Minutes of the Meeting held online on Wednesday 14th October 2020 at 7pm
Present: Mark Fussell (Chairman), Rachel Rowe (Vice Chair), Paul Turner, David Gray, David Ancell, Graham Hutson, Tyson Norman, Mike McKinley, Dawn Pennington, Jacqueline Williams (Clerk), District Councillor Andy Pratt and four members of the public.
311/20 Apologies for Absence – none.
312/20 Declarations of Interest
Cllr. Turner declared an interest as a member of the LDNPA planning committee and will take no part in the discussion on agenda item 5.
Cllr. McKinley confirmed that he is no longer on the planning committee and can therefore take part in the discussion on agenda item 5.
313/20 Minutes of the meeting held on 9th September 2020
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 9th September 2020, pages 83 to 86, be accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.
314/20 Public Participation
The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting, including members of the public who were attending to discuss the planning application for a residential development on land adjacent to Ellerslie.
Two members of the public had concerns regarding flooding and the ongoing maintenance of the proposed drainage system. They gave a detailed description of the route of the ‘ancient’ ditch system which local farmers use to water their animals in the adjoining fields and were concerned whether the ditches would flood the fields and become polluted with detergents, etc. They feared there could be a build-up of pollution over time. They also queried the declaration on the original planning application which claimed the proposed development was not within 20 metres of a watercourse but qualified this statement by saying they were not experts.
Two members of the public responded, pointing out that the flooding issue had been very well covered in the flood reports and reminded the meeting that outline planning permission had been granted, stating the only difference now is the number of houses which had risen from sixteen to twenty-two. They have written to the Parish Council and, together with a response from Castles & Coasts, had answered the queries raised.
Cllr. Pratt pointed out that the granting of outline planning permission still requires the proposed development to meet all criteria and as such is approval ‘in principle’ only.
The Chairman thanked members of the public for their contributions and closed the Public Participation session.
315/20 Planning Applications
7/2020/4071 – Residential Development on land adjacent to Ellerslie
The Chairman opened the discussion by noting that outline permission had been granted. Members had previously agreed that the issue of flooding had been appropriately mitigated and the issue of traffic was not under the control of the applicants.
Cllr. McKinley said that he believed flooding and the old ditch system were both material planning considerations and that a survey should be carried out of the ditch system to ensure it has the capacity for the excess water flow.
Cllr. Hutson said that the increase from sixteen to twenty-two houses was significant in terms of traffic. The mix of housing had changed, and he was still concerned about flooding and recommended that the detailed local knowledge of the ditch system, provided by local residents, should be passed to the County Council’s flood prevention team.
Cllr. Norman commented that the increase in the number of houses is a concern but accepted that houses were needed in the village. Cllr. Norman had concerns about the capacity the sewers. He would like to see the Housing Needs Survey to confirm the mix of housing is appropriate. Cllr. Norman expressed his concern about the maintenance of the drainage system and also felt that Tree Preservation Orders should be placed on trees to prevent any extension of the development.
Cllr. Pratt agreed with Cllr. Norman regarding the sewerage and reminded the meeting of a smaller development behind Bradbury House which had been unable to proceed due to issues with the flow of sewerage to the treatment plant. Cllr. Pratt noted that the Highways Authority had requested plans showing visibility splays.
Cllr. Fussell felt the style of the houses was not in keeping with the village and would have liked to see sandstone included. He also raised concerns about drainage onto agricultural land.
RESOLVED that a copy of the Housing Needs Survey be requested and that the Clerk draft a response to the planning authority and circulate to Councillors for comment.
No decision notices had been received but the Clerk noted that permission had been granted for the agricultural building at Broom Farm.
Other Planning Matters – none
316/20 County Councillor and District Councillors’ Reports
County Cllr. Turner said that he was working on a list of dropped kerbs for Seascale and Cllr. Gray agreed to produce one for Gosforth. Cllr. Norman requested that a dropped kerb be provided outside the Lion and Lamb to improve access to the playing field for parents with pushchairs.
Cllr. Turner reported that no progress had been made on the handover of the Viking Way to Sustrans. There are complications but he will continue to chase this up.
Cllr. Pratt said that Copeland Local Plan is out for consultation and will identify parcels of land for development. This applies to the part of the Parish outside the National Park. On street lighting, Copeland have been looking at which lights could be taken on by a third party and have identified that all the lights within Gosforth are either Home Group or CCC responsibility although CCC are yet to be notified.
Cllr. Norman commented that he was disappointed that the Copeland Local Plan did not cover the area of the parish within the National Park. He felt there should be references between the Copeland and LDNPA local plans. Cllr. Pratt responded saying he had made that point and encouraged the Parish Council to do so in their response.
Cllr. Gray commented that Copeland Borough Council are the housing authority for the area. Cllr. Pratt agreed but said it was a grey area.
317/20 Financial Reports
RESOLVED that the Bank Reconciliation to 30th September 2020 be received, noted and signed by the Chairman.
The Clerk noted some expenditure on the Public Toilets.
RESOLVED that the schedule of payments be approved for payment.
318/20 Public Toilets & Car Park
Councillors discussed whether to go back to the Council regarding the asset transfer or to carry on with essential repairs to the Public Toilets. Cllr. Fussell said we could do both in parallel. Cllr. Gray felt there were jobs we could do, including providing a hot water system in the store. Cllr. Rowe said hot water was essential for cleaning. All Councillors agreed that small and essential repairs could be done whilst pursuing a resolution to the asset transfer.
The Clerk commented that she had searched for a copy of the original lease to no avail and believes it is with Bleasdales Solicitors.
RESOLVED that the Clerk arrange to view the file held at Bleasdales offices.
The Chair proposed that, as our Zoom session was about to expire, all remaining agenda items be placed on the Agenda for the next meeting. All agreed and the meeting closed at 8.30pm.