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

Monday 16 June 2014 at 7.00pm in the Village Hall


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

D Millington, H Strong and the Clerk


In attendance : Cllr H Wormstrup, County Councillor for St Bees/ Egremont North

Mrs H Sharpe, St Bees Scouts


Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs I Hill, K James, F Kennedy, S Moules, M Riley and C Robson.



There were no declarations of interest.



No issues were raised.



It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the annual meeting on 19 May 2014 be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman.



Cllr Wormstrup reported that he had made enquiries about replacement of the street light at the bottom of Outrigg which was removed by Highways some time ago. They had undertaken to replace the light in the next few weeks but seemed unaware of the circumstances of its removal. It was agreed that the Clerk would forward to Cllr Wormstrup the report and photograph supplied to the Highways Dept last autumn.

Cllr Wormstrup had also been approached by residents concerned about the safety of the Abbey Rd junction with the B5345. A site meeting was to be organised with Highways engineers to look at the problems and it was agreed that Cllr Millington would be invited to attend.

Cllr Wormstrup then left the meeting.



The Chairman welcomed Mrs Sharpe to the meeting and invited her to explain progress with the project. Mrs Sharpe explained that the Scout Committee had investigated options for sharing accommodation with other groups in the village but had concluded that replacing the existing portacabin with a permanent building was the best solution. Some initial plans had been drawn up and it was hoped to submit funding applications in the autumn. If planning approval was given, it was hoped that the new building would be ready by Sept 2015.

Mrs Sharpe asked the council to consider whether they could assist with a promise of match funding and also give practical help with preparing tenders. In addition she asked the council to consider whether the Pinfold could be used to provide disabled car parking. The Chairman pointed out that the Pinfold was registered common land and this placed restrictions on its use. Cllrs Gilmour and Strong offered to assist with the preparation of tenders.

It was RESOLVED to support the project in principle and consider financial and practical assistance with the project at the next meeting.


107/14 FINANCE

(a)Financial Report

The summary of accounts at 31 May was received and noted. Cllr Strong explained that the precept and council tax support grant had been received and the concurrent services grant had been higher


than anticipated. The grant from CBC for the landscaping scheme had also been received. Expenditure was in line with expectations at this stage of the year.

(b) Insurance

The Clerk reported that there had been problems with the insurance renewal following the decision at the last meeting to terminate the long term agreement with AON. Zurich had withdrawn their quotation following a complaint by AON that Zurich were offering quotations to councils already in a long term agreement, contrary to an agreement between companies which they described as ‘usual market practice’. Following a prolonged period of discussion with the two companies AON had offered a revised renewal quotation of £1304.76 (including the penalty charge for terminating the long term agreement). Following consultation with the Chairman, Vice Chairman and Chair of FRAG it had been agreed to accept the revised AON quotation to ensure that insurance was in place on 1 June. It was agreed that a note of the problems be sent to CALC for the information of other local councils.


It was RESOLVED that the following payments be approved:

  • Cheque no 001956 United Utilities Water plc – allotment water Total £11.95
  • Cheque no 001957 United Utilities Water plc– beach toilets water and wastewater Total £389.02
  • Cheque no 001958 Open Spaces Society - annual subscription Total £45.00
  • Cheque no 0001959 CBC – NNDR Beach Toilets Total £150.00
  • Cheque no 001960 J Donaldson – reimbursement for postage £6.36 & tree supports £56.99 + VAT Total £74.75
  • Cheque no 001961 J Donaldson – Clerk salary June nett Total £450.71
  • Thomas Milburn Property Ltd – toilet service £583.33 + £116.67 VAT Total £700.00 (to be paid by Standing Order)


Payments since last meeting to report:

Cheque no 001955 AON UK Ltd – insurance 2014/15 £1304.76



West Cumbria Mining had provided a preliminary briefing paper on their plans to mine coking coal in the area. The plans were still at a very early stage and there were few specific details available but four test boreholes would be sunk at different sites this year with offshore investigations beginning in 2015. If the project went ahead, the headworks would be located south of Whitehaven and north of St Bees, although no specific sites had yet been identified. It was noted that the company was intending to hold public drop-in sessions in the next few weeks and had promised to keep the council informed as their plans developed.



(a)Beach Regeneration

(i) Play Area

The installation of the play equipment was now complete and fencing and ground works were underway. Discussions had taken place with the Village School and a date of Thursday 10 July at 10.15am had been proposed for the official opening. The play area would be opened by Cllr Sim assisted by two pupils from the Village School with all the school children coming to watch. Representatives of the funders and those who had helped and supported the project would be invited to attend as well as the local press. The opening would be publicised on the noticeboards and web-site and members of the public would be welcome to come along. It was proposed that all the children should be given an ice cream with coffee and biscuits being provided for the invited guests.




The Clerk would arrange for the grass to be cut before the opening and a sign would be ordered. CBC would be asked to undertake the monthly inspections with weekly inspections carried out by volunteers. A small supply of parts would be ordered to keep a stock in hand.

It was RESOLVED that:

  • the official opening take place on Thursday 10 July at 10.15am
  • £200 be allocated from the Community Events budget to cover the costs of the opening ceremony
  • £500 be transferred from the general reserve to the earmarked play area reserve to cover the cost of parts
  • arrangements be made with a commercial company to handle calls from the public relating to the play area and other parish council assets.


(ii) Rottington Beck

The work at Rottington Beck was apparently complete. CBC had been asked to leave in place the gravel laid to create an access road. It was noted that some of the stobs needed to be put back in place to prevent vehicles parking in that area.


(iii) Landscaping Project

A final meeting had taken place with the landscape architect following the receipt of the report from the structural engineers. The total cost of the project was now estimated at £79K + VAT. The next stage would be to look at the legal issues arising from ownership of the land, responsibilities for future maintenance and possible funding sources.

It was RESOLVED that a meeting of the Beach Regeneration Committee be convened to consider the possible ways forward and make a recommendation to the full council.


(iv)CBC Coastal interpretation project

A meeting had taken place with CBC representatives and their consultant to discuss the siting of the new interpretation board. The location chosen had been the grassed area near the beach café. The text would be agreed with the parish council and Cllr Sim had been asked to provide some suggestions.


(b) Traffic Calming

No report had been received from Cllr Moules on progress with the rota. Cllr Hewetson offered to contact the volunteers to progress matters if Cllr Moules provided the necessary details.


(c) Community Events

Cllr Argyle reported that plans for the Beach Event on Sun 31 August were moving ahead.

It was noted that a small group was being formed to co-ordinate plans for the commemoration of the start of WW1.


(e) Office Improvements

The Chairman reported that the window had been repaired and the roof repairs were in hand.


(f) Tree Planting

Cllr Bettinson reported that the trees planted this year appeared to be doing well with a very small failure rate. Additional tree supports had been ordered. It had been suggested that the next phase of the project might be done in conjunction with the lengthsman scheme. It was agreed that the Clerk and Cllr Bettinson would follow up this possibility.


110/14 CCTV

The CCTV system at the beach car park had been removed by CBC as part of their budget cuts. It was suggested that the costs of installing a system should be investigated to deter anti-social behaviour around the car park and play area.


It was RESOLVED that costs be obtained for installing a suitable CCTV system.



The Clerk’s report on on-going matters was received and the following points were noted:

  • Brown tourist signs - CCC had been asked to look again at the refusal to allow brown tourist signs on the main approach roads to St Bees but they had not changed their decision. It was RESOLVED to continue to pursue the matter.
  • Algae, Pow Beck - the Environment Agency had investigated and identified the problem as long chain algae. They would monitor the situation and take any action necessary.
  • Letter to CBC re beach car park income – a response had been received from CBC explaining that in the current financial climate they were unable to agree to the request to share the additional revenue generated by the play area. It was agreed to ask Cllr Hill to take up the matter again with CBC officers.
  • Public footpaths – CCC had confirmed that the route of the Seamill path now follows the line on the Definitive Map. A stile could be placed in the original position if the landowner agreed but this would not be funded by CCC. The Beach Rd footpath improvements were in the CCC programme for this year and CCC would contact the Clerk shortly to discuss this and other footpath work in the parish.
  • Quality Coast flag- CBC had repaired the flag pole and the flag was now flying.
  • Noticeboard on toilet block – CBC had passed on a key to the noticeboard but there appeared to be problems with the lock.
  • Grasscutting- some changes had been made to the contract schedule for this year as CBC had obtained grant funding to enable them to reinstate fortnightly cuts at the main beach. Other areas had been identified and added to the schedule and CCC had agreed that the contractor could do extra cuts on verges to supplement the work they were able to do.
  • Sale of Land to United Utilities – the legal work associated with the sale was in hand.
  • Outrigg Play area – an urgent repair was needed to the safety surfacing at the play area to prevent the damage worsening. The Clerk had authorised the work at a cost of approx £50.


(a)New Applications

The Planning Advisory Group reported on the following applications which had been received for comment:

  • 4/14/ 2217/0L1 Listed building consent to remove render so that lead soakers & flashing can be installed for an abutting roof - Manor Cottage, 13 Main St, St Bees

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


  • 4/14/2227/0F1Amendments to approved access track,cable and ancillary structure originally approved under 4/13/2157/0F1 – Highfield Farm, Egremont

It was RESOLVED that there were no objections to the proposed amendments.


  • 4/14/2221/0F1 Erect general purpose/sheep building - field opposite Fairladies Farm, Outrigg

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


(b) Applications approved/refused

No decisions had been notified by CBC.


(c)Other planning matters

Cllr Millington reported that the owner of the property being built at Blythe Place, Seamill Lane had contacted the parish council to explain his intention to apply for permission to create a habitable room in the loft. It had become apparent that the height of the building would exceed that approved in the original application. The applicant had discussed the position with CBC who had said a new


application would be required as this would be a significant change to the approved plan. Any new application would be sent to the parish council for comment.


There was discussion about the council’s policy on dealing with cases where there may be a possible breach of planning rules. It was agreed that there needed to be consistency in these cases and that in future the parish council would ask CBC to investigate possible breaches if the landowner/developer did not take steps to clarify the position.



PCSO Kane had provided a written report which was noted.



There had been no issues arising from the Annual Parish Meeting held earlier in the evening apart from the Scout Hut project which would be discussed at the next meeting.



It was noted that the travellers had moved on from the beach car park before CBC was able to obtain a court order. A copy of a letter sent to CBC by Mr T Milburn was received and noted.

The next 3 tier meeting with CBC and CCC would be taking place on 17 June. One of the items for discussion was the lack of traffic planning associated with Sellafield and the Albion Square development. The Chairman would attend on behalf of St Bees PC.



(a) Correspondence had been received from CBC seeking suggestions for inclusion in the overview and scrutiny programme for 2014/15. Noted.

(b) Guidance had been received from CALC on the new Local Government Transparency Code and Publishing Information. This was not relevant to St Bees as it only applied to councils with income or expenditure over £200K.

(c) Correspondence had been received from CCC giving dates for Neighbourhood Forums and enclosing the Copeland Newsletter. The dates for West Copeland were to be Tues 1 July and Thurs 6 November. Noted.

(d)Preliminary details had been received of the National Grid North West Coast Connections consultation postponed from last year. Further details of local consultation events would be provided in due course. Noted.

(e)An email had been received from Arthur Millie providing information on the election of a mayor and qualifications for candidature. Noted.

(f) Correspondence had been received from Chris Marriott about further problems with horse droppings on the footpath on Beach Rd. The Clerk was making enquiries about whether any signage/enforcement action was possible.

(g) Details had been received of a Funding Fair organised by CVS to take place at Lillyhall on 3 July. Noted.

(h) Details had been received of support available through ACT for Community-led Planning. Noted.

(i) Details had been received of a special meeting of West Copeland Partnership on 1 July to consider a proposal to use the old police station in Egremont as accommodation for ex-services personnel. Noted.

(j)Letters had been received from two year 7 pupils at Cockermouth School (both living in the village), one asking for action to deal with dog fouling, the other complaining about noise and bad language from customers of a local public house. It was agreed that the letters be passed on to Cllr Hill as both matters fell within CBC’s remit.

(k)A revised timetable had been received for beach and sea-bed monitoring. Noted.

(l) Information had been received from CBC on grants available to those whose homes were affected by flooding in December/January. Noted.




CALC Circular June 2014

Coastal Access Update June 2014

Healthwatch Cumbria Newsletter

Open Space Summer 2014 & Annual Report 2013

Dispatches June 2014



(a)It was noted that the Village School feteon 14 June had been very successful and the organisation had been excellent. It was agreed that a letter be sent to the organisers thanking them for their hard work and congratulating them on the success of the event.

(b) It was noted that a survey of Grade ll listed buildings in the parish would be taking place shortly. Property owners had been informed.

(c)The sign advertising the Garden Show would be located at Beck Edge Garden this year. It had been noted that the honeysuckle alongside the road at Beck Edge was causing problems with visibility. The grasscutting contractor would be asked to trim it back when next in that area.



It was RESOLVED that the next meeting take place at 7.00pm on Monday 21July 2014.