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Minutes for September 2009

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

Monday 21 September 2009 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall

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

A King, I Hill, B Mayow, D Millington, C Robson and the Clerk

In attendance: Ms C Harrison, Cumbria Primary Care Trust

Also present: 9 members of the public


Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Rowlands, Smith and Turpin


Cllr Millington declared an interest in the planning application for Plot 1,Wyndhowe, Seamill Lane as the owner of an adjacent property.


The Chairman welcomed Christine Harrison who was attending on behalf of the PCT to provide further information on some of the points raised by the Council in their response to the recent Closer to Home consultation. The detailed responses to the questions raised by the Council are attached to the minutes.

A number of supplementary questions were raised about the costing of care in community hospitals as compared with district general hospitals and how general practitioners would be able to devote the time required to staff community hospitals. Ms Harrison also agreed to check whether there were staff shortages in specific areas in the acute trust and how manning levels compared with establishment. Concerns were raised about the lack of local in-patient facilities for patients with dementia. As a result patients were either accommodated a long way from home or were placed in inappropriate settings in West Cumbria. Ms Harrison agreed to feed back the Council’s concerns and to provide the Clerk with information on how the Council could be involved in commenting on future strategy.


Two issues were raised by local residents present:-

  • Planning application for Plot 1 Wyndhowe, Seamill Lane – a number of concerns were raised about this re-submission. The development proposed was for a large property with 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms whereas the outline permission granted for the site was for 4 small bungalows. The development would be in front of the land originally identified as plot one and would be massive in scale compared to other nearby buildings. Concerns were also raised about the adequacy of existing services, particularly the sewer which runs alongside Burnbrae and which regularly overflows in wet weather. Although vehicle access would be from Seamill Lane, a pedestrian entrance would be constructed on to Nethertown Rd and this could lead to car parking along this very narrow road. There were also concerns that the new property would overlook 3 Blythe Place and affect the privacy of the owners of that property.
  • Donation of seat – a Rottington resident was concerned about the possible siting of a seat in Rottington. The site adjacent to the noticeboard would not be suitable as it was too close to the farm entrance and she was concerned that it could attract anti-social behaviour.


It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 20 July be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman. .


(a) Chimney Repairs, New College Hall

Cllr Gilmour reported that the estimate for the repair work was £8300 and work was now in progress. There appeared to be no prospect of challenging the decision of CBC and all possible


sources of financial help had been explored. Therefore the PCC was requesting that the Council consider making a financial contribution towards the cost.

It was RESOLVED that a donation of £2000 be made from reserves, subject to scrutiny by the Finance & Risk Advisory Group and confirmation at the next meeting..

(b) Dilapidated properties

It was reported that there had been some improvement in the appearance of the property on Main Street. Eaglesfield was continuing to deteriorate and there was concern about the safety of scaffolding etc in high winds. Windows were open or missing and birds were nesting there.

It was RESOLVED to write to the Building Inspector and Environmental Health Officer at CBC about the state of the building.

(c) Donation of seat

In view of the concerns about siting the seat in Rottington other possible sites were considered.

It was RESOLVED to ask the donor to agree to the use of the seat to replace one of the existing seats in the village.

(d) Other items from the action list

  • Information Boards – the information boards for the station had been passed to the Station Manager and would be put in place shortly. Enquiries had been made about a frame for the board outside the Post Office and a possible frame had been identified.

It was RESOLVED to purchase a suitable frame at a maximum cost of £600.

  • Poop a scoop bags – the bags had been delivered and were available from the Post office and beach shop.
  • Metal Railings, Main Street- following the concerns expressed a few months ago about the state of the railings, Cumbria Highways had now agreed to replace them with new metal railings which would be painted black.
  • Blocked drain, Allotment Field – the problem had not yet been resolved and the Environmental Health Dept was continuing to press Home Housing to deal with the problem.


A meeting had taken place on site on Friday 18 September with representatives of Story Homes. Cllr Smith’s written report of the meeting was received and noted. The construction work was now finished and the car park and footpath were ready to hand over. It was noted that there was a large field gate across the path which Story Homes would remove if the Parish Council wished.

It was RESOLVED to instruct the Council’s solicitor to proceed with the transfer of ownership, subject to confirmation that the issues concerning ownership of the boundary walls had been dealt with. It was further RESOLVED to remove the field gate and to bring the car park and footpath into use at the earliest possible date.


  • Seamill car park – A quote was being sought for investigating the pot-hole which has appeared as there appears to be running water underneath. The pot-hole had been filled with stone for the time being but the problem was likely to recur in heavy rain.

It was RESOLVED that a budget of £500 be approved for the work.

  • Beck Edge GardenIt was reported that the hedge had become very overgrown, making it difficult for the contractor to cut the grass. The Clerk had authorised work to cut the hedge under delegated powers to deal urgent work required between meetings.
  • High House Rd seat – The owner of the hedge had agreed that it could be cut to the level of the stock fence and this had been done at the same time as Beck Edge hedge.
  • Priory Paddock – It had been proposed to buy gorse plants and supports last year but stock had been unavailable. It was also proposed to renew the order and to purchase a supply of weedkiller.

It was RESOLVED to order the plants and weedkiller at a cost of £230 + VAT

  • Beck Edge Fence -One quotation had been received for replacing the fence alongside the road and, in view of the likely cost, further quotes were being sought for comparison. It was


noted that the fence adjacent to the field was also in need of replacement and it was agreed

to obtain estimates for inclusion in next year’s budget.

  • Allotment Field – It was noted that there was a deep drop at the bottom of the allotment field and a serious accident had been narrowly avoided when an allotment holder fell there.

It was RESOLVED that an estimate be obtained for erecting a suitable fence.

  • Memorial Seat, AbbeyRd/Coach Rd – It was reported that the area around the seat was again overgrown.

It was RESOLVED to write to the owners of the seat seeking their co-operation in tidying up

the area.


A problem had developed with the weather station over the summer and the unit had been sent away for examination by an engineer (cost £79.00 including carriage). The unit had failed again and a reconditioned board had been sent on loan. The weather station was now working again and the reconditioned board was available to purchase for £50. A donation had been received from Eastman for information provided from the weather station records.

It was RESOLVED that the reconditioned board be purchased at a cost of approx £50 and that further information be obtained for the next meeting on the users of the weather data.


Correspondence had been received from a local resident with sight problems about the difficulty of accessing the beach at Seamill. Copies of his correspondence with CCC and CBC were also received. It was noted that improvements to rights of way such as handrails on the bridge could be included in the bid for funding from the Parish Paths Initiative, subject to the agreement of the owner. However, it was noted that the area was subject to regular erosion by the tides and improvements to the surface would be impractical.

It was RESOLVED to include the provision of hand rails in the PPI bid for next year.


It was reported that a number of local people were experiencing very slow internet speeds and the problem was common to all ISPs. The problem seemed to have become worse in the last few weeks.

It was RESOLVED to write to BT about the issue and to seek further information on the extent of the problem by putting an article in the parish magazine and by contacting CALC to ascertain if other areas were experiencing the same difficulties.


No report had been received for the meeting. It was noted that drivers of agricultural vehicles travelling through the village were regularly observed using mobile phones. It was agreed to report this to the community officers and to seek an update on the possibility of placing a speed indication device in the village.


Two issues were noted:-

  • The area around the Wainwright sign was becoming quite muddy. The Clerk reported that CBC had agreed to lay more paving stones when their team was next carrying out work in the village.
  • There had been little or no improvement with the lighting at the beach car park.


  • At the Annual Parish Meeting a resident had raised concerns about the danger of pedestrians being struck by a wing mirror as large vehicles move to the side of the road to minimise the effect of the speed hump outside Barony House. It had been intended to deal with this as part of the discussions on the proposed one way system but these discussions had not yet taken place.

It was RESOLVED to write to Cumbria Highways about the potential danger.


  • It was reported that a hedge on the bends by St Bees School was overhanging the highway and drivers were moving towards the centre of the road to avoid it.


(a)New Applications

The Planning Advisory Group reported on the following new applications received for comment since the last meeting:

  • Ref 4/09/2349/0F1 Detached dwelling

Orchard How, Outrigg, St Bees

  • Ref 4/09/2348/0F1 Erection of garage

6 Bay View, St Bees

  • Ref 4/09/9009 Construction of single storey pitched roof extension to existing

primary school to provide new classroom and new nursery to

replace the existing portacabins

St Bees Village School, Main Street, St Bees

  • Ref 4/09/2377/0F1 Double storey extension

40A Abbey Vale, St Bees

  • Ref 4/09/2411/0F1 Erect general purpose agricultural building

Horsley Croft, High Walton, St Bees

  • Ref 4/09/2423/0F1 Notice of Intention for general purpose building

Whin Bank, Rottington

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to any of the above applications.

  • Ref 4/09/2426/0F1 Demolition of barn and erection of new dwelling (revised scheme)

Plot 1, Wyndhowe, Seamill Lane, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that objections be lodged on the following grounds:-

(i) the proposed development is not in accordance with the outline consent for 4 single storey dwellings on the site

(ii) the scale of the building is out of keeping with other properties and will be too dominant

(iii) the services are not adequate to deal with developments of this size. The existing sewer is operating to full capacity and regularly overflows during heavy rain. Water pressure is already poor and further properties will worsen the situation yet further.

(iv) the development is likely to overlook the property at 3 Blythe Place

(v) the pedestrian entrance from Nethertown Rd is likely to result in additional parking on Nethertown Rd which is already very narrow.

  • Ref 4/09/2431/0F1 Rear conservatory

36 Fairladies

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

  • Ref 4/09/2435/0F1/ Reinstatement of cottage & extension into attached barn to form new

Ref 4/09/2434/0L1 dwelling (re-submission)

Moorleys, Egremont

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

(b) Applications approved/refused

The following decisions by CBC were noted:

  • Garage extension to side and double storey extension to rear - 21 The Crofts APPROVED
  • Change of use from agricultural to scaffolding store- Dove Cote Barn, High Walton APPROVED for one year only to allow the business to find other premises.


  • · Single storey extension to sides & rear –Llanwern, Outrigg APPROVED
  • · Listed building consent to replacement windows, rerendering of chimney and new rear canopy over walkway – Lonsdale Terrace, St Bees APPROVED
  • Demolition of garage and filling station & erection of 6 flats and 3 houses - Station Rd WITHDRAWN
  • Detached dwelling - Orchard How, Outrigg APPROVED
  • Erection of garage – 6 Bay View, St Bees APPROVED

(c) Planning enforcement

It was noted that CBC had appointed a new Planning Enforcement Officer, David Wright.

147/09 FINANCE

(a) External Audit 2008/9

The report of the external auditor gave an unqualified opinion with one observation, drawing attention to the recommendations made in the Internal Audit report. It was noted that these recommendations had already been addressed so no further action was required.

(b) Budget 2010/11

The deadline for notifying CBC of the precept for 2010/11 is 18 December. The Finance & Risk Advisory Group would be meeting on 13 October to draw up a draft budget so suggestions for inclusion in the budget were required as soon as possible.

(c) Donations.

Two requests for donations had been received:

  • Wellington Pit Centenary Memorial Committee was seeking a donation towards the costs of a commemoration in May 2010 of the 100th anniversary of the Wellington Pit disaster. The project is estimated to cost £20,000.

It was RESOLVED not to make a donation.

  • St Bees Parent & Toddler Group was seeking a donation of £105 for the purchase of new toys.

It was RESOLVED to make a donation of £105 (cheque no 001463).

(d)Payments to be approved

  • Cheque no 001450 St Bees Enterprises Ltd – photocopying £50.15 + VAT Total £57.67
  • Cheque no 001451 Assured Cumbria Pest Control– refurbishment of noticeboard Total £32.00
  • Cheque no 001452 Assured Cumbria Pest Control – repainting seats Main St / Dandy Walk Total £59.00
  • Cheque no 001453 National Society of Allotment & Leisure Gardeners – membership fees Total £22.00
  • Cheque no 001454 Playsafety Ltd– playground inspection £66.00 + VAT Total £75.90
  • Cheque no 001455 Assured Cumbria Pest Control – hedge cutting Beck Edge Garden/High House Rd Total £72.00
  • Cheque no 001456 Assured Cumbria Pest Control – grasscutting -2nd quarter Total £572.00
  • Cheque no 001457Glasdon – litter bin £128.36 + VAT Total £147.61
  • Cheque no 001458 J Donaldson – reimbursement for trophy engraving (£6.00) and Land Registry search (£4.00) Total £10.00
  • Cheque no 001459 The Information Commissioner – renewal of registration £35.00
  • Cheque no 001460 J Donaldson – Clerk’s salary September 2009 £429.36 & postage £7.20 Total £436.56
  • Cheque no 001461 United Utilities Water – allotment water charge 12/6/09 – 15/9/09 £20.00
  • Cheque no 001462 Assured Cumbria Pest Control installation of litter bin and removal of old bin £47.00

Cheques signed since last meeting to report:

001443 J Donaldson – Clerk’s salary August 2009 Total £429.36

001444 BDO Stoy Hayward – audit fee 2008/9 £135.00 + VAT Total £155.25

.001445 Harrison’s Packaging– poop scoop bags £86.99 + VAT Total £100.04

001446 V Turpin – reimbursement for allotment prize £14.77 + VAT Total £16.99


001447 YNH – web-site name renewal (stbees.info) £17.39 + VAT Total £20.00

001448 I McAndrew – weather station repair £69.40 + VAT Total £79.00

001449 Petty Cash (VIB) £137.40


(a) CALC Training Prospectus received for the period Sept 2009 – March 2010. It was RESOLVED that places be booked for Cllrs Millington, Turpin and King to attend the ‘Essentials for Local Councillors’ course.

(b) Letter received from CBC offering parishes a list of properties in their parish by council tax band providing the council signs a Contractor’s Licence. No action required.

(c) Agenda received for the meeting of CCC Local Committee with local councils on Wed 23 September at 6.30pm at Cleator Moor.

(d) Letter received from 4NW inviting comments on the submitted draft of the draft North West Plan Partial Review. Cllr Millington agreed to review.

(e) Letter received from Cumbria Highways asking the Parish Council to cut back a tree at Stonehouse Garden which was overhanging the pavement. As the land belongs to CBC, the matter had been referred to Richard Mellor who had arranged to have the tree cut back.

(f) A further consultation had been received on the Minerals and Waste Development Framework – Draft Site Allocations Policies and Proposals Map. The revised proposals did not appear to include the site at Bank End which was put forward in the last round of consultation.

It was RESOLVED to contact CCC to check why the quarry at Bank End had not been included.


CALC Circular

Dispatches – Issue 2

Fieldwork Sept 2009

Cumbria Playing Fields Association Annual Report

Agenda for Neighbourhood Forum – 22 September 2009 6.30pm at Orgill School

FLAG Newsletter September 2009

Police Area Community Liaison Forum 6 October 7.30pm at St Cuthberts Church Hall, Seascale (presentation on identity fraud)


(a) Following concerns expressed by residents, the Fire Service had confirmed that a fire appliance could access Seamill Lane but with little room to spare and they requested that residents try to avoid obstructions which narrow the road. This advice had been included in the parish magazine.

(b) It was noted that St Bees is to feature in an article in a NALC publication encouraging other local councils to register their land.

(c) Cllr Robson reported on progress with the History Project and the recent Open Days which had proved very successful.

(d) Cllr Mayow explained that signatures were being collected to support the application for Walkers Are Welcome status.

(e) It was reported that there were problems with the springs on the two new gates on the Dandy Walk. Cllr Mayow agreed to carry out repairs.

(f) The prize winners in the allotment competition had asked that their thanks be passed on to the Parish Council.

(g) The responsibility for maintaining the lane beside the Oddfellows was raised again. As this was private land the Council had no information on who was responsible and could only suggest that property owners check the information in their property deeds.


It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place on Monday 19 October 2009 at 7.30pm in the Village Hall when a representative from British Transport Police would be in attendance.