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2010/03/22 Annual Parish Meeting

22nd March 2010

9315 Minutes: of the Annual Parish Meeting for Silverdale held in the Gaskell Hall, Silverdale on Monday, 22nd March 2010 at 7.30 pm.

9316 Present:  Chairman  –  Councillor T.G. (Terry) Bond, the Clerk  –  L.D. (Denise) Challenor (part), the Deputy Clerk  –  S.D. (Sue) Hayward, Geographic Inspector Geoff Tagg (Morecambe police station), PS 2263 Scott Warburton, PC 2866 Tony Marsh, Ms Diane Baxter, Lancaster District Manager for Libraries, Mr Alan Ferguson, Warden-in-Charge, Arnside and Silverdale (National Trust), Ms Lucy Barron, AONB Manager (Arnside and Silverdale), and 20 members of the public.

9317 Apologies for Absence:  Councillor E. (Eve) Holden and County and District Councillor S.M. (Sarah) Fishwick.

9318 Minutes
 The Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held on 19th March 2009 were approved then signed by the Chairman.

9319 Matters Arising
 There were no matters arising from the Minutes for discussion.

9320 Police Report
 Geographic Inspector Tagg explained that he is responsible for uniformed officers in the Morecambe district, which includes Silverdale. He advised that the number of reported crimes in the area has declined and that the number of reported burglaries is the lowest this century; it is difficult to measure the trend for violent crimes due to the way such crimes are recorded. In the Carnforth area the main concerns that have been raised by the public are crimes associated with anti-social behaviour and misuse of vehicles (e.g. speeding and inconsiderate parking); the police are now focussing on these locally set targets by introducing a number of different strategies. 2010/2011 will see a 0.5% cut in funding for policing in this division but the number of frontline staff will not be reduced, rather cuts will be made in other departments.

 PC Marsh advised that in the last twelve months 4901 incidents were recorded for the Carnforth area ,of these 201 related to Silverdale. The number of incidents has remained relatively consistent in comparison to previous years but the detection rate (crimes for which an offender has had some form of sanction) has risen. In 2008/09 the detection rate for the Carnforth area was 13% and in 2009/10 the detection rate is currently 25%.

 Notable incidents during 2009/10 have been the high value burglaries at the Golf Club and Cricket Club, the rise of anti-social behaviour and corresponding criminal damage over the first weekend of August and the theft of part of the Lady Slipper Orchid. Enquiries are on-going in relation to the theft from vehicles in the area last autumn. The investigation following the execution of the drugs warrant in April has been concluded. Two men have been charged with drugs offences.

 PS Warburton introduced himself as the temporary Neighbourhood Policing Sergeant for Silverdale and he can be contacted at Carnforth Police Station, tel.: 01524 63333.

 The Chairman reminded the public that Silverdale Neighbourhood Watch is hoping to introduce a scheme to try and deter ‘cold callers’. The scheme is a police/ trading standards initiative, a form in connection with the scheme has been delivered to every household and villagers are encouraged to complete the form and return it to Silverdale post office.

9321 Library Report
 Ms Diane Baxter, Lancaster District Manager for Libraries, reported on news from Silverdale Library, the Librarian for which is Mrs Jill Mason: (1)  Mrs Mason visits  Silverdale Primary School twice a week, (2)  a home library service has been introduced – if anyone is interested in using this service, or knows of anyone who might be interested (on a temporary or permanent basis), they should contact Mrs Mason, (3)  the library supports 4 reading groups in the village, (4)  in the next few months various improvements will be carried out to the library building; the side door will be used as the entrance door and the front door will become a window, this will leave extra space for storage and an additional computer. New heating and flooring will be fitted and a table and chairs will be placed in the courtyard area outside the library. Ms Baxter passed a copy of the plans to the Chairman for information, (5)  borrowing figures have risen slightly (contrary to the national trend), (6)  PC Marsh calls at the library every 3 months.
 
9322 National Trust Report
 Mr Alan Ferguson, Warden-in-Charge, Arnside and Silverdale (National Trust), explained that the National Trust looks after a number of historic buildings and natural places of beauty, it is a charity and relies totally on the financial support of its members. Silverdale and Arnside are under a new administrative area which stretches from Heysham to Barrow and the Temperance Inn at Cautley Spout to Penrith with Sizergh Castle in the middle. The new area does not have a name as yet and suggestions are welcome (there is a prize of a bottle of champagne for the winning entry!). A new Property Manager, Mr Mike Pemberton, will start in June and will probably be based at Sizergh. The National Trust aims to make everyone feel welcome and connected with its work as reflected in the slogan “for ever, for everyone”; it tries do this locally, for example, by commenting on planning applications, replacing dying trees, using local produce in a sustainable way, encouraging volunteers and student placements and organising guided walks.

 A member of the public asked about the possibility of National Trust land being used for allotments in the village, Mr Ferguson explained that this would be difficult as all of the land owned by the National Trust in Silverdale is let on 10 year leases.

9323 Report on the AONB
 Ms Lucy Barron, AONB Manager (Arnside and Silverdale), gave a presentation on the  Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Arnside and Silverdale. The area has been designated as an AONB for a number of reasons such as the magnificent views, the impressive and unusual geological features, which have been colonised by a variety of plants and animals, and the number of ancient woodlands. Half of the flowering plant species of the British Isles can be found in the area. The area is perceived, both locally and nationally, to be special and it is felt that it should be conserved for future generations.

 The AONB works in partnership with other organisations including Natural England, the local authorities, National Trust, parish councils, RSPB, businesses and user groups (such as ramblers) to develop a management plan for the area and achieve its objectives with the help of volunteers. In 2009 more than 600 volunteer days were spent on practical management work and more than 400 volunteer days were spent helping at events.

 One objective is to raise awareness and a wildflower festival is scheduled for 2nd – 8th June and a Bay Discovery Day is scheduled for July. The AONB produces a range of leaflets and a new website is to be launched. Another objective is to promote sustainability – sustainable energy is promoted and a Sustainability Development Fund has been set up to support local projects. The AONB also provides landscape related planning advice and comments on planning applications.

 A number of people asked questions and the following points were made: (1)  there is only one road-side sign for the AONB. Ms Barron explained that the original intention had been to fit signs at several points along the AONB boundary but that this had not been possible due to the lack of suitable locations or because permission had not been granted by the Highways authorities, (2)  Natural England might consider extending the boundary to include Hutton Roof and Farelton at some point in the future, (3)  the Environment Agency is producing a Shoreline Management Plan, this is a national plan for dealing with a possible rise in sea level.
 
9324 Report from County and District Councillor Sarah Fishwick
 Councillor Fishwick was not present at the meeting and her report was not available.

9325 Chairman’s Report
 The Chairman read out his annual report, a copy of which is appendaged to these minutes.

 The Chairman added that it is hoped a calendar of events for the village bicentenary celebrations will be available by October this year. It was noted that St. John’s Church will celebrate its 125 year anniversary and the Silverdale Hotel its 175th anniversary in 2011. The celebratory weekend for the village bicentenary will be 16th/17th July 2011.

9326 Matters Raised by the Public
 A member of the public asked for clarification as to the cost of running the public toilets in the village. The Chairman responded that £3,000 had been added to the parish precept to cover the cost for the first year.

 Another member of the public suggested that a donations box be fitted to the wall of the toilets.
 
9327 The meeting closed at 9.00 pm.

Sue D. Hayward, Deputy Clerk to the Council

Appendix 1

Annual Newsletter & Chairman’s Report to the Parish Meeting

As the Chairman of Silverdale Parish Council I would like to present my report on the Council for the year 2009-10.

Parish Council
The Parish Council is the first tier of local government and plays a significant role in representing the interests of Silverdale and local villagers.
Last August we lost Dorothy Kitson when she left the village, and we co-opted Anne McNaughton in her place. Our Clerk, Denise Challenor, does a good job in support of all of us and managing the day to day tasks of the Council. The Deputy Clerk, Sue Hayward, is also a great help. As there were 117 items of correspondence over the past year it can be seen the Clerk’s role is an important one.

Meetings
The Parish Council meets on the first Monday of each month at the Institute on Springbank. These meetings are open and the public can attend and hear Council business. Verbal reports are also provided by our District & County Councillor Sarah Fishwick, and the Community Police. Usually there are very few members of the public attending these meetings, and I would urge anyone who is interested to come along and find out more of what is happening in our area.
The Agenda and Minutes of the Council are displayed on the Notice Board outside the Gaskell Hall, published in the Parish magazine and available on the Council’s website at www.silverdale-pc-lancs.gov.uk. The attendance of Councillors at the past 12 meetings was: Cllrs Bond – 11, Graves – 8, Holden – 8, Houghton – 10, Kitson/McNaughton – 10, Mason – 11, Taylor – 11, Williams – 10.

Planning and Related issues
During this year the Council considered 50 planning applications and made comments to Lancaster City Council, who is the legal planning authority. Some of the applications we have commented upon are outside the village, notably Cumbria, but affect us all the same. Although we make comments, and sometime objections, the City Council does not always concur with us. Caravans seem to have been a theme this year, with two applications from Gibraltar Farm area, one of these ongoing, and also several in relation to Holgates, just outside the village in Cumbria. The Council are aware that the expansion of Holgates into Hollins Farm has caused a number of individuals and organisations to make their opposition known. As a Council we also have concerns, not only the visual impact, but primarily the fact that an expansion of the caravan site leads to more traffic and the caravans have to come through Silverdale thereby causing more pressure on our narrow roads.
Another commercial concern, The Co-operative, caused some consternation last year when work started on the renovations of their store. A well attended public meeting, where representatives from the Co-op were questioned, managed to resolve many of the issues raised – a typically Silverdale solution!

Contracts
Our local Parish Contractor service works well, Paul Holgate maintains all Council property, including over 40 seats and benches around the village, as well as maintenance of the playing field. Work on improving the War Memorial site was completed prior to the Remembrance Day service and many favourable comments have been received.

Transport
Efforts continue to improve public safety, particularly at ways of improving the station area. Negotiations with Network Rail, RSPB and others are in progress to facilitate a ramp to the platform. The Council are aware that the car park at the station is used rather more, which is welcomed, but there are no plans to increase the size of the parking area. An alternative is for rail users to travel to the station via the Shuttle, and I would remind all that the threat to the Shuttle has not gone away, we need to use it or lose it.

Community Aspects
Throughout the year the Council has maintained good working arrangements with the local Police, and policing priorities are agreed at each Council meeting. Efforts have been concentrated on parking issues, in particular Emesgate Lane & Stankelt Road, and also  speeding by some drivers on village roads. Inconsiderate parking by some, especially on Saturday mornings, causes problems for many others. In addition the Police have been monitoring aspects of anti-social behaviour, and the damage to the seats at the Cove was an example of this.
The Parish Council also works closely with the AONB, RSPB and the National Trust, with members of the Council attending meetings of these bodies.
The Playground continues to be a success, and there is a small sub-committee which oversee the maintenance and management of the playground and who are also looking at ways to improve the facilities. The Council have looked at water safety, particularly after a spate of incidents, and some new warning signs will be going up in obvious places warning people of the dangers of  tides and sands.
The closure of the public toilets is another issue that will need to be addressed soon, whether we as a village can afford to keep them is a decision the Council will make soon. The provision of allotments has been an ongoing issue and the Council will continue its search to locate a suitable site, interest in this has been welcomed. This next year will also see some of the metal railings in the village being painted.

In conclusion, I would like to emphasise that we live in a lovely village with a good provision of services and facilities. However, in order to keep enjoying them we need to continue to use them and contribute to the village environment. Next year is a special one, we celebrate 200 years since the formation of today’s village boundaries when Silverdale came into its own. A number of events are planned. We, as your Parish Council, will continue to serve this village to the best of our abilities and seek your support in doing so.
All are welcome to the Annual Parish Assembly, which will be held in the Gaskell Hall on Monday 22nd March 2010 starting at 7.30pm.

Terry Bond  MBE
Chairman
Silverdale Parish Council                                                10/2/2010
  

 

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