-Dyson, John Wilkinson.   There were no declarations of interest.   

HM18/24.  Minutes of the meeting of the Hurst Meadows Advisory Board  20 November 2018:  The Board received and approved the minutes which were then signed by the Chairman.   

HM18/25.  Hurst Meadows Management Committee meeting  31 January 2019:  The Board was asked to note the minutes.  (REF:  Minutes of Hurst Meadows Management Committee  31 January 2019   

HM18/26.  Hurst Meadows Progress Report No 9:  The Board was asked to note the Progress Report.  It was reported that work had started on planting the apple orchard in Buckwilly Field and that one objection had been received from a resident adjoining the land.  (REF:  Parkland Progress Report 23 January 2019 ) 

HM18/27.  Woodland survey report:  The Board was asked to note the report.  The process for action would be as follows:  Wilderness (zone 1):   carry out surgery only on those trees which are putting neighbouring property at risk.  The zone is being fenced and signed to discourage entry by the public, as previously agreed.  Tilleys Copse (zone 2):   carry out surgery  on those trees which are putting neighbouring property at risk and those which are putting the footpaths and rights of way area at risk.  A programme of surgery was being prepared.  In discussion the Board suggested that some signs in Tilleys Copse would be helpful to guide walkers on the preferred footpaths, or order to protect bluebells and other flora.  The risks of ash-die-back were noted, and the disease was known to be throughout the area.  It was agreed that the matter would be monitored, but that dead and fallen trees in the Wilderness area should not be moved, unless there was a risk to the public.  It was noted that there were instances of fly-tipping in Tilleys copse which would require monitoring.  The Board then confirmed its acceptance of the report.   (REF:   PJC  Hurstpierpoint Safety and Condition Survey   5 Feb 2019  ) 

HM18/28.  Monitoring fauna and flora:   The Board considered the issues raised in the paper by Board member Georgina Judd.   The proposals were far-reaching and comprehensive, and would provide a substantial database for further planning and management.  The suggestions were:  

  1. (1) Static point monitoring:  comprising a number of locations where routine photographic evidence would be collected at intervals over time.  This would record changes in the vegetation and habitat.  In discussion it was agreed that volunteers could undertake much of the work, provided that it was thoroughly organised and that the data was properly collated.  
  2. (2) Phase 1 survey:  a detailed record of flora and fauna, undertaken in a systematic process, covering defined zones of the Meadows.  It was thought that this work would be undertaken professionally by suitable consultants.  
  3. (3) Supplementary surveys:  covering specific wildlife and habitats, such as dormice.   

The Board thanked Georgina Judd for her proposals and it was agreed that she and the Board Chairman would further discuss to formulate a Data Survey Plan, addressing the practical issues, and take to the Management committee for implementation.   (REF:  Georgina Judd: Management and long-term monitoring for wildlife –  February 2019 ) 

AGREED:  that Ms Judd and the Board Chairman would further discuss to formulate a Data Survey Plan, addressing the practical issues, and take to the Management committee for implementation. 

HM18/29.  Hurst Meadows Walkabout – Easter 2019:  Following the considerable success of the New Year’s Day public walkabout, when around 80 people attended, the Board considered a similar event at Easter.  Following discussion it was agreed that a similar event would be held on one day over Easter weekend, and that individual ‘leaders; would be identified to guide on specific topics.  Board Members Claire Majsai and Helen  Brangwyn would make the arrangements.   

AGREED:  An Easter 2019  ‘walkabout’ would be arranged.  

HM18/30.  Accessibility matters:  The Board was asked to review the issue of accessibility to Hurst Meadows.  In previous discussions it had been noted that there had been requests for disabled carparking and for paths to enable wheelchairs.  Previous attempts at locating  a carpark had not provided an acceptable solution, and there remained a concern that such provision might be misused unless a strong enforcement was available, which is not currently the case.  It was noted that the matter of paths required a balance between maintaining the rural and natural landscape and providing firm all-weather paths for better accessibility.  It was also noted that all access gates had been designed to facilitate wheelchair access.  It was reported that local resident Ian Maskell had attended the New Years Day Walkabout and had offered a number of helpful comments.  It was therefore agreed that Mr Maskell would be invited to attend the next meeting of the Board to assist in the discussions.   

AGREED:  The Board is invites Mr Ian Maskell to attend a future meeting to advise on accessibility matters.   

HM18/31.  Questions:  The following matters were raised by Members of the Board:   

  1. (1) Latchetts Lane:  The recent clearing works by WSCC and adjoining landowners were noted and it was also noted that the Parish Council did not own the land.  The Board were however, interested in the condition of the two access points into  the Meadows near to Primrose Cottage.   
  2. (2) Meeting dates:  It was agreed that the Board should meet more frequently, perhaps every two months.   
  3. (3) Layton Fields – Buckwilly Field:  It was reported that  there were several dead saplings which had been planted in the shared space land on the new development, bordering Buckwilly Field.  It was agreed that this would be reported to the developer.   

There being no other business the meeting closed   8.56  pm.   


Dist:  cc:  Parish  Council Members 

Parish Council  Special groups representatives Members of the public  representatives 

Stephen Hand Patrick Howarth  (Hurstpierpoint Society) Donna Willis 

David Evans Michael Nailard (Woodland Flora + Fauna Group ) Helen Brangwyn 

Steve Whitehead David Brown (St Georges Millennium Garden ) Adrien Bischoff-Dyson 

Claire Majsai  Tony Whitbread  (Sussex Wildlife Trust ) Rachel Felton 

Stephen Hoyles (Clerk) John Wilkinson  (Mid Sussex District Council Georgina Judd 

Nick Sinclair  (Facilities Manager)   

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