Last updated 16-Jan-2023
The Parish Council get asked similar questions on common themes many times. Below we have set out some of these frequently asked questions and some guidance from the Parish Council. It is worth noting that suitable complaints should be raised and logged using the correct mechanisms (many of which are detailed below) first as this formally records the issue with the appropriate team.
There are two applications you can download to your phone which will provide useful information and the means of reporting various issues directly. The first app is 'Stafford BC' which allows the reporting of various issues with abandoned vehicles, street cleaning, fly tipping etc. You can also see bin collection days, car parks and events. The second app is called 'MyStaffs' and covers leisure, health, transport and roads, rights of way etc. These are a good starting point for many queries and complaints.
If possible, issues such as pot holes, flooding, road sign etc. should be reported through the Staffordshire County Council online facility in the first instance.
In the event that an urgent case requires escalation, the Parish Council can help with this and we ask that you provide the case reference number and any other information relating to your original reporting of the issue.
The Planning process is the responsibility of Stafford Borough Council Planning Department and they will make the decision on planning applications. The Parish Council is included as a statutory consultee on all planning applications in Church Eaton Parish, so that a local perspective may be included in the decision making. Borough Planning notify the Parish Council when applications require a comment from us.
Once a notification is received, and given sufficient time to ensure the application is not reviewed in haste, the planning application will be discussed at the next Parish Council Meeting, otherwise this will happen at the following meeting and if necessary an appropriate extension to the response deadline may be requested. Planning applicants and parishioners are welcome to attend the Parish Council Meeting and make comments on an application, but this may only be done during the Open Forum Agenda item which preceeds the Planning agenda item. They may also contact the Parish Council, either collectively via the parish council email, or individually, to share their thoughts ahead of the meeting, and these will be considered.
The Planning Applications scheduled for discussion are listed in the Parish Meeting Agenda, which is published on both the Village notice board and on the churcheaton.org.uk website, before the meeting. Planning applicants will not be otherwise notified that their application is on the Agenda. The Parish Councillors will discuss each application during the Planning Agenda item. The applicant and other members of the public do not take part in this discussion but their representation can be made during Open Forum part of the meeting ahead of the Planning agenda item. Parish Councillors will declare an interest in any matters that impact upon them and cannot take part in the discussion other than under the Open forum agenda item. If a Parish Councillor is also the applicant, they will be asked to leave the meeting while the discussion takes place. The Parish Council comments are combined to form our response.
The Parish response might support or object to the application, it might suggest amendments to improve or to allow us to support an application, it might suggest conditions or restrictions to minimise impact of the development, on the local community. The Parish response will question any apparent inaccuracies in the application.
Whilst the Parish Council may seek assurances that certain agencies are consulted, it is not the responsibility of the Parish Council to respond on specialist topics that should originate from those agencies such as the Conservation Officer, Highways or Environmental Health. We may however still decide to comment in a lay capacity.
The Parish Council’s response may be a majority decision, when there is difference of opinion between Councillors.
The Clerk to the Parish Council will record the conclusion of the discussion in our response and submit this to Borough Planning. This can be viewed in the Documents section for that application, on the Borough Council Planning Portal. A summary of response will also be recorded in the Parish Meeting Minutes (which can be viewed on the notice board or website) and may be further summarised for the Parish Report published in the Bugle magazine.
The Parish Councillors’ discussion relating to applications will not be minuted in detail although the public is welcome to attend the Parish Meetings and observe this happening.
The public are also free to make personal comments about planning applications directly, via the Borough Council Planning portal or by email to email@example.com (quoting the application reference number).
For further information about planning please see the Stafford Borough Council web site:
The Church Eaton Playpark is fully open following some repairs at the end of 2022, and has been granted a certificate of safety. Users are asked to follow sensible guidelines, play safely, and not to allow dogs to foul in the area.
The playpark is inspected weekly, however if you notice any issues with the park, please contact the Parish Council so they can investigate.
You can report incidents of fly tipping to Staffordshire Borough Council on 01785 619401 or to South Staffs Council 01902 696000 depending where the fly tipping has occured.
Early notification is important as evidence will be collected, and as a result a number of prosecutions have been successful in recent years. Fly tipping is not a major issue in the parish and we want to keep it that way.
Street Scene pick up regularily from the area and can provide specific refuge bags if you wish to do some little picking, either individually or in a small group. A number of members of the Parish already do this as both a social get together and a benefit to the community.
If your property has been recently affected by flood-water then please report this to Stafford County Council using the SCC Flood Questionnaire (esriuk.com).
Alternatively, you can report it by printing, completing and returning this questionnaire
The Parish Council have been working with various agencies including Severn Trent, Highways and the Country Flood team to determine all potential issues and seek resolution. So far a number of improvements to the drainage to the south of Church Eaton have helped significantly lower the water level in the flood plain and improve the flow of water from the flood plain towards Eaton Brook. So far this appears to have made a improvement in preventing flash flooding. Before the improvements, the flood plain was nearly always saturated, today, the area drains better, although by the nature of being a flood plain, the field is expected to be flooded after a period of heavy rain. The pools should also be visible at all times for the wildlife. Over the winter of 2021/2022, and so far in 2022/2023 there have been no reports of flooding near property. We are aware of some localised flooding on roads which we are investigating.
We will continue to seek updates from those previously affected and review the changes previously made to ensure they are still in place.
Staffordshire Police have a smart alerts system where you can either look at recent incidents or sign up for notifications.
Under the Dog (Fouling of Land) Act 1996 owners can be fined up to £1000 if they fail to clean up after their pet. This is not limited to just footpaths, but any public space including country lanes. If you see dog owners failing to clean up after their pets and feel unwilling to approach them, please share the specifics with the Parish Council.