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Draft Minutes of the Meeting of St Bees Parish Council held on

Monday 21 November 2016 at 6.30pm in the Village Hall


PRESENT: Cllrs D Sim (in the Chair), N Bettinson, G Gilmour, J Haile, T Kelly, F Kennedy,

J Mellor, D Millington, H Monaghan, M Riley, N Smart & the Clerk

In attendance: Cllr H Wormstrup, County Councillor Egremont North/St Bees

Also present: 2 members of the public


Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs P Argyle, J Lockie and C Robson



There were no declarations of interest at the start of the meeting.


Both members of the public present indicated that they wished to speak about traffic issues on Outrigg and the dangers this posed to pedestrians walking to the Village School. It was agreed that this would be dealt with under agenda item 5 - Cumbria County Council & Highways Issues.


It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting on 17 October be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman.



Cllr Wormstrup reported that he had met some residents of Outrigg to discuss their concerns about traffic congestion at the start and end of the school day. Vehicles were parking right up the hill beyond the end of the pavement, forcing pedestrians to walk in the road to get to the school entrance. Members of the public present provided photographs to show the scale of the problem. Cllr Wormstrup had discussed the situation with the Highways Manager who favoured an extension of the pavement as the most effective solution. Cllr Wormstrup was seeking the parish council’s support for his request to have this considered for inclusion in the highways programme. The Chairman pointed out that an extension of the pavement was one of three traffic improvements which had been put forward to CCC following the last meeting. The parish council would provide any further evidence or support required.

Cllr Wormstrup reported that he had witnessed several incidents of motorbikes and vehicles travelling at high speed through the village. He was contacting the Highways Manager to request more police enforcement at key times. It was noted that there had been several instances recently when traffic had become grid locked at Sellafield out muster times, possibly because of the closure of the Cold Fell road. It was noted that the Sellafield Transport & Movement Plan was likely to be completed in December.

Cllr Wormstrup reported that Natural England was proposing a diversion from the route originally agreed for the Coastal Access project because of concerns about erosion of the golf course. The Chairman pointed out that residents would not support such a diversion and he believed other options needed to be explored with representatives of St Bees School, golf club and parish council. It had been planned to have a meeting in August but this had been cancelled and had not been rearranged. The Chairman would follow this up with Natural England.

Cllr Wormstrup raised the issue of flooding and asked whether plans were in place at local level. It was pointed out that the major issue was blocked drains on Outrigg which could result in water flowing into Main Street. Although the drains were being cleaned routinely, debris was continually washing down from the top of the hill since the culvert was closed off some years ago. Cllr Wormstrup agreed to ask CCC staff to monitor the situation.


Cllr Wormstrup reported that CCC was to make supplies of grit available to parishes. It was noted that the grit bin at the top of Outrigg had been removed following damage but had not been replaced. The Clerk would request a new bin.

Cllr Wormstrup then left the meeting.



National Grid had held a workshop for parish councils on 26 October in advance of the launch of the public consultation. Cllr Argyle had attended on behalf of St Bees PC and had collected information on the plans for the project in this area. Connections would run underground in the National Park, while in most other areas there would be new overhead lines and larger pylons. CALC had organised a separate workshop on 22 November to allow parishes to take advice from independent planning consultants before deciding their response to the consultation.

After viewing the proposed route of the overhead lines and the photomontages which had beenprovided, it appeared that there would not be a significant impact on the parish. However, a query was raised about a second line shown on the plan and it was agreed that Cllr Argyle would clarify this at the CALC workshop. A draft response to the consultation would be circulated for approval at the next meeting.



(a) Finance Report

The notes of the meeting of the Finance & Risk Advisory Group on 26 October were received, together with details of the review of income and expenditure at 30 September (copies attached to the minutes). It was noted that income was higher than expected due to increased grants and backdated refund of NNDR which could not have been anticipated. Expenditure was also likely to be higher than the original budget, mainly because of the increased cost of the cycle track feasibility study. In view of the significant variances on certain budget headings a revised budget had been prepared. This showed an expenditure budget of £ 57180 against an anticipated income for the year of £56600. It was noted that some items of expenditure would be met from grants and earmarked reserves carried over at the end of 2015/16.

The account summary at 31 October was also received and noted.

It was RESOLVED that the revised budget for 2016/17 be approved.


(b) Risk Register

The risk register had been reviewed at the recent FRAG meeting. The risks and opportunities were unchanged and the mitigation measures were considered to be appropriate. Some minor amendments had been made to update the Comments section.

It was RESOLVED that the updated risk register be approved.


(c) Health & Safety Policy

A draft Health & Safety policy had been prepared by Cllr Lockie and circulated with the agenda.

It was RESOLVED that the new policy be adopted.


(d) Financial Regulations

Minor amendments had been made to the Financial Regulations to reflect changes to the NALC model and to reword the section on the arrangements for the management of petty cash.

It was RESOLVED that the amendments be approved and incorporated in the Financial Regulations.


(e) Donations

Cllrs Bettinson, Kennedy & Sim declared non-pecuniary interests due to links with the Village Hall Committee.


It was RESOLVED that the following donations be approved:

  • Village Hall Committee - £550.00
  • St Bees PCC –contribution to the costs of the parish magazine £675.00
  • Royal British Legion - £125.00
  • Calderwood House - £75.00
  • Friends of the Priory - £50.00
  • Furness Line Action Group - £25 (in addition to annual subscription)


(f) Payments

It was RESOLVED that the following payments be approved:

  • Chq no 002239 Unipar Services LLP – speed gun servicing/recalibration £213.00 + £42.60 VAT Total £255.60
  • Chq no 002240 G Hayes – grasscutting 2016 –Total £2590.00
  • Chq no 002241 YNH Ltd – domain name renewal £89.95 + £17.99 VAT Total £107.94
  • Chq no 002242 Npower – toilet electricity Aug-Oct £46.67 +£2.33 VAT Total £49.00
  • Chq no 002243 Works 4 You Ltd – tree stakes £32.50 + £6.50 VAT Total £39.00
  • Chq no 002244 J Donaldson – reimbursement for printer cartridge £28.33 + £5.66 VAT & packaging for speed gun £3.24 + £0.65 VAT + £10.44 postage Total £48.32
  • Chq no 002245 J Donaldson – salary (net) Nov 2016 - £621.39
  • Chq no 002246 J Mellor – batteries for speed gun £6.67 + £1.33 VAT Total £8.00
  • Thomas Milburn Property Ltd – toilet service Nov £583.33 + £116.67 VAT Total £700.00 (to be paid by SO)

Payments since last meeting to report

  • Answer4 You – answering service £8.80 +£1.76 VAT Total £10.56 ( paid by direct debit on 17/11/16)


The Chairman explained that a three year plan was needed to underpin the three year budgeting process which had been recommended by the internal auditor. The transition to three year budgeting was required as the council was now undertaking larger scale projects which would extend over more than one year. A framework for the plan had been circulated for consideration.

It was agreed to support the approach set out in the framework document. Proposals for inclusion in the plan should be sent to the Clerk as soon as possible as FRAG would be preparing a draft budget for discussion at the next meeting.



Cllr Kelly declared a non-pecuniary interest as Clerk to the Governors of St Bees School.

The Chairman reported on his meeting with Mark George, the new Chairman of the Governors. This had been a general discussion and Mark George had accepted an invitation to come to speak to the Parish Council at the December meeting. The Governors still had three options for the reopening of the school – fee-paying, state funded and working with third parties – and had not yet reached any firm decisions on disposal of assets. The Chairman had taken the opportunity to outline the Parish Council’s response to the consultation on CBC’s Site Allocations & Policies Plan Preferred Options document in March 2015.

Cllr Kelly explained that the Governors were actively engaged in discussions with a third party which could lead to the school re-opening on a fee paying basis but with a different business model

At this stage it was not possible to provide more information because of confidentiality issues but the Governors were keen to share as much information as possible.



The Governors were looking at the school’s financial position. The reopening of the Management Centre and income from letting of sports facilities etc had helped to secure the position for the moment. However, the Governors had a legal duty to act in the best interests of the school so some disposal of assets might need to be considered. He stressed that no decisions had yet been made and any sale of land would take place only if it was necessary to secure the school’s financial position. If it was decided to dispose of any assets, the decision would be made public and expressions of interest would be sought.

The Governors were now taking advice on the cost of refurbishing buildings which had suffered from lack of maintenance in recent years. It was likely that the plans to convert Lonsdale Terrace back to separate properties would be postponed until plans for re-opening the school were clearer.



(a)Beach Regeneration

A quotation of £467.49 + VAT had been received from CBC for repairs to the zip wires.

It was RESOLVED that the quotation be accepted.


(b) Traffic Calming/Speedwatch

It was noted that the speed gun had been serviced and recalibrated and further monitoring sessions were planned. Cllr Mellor was liaising with the police about possible monitoring on Beach Road. The Speedwatch volunteers had noted a significant number of contractors’ vehicles using the B5345 through the village to travel to/from Sellafield and it was agreed that Cllr Millington would write to Sellafield Ltd to follow up his earlier correspondence with George Beveridge.

It was noted that there had been serious congestion in the village with increased traffic travelling to and from Sellafield while Cold Fell had been closed. A number of incidents of damage to parked vehicles had been reported and local residents had asked whether CCTV could be provided to identify the drivers responsible for such incidents. It was pointed out that such systems would be very costly and that there were restrictions on the use of CCTV in public areas.

A question was raised by a member of the public about the change to LED lighting in certain parts of the village which had created dark areas between lights. It was noted that this was a matter which needed to be taken up with CCC. There was a long standing fault with the lights on Station Rd which was awaiting repair by ENW.


(c) Community Events

The Christmas tree was on order and delivery was expected shortly. It was noted that the annual RNLI Carol Concert would be taking place on Tuesday 6 December. Arrangements for the Santa Parade and switching on the tree lights on the same evening were discussed.

It was RESOLVED that the parish council would assume overall responsibility for the Santa Parade and switching on the lights and that Cllrs Kennedy and Bettinson would liaise with the Village School volunteers to agree the detailed arrangements and ensure that a risk assessment was completed.

It was further RESOLVED that a donation of £100 be made to the RNLI towards the cost of refreshments at the Carol Concert.

(d) Tree Planting

A team of volunteers together with the lengthsman had planted 200 gorse plants along the bank alongside the Adams Ground, A further planting of native shrubs was planned for after Christmas.

(e) St Bees – Whitehaven Cycle Path

Sustrans had provided draft copies of various documents for comment. The Chairman and Cllr Riley would review the documents and it was hoped that the feasibility study would be completed



shortly. As the route was not yet finalised it had been decided not to apply for planning consent at this stage.

The Chairman had recently attended the Copeland Coastal Conference at Muncaster and had given a presentation on plans for the cycle track.


(f) Station car park extension

There had been no further progress despite Network Rail’s promise to contact the Clerk to discuss a possible easement.

It was RESOLVED to write formally to the Chief Executive of Network Rail.



It was noted that United Utilities was holding a pre-consultation on the priorities for the next Water Management Plan.

It was RESOLVED not to submit comments at this stage.



The consultation on the future shape of health services in north, west and east Cumbria would end on 19 December. A number of public events had taken place across the area and extensive information on the options being considered was available on the web-site. In view of the complexity of the options put forward it was felt that it would be impossible to compile a response which reflected the views of the whole council and councillors would therefore respond on an individual basis.



A meeting had taken places of parishes involved in the scheme and all the parishes had agreed to support a continuation of the scheme apart from Beckermet/Thornhill PC which had postponed a decision. It was noted that St Bees PCC had indicated an interest in joining the scheme to help with maintenance tasks around the Priory. A further meeting would take place in January when it was hoped that the costs could be finalised.



Cllr Gilmour gave a brief report on the meeting of the Sellafield Sites Stakeholder Group on 1 November.

It was noted that the next meeting of the West Copeland Partnership would be on 28 November. Cllr Smart agreed to represent St Bees PC as Cllr Gilmour was not able to attend.



The Clerk’s report was received and the following points were noted:

Rottington street lights – the two new lighting columns had now been connected by ENW.

Litter bin – the new litter bin had been fitted outside the Post Office.

Seat on footpath off Seamill Lane – the lengthsman had completed repairs to the seat.

Priory Paddock – an application had been submitted to Nu-Gen Green Grant programme for work on the pond in Priory Paddock.



(a)New planning applications

The Planning Advisory Group reported on the following application received for comment:

Ref 4/16/2364/TPO Felling of four poplars & removal/reduction of branches on sycamore

& ash trees within the conservation area

The Priory, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to this application



(b) Applications approved/refused by CBC

It was noted that CBC had made no decisions on planning applications affecting the parish since the last meeting.



The written report from Cllr Hill was received and noted.



The latest update from the Copeland Hub was received and noted.



(a)A copy of the West Cumbria Corridor Travel Plan had been received. Noted.

(b) CCC had forwarded dates for drop in sessions as part of the consultation on modernising care homes in Copeland.Noted.

(c) Healthcare for the Future Newsletters 2 & 3 had been received together with further dates for the Chatty Van visits across the county and dates for deliberative events. Noted.

(d) CALC had forwarded details of a guide to making the most of Community Assets -Guide for Local Authorities written jointly by NALC and the LGA. Noted.

(e) An invitation had been received to a public meeting with the Mayor on 23 November in Egremont Rangers RL Club. Noted

(f) A letter had been received from British Red Cross seeking volunteers to open their gardens in summer 2017 to raise funds for the organisation. Noted.

(g) An email had been received from the Environment Agency inviting comments on the GDA of Westinghouse’s AP 1000 nuclear power station design. Noted.

(h) A copy had been received of a Traffic & Roads Study produced for Cumbria LEP, looking at roads issues west of the M6, circulated to all councillors for information.

(i) An invitation had been received to the Nu-Gen health impact assessment meeting with West Copeland Partnership on Thurs 24 November. Noted

(j) An email had been received from CBC inviting parishes to apply for Blue Flag awards. The cost would fall to individual parishes but CBC would assist with the application process. Noted

(k) Notification had been received of an extension of the road closure on Nethertown Rd as work had overrun by approx. 2 weeks. Noted.

(l) Details had been received of a drop in event at Cleator Moor on 24 November to recruit new volunteers for the Voluntary Car Scheme. Noted

(m)Details had been received of a Dependant Carers’ survey being undertaken by NALC. Noted



Cumbria Wildlife Trust –eNewsletter Nov 2016

North West Coastal Access update Nov 2016

ACT Gazette Winter 2016

CALC Circular Nov

Local Enterprise Partnership Autumn Newsletter


(a) It was noted that numerous donations had been received for the retirement gift to Don McKay who had retired as the village postman. The closing date for donations was 30 November and donations could be left at 31 Main Street or 47 The Crofts.

(b) It was noted that the St Bees station sign was in need of repainting. Cllr Bettinson would make enquiries about the ownership of the sign.



It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place on MONDAY 19 DECEMBER 2016 at 6.30pm.



Signed…………………………….. Date……………………..