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Minutes for September 2007

Draft Minutes of the Meeting of St Bees Parish Council held on Monday 17 September 2007

in the Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllr P Smith (Chairman), N Bettinson, G Gilmour, J Haile, I Hill, F Kennedy, R Mayow, D Millington, C Robson, J Rowlands, D Sim, V Turpin and the Clerk.

In Attendance: PC Francesca Geer, Cumbria Constabulary


No apologies for absence were received.


Cllr Turpin declared a prejudicial interest in agenda item 10 – Land at Seamill.


It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 16 July 2007 be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.


(a) Youth Issues

Preliminary discussions had taken place with the Chairman of the Adams Recreation Ground Committee about the possibility of an off-road bike track and the matter would now need to be considered by the full Committee. It was hoped to involve the young people themselves and their families in taking the project forward.

It was RESOLVED that a formal request be made to the Adams Committee to consider the proposal for an off-road bike track and that Cllr Kennedy be appointed as a Parish Council representative to the Adams Committee in place of Marcus Clarkson who had now resigned from the Parish Council.

(b) Parish Paths Initiative

Cllr Mayow reported on the schemes to be included in the programme for 2007/8, including improvements to the surface of the path from Seamill Lane and some stile improvements. It was noted that the repairs to the wooden bridge over Pow Beck at Seamill were to be carried out by the County Council. A volunteer had come forward to carry out the survey of the footpaths.

It was RESOLVED that the terms of the agreement be approved and signed on behalf of the Council.

(c) Resiting of Weather Station

Further information had been provided by Ian McAndrew to support the request for funding (approx £50) which had been received at the last meeting. The equipment was purchased on behalf of the village school with public funds and is located at the village school. The resiting would ensure that the system could be readily maintained and that data was routinely available even during school holidays.

It was RESOLVED that the costs of resiting the equipment be approved on the basis that the data was available to the whole community, the village school was agreeable to its relocation and that Ian Mc Andrew would act as custodian.

(d) Other items from the Action List


  • Gutterfoot Bridge – The Clerk reported on correspondence with CBC about the poor state of the metal bridge. CBC had decided to repair the bridge as a short term measure, whilst considering whether it should be permanently removed. It was noted that the bridge appears to have been removed recently. The Clerk would investigate the latest position.
  • Metal Railings, Station Rd – A response had been received from Capita stating that they had no objection to the suggestion that the railings could be replaced by a stock- proof fence even though this would be much lower. As the County Council had accepted responsibility for the railings further along this road it was agreed to press them again to take responsibility for replacing this section.
  • Land Registry Search –A copy of the title register for the land adjacent to the Priory had been received. The title plan was awaited. A response had also been received from St Bees School. Cllr Robson agreed to confirm the details of the land in question with the Bursar.



  • Meetings Calendar – The Clerk had identified possible dates when the ward councillors could be routinely invited to attend. It was agreed that both the CCC and CBC ward councillors would be invited to attend the October and April meetings.


(a)The Chairman explained the background to a series of meetings which had been organised by residents to press for action on crime and anti-social behaviour issues. Cllr Sim and the Clerk had attended the most recent meeting on 16 August at which Cllr Woodburn and Toni Magean from CBC, the police and a representative of CCC had also been present. The notes of that meeting were received and Cllr Sim explained the key points. Anti-social behaviour was a concern throughout the village and many of the issues raised were already included in the Parish Plan. The outcome of the meeting was that the residents’ representatives would meet to decide whether they wished to establish a separate community group or whether they wished to see the issues progressed by the Parish Council. No decision had yet been received.

It was RESOLVED that CALC be asked for advice on possible models for tackling such issues and that in the meantime Cllr Gilmour liaise with Geoff Walker of the residents group.

(b) A reply had been received from the Chief Executive of CBC to the letter sent after the last meeting expressing the Council’s disappointment with the limited scope of the CCTV proposals for the beach car park.

It was RESOLVED that a letter be sent to the Leader of CBC detailing the history of the car park problems and expressing the Council’s serious dissatisfaction with the lack of effective action.

(c) PC Geer reported on the number and nature of calls to the police during August and September (to date). The number of logs had increased slightly but remained low in comparison with other areas. A number of the reports were of a general nature and the police required more hard information on which to act.


All the plots were now let and were being cultivated. Arrangements were being made to cut the grass along the public footpath across the allotment field. The water supply was now installed and tenants who wished to use the supply had been asked to sign an undertaking to pay an equal share of the bill. Keys would be supplied to tenants using the supply.

Requests had been received from two new tenants for permission to erect sheds and one had asked to erect a short piece of fencing. It was reported that some owners of neighbouring properties were concerned about the visual impact of sheds on the allotment field. A recent inspection suggested that the appearance of the allotments was much improved, the sheds were well maintained and were making it easier for tenants to keep plots tidy and weed free.

It was RESOLVED that :-

  • sheds continue to be allowed provided that they are in accordance with the conditions and are well maintained.
  • permission be granted for the fencing and new sheds
  • a refundable deposit be sought from tenants for the keys to the water supply.


The Chairman reported that Marcus Clarkson had resigned from the Council following the last meeting. CBC had been notified and the statutory notices had been posted on the noticeboards. As no election had been claimed, CBC had asked the Council to fill the vacancy by co-option.

It was RESOLVED that the vacancy be advertised on the noticeboards with expressions of interest to be submitted by 9 October 2007.


A draft Health and Safety policy had been prepared covering the Council’s obligations to employees and the public arising from its own assets and also the Council’s wider role in working with others who own assets in the parish. Comments had been sought from CALC and taken into account in drafting the policy.

It was RESOLVED that the policy be approved and that a rota be drawn up for routine inspections of the play area by Councillors.



Cllr Gilmour reported on the 5 year plan being developed for the Priory Church. Suggestions and comments are being sought from individuals and organisations outside the church. Suggestion forms are available in the Church.


Cllr Turpin declared a prejudicial interest and withdrew from the meeting during discussion of this item.

A request had been received from Mr P Turpin to purchase the area of grassland adjacent to the car park at Seamill to use as a paddock for horses.

It was RESOLVED that the land should not be sold but that Mr Turpin be offered a long-term lease on the land.


The following item was noted for report to CBC:-


  • The trees planted to screen the sewage works are in poor condition. It is believed that the landscaping was a condition of the planning consent. The Clerk would check with CBC what action was being taken.


The following items were noted for report to CCC:-


  • The B5345 to the north of the village has been resurfaced but the white lines have not been reinstated. CCC to be asked to take this opportunity to improve the markings as agreed some time ago.
  • Cumbria Highways to be asked to carry out a thorough review of the safety of the section of the B5345 near St Bees School in light of the recent fatal accident to identify what short and long term measures may be required.
  • The hedge on Abbey Rd has still not been trimmed.

It was noted that there had been no apparent progress in devising measures to prevent flooding in the village since the meeting with Cumbria Highways last year.

It was RESOLVED that Cllr Southward be asked to press Cumbria Highways to complete the drainage survey as a matter of urgency.


(a) New Applications

The Planning Advisory Committee reported on new applications received:


  • 4/07/2511/0F1 Extension to roof to provide additional bedroom, 5 Main Street

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to this application.


  • 4/07/2512/TPO Remove 6 elms and 1 sycamore. Crown reduce 1 sycamore, Fleatham House

A copy of Richard Mellor’s report had been received confirming the need for the trees to be felled and suggesting a replanting scheme.

It was RESOLVED to support Mr Mellor’s recommendations and to seek an update report on progress with the replanting required under previous applications.

(b) Applications approved/refused

The following applications had been approved by Copeland Borough Council:

  • 4/07/2356/0C1 Demolition of plumbers store and building of new dwelling, 116A Main St
  • 4/07/2364/0F1 Conversion of field to provide parking area for 5 dwellings, Abbey Rd
  • 4/07/2415/0F1 Installation of 5m tower extension with antennae and 1 ground based antenna, Ivy Hill Bank Top
  • 4/07/2367/0F1 New dwelling, Land adjacent to Fleatham Farmhouse
  • 4/07/2299/0F1 Maize Maze, Byersteads Rd (with conditions)
  • 4/07/2346/0F1 Revised site lay-out, Land adjacent to the Seacote Hotel (with conditions)


(c)Highways Consultation - Waiting Restrictions, Fairladies

Following the consultation some changes had been made to the scheme and a Traffic Regulation Order is now being sought.

(d) Fairladies Development

An appeal had been lodged by the developers against the refusal by CBC of the amended plans for apartments on the land adjacent to plot 14. A letter explaining the Parish Council’s position had been sent to the Planning Inspectorate.

136/07 FINANCE

(a) Payments to be approved

It was RESOLVED that the following accounts be approved for payment:-


  • Cheque no 001265 St Bees Enterprises Ltd - Photocopying £95.41 (£81.20+VAT)
  • Cheque no 001266 Playsafety Ltd – Inspection of play equipment £74.03 (£63.00+VAT)


  • Cheque no 001267 J Donaldson – Reimbursement for printer cable £9.99
  • Cheque no 001268 J Donaldson – September Salary (£269.73) & postage (£3.86) £273.59
  • Cheque no 001269 United Utilities – Allotment water charges £31.36
  • Cheque no 001270 V Turpin –Reimbursement for boat park key £6.00
  • Cheque no 001271 I McAndrew – Reimbursement for renewal of domain name £20.00 (£17.02+VAT)

Payments made since last meeting to report:


  • Cheque no 001260 CALC – Code of Conduct advertisement £15.00 ( authorised by minute 111/07)
  • Cheque no 001261 K Hammell – Grasscutting £385.95 (paid on delegated authority to avoid late payment charges)
  • Cheque no 001262 Audit Commission – Audit fees £158.63 (£135.00+VAT)
  • Cheque no 001263 J Donaldson – August salary £269.73
  • Cheque no 001264 Land Registry – Title search £6.00 (authorised by minute 101/07 )


(a) Correspondence had been received from a visitor to St Bees expressing concern about public toilet facilities. It was noted that the toilets by the level crossing are privately owned. It was agreed to discuss the situation in more detail at a future meeting.

(b) Letter received from Mr J Hawkins of Beach Rd stating that he will not be continuing to cut the grass on the Beach Rd footpath after this year. A letter of thanks has been sent. This area would now be included in the grasscutting schedule.

(c) Letter from VAC about forthcoming workshops on Action Planning for Parish Plans. Noted.

(d) Agenda received from CCC for the Annual Meeting of Copeland Local Committee with parish representatives – Wed 26 September 6.30pm at Cleator Moor Civic Hall.

(e) Letter from St Bees Garden Society thanking SBPC for the donation and asking to be considered for a similar donation next year. Noted.

(f) Correspondence received from CBC seeking information for the Cumbria Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment. Councillors to pass any relevant information to the Clerk.

(g) Letter from CBC inviting contributions to the review of the Statement of Licensing Policy. The proposed revised policy can be found on the CBC website. Noted.

(h) Details of VAC conference ‘Rhetoric or Reality- A Future for Rural Services?’ to take place on 28 November at Melmerby. Noted.

(i) Letter received from Mr M Clarkson – consideration deferred to next meeting.

(j) Letter received from a visitor about the state of the beach at Fleswick Bay. It was noted that the logistics of disposing of rubbish was a significant problem in organising any clean-up in this area.


CALC Circular July/August and Sept incl Training Programme

Highways Agency – Planned Roadworks North West

Cumbria Highways Newsletter Summer 2007

Allerdale & Copeland Borough Council Arts Services Annual Report

Fieldwork (CPRE) September 2007


Community Minibus Brokerage Leaflet

VAC leaflet ‘Local Services Under Threat’

Cumbria Police Authority Annual Report

FLAG Newsletter August 2007

Update report on Local Transport Plan

Temporary road closures – various locations 29 September (for demolition of cooling towers)


(a) Beach monitoring will recommence from 17 September. Information will be posted fortnightly on the BNG website.

(b) The report of the annual inspection of the play area has been received. It was agreed that this will be included in the next agenda.

(c) The Neighbourhood Forum meeting in November will be held in St Bees. Grant applications from local groups are welcome.

(d) Cllr Robson drew attention to the History Festival taking place from 28 – 30 September and the re-enactment of the Cooper Neddy story to take place on Monday 24 September.

(e) The plaque for the war memorial has been received. Cllrs Sim and Robson will arrange for it to be put in place.



It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place on Monday 15 October 2007 at 7.30pm.