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

Monday 21 January 2013 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllrs D Sim (in the Chair), P Argyle, G Gilmour, B Hewetson, I Hill, K James,    

                     T Kelly, F Kennedy, D Millington, S Moules, H Strong and the Clerk



Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs J Haile and C Robson



Cllrs Bettinson, Sim and Strong declared their interest as Trustees of the Pagan Trust in respect of budget decisions involving the Village Hall which is owned by the Trust. Cllr Kelly declared his interest in the item concerning Sellafield travel issues as an employee of Sellafield Ltd involved with their security enhancement scheme.



No matters were raised.



It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting on 17 December 2012 be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman.



(a)Quarter 3 financial report

The notes of the Finance & Risk Group meetings on 8 and 14 January were received together with a summary of accounts at 31 December (copy attached to the minutes). Cllr Strong explained that all the income expected had now been received and was above the original budget figure. Expenditure was below budget at this stage, mainly due to the delays with the traffic calming, play area and walks booklet projects where expenditure was now expected to fall in 2013/14. The budget allocation for tree planting was not required and would be transferred to reserves. The general reserve at the start of the year had been low and this year the reserves were expected to increase by £4000.

It was RESOLVED that the budget allocations for traffic calming, beach play area and walks booklets be carried over to the next financial year with expenditure expected to fall in quarter 1.


(b) Budget 2013/14

Cllr Strong presented the draft budget prepared by the Finance & Risk Group for discussion. The budget expenditure included the estimated costs of taking over the beach toilets and additional grass cutting if the budget cuts by CBC were confirmed. Part of these costs would be met by reducing expenditure in other areas but the budget proposed an increase in precept to meet part of the costs.

There was a lengthy discussion about the proposed budget allocations and the projects which should be included for 2013/14. It was suggested that there should be a reduction of £750 in the project budget and an increase of £500 in the allocation for legal fees in light of the need for legal advice on leases etc. It was noted that the budget, if approved, would result in expenditure of £39470. After detailed debate of the reserves forecast graphs councillors considered the impact of setting a deficit budget. The recommendation of the FRAG group was to raise precept income by £8000 bringing budget income to £38735 (an increase of approx. £12 per annum for a band D property). Whilst this reduction in reserves would be acceptable in 2013/14, it was noted that the income for future years would be reduced as the income from Network Rail for the use of Seamill car park was for one year only and a budget deficit of this scale could not be sustained for future years. However, it was noted that there were still a number of uncertainties surrounding the costings of former CBC services and economies might well be achieved in future years, and there was general agreement that discretionary projects would be reduced or


sacrificed in future years to allow an adequate level of reserves to be maintained. The beach improvement project was identified as a project which might have to be sacrificed.

It was RESOLVED that the budget be approved subject to minor amendments to expenditure on projects and legal fees (copy attached to the minutes) and that the precept for 2013/14 be set at £33065.28 supplemented by grant income of £1094.72.



It was RESOLVED that the following payments be approved:–

·       Cheque no 01788 CBC- play area inspection £39.91+ VAT Total £47.89

·       Cheque no 01789 St Bees Priory PCC –hire of New College Hall Total £37.50

·       Cheque no 01790 J Donaldson –clerk salary Jan £504.30 + broadband allowance £50.00 Total £554.30 

·       Cheque no 01791 J Donaldson – reimbursement for anti-virus renewal £52.05 + VAT  Total £62.98

·       Cheque no 01792 P Preston – contribution to electricity for Christmas lights Total £30.00



(a)Beach Regeneration & Play Area Projects

The Chairman reported that CBC Executive had approved the granting of a lease for the play area and the full council would be asked to approve the proposal for CBC to act as ‘accountable body’ at its meeting on 15 February. The way was now open for the parish council to begin funding applications and formal approval was now required on the outline project plan and project costings.

The total project cost discussed at the Beach Regeneration Committee in October was £130,000 which the committee had felt was appropriate and could realistically be funded. It was noted that the project management cost element had now increased and some contingency needed to be allowed. There was a lengthy discussion about how these changes might affect the overall costings.

It was RESOLVED that the overall project total be £132,250 with £95,000 being allowed for removal of the old equipment and supply and installation of new equipment.


It was further RESOLVED that the Clerk and Chairman complete the funding applications and that these be reviewed by the Finance & Risk Group before submission.


CBC had supplied draft Heads of Terms for the proposed lease. There were several sections which required some negotiation with CBC and further discussions were needed with CBC on the terms of the project management contract.


It was RESOLVED that the Clerk and project group be authorised to progress discussions with CBC on the detailed terms of the lease and the council’s solicitor be asked to review the lease before it was brought back to the council for formal approval.


It was noted that the play area project together with the transfer of the toilets, additional grasscutting and other minor improvements would make the beach a major focus for the council.  Councillors would be needed to lead specific aspects of these projects. It was agreed that the Chairman would draw up a list of tasks which would be required as the council’s workload increased in the coming months so that responsibilities could be allocated at the next meeting.


The Chairman reported that he had responded to the Wainwright Society with a design for their proposed new information board. They were hoping that the new board could be in place in time for an official unveiling in May.





 (b) Traffic Calming

Cllr Millington reported that Cllr Southward had agreed to provide funding of £7700 towards the physical traffic calming measures. An informal meeting had taken place with the traffic engineer and it was likely that a further £1000 would be available as the pavement work had been under budget. With the funding allocated by the parish council and public school the funds available were now £15700. The traffic engineer believed that rumble strips might not be possible on Egremont Rd and Outrigg because of the proximity to properties but painted markings could be provided. The funding available should be sufficient for the island and gateway features on Egremont Road with any remaining funds being used for gateway features on Outrigg. It was hoped to have a meeting of the Traffic Calming Committee shortly to confirm the position and make recommendations to the next parish council meeting. Work would take place in April/May 2013.


The traffic engineer had offered to visit the village school to speak to parents and staff to address concerns about congestion following the installation of the new pavement. Cllr James agreed to pass on his offer to the Headteacher.


A grant application had been prepared for the next Neighbourhood Forum for funding for a speed gun. Cllr Moules would attend the forum to present the application. The Clerk would seek confirmation from the council’s insurers that the volunteers would be covered by the council’s policy whilst taking part in the speedwatch scheme.

It was RESOLVED that the application be approved.   


(c) Tree planting

The project would now be delayed until 2013/14.


(d) Walks Booklets

There was no progress to report.



The consultation document on CCC budget proposals for 2013/14 was discussed.

It was RESOLVED to send a response encouraging CCC to protect front line services as far as possible by reducing overhead costs and maximising opportunities for sharing services with other authorities.



It was hoped that the first meeting of the Allotment Committee would take place on Monday 4 February.

It was RESOLVED that the membership be confirmed as Cllrs Kennedy, Bettinson, James Moules and Argyle.



The licence agreement permitting Network Rail to use parish council land had now been signed by both parties. The replacement of the bridge would take place over the weekend of 22-24 February but there would be work taking place on site from late January to April. The road under the bridge would be closed during certain periods and notices would be posted. Network Rail had now written to property owners to inform them of the work.

Further discussions would take place with Network Rail staff about the additional work (movement of the millstone, relocation of boulders etc) once work began on site.





The Chairman reported that he had been invited to speak to the Copeland CALC about the implications of the move to relocate Sellafield staff off-site and to restrict vehicles entering the

site. He had stressed that this was an opportunity for parishes to be involved in the early stages and to compile a wish-list of improvements. He had prepared a list of improvements which might beconsidered for St Bees and this would be discussed by the Traffic Calming Committee with a view to developing an agreed parish council policy.

It was also noted that EnterpriseMouchel had been commissioned by the Highways Agency to carry out a survey of possible improvements to cycling facilities between Egremont and Sellafield (both for commuters and leisure users) and the parish council had been invited to submit comments. It was agreed to pass copies of the letter to groups within the parish who were interested in cycling so that they could submit individual responses. Cllr Moules also referred to plans drawn up some time ago for a cycleway between St Bees and Whitehaven and agreed to forward a copy to the Chairman to be included with the consultation response.



It was reported that there had been problems of litter, broken glass etc in the centre of the village following the Christmas/New Year festivities. There had also been concern about loud music.

It was RESOLVED to write to the public houses to ask for their co-operation in keeping the roads and pavements free from litter and glass and minimising the disturbance to residents.



CBC officers had indicated that CBC was now interested in the possibility of transferring land behind Stonehouse Farm to the parish council. CBC was also considering whether to terminate their lease of station car park with Network Rail and this would offer the opportunity for the parish council to negotiate a new lease with Network Rail.

It was RESOLVED that

·       further discussions take place with CBC about the possible land transfer and

·       discussions take place with Network Rail if CBC terminate their lease in order to ensure that the car park remains available for public use.



(a)New Applications

No new applications had been received for comment.

(b) Applications approved/refused

No information had been received on decisions made by CBC.



The Clerk reported on progress with the following outstanding matters:

  • Beach Rd footpath – further comments had received from an adjoining property owner. A meeting was being arranged with CCC officers, Carillion and residents to discuss the plan to tarmac the path.
  • Access rights to Seamill car park – the matter had now been resolved without the need for a statutory declaration. Brockbanks solicitors had provided copies of the documents from the original purchase and these showed that the right of access was mentioned in the initial registration at the Land Registry. This reference had been removed in later versions but the Land Registry had now included it in the register.
  • Highways defects – The Clerk had requested a progress report from Highways on the defects identified in the survey. Highways had agreed to provide some information but had been unable to give a definite commitment to do this before the next meeting due to staff shortages. It was RESOLVED to write formally to Highways to request the information.



  • Light on footbridge adjacent to level crossing – the light had now been repaired but Highways staff would be visiting again to check that the repair was effective.
  • Fairladies footpath – the new litter bin was now in place.



No report had been received.



There were no items to report.



There were no items to report.



(a)CALC had provided details of two meetings to update parishes on the National Grid North West Connections Project on 6 Feb in Wigton (for Allerdale & Carlisle parishes) and 7 February (venue tbc) for Copeland and South Lakes parishes. Cllr Gilmour would attend the Copeland meeting if available.

(b)An  E-briefing had been received from CALC summarising welfare benefit changes. Noted.

(c) Correspondence had been received from CALC inviting nominations for the Royal Garden Party on 22 May. There were only 2 places for Cumbrian parishes so lots would be drawn.

It was RESOLVED that Cllr Sim be nominated.

(d) Information had received from the Police & Crime Commissioner about his consultation on the Police & Crime Plan for Cumbria. Details were available on the web-site (cumbria-pcc.gov.uk)

(e)MRWS – a letter had been received from CBC confirming that the executive would be discussing whether to proceed to the next stage at its meeting on 30 January. A briefing had also been received from CALC with CALC representatives due to meet the Minister on 22 Jan. If the three decision making bodies decided to proceed to the next stage, CALC would hold a briefing session on 4 Feb in Copeland. Noted.

(f) Letters of thanks had been received from Royal British Legion, Village Hall Committee, St Bees PCC and Friends of the Priory for the recent donations. Noted.

(g) Information had been received from Natural England about an intertidal shore survey of recommended Marine Conservation Zones to be carried out between 28 Jan and 31 March. Noted.


Walney Offshore Wind Farm Newsletter No 4

Cumbria Coastal Access Monthly Update January 2013

Connecting Cumbria December 2012

Cumbria Wildlife January 2013

Notification of survey work A595 Moor Row 7-22 Jan



(a)Cllr Hill reported that the Quality Coast scheme would not continue next year.

(b)It was noted that the Hadrian’s Wall project was planning a campaign to encourage active sports.



It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place on Monday 18 February 2013 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall.