Parish Council Minutes - August 2008

  • Minutes of meeting held 13th August 2008 in the Supper Room, Gosforth Public Hall - 7.00pm

    Present : Messrs. McKinley (Chairman), Gray, Jacob, Norman, Wright;

    1. Apologies: Dr Hutson, Messrs. Ancell, Bailey (Both business), Newbold ( Holiday), Mrs Balmer (Visitors).

     2. Declarations of interest . None

     3. Chairman's opening remarks. The Chairman said that the last month had been extremely busy with detailed responses being made on the Local Development Framework (LDF) and the Government proposals for the Geological Disposal Facility (GDF). He and The Clerk had also met with Copeland BC regarding the transfer of the carpark.

    4. Minutes of the previous meeting held on 9th July 2007. These were approved (Proposed Mr Jacob, seconded Mr Wright).

     5. Actions arising from the minutes.

     1. Investigate funds in High School charity. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – The clerk reported that the High School charity fund account stood at £220 and the other charity accounts held £1214. After discussion it was agreed that The Clerk should write to the other trustees of the High School charity to get agreement to release the funds towards the Nursery improvements. It was suggested that the other charity fund could possibly be used towards the Burial Ground if the need arose in the future.

     2. Arrange meeting with K Parker ref transfer of carpark.

    Action – The Clerk and the Chairman.

    Action complete – See Item 12 below.

    3. Provide copies of P/Hall AGM and subsequent meeting minutes. Action – Mr Jacob

    Action ongoing – See also Item 6b below.

    4. Follow up with Copeland BC issue of Smoking Shelter. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete but no reply had been received. However LDNPA had, at last responded to the original request for information. See Correspondence Item 9.11 below.

    5. Inspect council safe contents. Action – Mr Jacob & The Clerk

    Action ongoing.

    6. Discuss with Playing Fields committee the retirement of Mrs McDowell.

    Action – Mr Norman

    Action discontinued – decision to be made by the Playing Fields Committee.

    7. Contact LDNPA ref trees at Harecroft Hall. Action – The Clerk

    Action ongoing - The council is anxious to ensure that any Tree Preservation Orders are not violated. On the advice of the Chairman a letter would be sent to Mr McGowan.

    8. Send any comments ref LDF as soon as possible but NO LATER THAN 21 st JULY directly to The Clerk. Action – All members

    Action complete – Response had been completed by the Chairman and The Clerk and an acknowledgement had been received.

     9. Follow up with Post Office Ltd possibility of OUTREACH service.

    Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – See Correspondence Item 31 below.

     10. Check out availability of mobile phone signals for Wellington.

    Action complete – See Item 7c below. Action – Mr Jacob

    11. Arrange meeting with Dr Walker ref Seascale Surgery. Action – The Clerk

    Action overtaken by Neighbourhood Forum meeting on 11 th August – see Item 12 below.

    12. Prepare draft letter to HMG ref White Paper on Geological Disposal Facility

    (Radioactive Waste). This will be circulated to members for responses. Action – Mr McKinley, The Clerk

    Action complete – Final letter had been sent.

    13. Reply to LDNPA ref Gosforth Hall planning application. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    14. Write to Mr Clarkson ref Street Lighting improvements. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete - The Clerk had since discussed the situation with Mr Clarkson who was taking the matter forward.

    15. Settle Bleasdale Solicitors account. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    16. Initiate consultation process ref Mental health Services. Action – Mr McKinley

    The Chairman reported that his assessment was that the proposals concentrated on providing care in the community but there was over-centralisation of services in major population areas – ie. not really suited to the Cumbria situation. He had pencilled in his responses and asked that the action continues via other members (Messrs Wright, Norman, Gray & Jacob. Responses to be returned to The Clerk to co-ordinate a reply before the 30 th September deadline.

    17. Put info on Summer Activities in the Library. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    18. Contact Copeland BC grass-cutting team ref Leagate. Action – The Clerk

    Action ongoing.

    19. Contact LDNPA Ranger and County Warden ref Rubbish on Bleng Footpath and locked gate on bridleway near Silverdale. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – both agreed to take action in the near future.

    20. Provide electronic copy of WCSSG press release. Action – Dr Hutson

    Action complete.

    21. Provide Mr Gray with newsletter distribution list. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    6. Financial Matters.

    a) Monthly financial report. This was approved (Proposed Mr Norman, seconded Mr Wright).

    b) 2007-8 Audit Report. The Clerk explained the District Auditor’s response and comments. The only issue was that of the oversight and acceptance of the Public Hall accounts and arrangements had now been put in place to ensure that this would be done in future. Mr Gray proposed and Mr Norman seconded a motion to accept the District Auditors report. This was agreed unanimously.

    7. Main Business

    Gosforth – Seascale Greenway (Mr Gray). Mr Gray reported on the continuing progress by SUSTRANS and proposed, seconded by Mr Jacob, that the existing design proposals should be formally accepted by the Parish Council. This was agreed unanimously. He then read a report from the County Area Engineer which raised several obstacles to the scheme. In view of the comments made it was agreed that Mr Gray would bring the letter to the attention of the 2 County Councillors for the area (Mr Clarkson and Mrs Brown).

    Playing Fields Committee funding (Mr Norman). Mr Norman reported on the difficulties the Playing Fields Committee had experienced in securing funding for the Multi-purpose Playing Area. The net result was that the project was at some risk due to the timescales involved for completion. Discussion were ongoing with Copeland BC legal department to enable the Parish Council to participate in the process and hence enable the release of the funds. Mr Norman and The Clerk were asked to deal with Copeland BC on behalf of the council if this became necessary.

    Telephone Box closure. Mr Jacob reported that mobile phone reception in the Wellington area was intermittent and accordingly it was agreed that Copeland BC should be advised that the Parish Council wished the public call-box at Wellington to be retained for the benefit of emergency situations.

    GDF progress. The Chairman summarised the positon to date and referred to the second letter from the County Council Chief Executive which raised further confusion regarding the status of Copeland BC’s ‘Expression of Imterest’ and the County Council’s intentions. It was agreed that the letter should be circulated to all councillors for comment and it was also agreed, at the suggestion of Mr Norman, that the Parish Council’s position should be publicised by the appending of the letter to HMG (ref. the White Paper) to the council minutes. In response to a suggestion from Mr Wright, that CORWM should also be informed of the concerns which the Parish Council had regarding the Government White Paper, the Chairman said we should await a reply to the letter from the Government and if this was unsatisfactory we should then involve CORWM. It was also agreed that clarification should be sought from Copeland BC regarding their Nuclear Policy following a statement made by the Leader at the recent Neighbourhood Forum meeting when she said that consultation on the policy with Parish Councils had already taken place. None of the Gosforth Parish Councillors present at the meeting could recall any such consultation, and on reflection, neither could The Clerk.

    8. Planning Matters

    78 Meadowfield – Single storey extension. ( Dealt with by Mr Gray & The Clerk.)

    61 Meadowfield – Change to roofline of garage. ( Dealt with by Mr Gray & The Clerk.)

    9. Correspondence.

    West Cumbria Strategic Partnership - Invite to Coalfields Regeneration Trust meeting. Noted.

    CALC – Training leaflets. Noted.

    Copy of letter ref. land at Bridge Petton. Mr Norman said that apparently 2 separate surveys into potential development sites had been carried out without either the land-owner or the Parish Council being informed. This was considered unacceptable and it was agreed to write to LDNPA that we were surprised that the Parish Council had not been kept informed about the survey, was not asked for its views, despite being active participants in LDF discussions, and was unimpressed with the work of consultants whose knowledge was so out of date that they were writing to people who had long since passed away.

    VAC – Community Planning Workshops. Mr Gray would attend.

     Neighbourhood Forum – Special meeting ref Seacale Surgery. See Item 12 below.

     Bleasdale’s - Lease info required. Agreed that The Clerk should fix a date (possibly 1/1/2009 taking advice from Mr Wilson.

     CCC – Composting poster. Noted.

    CALC & Defra – Consultation on direct elections to National Parks. Agreed that, while supporting democratic principles, there was difficulty in understanding how the change would be of benefit to Lake District parishes. The Chairman and The Clerk would respond accordingly when they had read the DEFRA consultation paper and copy the ensuing letter to all councillors.

     Feedback from LDNPA ref questions raised at the last 5 Rivers Group meeting (via K Hitchen). Noted.

    Feedback from LDNPA ref funding for Nursery School. Sent to all councillors. Noted that funding for nursery education was not normally available.

    Response from M Locke ref Smoking Shelter. The letter of explanation was read out by The Clerk which accepted that the Parish Council should have been kept informed.

    Info ref Big Lottery Fund from Playing Fields Committee. Dealt with under Item 7b above.

    CBC – Closure of Telephone Boxes. Dealt with under Item 7c above.

    CBC – Housing renewal questionnaire. Mr Jacob to complete.

     Cumbria Highways – Appointment of Highways Steward for the area including Gosforth. Noted – Mr Norman and The Clerk would attend the meeting at Cleator Moor.

     CCC – Changes to No 6 Bus service. Noted – Copies of the new timetable would be put in the Library.

     LDNPA – Info required on open spaces etc. Noted – The Clerk to respond.

    CCC – Resource Cumbria info. Noted – to be put in the Library.

    AUDIT – Return from District Auditor. See Item 6b above.

    CALC – July/August circular. Sent to all councillors.

    Letter – Karen Bickerstaff. Noted.

    South Calder Mission – Letter of thanks for donation towards the Burial Ground survey. Noted.

     CCC – Road closure at Seascale. Noted.

     CCC - Response from Chief Executive ref letter to HMG on GDF. Noted.

     CBC – Note from K Parker ref meeting with C/M & Clerk . Noted – See Item 12 below.

    CALC – Audit training. The Clerk would attend.

     CCC – Rural Wheels info. Put into the Library.

     LDNPA – Offer of visit ref World Heritage Status. Considered more appropriate for the 5 Rivers Group.

     Gosforth P/Hall – Tabletop Sale. Agreed to make a donation of £25 towards the event. (Mr Jacob declared an interest and did not vote).

     Allerdale Council – Request for information to PhD student at Allerdale Council on area migration, job opportunities etc. Noted – The Clerk would respond.

     Post Office – Response to letter requesting Outreach service. The letter merely stated the existing situation and did not answer the original question. Agreed to write again.

    Cumbria Highways – Appointment of Stewards. Repeat of 15 above.

    CCC – Rural Wheels Info. Put in the Library.

    CBC – Info from K Parker on Carpark TPO’s. Noted – See Item 5.2 above.

     CCC – Report on Care Homes. Noted.

    LDNPA – Acknowledgement of comments on LDF. Noted.

    Police Report. Noted that the number of incidents (10) were again low.

    CALC – Planning meeting with County Council. Noted.  

    10 Public Participation . At the request of the Chairman, Karen Bickerstaff who was present as a member of the public, summarised the work she was doing in her research and thanked those members who had spent time giving her information and assistance. She promised to keep the council informed of the outcome of her studies. The Chairman thanked her for her work and on behalf of the council wished her well for the future.

    11 Questions Councillors wish to raise.

    Mr Gray Asked why the request for a 20mph speed limit through the village had been turned down on the grounds that traffic calming measures were not in place when other areas eg. Ambleside & Grasmere had 20mph limits with no traffic calming – and the luxury of pavements as well. The Clerk was asked to raise this matter with Mr Clarkson.

    Mr Norman Said that he had learned that the movement of construction materials for the Drigg site (for Vault 9) was to be by road from Millom to Workington and then by rail to Drigg. All agreed that, if true, this was ridiculous and the matter should be raised with Mr Clarkson.

    2. Referred to a recent incident when an elderly resident had been verbally abused by a driver when trimming his hedge (he actually owns the part of the road that he was standing on) and asked what enforcement had actually been carried out by Copeland BC. The Clerk was asked to contact Mr Parker.

    12 Representatives Reports

     Mr Gray – Reported that the Parish Plan was proceeding but far more slowly thaan he had anticipated.

    He also informed the council that the issue of extra units on Fell View was still under discussion between the site owners and LDNPA.

    Mr McKinley Reported on the Neighbourhood Forum arranged meeting regarding potential changes to Pharmacies and the consequential risks to health care in the community. Both lay and professional representatives at the meeting were of the opinion that the proposals to change dispensing arrangements would have a deleterious effect on the quality of health care provided in the community served by the Seascale Clinic. The Primary Care Trust and the County (and District) Standards Committees had made (or were in the process of making) representations to express their strong opposition. It was agreed that as many people as possible should be encouraged to sign the local petitions for maintaining the status quo and the council should support this with an appropriate letter of protest.

    2. Reported on the meeting with K Parker which established that Copeland BC favoured the transfer of ownership of the carpark to the Parish Council and were keen to make progress. It seemed likely that the annual grant would be sustained but maintenance of the grassed areas would be incumbent on the Parish Council. There were no Tree Preservation Orders in place but there were issues to be resolved regarding a long term drainage lease with the Ulverston & North Lonsdale Co. There was agreement that the Chairman and The Clerk should continue discussions.

    13 In Camera. None.

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

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