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Draft Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held on Monday 16 June 2014 at 6.30pm

in St Bees Village Hall

PRESENT: Cllr D Sim in the Chair and 10 local residents

In attendance: Cllr H Wormstrup (County Councillor for Egremont North/St Bees division)

PCSO A Willison


The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and explained that the monthly meeting of the parish council would take place immediately after the annual parish meeting.



Apologies for absence were received from Karen James, Gus Kennedy, Sean Moules, Chris Robson and Maxine Riley.



It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the last Annual Parish Meeting held on 10 June 2013 be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman.



The Chairman gave an update on issues raised at the meeting in 2013:-

  • The work undertaken by CBC at Rottington Beck had now been completed. The scum which had been noted had resolved itself naturally.
  • Illegal and dangerous parking continued to be a problem and the Parish Council continued to press for greater enforcement of parking regulations.
  • There had been no progress with the suggestion of a cycle track link to Whitehaven.
  • The Parish Council had received permission to produce a Neighbourhood Plan but did not have the resources to undertake the task at this stage. The Copeland Plan was moving ahead and this would be the reference point for development decisions in the absence of a Neighbourhood Plan.



The Chairman presented his report on Parish Council activities for 2013/14 (copy attached to the official copy of the minutes). The report and summary of the accounts would be published in the next edition of the parish magazine and would also be available on the web-site. The Chairman explained that this had again been a very busy year with the Parish Council taking on new services as a result of the budget cuts by Copeland Borough Council. His Annual Report focussed particularly on the major strategic issues which the council had dealt with over the year. He particularly drew attention to the following:-

  • The parish council had undertaken a survey of households in the parish in response to the government consultation on changes to the site selection process for geological storage of nuclear waste. Fifty responses were received and the views expressed were included in the response sent to DECC. A letter had been sent to members of the House of Lords Select Committee drawing attention to the lack of public engagement.
  • The Parish Council had agreed to take a 99 year lease on the toilets at the beach which had enabled them to remain open. This was a major financial commitment for the Parish Council which was now responsible for running costs and maintenance. The project to improve the beach play area was nearing completion. A 25 year lease on the land had been agreed with CBC and grant applications had been successful. The project would cost £138000 and was expected to be complete in July. New information boards had been installed in the beach shelter and there were outline plans for landscaping at the northern end of the foreshore, although this would require substantial funding.
  • The Parish Council had agreed a licence with Network Rail for the use of station car park when CBC gave up their lease. This would enable the car park to continue to be free of parking charges.
  • The roads through the village continued to be very busy and the Parish Council had been pressing CCC to improve the standard of maintenance. Concern had been expressed about the lack of any traffic plan for the B5345 when the new Albion Square development opened.
  • Superfast broadband was being rolled out across the county and it was likely that it would be available to most households in the parish by the autumn. Ian McAndrew continued to be the parish Broadband Champion and received regular updates on progress with the project.
  • The County Council held a public meeting to report back on their findings and recommendations following the flooding in the village in 2012. They had suggested that a community group be formed in the parish to act as a point of liaison with the statutory authorities on flooding issues. Volunteers to join such a group had been sought through the parish magazine but there had been no response. A member of the public asked what the remit of such a group would be and indicated her interest in helping with emergency planning. The Chairman replied that the group’s remit was not finally decided but it would work with CCC on looking at flood and drainage patterns in the parish.



The Chairman invited Mrs Helen Sharpe from St Bees Scouts to explain progress with the project.

Mrs Sharpe explained that the old portacabins were reaching the end of their life and were no longer serviceable. The Scout Committee had looked at a number of options including sharing buildings with other groups but none of these had proved practical. The Committee had concluded that a new building on the existing site was the only satisfactory solution. A number of other local groups had expressed an interest in using a new building. The proposal was to replace the old portacabins with a single storey brick building. CBC Planning Dept and Cumbria Highways had not raised any objections in principle and the Committee was now investigating possible funding sources with a view to completing the project by Sept 2015.



PCSO Willison presented a report prepared by his colleague, PCSO Kane, who was unable to attend.

St Bees remained a village with a low level of reported crime. There had been a recent burglary and the police encouraged all householders to be vigilant. Parking around the village school continued to be a problem and the police would attend as often as they were able to speak to drivers. The formation of a volunteer Speedwatch scheme in the village was expected to help in deterring speeding and the police would continue to carry out their own speed checks. There had recently been some youth-related disorder around the village school. The police would be patrolling the area and asked residents to report any problems. Neighbourhood Watch schemes were well established in the village and there had been an encouraging level of interest in the Farm Watch Scheme.

It was reported that there had been some rowdy behaviour the previous weekend and the parish noticeboard in Main Street had been damaged.



No motions had been received.