Minutes of the Meeting of Gosforth Parish Council
held on Wednesday 12th October 2022 at Gosforth Library at 7pm
Councillors Present: Mark Fussell (Chairman), Rachel Unsworth (Vice Chair), Tyson Norman, David Gray, Graham Hutson, Jackie Atkinson
Others Present: Cllr. Andy Pratt (Copeland BC), Anthony Millard (Playing Field), Jacqueline Williams (Clerk) and one member of the public.
355/22 Apologies for Absence – none received.
356/22 Declarations of Interest – no declarations.
357/22 Minutes of the meeting held on 13th July 2022
Cllr. Atkinson commented on minute 337/22 Public Participation item which noted the concerns of a member of the public regarding the trees between Fell View and Meadowfield. Cllr. Atkinson felt it ended abruptly. The Clerk had passed on the concerns raised to the LDNPA Planning Department on 14th July.
The Clerk said she had not yet contacted the Forestry Commission.
Cllr. Unsworth passed information regarding Defibrillator signs to the Clerk.
Cllr. Fussell asked if there was any progress on the relining of the Car Park. The Clerk explained that the Car Park needs to be empty and wanted to discuss how this could be achieved. Cllrs. agreed that notices should be put up and on social media about the date of the closure and barriers put out to prevent any car entering the day before. Cllrs. asked the Clerk to arrange for the work to be carried out on a future Monday to allow time to notify Car Park users.
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 13th July 2022, pages 157 to 160 be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.
358/22 Public Participation
Anthony Millard was in attendance following the receipt of correspondence sent to the Parish Council regarding the use of the playing field for football. Cllr. Fussell requested that a separate meeting be set up with all parties.
359/22 County Councillor and District Councillors’ Reports
Cllr. Pratt said that the new recycling bins will be distributed throughout Copeland by Christmas. Letters are being sent out before delivery and the schedule may change in January. The new wagons hold twice as much material.
Cllr. Pratt said that Winter Warmth sessions were being promoted by ACT, CCC and Copeland and funding was available for sessions with a minimum of 2 hours per week.
Cllr. Pratt said that most people he had spoken to did not know where the food they donated to local food banks went to. He is working with CALC to provide information and advice on the process of applying. Cllr. Gray knew of one at Cleator Moor (Pheonix) which delivers as far as Waberthwaite.
Cllr. Pratt reminded the Parish Council of CALC’s AGM which will take place on 28th October and of the briefing session on becoming a CIO on the 17th.
360/22 Planning Applications:
Applications: No applications
The Lake District National Park planning authority has approved the following applications:
7/2022/4019 Bleng Garth, Wellington – alterations and extension for an accessible suite and garage workshop
7/2022/4051 – High Boonwood, Gosforth – Single storey annex
7/2022/4052 – 2 High Ghyll Foot, Snaefell – single store side extension
T/2022/0100 – Trees behind 7-10 Meadowfield – crown reduction
7/2022/4053 – Bridge Petton – barn conversions for holiday let
7/2022/4072 – Longacre, Gosforth – alteration and extension for accessibility
6.3 Other planning matters:
A further planning application had been received too late for the agenda. The Clerk has requested an extension to the response date. Cllrs. requested a site visit to enable them to be sufficiently well-informed to comment on the application.
361/22 Financial Reports
The Clerk presented a Bank Reconciliation to 30th September 2022 and noted the income from Copeland for the Car Park and the GDF Library grant. The Clerk has raised a query regarding an invoice from PHS and has requested a refund.
RESOLVED that the Bank Reconciliation to 30th September 2022 be received and noted.
RESOLVED that the schedule of payments and 3 late invoices be approved for payment.
Parking problems continue throughout the village. On school parking, Cllr. Fussell said that whilst he sympathised with those affected, there is no readily available alternative. The Parish Council, School and Nursery had sent a joint communication to parents asking for their cooperation and the Parish Council should continue to keep a watching brief. Cllr. Hutson said that teachers were parking at the entrance to Denton Park and if they could leave a gap, at least cars would be able to pass. Cllr. Atkinson asked if the school could develop its own car park. Cllrs. said it had been suggested in the past but were told that there was insufficient space for the visibility splays at the entrance.
Cllr. Fussell said that the village and the playing field car parks were very busy and he has contacted Sellafield and will be attending a meeting tomorrow (13th Oct). In answer to Cllr. Gray’s question, Cllr. Pratt said that Sellafield do provide a bus from Gosforth but this is aimed at people who live in the village. Cllr. Norman described a scheme that had been suggested where Sellafield staff provide their own travel to work plan and receive a bonus if they conformed to it.
Cllr. Unsworth agreed with a previous comment made by Cllr. Norman regarding the loss of a public house car park which had been turned into a beer garden, putting further pressure on the village car park.
Cllr. Hutson, regarding the playing field car park, said that in the past, locking the gate periodically had reduced the problem. Cllr. Unsworth said this may have an impact on residents of Petton Place.
Cllr. Norman suggested a sign stating that the car park was for local residents and playing field users only. Cllrs. agreed to close the gate in the morning and at night.
363/22 Public Toilets & Car Park
The lease has been signed and the payment towards refurbishing the toilets has been received. The Clerk had received a quote for the refurbishment, but it was clear that we need to specify exactly what is required before we can make further progress and this will need a separate meeting. The relining of the car park was discussed under minute 357/22 above.
364/22 Car Park Maintenance
Cllr. Gray described the work he has undertaken at the Car Park on the flowerbeds, shrubs and tubs over past years and said that he was unable to continue. Cllr. Atkinson offered to take this on.
Discussion on benches will be included on the November agenda.
365/22 Outdoor Gym
Cllr. Unsworth has prepared a funding application which is ready to be submitted. Cllr. Fussell said that several responses to the questionnaire had identified the need for equipment for older children and the outdoor gym would be suitable for them as well as adults. Cllr. Unsworth has included five years maintenance costs in the funding application which will cover inspections and maintenance. Cockermouth Town Council installed an outdoor gym in May 2019. They confirmed that maintenance costs had been minimal since installation with only hand grips having to be replaced. Cllr. Gray said that 80 or 90% of people who responded to the outdoor gym plans at Gosforth Show said they would use it. Cllrs. agreed that the application should be submitted and Cllr. Fussell thanked Cllr. Unsworth for her hard work.
366/22 Public Hall
Cllr. Fussell outlined plans to refurbish the Public Hall and the Clerk, in her role as Secretary, is applying for GDF funding for the development phase of the project. All Councillors welcomed the proposal and approved the submission of the application on behalf of Gosforth Public Hall Council of Management.
367/22 Geological Disposal Facility
Cllr. Fussell said that GDF meetings are now public meetings and, like Parish Council meetings, have a 15-minute public participation section. The community partnership has recruited a representative from the business sector but they are still looking to recruit more members from tourism, youth and farming sectors to ensure the whole community is represented. The public consultation exercise has now closed. There has been a total of 170 public engagement events with another one in Gosforth tomorrow. Around £100K came into Gosforth from the last funding panel.
368/22 Copeland Code of Conduct
A new Code of Conduct had been circulated prior to the meeting. Cllr. Atkinson said it was very appropriate and Cllr. Fussell agreed. Cllr. Unsworth pointed out that under 9.1 of the new code, all Councillors are required to undertake code of conduct training which is online. Cllr. Hutson would prefer face-to-face training and asked the Clerk to clarify the options on offer.
369/22 Remembrance Sunday
The Clerk had circulated an email from Paul Turner regarding Remembrance Sunday on 13th November and asked if a wreath should be ordered. Cllr. Fussell said he would attend the War Memorial and asked the Clerk to order a wreath.
Cllr. Fussell had attended two GDF meetings and a parish forum meeting as well as a workshop on Sellafield Beach Monitoring which was attended by Councillors for other Parish Councils. It gave reassurance about the same amount of coverage on a reduced programme of monitoring. Cllr. Fussell had also attended a WCSSG – main committee meeting where to focus was on sustainability and a WCSSG subcommittee meeting on hazard reduction with good progress being reported. He had also attended an ACT seminar on sustainable transport in the LDNP. Ideas to reduce travel were discussed with some radical ideas that were reliant on public transport being enhanced.
Cllr. Gray had attended a zoom meeting on Visitor Management and Cllr. Fussell commented that there was mixed feedback on the Wasdale Bus.
Cllr. Atkinson said there is a Spent Fuel Management and Nuclear Materials event on 25th October at Cleator Moor 1pm with lunch. Cllr. Fussell said he hopes to attend.
371/22 Councillor Administration/Recruitment
Cllrs. requested that a letter of thanks be sent to Paul Turner following his resignation from the Parish Council.
372/22 Councillor Matters
Cllr. Gray reported that the Rotary propose planting Crocus corms at the entrance to Denton Park. All Cllrs. welcomed the proposal. Cllr. Gray said the area next to the shop needs to be tidied up. Cllrs. Unsworth and Fussell said that the owner was waiting for a stone mason. Cllr. Fussell agreed to contact the owner informally.
373/22 Items in Camera
Items in camera are dealt with in private in accordance with The Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960.
374/22 Date of Next Meeting
The date of the next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday 9th November 2022 at 7pm. The meeting closed at 9.15pm.