Parish Council Minutes - March 2011

  • Minutes of meeting held 9th March 2011 in the Supper Room Gosforth Public Hall - 7.00pm

    Present : Dr Hutson; Messrs. Bailey, Davies, Gray, McKinley (Chairman), Norman; Mrs Balmer, Mrs Gallery-Strong.


    1. Apologies: MessrsAncell (Work commitments), Jacob, Wright (Family illness).


    2. Declarations of interest . None


    3. Chairman's opening remarks. The Chairman introduced Cath Giel and Neil Shaw from LLWR who gave an illustrated presentation on the future operation of the LLWR site at Drigg up to and including closure of the site in ~2055. Construction of Vault 9 was complete and there were plans for another 5 vaults, all on the west side of the site. High stacking would remain to ensure optimisation of site space. Closure of the site required a final cap to be in place and this would be constructed initially to cover the old trenches and Vault 8 and then progressively as vaults were filled. Assurance was given that maximum use would be made of the railway for delivery of both operational and construction materials. An offer was made for the Parish Council to visit the site which would be taken up in due course.


    4. Minutes of the previous meeting held on 9th February 2011. It appeared that these had not been received by members, probably due to the Clerk’s recent Broadband problems. The Clerk was asked to resend them.

    5. Actions arising from the minutes.

     1. Respond to Mr Martin with views on MRWS Partnership. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – Ackowledgement received.

    2. Progress estimates for Carpark lighting. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete. Costs were approximately £8000 which were considered prohibitive. Mr Norman and The Clerk were asked to look at alternative forms of lighting.

    3. Progress Carpark transfer with Copeland BC. Action – The Clerk

    Action continues.

    4. Arrange assessment of Toilet electrics. Action – Mr Norman

    Action ongoing.

    5. Convene meeting of Footpath Group. Action – Mr Wright

    Action ongoing.

    6. Arrange for High School charity funds to be handed over to the Nursery. Action complete. Action – The Clerk

    7. Check Public Hall deeds ref ownership of land by Library. Action complete – The Clerk was asked to clarify the position with Mr Nolan.

    Action – The Clerk

    8. Complete Parish Newsletter and obtain printing costs. Action - Mr Ancell

    9. Investigate design/siting conditions ref Bus Shelter with LDNPA. Action complete – There are no restrictions. Action – Mr McKinley

    10. Arrange Cycleway meeting. Action – Mr Gray

    Action ongoing.

    11. Progress excess water charges with UU. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – A new meter had been installed and a check would be made on water usage.

    12. Pass British Legion material to Mr Steel. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    13. Write letter of thanks to Lakeland Habit. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    14. Inform CBC of precept for 2011-12. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    15. Follow up energy supply deal with CCC. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – Both E-on and CCC had been informed.

    16. Respond to consultation on sell-off of forests. Action – The Clerk

    Action withdrawn following HMG action.

    17. Copy minutes of CALC Executive meeting of 3 rd Feb. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    18. Respond to WMRT proposals for new premises. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    19. Send donation of £50 to NW Air Ambulance. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete.

    20. Deal with Solicitor ref Playing Field Trust. Action – The Clerk

    Action continues – The new Order had been issued by the Charity Commission and the land was being registered. Approval was required for the sale of the Shares.(Resolution for next meeting).

    21. Generate suitable letter for residents of Petton Place ref parking restrictions. Action – The Clerk

    Action complete – The letters had been distributed and Copeland BC Enforcement Team had been alerted.


    6. Financial Matters. The monthly financial report was tabled and approved

    (Proposed Mr Bailey, seconded Dr Hutson).


    7. Main Business.

    a) G Browning note ref Bleng Footbridge. The bridge had now been officially closed as it was unsafe. The Clerk said he had put copies of the Closure Order on the notice boards. Initially there had been some doubt regarding the ownership of the bridge as it was not on the official public footpath route, but it had been accepted that it was part of the right of way. The Clerk had met Mr Browning and Mr Clague (LDNPA) on site and it was agreed that reinstatement of the footbridge was essential to preserve the public right of way, and the enjoyment of the forest. There were problems with funding within the Forestry Commission and it was considered that the best way forward would be for all parties to investigate possible funding streams and then possibly form a community partnership to improve access to the area generally, replacement of the footbridge being the priority but possibly including bridging Skalderskew Beck. The Clerk had agreed on behalf of the Parish Council to discuss with the Community Fund managers the possibility of acquiring funding towards the project. Mr Browning and Mr Clague were to cost various options for design of a new bridge and what funding streams were available to them. Suitable information regarding the status of the bridge would be put on the web-site and in What’s On.

    b) Parking, Petton Place (Mr Norman). Mr Norman said that he had been contacted by a resident who described the problems she faced when trying to access her car with young children. She considered that Home Housing should provide additional parking space by taking part of the gardens, and asked for Parish Council support. It was agreed that the proposal would be of benefit to the residents and would reduce some of the overall parking problems in the area, and in principle the council would support an approach to Home Housing by the residents.

    c) E Martin letter. (A copy of the letter had been sent to all councillors). As noted in Action 5.1 above the letter (concerning the council’s misgivings with the MRWS Partnership) had been acknowledged but a reply was awaited. Mr Gray who had written privately to Mr Martin had received a reply to his letter which he thought gave some reassurance. The Chairman felt otherwise, both in terms of the voluntarism aspect and in respect of the establishment of the Community Siting Partnership. He felt that the identification of Host Communities via the site selection process departed significantly from the White Paper requirement of voluntarily expressing an interest in taking part in the process, while the proposal in the Barker draft paper for the MRWS Parnership to evolve into the Community Siting Partnership was light-years away from the requirements of the White Paper …… “CSP = Host Community + Wider Local Interests + Decision Making Body”. The matter would be discussed further when a reply was received from Mr Martin.

    d) Libraries (Dr Hutson). Dr Hutson considered that in view of the potential threat to all Libraries with the cuts in Local Government funding the Parish Council should keep the situation under review.

    e) CCTV Procedure (The Clerk). Sent out in advance.

    This was approved with a minor amendment to the text. The nett effect of the procedure was to provide records only to the Police on request. The Police would not have direct access to the system.

    f) PAYE/NIC – New requirements from HMRC. (The Clerk). The Clerk explained that HMRC would no longer accept Clerks paying Income Tax as self-employed persons and now required each and every council to make arrangements for them to be treated as employees for Tax and National Insurance purposes. There were several options available and it was agreed that the Chairman, Vice-chairman and Mr Norman, together with The Clerk would examine the options and report back.


    8. Representatives Reports.

    Mrs Gallery-Strong – Said that she was awaiting written confirmation of the grant from the Community Spaces Fund (£40k). When this was received she would start placing orders for equipment before 31 st March. The Clerk said he would give whatever assistance was necessary.

    Mr Gray – Said that he still had some work to complete on the Parish Plan.


    9. Planning Matters. The Clerk reported that approval had been given to Hall Croft (Conservatory and internal changes); 16 Denton Park (Extension); The Nursery (Installation of Photovoltaic panels on roof).

    In response to a question regarding Beck Garage the Chairman confirmed that LDNPA planning approval had been given. As the Parish Council had not been informed (contrary to normal practice) The Clerk was asked to ascertain why.


    10 Correspondence.  

    1. CRUG Newsletter. (Sent out e-mail) Noted.

    2. G Browning note. (Sent out e-mail) See Item 7a above.

    3. CCC A595 repairs. (Sent out e-mail) Noted.

    4. JB Wrigley Trust. See Item 5.20 above.

    5. CBC Elections meeting. Noted 15 th March 5.00pm – The Clerk would attend. Elections for both District and Parish Councils were to be held on 5 th May and The Clerk would arrange for information to be put on the web-site and What’s On. Official notices would be displayed post 15 th March when they become available.

    6. NDA Briefing note. Sent to Nuclear Group.

    7. CALC town & parish survey. ACT were to carry out a survey of Service Centres. It was not known whether Gosforth was included and The Clerk was asked to check.  

    8. LDNPA Site visits. Noted – The Chairman (As a LDNPA Member) would be accompanying the team from LDNPA.

    9. CBC grass-cutting 2011. To be assessed by Mr Norman.

    10. CBC – 3-tier meeting 14 th March 6.15 Copeland Centre. Noted. The Chairman and The Clerk would attend.

    11. CALC circular March. (Sent out e-mail).

    12. BDO Audit briefing note. Passed to Mr Norman and Mr McKinley.


    11 Public Participation. There were no members of the public present at this point.


    12 Questions Councillors wish to raise.

    Dr Hutson – Asked about a date for the Annual Parish Meeting. It was agreed that it would be held immediately prior to the monthly council meeting on April 13 th.

    Mrs Gallery-Strong – Said that she had been asked by a resident about parish boundary changes. The Clerk explained that Copeland BC had carried out a public consultation regarding the Ponsonby, Beckermet, Egremont, Lowside Quarter and Haile parishes which had now been resolved, and the associated boundary changes (and in the case of Beckermet a new parish) would be enacted after the May elections. Changes had already been agreed to the boundaries of Wasdale, Eskdale and Irton/Santon. A further consultation was in the process of being carried out in the Irton/Santon and Drigg/Carleton parishes with a view to adjusting their boundaries. None of the above situations affected Gosforth parish, whose boundaries would remain unchanged.

    Mr Norman – Said that, at the request of residents, he had reported a series of potholes in the Whitecroft area to the Highways Hotline.


    13 In Camera. None.


    There being no other business the meeting was closed at 9.25pm.

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