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Draft Minutes of the Annual Meeting of St Bees Parish Council

held on

Monday 16 May 2011 at 7.45pm in the Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllrs N Bettinson, C Davidson, J Haile, B Hewetson, T Kelly

D Millington, S Moules, D Sim, H Strong and the Clerk


In the absence of the previous Chairman, the Vice Chairman, Cllr Sim, took the Chair for this item. Nominations were sought for the office of Chairman for the coming year. Cllr Moules was proposed by Cllr Millington and seconded by Cllr Haile.

It was RESOLVED that Cllr Moules be elected Chairman for the coming year.

Cllr Moules then took the Chair.


Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Gilmour, Kennedy, Hill and James.


Cllr Millington declared an interest in agenda item 19(d) – request for donation for the Neighbourhood Watch scheme as a close relative of the co-ordinator.


No items were raised.


Nominations were sought for the office of Vice Chairman for the coming year. Cllr Sim was proposed by Cllr Bettinson and seconded by Cllr Millington.

It was RESOLVED that Cllr Sim be elected Vice Chairman for the coming year.


It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 19 April be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.


The Chairman welcomed new councillors to their first meeting and councillors introduced themselves and outlined their areas of interest.


It was RESOLVED that the membership of committees and advisory groups for 2011/12 be as follows:-

Planning Advisory Group – Cllrs Gilmour, Kelly, Kennedy

Allotments Advisory Group – Cllrs Kennedy, James, Strong + interested allotment holders

Finance & Risk Advisory Group – Cllrs Strong, James, Kennedy and Moules

Village in Bloom Committee – Cllr Hewetson + community representatives

Traffic Calming Committee – Cllrs Millington, Sim and Moules + community representatives and representatives from St Bees School, PCC and Village School Governors.

Events Group – Cllrs Moules, Kelly, Kennedy and Gilmour + community representatives

It was suggested that groups should also be established to advise on footpaths and the management of Priory Paddock. It was agreed to include this on a future agenda.

It was RESOLVED that the following councillors would lead on specific areas of work:-

  • Nuclear New Build – Cllr Gilmour
  • Broadband Project – Cllr Moules
  • Priory Paddock – Cllr Bettinson
  • Web-site – Cllr Sim
  • Commons – Cllr Sim



It was noted that Cllr Kennedy was prepared to continue as a governor of the village school.

It was RESOLVED that the following be appointed as representatives to outside bodies:-

  • Adams Recreation Ground Committee – Cllrs Davidson & Kennedy
  • Friends of St Bees Priory – Cllr Bettinson
  • Shephards and Whitehead Charity – Cllrs Bettinson & Hewetson
  • West Copeland Partnership – Cllr Kelly


It was RESOLVED that Mr A Oldham be appointed as Internal Auditor for 2011/12.


(a) Litter bin, Post Office – The owner of the post office had agreed that a wall mounted bin could be located outside the post office subject to final agreement on size and exact position. The Clerk had investigated suitable models and would continue discussions with the owner of the post office. CBC had indicated that they would empty the bin three times per week on their regular round. .

It was RESOLVED to proceed with the purchase of a bin at a maximum cost of £250.

(b) Copeland Coastal Design Guide – The consultants appointed by CBC had met a group of parish councillors and community representatives on 12 May to discuss ideas for creating a uniform appearance to signs/ street furniture. A number of suggestions had put forward including the need to link the beach area with other points of interest in the village and to make signage more relevant and welcoming. It was hoped that the report would highlight projects for which funding/support could be sought from other bodies.

(c) Dog Fouling – CBC Enforcement Manager, Alana McKinnon, would be attending the June meeting to discuss the problem. It was noted that the Enforcement Team had issued two penalty tickets recently for dog fouling offences at the main beach area. Cllr Moules agreed to write an article for the parish magazine highlighting the problem.

(d) Other items from the action list :

  • Blocked drain allotment field – further problems had been experienced with the blocked drain. Copies of photographs had been forwarded to the Environmental Health Officer for his comments.
  • Paragliding, Main beach area – CBC had confirmed that there was a written agreement with Phoenix Paragliding to allow use of the Head for landing only but no consents had been given for the use of any other area. If paragliders were seen using other areas, the matter could be reported to CBC Enforcement team or those responsible could be challenged directly.
  • New councillor training course – places had been booked for those wishing to attend the course to be held at Cleator Moor on 17 May and 8 June.
  • Nuclear New Build – Cllr Gilmour had been invited to a discussion with senior officers of CBC following his suggestion of setting up a ‘think-tank’ to help CBC during the consultation process. He had offered continuing involvement if required.
  • Fireproof safe for storage of back-up CDs – some possible models had been identified but these were relatively expensive. As copies would be held in two different locations it was felt that fireproof storage was unnecessary.


Cumbria County Council had begun a public consultation on the future of library services in Cumbria. The consultation document put forward a number of ideas including increased use of community facilities and volunteers together with more on-line facilities.

It was generally agreed that the present library at the village school was a valuable community asset and should be retained. Cllr Moules agreed to collate comments for inclusion in the response to CCC and it was agreed to place an article in the parish magazine encouraging residents to join in the consultation exercise.


Cllr Moules gave a report on the county-wide project to improve broadband links. The funding allocated to Cumbria was not sufficient to bring superfast broadband to every home. However, in


many areas networks were in place in schools, council offices etc and the project would be looking at how these could be shared with local communities. CALC representatives were involved in the project and would liaise with individual parishes.

Cllr Sim agreed to contact those who had submitted evidence of broadband speeds two years ago and ask for their current experience of broadband speeds within the parish.


The minutes of the meetings held on 28 March and 21 April were received.

Cllr Millington outlined the work already agreed with Cumbria Highways to install gateway features at the northern entrance to the village and to build out an island by the kissing gate opposite Barony House to improve the safety of children and other pedestrians crossing at that point. The work was due to be carried out in July/August. Cllr Millington agreed to write an article for the parish magazine outlining the planned work.

At the last committee meeting the possibility of a 20mph limit or zone had been discussed and the Traffic Engineer was following this up with colleagues. He was also working on designs for possible measures in the Outrigg and Fairladies areas. However, it was unlikely that further funding

would be available from the Highways budget in the near future so funding would have to be found from other sources.

Residents of Fairladies had drawn attention to the problem of the school bus parking at the bus stop each morning blocking the road around the roundabout. The bus was often parked for periods of 20 minutes and frustrated drivers were resorting to going the wrong way around the roundabout to leave the estate. A letter to the bus company had produced no improvement.

It was RESOLVED to ask the local police to take action.


A report on the usage of the web-site was received. Cllr Sim drew attention to the fact that the site now gets over 200,000 visits per year and is an excellent way of publicising the village and its facilities. The site has a forum for discussion of local issues but this is underused. Cllr Sim agreed to discuss with Dr McAndrew whether there were ways of making the forum more accessible.

It was RESOLVED to write to Ian McAndrew to thank him for his work in maintaining the site on behalf of the parish council.


No report was available.


It was noted that the fine weather over the Easter weekend had brought many people to the beach and large amounts of rubbish had been left at the end of the day. CBC staff had done an excellent job in cleaning the area by the following morning and it was agreed to write to CBC to express the council’s appreciation of the work which had been done.


There were no items to report.


(a) New applications

The following applications had been received for comment:-

  • Ref 4/11/ 2182/0F1 Removal & rebuilding of two storey extension to rear

(revised scheme)

51 Main Street, St Bees

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

  • Ref 4/11/2190/TPO Removal of one eucalyptus tree within conservation area

Cross Hill House, Finkle Street, St Bees

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


  • Ref 4/11/ 2093/0F1 Erection of conservatory

Horsley Croft, High Walton, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that there was no objection to this application.

  • Ref 4/11/2221/TPO Felling of one bay tree within conservation area

The Beeches, High House, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that there was no objection to this application.

  • Ref 4/11/2217/TPO Removal of tree situated within conservation area

Fleatham Gardens, High House Rd, St Bees

It was RESOLVED to strongly oppose this application on the grounds that trees in sensitive locations such as this should be protected unless the tree was diseased, in accordance with Policy ENV 10 of the Copeland Local Plan.

(b) Applications approved/refused:-

The following decisions by CBC were noted:-

  • Double garage – Catbells, Abbey Road St Bees – APPROVED
  • Revised scheme for conversion of barns to provide three dwellings including partial demolition to provide managed cesspit drainage system – Rookery Barns, Rottington- REFUSED
  • Listed building consent repositioning gateway and creation of sandstone gateposts-

Mayfield, Finkle Street – APPROVED with conditions


(a) Draft Accounts 2010/11

The draft summary of accounts for 2011/12 was received and noted.

(b) Review of banking arrangements

The Finance & Risk Advisory Group would be reviewing investment policy at its next meeting and would report back to a future meeting of the council.

It was RESOLVED that cheque signatories for the coming year would be Cllrs Moules, Kennedy, Millington, Sim, Strong and the Clerk and that the bank mandate remain otherwise unchanged.

(c) Risk Management – Insurance

It was noted thatthe policy was due for renewal on 1 June. The premium would be £1219.17 for the existing cover.

It was RESOLVED that the policy be renewed and that the Clerk try to negotiate a discount on the premium.

(d) Donations/subscriptions

Having declared an interest Cllr Millington took no part in the decision on the following item.

  • A request had been received from the Neighbourhood Watch Groups in the village for a donation of £25 to cover the cost of hiring the Village Hall for meetings twice per year.

It was RESOLVED that a donation of £25 be made.

  • The annual subscription to the Cumbria Playing Fields Association was now due.

It was RESOLVED to renew the subscription at a cost of £25.00

(e)Payments to be approved

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

  • Cheque no 001610 BTCV – mulch mats £28.75 + VAT Total £33.10
  • Cheque no 001611 I McAndrew – hosting of web-site £60 and weather station £60 Total £120
  • Cheque no 001612 CALC – course fees £163.50
  • Cheque no 001613 J DonaldsonClerk’s salary May 2011 £504.30

Payments since last meeting to report

Cheque no 001609 Harrison’s Packaging – poop scoop bags £166.99 +VAT Total £200.39

(payment required to avoid interest).


(a) A letter had been received from the Open Spaces Society explaining their campaign to lobby for changes to the government’s plans for changing the system of registration of village greens and reviewing the statutory responsibilities of local authorities to protect public paths. Noted.


(b) A letter had been received from Cumbria Community Foundation giving details of a new charity challenge – the Jennings Rivers Ride- and explaining how people could become involved. Noted.

(c)Information received from NALC about the publication of revised model standing orders. The Clerk would investigate what changes had been made before the scheduled review of Standing Orders later this year.

(d) An invitation had been received for a representative to attend a conference ‘Big Society: Rural Action’ on Sat 18 June 9.30-3.15pm at Rheged. Noted.

(e) Correspondence had been received from the British Youth Council about a new award scheme encouraging young people to shadow a local councillor. Noted.


CALC Newsletter May 2011

Countryside Voice Spring 2011

MRWS e-bulletin 10

Fieldwork Spring 2011

Friends of the Lake District Annual Review 2010


(a) It was reported that St Bees was one of four beaches in Copeland to be awarded the Quality Beach award for 2011.

(b) United Utilities had informed the Clerk that they would need to lay a new pipe in Beck Edge Gardens following problems with a broken sewer.

(c) Cllr Kelly reported that the use of jet skis close to the beach was again causing concern. He would speak to members of the lifeboat crew to see whether they could help facilitate a voluntary agreement that jet skis would avoid areas used by swimmers. The Clerk would ensure that the signage to be provided by CBC took account of this issue.

(d) Cllr Sim proposed that representatives of St Bees School should be invited back to a future meeting to discuss matters of mutual interest. Suggestions for inclusion in the agenda for that discussion could be passed to the Chairman or Clerk.

(e) Cllr Bettinson reported that he had met the new grasscutting contractor and agreed a monthly schedule of cutting the additional areas in Priory Paddock during the growing season.


It was RESOLVED that meetings continue to be held on the third Monday of the month, with the next meeting taking place on Monday 20 June 2011 at 7.45pm in the Village Hall..