Minutes of a meeting of Gosforth Parish Council held on Wednesday, 10 th February at 7.00pm in the Supper Room of the Village Hall.
Present: Cllrs T Norman (Chair); C Walton (Vice Chair); D Ancell; D Gray; D Hobson; G Hutson; A Jacob; I Rae; P Turner
Apologies: Cllrs M McKinley and G Parker
Also present: J Murray (Clerk); C Campbell, Lake District National Park Authority (LDNPA)
14/16 Chair’s Opening Remarks
The Chair extended a warm welcome to Catherine Campbell, planner from the Lake District National Park Authority.
15/16 Declarations of Interest
Minute No 6/16: Cllr T Norman in a Planning Application with respect to Little Fold, Gosforth and would withdraw during consideration.
Catherine Campbell noted that there were around 40 planning applications a year for Gosforth, which was categorised by the LDNPA as a rural service centre, for which development would be supported.
In the case of Gosforth, this did generally mean gap fill sites as most peripheral areas were categorised as amenity land.
In considering planning applications, the planning team would consult all statutory consultees and it would be their view they would take into account for their particular specialism.
With respect to the Parish Council, they would be looking for one of three particular responses on a planning application:
The Committee was reminded of the areas of consideration they should take into account in addition to LDNPA and local plans:
The Committee was reminded that the LDNPA Development Control Committee made provision for public participation and should ever the Parish Council wish to attend, they could be allocated five minutes.
Planners found it helpful to work with the Parish and applicants in advance of an application and Catherine drew attention to the LDNPA planning surgeries in the village once a month.
In the course of discussions, it was noted that the Parish Plan was relatively up-to-date. However, there was little room for substantial development, and if the Parish Council decided to update its current plan to include development sites or business sites, then this was something that the LDNPA might take into account.
Asked about affordable housing, it was noted that if there was to be a development of more than 3 houses, then a percentage would require to be affordable. It was also noted that the Planning Authority would be interested to know if local occupancy clauses were being abused.
Finally, the Council noted that the appeal against non-determination for Walkmill Gardens was likely to be held on 5 th April 2016, venue to be confirmed.
Councillors thanked Catherine for her input and advice, which had been most helpful.
Continuing on other planning matters, early plans for the proposed Bradbury House development were viewed.
Cllr T Norman withdrew (conflict of interest)
Cllr C Walton took the Chair
A planning application had been received with respect to the erection of a shed at Little Fold, Gosforth. Councillors did not have any objections to the proposed development other than that neighbours views should be taken into account.
Resolved – that there should be no objection to the proposal (subject to the views of adjacent properties).
Cllr T Norman returned and resumed the Chair
Resolved – that the minutes of the meeting held on 20 th January 2016 be approved and signed as a correct record.
18/16 Matters Arising
Cllr Turner noted that monitoring of the traffic flow had not raised undue concern over speeding. The SID device was now located on the approach to the primary school.
The Clerk noted that the allowance payable to the Clerk was now itemised under Schedule of Income and Payments.
The insurance company had settled with the gentleman who had had an accident in the disabled toilet. Costings would now be sought for repair and to take into account additional disability aids which might be required. It was noted that there may be some funding available, for which enquiries would be made.
19/16 Reports from Meetings
A further library meeting had been held and some volunteer interest had been identified. This was still at a very early stage and a further meeting was to be held shortly.
There had been a further meeting with Cumbria County Council and Parish Councils about the demise of the no 6 bus service. Efforts by Cumbria County Council to provide alternatives were noted and welcomed, in particular the Village Wheels service twice weekly Egremont (to connect with other services), which would complement the existing Muncaster Microbus. The efforts to engage another operator, were also welcomed.
It was also noted that, Arriva trains were due to take over the local rail franchise shortly and that this should see an improved service.
Resolved – that the Parish Council should not subsidise a bus service at this time and no provision should be made under the precept for such a subsidy.
Cllrs Hutson and Walton updated Council on the NDA strategy consultation, with concern from the stakeholder group largely centring on local issues for which the NDA had no power under the Energy Act, such as transport or bio-diversity. It was noted, however, that some of these issues were being picked up under the Local Enterprise Partnership.
Cllr Walton had attended the Mid Copeland Group meeting and reminded Council of the Mayor’s public meeting in Seascale the following evening. It was noted that bridges in the area were being monitored for any flood damage.
20/16 Public Participation
No members of the public were present.
The schedule of Income and Expenditure was received, noted and approved, including payments for training.
It was also noted that there had been further correspondence on external audit and it was agreed that there was no appetite to opt out of the proposed external audit requirements on the basis of the fee being charged and that £300 provision in the budget for audit should be adequate to cover this.
22/16 Police Report
The report was received and noted.
Cllr Hobson undertook to respond to the request for a condition report on war memorials.
Cllr Rae undertook to look into correspondence with respect to access to Coastal communities (which it was felt was not linked to the cycleway project).
24/16 Questions/Issues from Councillors
It was noted that some security equipment had been replaced in the village and that the cost would be approved from contingency.
It was agreed that the potential for a village lottery be discussed in more detail at the next meeting.
It was noted that the Parish Magazine would be ready for distribution shortly.
25/16 Meeting of April 2016
Resolved – that the meeting should be held on Tuesday, 12 th April 2016 (to allow the clerk to attend the clerks’ induction training).
26/16 Confidential Items
The meeting closed at 2105h