Parish Council Minutes - February 2015

  • Minutes of meeting held 11th February 2015 in the Supper Room Gosforth Public Hall - 7.30pm


    Present : Dr Hutson; Messrs. Ancell, Gray, Jacob, McKinley, Norman (Chairman), Rae, Walton, Wright.

    1 member of the public was also in attendance


    1. Apologies: None.


    2. Declarations of interest . None


    3. Chairman's opening remarks. The Chairman introduced Mr John Meeks to speak on potential developments at Bradbury House (Abbeyfield). John gave a resume of the development of the Abbeyfield Society and the current management organisation. Recent moves by the Church Commissioners to put the Glebe Field on the market for development had now been withdrawn and there were tentative proposals by Abbeyfield to provide additional accommodation on the land. John tabled a conceptual outline plan of what could be achieved. A previous agreement at the time of the development of Bradbury House actually gave Abbeyfield a first option on the land. There was some confusion regarding the need for such development as pronounced by the County Council (not least of which is a clear definition of what type and extent of care is being provided for) which was completely at odds with local perceptions, including the current Bradbury House manager. The issue of ‘Sheltered Housing’ had been the subject of discussion at a recent Mid-Copeland Group meeting where the common view of the representative Parish Councils was that ‘Sheltered Housing’ in the area was in short supply and more was needed – as consistently borne out by demographic statistics. The Group agreed that a proper survey should be undertaken, which Mr Barker (Community & Regeneration Officer for Mid- & South Copleand) offered to organise, and that Mr Clarkson ( County Councillor) should be involved. The Parish Council agreed in principle to support the aims of Abbeyfield should it wish to increase the number of ‘Sheltered Homes’ on the Glebe Field, and to work with all parties involved in any way it could, including assistance with any survey.


    4. Minutes of the previous meeting held on 14th January 2015. These were approved - (Proposed Mr Wright, seconded Mr Rae).


    5. Actions arising from the minutes.


    1. Arrange meeting with council solicitor ref Carpark transfer. Action – The Clerk.

    Action ongoing.

    2. Assess financial risks to PC should management involvement with the Pavilion become necessary.

    Action ongoing – Next Finance Committee meeting. Action – The Finance Committee.

    3. Find out from Copeland BC which streetlights are at risk. Action – Mr Jacob.

    Action complete – List had been provided.

    4. Clarify qualification criteria ref Hallbeck Place. Action – Mr Jacob.

    Action complete.

    5. Forward Photo of illegal parking to Police. Action – The Clerk.

    Action discontinued.

     6. Provide additional information Ref Budget and put on Feb agenda. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – See Item 6b below.

    7. Respond to Parish Polls consultation. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete. 8. Respond to Submarine Dismantling consultation. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete.

    9. Put ‘Traffic Plan’ on Feb agenda. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – See Item 7a below.

    10. Put ‘Land & Logistics’ on Feb agenda. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – See Item 7b below.

    11. Put Public Hall appointments on Feb agenda. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – See Item 7c below.

    12. Respond to LDNPA ref Log Cabin near Craemar. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete

    13. Arrange meeting with G Browning. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – On March agenda.

     14. Provide piece for Newsletter. Action – Mr Rae.

    Action complete.

     15. Write letters of thanks to Mr & Mrs Jacob and Mrs Gallery-Strong. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete.

     16. Put Honesty Box on Feb agenda. Action – The Clerk.

    Action complete – See Item 7d below.



    6. Financial Matters.


    a) Monthly Financial report. This was approved (Proposed Mr Walton, seconded Mr Wright).

    b) 2015-16 Budget . The Clerk had distributed an updated budget proposal sheet following discussions at the January meeting. It was agreed that an extra item should be added to provide funding of ~£240 for the Newsletter (Tethera) from the reserves. With this amendment the budget was approved and the precept for 2015-16 set at £23140 (Proposed Mr Walton, seconded Mr Jacob). Copy is attached to these minutes.


    7. Main Business.  

    a) Traffic Plan (Mr Rae). Mr Rae gave a resume of discussions with Mr Cosgrove. Traffic surveys had been done and the 20 mph speed limit was being consistently ignored (by > 90% of all drivers). Mr Cosgrove proposed a series of hatched lines in the Public Hall/War Memorial area which would create the illusion that the road appeared narrower than it really was, as a means of slowing traffic. It was agreed that this should go ahead as it could be done in the present financial year, and the results subsequently monitored. The Clerk said he would forward the County Highways plan (from 2011) for the Petton Place/Gosforth Gate area to Mr Rae as this appeared to have gone off the radar.

    b) Land and Logistics (Mr Rae). There had been a presentation by Sellafield staff at the last 3-tier meeting on means of reducing the impact of Sellafield-bound traffic on local residents as well as making access/egress easier for staff. Mr Rae explained some of the thinking and analysis which was part of the process and which now had to consider the additional effects of the NUGEN development at Moorside.

    c) Public Hall Committee representation. Mr Jacob said that although he had resigned as Chairman of the committee he would still like to be a member. It was agreed, following a suggestion by The Chairman, that Mr Jacob could stand in for him or Dr Hutson if either could not attend and the formal appointment could be dealt with after the May elections.

    d) Honesty Box. It had been suggested that continuing damage to the Honesty Box by reversing vehicles meant that it was not cost-effective. As much had been spent on repairs as had been received from the Box.The Clerk said that since the Box had been moved back and a protective plinth installed there had been no further damage to the Box although the plinth had been damaged twice. It was agreed that the Box and plinth should be left in situ and the situation monitored before any decision was taken to either remove or re-site the Box.


    8. Representative's reports.

    a) War Memorial (The Clerk). The Clerk said that via our MP who had been very helpful, he had received feedback from the Ministry of Defence that a serving Gosforth-born soldier had lost his life at Suez in 1952. He had consequently arranged an appeal for information on the family (reproduced below) via the web-site, What’s On and Whitehaven News. At a suggestion from the floor this was extended to the Newsletter. Mr Ancell also volunteered to use social media to promote awareness.


    War Memorial - Gosforth

    The Parish Council has been looking into improving the appearance of the memorial and part of that process has been the investigation of whether the list of the fallen which is displayed in St Mary’s Church is accurate, as it shows only names from the 1 st and 2 nd World Wars, and there have been numerous conflicts since. Information received from the Ministry of Defence reveals that a Gosforth-born soldier –

    Lt. William Horace Hobson - lost his life in Suez on 30 th January 1952. (He is unrelated to Des Hobson from Ellerslie Park).


    Accordingly the Parish Council seeks information from anyone who can recall the family with the objective of gaining their agreement to updating the existing list and how that should be done.


    If anyone has any information will they please contact The Clerk at Tel. 24327 or e-mail –



    b) Mid-Copeland Group. The main areas of discussion centred around the future delivery of health services to local rural areas (referred to in Item 3 above),and the Copeland Local Plan which followed tradition by totally ignoring parishes which were in or partially in the National Park. The minutes of the meeting would be sent out to all members.


    9. Planning Matters.

    a) 7/2015/4011 Hall Bolton Farmhouse – Removal of Agricultural Tenancy condition. There was no objection but it was agreed that LDNPA should be asked to consider applying a Local Occupancy condition to the premises.

    b) 7/2015/4009 Side Hill, Beck Place 2 storey extension . No objection.

    c) 7/2015/4008 Mill House Farm – Roof on Sheep Pen . No objection.


    10. Public Participation. As a member of the public,Mr Turner raised issues regarding parking on Whitecroft, which were aggravated by contractors’ vehicles associated with short-let properties, and questioned whether the area of grass adjacent to Meadowfield entrance could be converted for parking. He also suggested the use of SIDS as a means of slowing traffic and drew attention to the amount of the carpark taken over by Sellafield staff. The Chairman replied that parking in this area was a continual problem but it was recognised that it did have the effect of reducing vehicle speeds. The Police would take action on request if the parking was dangerous, caused an obstruction, or prevented access to residents’ properties. The council had been advised by the County Highways that SIDS had a very short-term effect and preferred other solutions. The conversion of the grassed area into parking had been investigated by the Parish Council in the past but the costs were prohibitive. The use of ‘Resident Only’ parking permits was not considered to be advantageous as temporary residents would also qualify. The council were aware of the problems on the carpark and had repeatedly taken the matter up with Sellafield management but since no laws were being broken and the carpark was free to use any action was difficult.


    11. Police Report. There had been 13 incidents reported in the period - 1 public order offence, 1 abandoned 999 call, 1 road traffic collision (injury), 1 road traffic collision (damage to vehicle only), 4 cases of criminal damage to vehicles had also occurred in the Gosforth area and are currently under investigation, 1 theft of a vehicle, 1 theft from a vehicle, 1 highway disruption, 2 concerns for welfare .

    12. Correspondence.

    a) Info from NDA ref Forestry management. This had been in disk form and the Chairman asked the Clerk to get it copied as it was difficult to read on-screen. The disk would be passed on to Ponsonby PC as it covered areas in both parishes.

    b) Blengdale Forest – The National Park Ranger, Phil Clague, had contacted The Clerk for an update on the forest project. A meeting would be arranged to include Mr Walton.

    c) Fix the Fells Group. The Clerk had been informed that the group would be carrying out repairs to several of the main fell footpaths in its next programme incuding Gavel Neese, Kirk Fell, Esk Hause, Brown Tongue and Black Sail.

    d) West Cumbria Community Forum. The Parish Council was asked to send a representative. Mr Jacob and The Clerk would attend.


    13. Questions Councillors wish to raise.

    ) Distribution of Newsletter (Mr Gray). It was confirmed that the current distribution list was adequate with the exception that Mrs Gallery-Strong’s area would be taken over by Mr Hosfield and there was no need for postal distribution of the outlying areas by The Clerk as copies would be available in the village shops.

    b) Mr Ancell – Drew attention to the chaotic parking in Petton Place (See Item 7a above) and the problems on the carpark during recent icy conditions. The Chairman said that he and The Clerk were actively pursuing a source of salt as County Highways were not making supplies available.

    c) Dr Hutson - said that the situation at the bottom of Hardingill was also made difficult by the number of cars parked.


    14 In Camera. None.


    There being no other business the meeting was closed at 9.50 pm.











    Back to main page