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Minutes for February 2007

Draft Minutes of the Meeting of St Bees Parish Council held on Monday 19 February 2007

in the Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllr P Smith (Chairman), N Bettinson, M Clarkson, J Haile, I Hill, M Richards, C Robson, D Sim, V Turpin, H Wilson and the Clerk.

Also present: Mr R Mellor, Landscape Officer, CBC and 3 members of the public.


Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs R Mayow, D Millington, J Rowlands and D Warbrick.

The Chairman stated that the thoughts of all Councillors were with Cllr Millington at this difficult time.



No Councillors declared a personal interest in any matters on the agenda.


It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 15 January 2007 be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.


The Chairman invited members of the public to speak to the meeting. The allotment holders present expressed some concern about the state of some of the plots which were apparently not being cultivated and were causing a nuisance to other tenants. There was also discussion about ways of improving liaison between the Council and allotment holders.

It was RESOLVED that:


  • a letter be sent to all allotment holders pointing out the requirement for plots to be kept tidy and weed free
  • an Allotments Committee be set up to assist the Council in managing the allotments. Cllr Clarkson would be the Parish Council representative and all allotment holders would be entitled to become members if they wished.


Richard Mellor, CBC Landscape Officer, gave a presentation about the Tree Warden Scheme, which is run by the National Grid in partnership with the Tree Council. The aim of the scheme is to collect information about trees in the locality, undertake practical projects, liaise with the local authority on tree matters, and to protect trees in the area. A meeting would be held in June/July with representatives of the Tree Council and interested Parish Councils.

Mr Mellor also outlined his role within CBC, the help he could offer on tree planting and management and the financial help available.

It was RESOLVED that:


  • the Tree Warden Scheme be included in the agenda for the next meeting
  • suggestions for further tree planting be considered at the next meeting
  • Ian Shuttleworth, who has expressed an interest in becoming a volunteer tree warden, be invited to the next meeting
  • copies of comments made by SBPC on tree works applications be sent routinely to Mr Mellor.
  • A copy of suggested tree preservation orders prepared by SBPC some time ago be provided to Mr Mellor.


(a) Allotment Water Supply

Home Group had now sealed the agreement to the easement and it was anticipated the work would take place shortly.


(b) Birkhams Quarry

Cllr Mayow had visited the site and spoken to nearby residents. CCC had supplied a copy of the planning approval for the extension to the quarry and a copy of the report considered by the Planning and Development Committee at the time.

It was RESOLVED that no action was required at this stage other than to ask CCC to ensure that the developer complies with the conditions attached to the planning consent.

(c)Fairladies Car Park and Footpath

Correspondence had been received from Story Homes about a proposed application to CBC to change the design of the car park because of engineering difficulties. The bungalow at plot 14 would be removed and 4 apartments built. It was noted that the plans supplied did not show lighting of the car park and footpath. No further information had been received about the adoption of the footpath.

It was RESOLVED that:-


  • there were no objections to the changes proposed
  • Cllr Southward be asked to investigate the position with adoption of the footpath
  • An assurance be sought that adequate lighting will be provided.

(d) Missing Street Lights, Station Road

CBC say that the delay in replacing the lights is due to budget difficulties in the Enforcement Dept and that the work will be done in the next financial year. There appears to be some confusion about the number of lights which are missing and Cllr N Clarkson is trying to organise a meeting on site with CBC officers.

(e) Collation of weather data

A request was received at the last meeting for the Council to fund the collation of historic weather data so that it could be used in discussions with Cumbria Highways about flooding problems.

It was RESOLVED that a sum of £100 be approved to cover the costs of this work.

(f) Other items from the Action List


  • Seacote Hotel – Licensing Issues

The Clerk had investigated the position and raves do not require a separate licence. There is no requirement in the licence for security personnel to be used but, if they are, those employed on such duties must be approved by the Security Industry Authority.


  • Inspection of Play Equipment

The equipment had been inspected by CBC staff and the swings had been removed as a safety precaution pending a fuller examination. An estimate for repair was awaited.


  • Railings alongside Coach Road

A reply had been received from the tenant of the land offering to replace the railings with a low fence which would comply with the requirement to provide a stock-proof barrier. However, this would leave a gap between the fence and the pavement which could be a hazard. It was also noted that the surface of the pavement is in poor condition.

It was RESOLVED that Cumbria Highways be made aware of the problem and asked to inspect the site.


  • Street naming

A reply had been received from CBC to the enquiry about renaming a section of Station Road as Coach Rd. A formal request can be made to the Planning Panel but the Building Control Officer would oppose this on the grounds that this might confuse emergency services. It was also reported that there were difficulties in explaining the location of the Priory and nearby properties when contacting the utility companies and emergency services, as that section of the B5345 does not have a street name.

It was RESOLVED to make a formal request to rename the section of Station Road between the bend and Peck Mill as Coach Road and also to request that the section of the B5345 north of the level crossing be named Church Road.


  • Broadband problems

A response had been received from BT. They are only able to investigate complaints from customers on an individual basis.


  • Seacote Hotel – accommodation for homeless people


The Clerk reported that CBC used local hotels as temporary accommodation for homeless people to fulfil their statutory duty. Cllr N Clarkson had been made aware of the concerns reported at the last meeting.


Toni Magean of CBC had confirmed that the tendering exercise was underway and the security cameras at the beach car park have been included in the specification. It is expected that the contract will be awarded by April.


The Chairman reported on the CALC conference held to consider proposals for changes to the structure of local government and on a local CALC meeting at which CBC Chief Executive had presented the view of CBC. It was noted that only the County Council had made a formal proposal to central government within the required time-scale. CALC had written to the Secretary of State supporting the idea of further consultation on a unitary authority . but expressing some reservations about the County Council’s proposal. A consultation event was being organised by the district councils on 24 February.

It was RESOLVED that the Chairman attend this event on behalf of the Council.


(a) Moorclose – Negotiations were taking place between solicitors on the terms of the easement. A disbursement of £75 had been paid by the Council’s solicitor.

It was RESOLVED that the sum of £75 be reimbursed to Brockbank, Curwen, Cain and Hall and that the Council’s solicitor be instructed to continue to seek agreement for access with an appropriate vehicle (up to 5 tons laden weight) on the same terms as previously discussed.

(b) Green Lonning – The Planning Inspector had decided that the track should be designated as a bridleway. The decision has yet to be confirmed as there needs to be a formal consultation on a minor amendment to the order.


Copies of the proposed changes to the model Code of Conduct had been circulated. Any comments were required to be submitted by 9 March.

It was RESOLVED that there were no comments on the proposed changes.


(a)The following items were noted for report to CBC:-


  • Several lights in the Beach car park are still in need of attention.
  • The metal bridge at Gutterfoot is still in a dangerous condition. This could be removed as an alternative to repairs. The problem with the drain at Gutterfoot has still not been resolved.
  • The dog litter bin at Seamill beach is full and needs to be emptied more regularly.
  • Some residents of Fairladies have not received calendars showing dates of refuse and recycling collections.


The following items were noted for report to CCC:-


  • The sign to the caravan park has still not been replaced. The Clerk is continuing to pursue the matter.
  • The hedge on Abbey Road is still causing a problem.
  • The gulley outside Stonehouse Farm is overflowing.
  • The new grit bin on the beach estate is obstructing the pavement and needs to be relocated.


(a) New Applications

The Planning Advisory Committee reported on applications received:-


  • 4/07/2045/0F1 Conversion of disused barns to single dwelling – Plot 5, Foulyeat Cottages, Ingwell

It was RESOLVED that there was no objection to this proposed development.


  • 4/07/2059/0F1 Dormer window to roof – 118 Main Street, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that a reply be sent to CBC stating that there was no objection in principle to the addition of a dormer window but that white PVC facing was inappropriate within the conservation area.


  • 4/07/2068/TPO Removal of 2 trees and trimming of 2 trees, 8 Seacroft Drive, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that there was no objection to this work provided that CBC Landscape Officer was in agreement.


  • 4/07/2069/0F1 & 4/07/2070/0F1 Revised road layout and conservation area consent for approved applications, Fleatham Farm, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to these applications.


  • 4/06/2848/0F1 Conversion of canine treatment centre to holiday cottage, High Walton Farm

It was noted that CBC Planning Panel would be making a site visit on 21 February.

It was RESOLVED that CBC be informed that the Council had no objection to this application.

(b) Applications refused

.It was noted that the application to construct an Edwardian style conservatory at Platform 9 had been refused by CBC.



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


  • Cheque no 001229 Brockbank,Curwen,Cain and Hall – legal costs £75.00
  • Cheque no 001230 D Robinson – reimbursement for purchase of plants £96.51
  • Cheque no 001231 J Donaldson – Clerk’s salary Feb 2007 + additional hours for training + travel expenses and postage Total £441.64


The minutes of the meeting of the Village in Bloom Committee held on 30 January 2007 were received and noted.


(a) Letter received from Voluntary Action Cumbria enclosing the draft Copeland Community and Parish Plan Protocol.

(b) Draft nuclear policies received for comment from CBC. It was RESOLVED that Cllr Sim review the documents on behalf of the Council.

(c) Letter received from CBC enclosing a schedule of the precept levy and charge per council tax band for 2007/8. It was noted that the charge for a band D property in St Bees would be £22.77.

(d) Letter received from St Bees First Responders thanking the Council for the donation and stating that the group hoped to be operational by the end of February.

(e) Letter received from CBC to confirm that the Council has been awarded a further grant of £256 in the current financial year for concurrent services.

(f) Notice received of the annual meeting of CBC with town and parish councils to be held on Monday 12 March at 6.30pm.

(g) Letter received from the Audit Commission explaining that the appointment of the external auditor had been extended to 2007/8 and notifying increase in audit fees from 2006/7.

(h)Correspondence received from Ian McAndrew about renewal of the domain names for the web-site. It was RESOLVED to renew the registration of the names for a further year at a total cost of £40.

(i) Correspondence received from CALC inviting parish councils to take up the offer of a CALC Roadshow training event.

It was RESOLVED to accept the invitation.


CALC Newsletter February 2007


NALC Review of the Quality Parish Scheme

Cumbria Rural Housing Trust Newsletter January 2007

Temporary closure of the U4038 at Station Rd Nethertown for emergency repairs.

Changes to the issue of CBC travel concessions 2007/8


(a) The Adams Recreation Ground Committee was seeking support for possible development of part of the land. It was agreed that it was not appropriate for the Council to comment on possible planning proposals at this stage. However, the Council was anxious to support the Adams

Committee in any way possible and it was agreed that Steve Carter be invited to attend the next meeting to discuss the background to the proposals.

(b) It was noted that St Bees School had now adjusted the spotlight at Abbots Court.


It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place on Monday 19 March 2007 at 7.30pm in the Village Hall and that the Annual Parish Meeting take place at 7.00pm on Monday 16 April 2007.