Home     Site Map     Village Forum     Search     Help     About us

Home Parish Council Index Index to Minutes

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

Monday 17 June 2013 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllrs D Sim (in the Chair), N Bettinson, G Gilmour, J Haile, B Hewetson, I Hill, K James,

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



Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Argyle and Strong and from Cllr Wormstrup (CCC).



No declarations of interest were made.



No issues were raised.



It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the annual meeting on 20 May 2013 be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman subject to an amendment to min 96/13 (d) to read that the neighbourhood plan presentation would be given by Cllrs Kelly and Sim.


106/13 FINANCE

(a)Finance report

A copy of the summary of accounts at 31 May 2013 was received. It was noted that the precept, council tax support grant and concurrent services grant had all been received. The expenditure figure was low but several large invoices were expected shortly for the next stage of the traffic calming project and for servicing the beach toilets.

A meeting of FRAG was to be arranged shortly with Mark Armitage to redraft the risk management policy.


(b) Payments

It was RESOLVED that the following payments be approved:

  • Cheque no 001832 CBC – play area inspections June £43.48 +£8.70 VAT Total £52.18
  • Cheque no 001833 Seacote Hotel – refreshments for Wainwright board unveiling £41.67 + £8.33 VAT Total £50.00
  • Cheque no 001834 Open Spaces Society – annual subscription - £45.00
  • Cheque no 001835 United Utilities – allotment water March- June Total £17.61
  • Cheque no 001836 J Donaldson – reimbursement for postage £19.20 & refreshments £6.73 Total £25.93
  • Cheque no 001837 J Donaldson – Clerk salary May 2013 nett £415.10
  • Cheque no 001838 Cumbria County Council – tourist sign application fee Total £100.00

Cheques signed since last meeting to report:

  • Cheque no 001831 St Bees & District Garden Society – donation £156.00 (approved at last meeting)



(a)Beach Regeneration & Play Area Projects

WREN had asked for further detailed information to support the funding application and this had now been provided. A meeting had been arranged for 19 June with CBC officers to agree arrangements for the final tender process. Clerk would be attending a Copeland Community Fund Workshop to discuss monitoring arrangements (a condition of the grant). If the WREN grant was approved a further £3K would be required to meet the project total. An application would be made to the next Neighbourhood Forum but it was suggested that other sources of funding should be sought.

It was RESOLVED to write to Home Group and to businesses in the beach area to seek a contribution to the project costs.


An advertisement had been placed in the parish magazine and local press inviting tenders to provide a service to the toilets from 1 October. Two local residents had come forward independently to offer their help with opening/closing and possibly cleaning if commercial arrangements proved too expensive.




It was noted that the grassed area at the beach appears on the CBC list of assets for possible transfer.

It was RESOLVED to make an initial expression of interest and request further information from CBC.


Cllr Hill reported that CBC was making a bid for funding from DEFRA to cover the costs of a survey to investigate ways of preventing coastal erosion in the St Bees area. The further work on the promenade might now run into next year as there had been a delay in obtaining a consultant’s report.


Cllr Wormstrup had facilitated a contact with the Community Payback Scheme who might be able to help with regular litter picking at the beach. A meeting was being arranged with the scheme organiser in the week commencing 1 July. There might also be scope for the scheme to help with other projects.


(b) Traffic Calming

Cllr Millington reported that the invoice for the contribution to the next stage of traffic calming work was expected this week. The Traffic Engineer had confirmed that the new yellow lines by the school entrance on Outrigg were to be done very shortly and the repainting of yellow lines elsewhere in the village was to be included in the programme of works for the Better Highways team.

Cllr Moules reported that he had contacted Lowca Parish Council and the police to confirm that the parish council had agreed to purchase the speed gun. He would chase up the invoice from Lowca PC and seek a response from the police on when training could take place. Once arrangements had been made, a photo opportunity would be arranged with Cllr Wormstrup to recognise the contribution from the Neighbourhood Forum.


(c) Walks Booklets

There was no progress to report.



The draft minutes of the annual parish meeting on 10 June were received and noted.

The annual parish meeting had been well attended and the neighbourhood plan presentation had generated a lot of discussion points. More than 10 volunteers had come forward to help with preparation of the plan and a meeting would be organised in early July to prepare a work plan and it was hoped that an officer from CBC would be present to explain how the plan would fit with the Local Development Framework. It was noted that greater involvement from local businesses would be welcome. It was reported that Cllr Kelly would be attending a workshop organised by the DCLG on 25 June and Cllr Gilmour would also attend if a place was available.


The matters raised by local residents at the meeting were discussed. It was noted that the scum around Rottington Beck which had been mentioned at the meeting was a regular occurrence and had been investigated in the past by the Environment Agency. They had found it to be caused by algae which flourished in the slow moving water as a result of nitrates washing into the beck from adjacent farmland.

The Clerk had asked for parking enforcement officers to visit the village on weekday evenings to take action to deal with the problems caused by vehicles parking on double yellow lines.


Cllr Bettinson had followed up the newspaper report about the possible re-starting of coal mining operations at a site in the valley. The report was based on an article in the Times in which an Australian company was said to be seeking finance to explore possible operations in the UK. It was noted that there was an extant permission for surface working which runs until 2020, although the drift mine had ceased to operate in the early 1990’s. However, the coal extraction licence for deep mine working had ceased and the previous shaft had been sealed. Although substantial reserves of coking coal remained, there were numerous geological faults and it was considered very unlikely that the coal could be extracted economically.

However, the company mentioned in the newspaper report had interests in underground coal gasification.

This technology could be exploited to provide a source of energy by burning the coal underground and reducing the carbon emissions by storing the waste gas underground. The company had six licences around the UK including a site off the coast of St Bees. Cllr Bettinson had discussed the position with officers at CBC and CCC and he agreed to keep the situation under review.







A petition was received from residents in the beach area requesting that repairs be carried out as soon as possible to the footpath which links Abbots Way to Beach Rd. It was noted that Carillion had initially offered to tarmac the path as part of their community scheme but that recent changes to their contract at

Sellafield meant that they were now unable to do so. The Clerk had had discussions with CCC officers about alternative options and it had been suggested that repairs could be done as a partnership between CCC and the parish council. The total cost was estimated to be £3000, although it might be possible for the parish council’s contribution to be reduced if volunteer labour could be found.

It was RESOLVED that a meeting be arranged as soon as possible with representatives of CCC and local residents to discuss the specification for the work.



Correspondence had been received from CBC to confirm that Network Rail was prepared to transfer the lease of the Station car park to the parish council on the existing terms. The proposed transfer date was February 2014, although CBC had indicated that they might terminate their lease earlier. CBC had also confirmed that they were willing to consider an asset transfer of land adjacent to Stonehouse Farm subject to confirmation from the parish council of their intentions for the use of the land.

It was RESOLVED to accept Network Rail’s offer to transfer the lease on the existing terms from the earliest possible date.

It was further RESOLVED to continue discussions with CBC on the possible transfer of the land adjacent to Stonehouse Farm on the basis that the council would use it for the benefit of the community.



The draft plan had been circulated for comment. The document assumed that water could not continue to be taken from Ennerdale and proposed a series of options to avoid water supply problems in West Cumbria.

It was RESOLVED to respond to the consultation and comment that evidence had not been provided to support the assumption that Ennerdale could no longer be used for water extraction.



The Chairman reported that the Sellafield security enhancement project was now under review and further information was awaited.



The Clerk reported on progress with the following matters:-

  • Memorial seat on Tomlin – The CCC Ranger and RSPB Warden had put the seat back in position but for the moment the fence remained in position until final agreement had been reached between CCC and the landowner.
  • Kissing gates on coastal path – Carillion had confirmed that they would be able to complete this project and it was expected that the work would be done on 25 June.
  • Allotment tenancy agreements – new agreements had gone out to tenants for signature
  • Seamill car park – Network Rail had agreed to visit and inspect the state of the car park. A report was awaited.



(a) New Applications

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

  • Ref 4/13/2193/0L1 Listed building consent for internal alterations to second floor to provide

staff living accommodation for house tutor

11 Lonsdale Terrace, St Bees

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


  • Ref 4/13/2200/0F1 Erection of new dwelling- revisions to previously approved scheme incl use

of uPVC doors and windows

Plot 3, Fleatham House, High House Rd, St Bees

It was RESOLVED that the council would be content to rely on the recommendations of the Conservation Officer who was compiling a report for CBC.




  • Ref 4/13/2212/0F1 Renewal of planning permission for continued use of youth centre for

Scouts and playgroup

Youth Centre, Outrigg, St Bees

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


  • Ref 4/13/2204/0F1 Reapplication for demolition of plumber’s store & erection of dwelling

116 Main Street, St Bees

Ref 4/13/2205/0C1 Conservation area consent for above scheme

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to the demolition and rebuild, although further details would be requested of how the work was to be carried out I view of its proximity to the road and the potential effects on neighbouring property.


(b) Applications approved/refused

The following decisions by CBC were noted:

  • Demolition of existing house and replacement with new dwelling – The Knoll, High House Rd, St Bees – APPROVED with conditions
  • Conservation area consent for above scheme – APPROVED
  • Change of use from residential care home to private dwelling – 4 Seacroft Drive - APPROVED



No report had been received.



Cllr Hill gave a brief report on developments at West Cumberland Hospital, including progress with reopening the theatres. Discussions were taking place with the bus company about dropping off/pick up points at the new hospital as Age UK had suggested that it would be preferable for bus stops to be located within the site rather than on the road outside.



St Bees was included in the CCC annual rights of way maintenance programme this year and the parish council had been asked asking for suggestions for repairs or for improvement work, for which some funding may be available through their Rights of Way Improvement Project. Clerk had replied suggesting Beach Rd footpath as first priority with work on the lower part of the path from Seamill Lane over the railway as another possibility. It was agreed that councillors should forward any further suggestions to the Clerk.



(a) Details were received of a recently formed group which was seeking to promote and encourage bus use throughout Allerdale and Copeland. Noted.

(b) An updated Project Design document has been produced for the Walney Extension Offshore Wind Farm Project which was available on the Dong Energy web-site. Noted.

(c) The first monthly newsletter had been received from the Cumbria Police & Crime Commissioner. The Clerk would circulate a copy to all councillors.

(d) Information had been received from CALC enclosing the latest written ministerial statement on local planning and on-shore wind developments. It is propose to give a greater say for local people and strengthen the role of councils in shaping where development should and shouldn’t go. Noted.

(e) Minutes had been received of the meeting of the West Copeland Partnership on 11 June. Cllr Hill had represented St Bees. It was RESOLVED that a rota be drawn up for attendance at future partnership meetings.

(f) Correspondence had been received from a local resident about grass falling on his property after strimming of a nearby footpath by the parish council’s contractor. The Clerk had asked the contractor to minimise the effects of strimming as far as possible.

(g) Details had been received of drop-in events organised by United Utilities to give information on their work to identify a route for a pipeline to transfer borehole water from south Egremont to Ennerdale Water Treatment Works. The nearest event would be at Egremont Market Hall on 21 June. Noted.

(h) Details had been received of a visit by the PDSA offering free health checks for dogs – Beach car park Wed 17 July 9am-4pm. Posters would be displayed on the noticeboards.

(i) An update had been received on the Cumbria Broadband project including the anticipated exchange roll-out plan, although no timescales were given. Noted.



Cumbria Coastal Access Monthly Update June 2013

CALC Circular June 2013

Trading standards ‘Buy with confidence’ newsletter

Dispatches May 2013 (CBC’s partnership newsletter)



(a)Cllr Hill had attended the recent tourism conference at Westlakes where the emphasis had been on making information available electronically. However, it was noted that the tourist information office in Egremont

still found it useful to have printed lists of accommodation etc. It was agreed that the Clerk would provide details of accommodation providers in St Bees and Rottington to the tourist information office in Egremont.

(b) Cllr Hewetson reported that the Village in Bloom Committee’s Open Gardens event would be taking place on Sunday 30 June and offers of help would be welcome.



It was RESOLVED that the next monthly meeting take place on Monday 15 July 2013 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall.