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7th April 2003

7309 Minutes: of a meeting of the Silverdale Parish Council held in the Silverdale Institute on Monday 7th April 2003.

7310 Present: Chairman – Councillor C.J. (John) Eden, Councillors S.M. (Sarah) Fishwick, T.B. (Bernard) Fryer, A.W. (Arthur) Graves, J. (June) Greenwell, R.M. (Ralph) Henderson, A.J. (Tony) Houghton, P.(Peter) Roberts, and the Clerk – P.G. (Peter) Challenor.
7311 Apologies for Absence: Community Police Officer – Police Constable 874 (Ged) Daley.

7312 Minutes of the Previous Meeting

The Minutes of the meeting held on 3rd March 2003 were approved, and signed by the Chairman.

7313 Matters arising from the Minutes of previous meetings:

7291 Parish Lengthsman / Parish Contractor: The Chairman reported that he had met with Mr Steve Edwards of Lancashire Countryside Service and had been informed that an application had been made to the North West Development Agency for funding to assist with the Parish Lengthsman scheme. A decision is not expected before June, but it is noted that the parish councils for Warton and the Yealands are still in favour of proceeding with a scheme in conjunction with Silverdale. At the suggestion of one member, it was agreed to take item 14 of the agenda, at this point, because it appeared to be allied to the subject.

As there had not been any response to the advertising of a contract for maintenance of public seats within the Parish, the Clerk had contacted the AONB for recommendations about a suitable service, or person, to undertake the work. As a result of the response, the Chairman had contacted Mr Philip Hargreaves, who had expressed an interest in undertaking the work. RESOLVED that the Chairman and the Clerk be authorised to determine suitable terms and conditions and to ask Mr Hargreaves to undertake the work as soon as conveniently possible, without further reference back to the members.

7314 Public Participation

There were no members of the public present.

7315 Update from PC 874 Daley (Community Police Officer).

In sending his apologies for absence, PC Daley asked that members be informed that he was acting upon the concerns expressed at Minute 7283 regarding the incident at the level crossing.

7316 Report of any relevant matters by City and County Councillor Mrs S.M. Fishwick.

Councillor Fishwick had nothing to report.

7317 Reports on Meetings

(a) Silverdale National Trust Advisory Committee. Councillors Fryer and Henderson attended a recent meeting of the Committee and reported on the following items: (1) there are to be Open Days at Bank House Farm on 18th and 19th of April, (2) the Greenwood Fair will be held on 17th and 18th of May, (3) the high fencing in Eaves Wood, which has been protecting coppiced areas, will soon be dismantled, and (4) four large trees in the areas of Pointer Wood and Burton Well Wood are to be felled.

Councillor Houghton commented that growth of trees was beginning to obstruct the view of ‘The Pepperpot’ and asked that this be brought to the attention of the Committee.

7318 Parish Plan

Councillor Greenwell reported on a meeting held on March 31st, called to discuss how ‘action groups’ hope to continue their work. It was agreed that it would be desirable to have a member of the Council on each of those groups which are likely to proceed towards the implementation of proposals. Councillor Houghton is already appointed to the Sports & Recreation Development Committee. Other appointments will be made after the forthcoming election, but Councillor Greenwell will liaise with the Children’s Playground Group and the Chairman will liaise with the Library Group, both on a temporary basis.

The Clerk had taken the opportunity to explain some of the complexities of the conditions under which the Parish Council is permitted to make donations to outside organisations.

It had been agreed that it would be appropriate for the final Parish Plan to be compiled by someone having professional expertise in these matters. It was also agreed that there was no need for a further public meeting.

The Chairman reported that he had been in conversation with Mr Keith Reed, who appeared to have an excellent professional background in Planning matters and who had indicated a willingness to take on the task.

RESOLVED that the Council supports and endorses all the recommendations in the report and agrees that the Chairman and Councillor Greenwell should negotiate terms with Mr Reed, without further reference to the Council.

7319 Planning

(1) It was noted that a response to the following application was deemed to be urgent and was therefore dealt with under the provisions of Standing Order 25:

03/00256/FUL – Levensfield, Lindeth Road – erection of an extension to form breakfast room / sun lounge: NO OBJECTIONS.

(2) The following applications were considered and commented upon at the meeting:

02/01103/FUL – Ridgway Park School – amendment to application for erection of a new school building (scheme 1):

The Parish Council OBJECTS to the project on the grounds that the location of the current site makes it unsuitable for further development. Our concerns are that the site is in a sensitive location within an area of outstanding natural beauty. The building needs to have a function, which has been provided by the existence of the school, but we do not wish to see the building expanding to meet the demands of a growing function, i.e the function should fit the existing building rather than the building grow to fit the function. The principle basis for this statement is that the site is served by a single access route which comprises unclassified roads, which are of a ‘single track’ width in parts and where there are very limited facilities for vehicles to pass each other. The current usage of these roads by staff, visitors and trade vehicles is already stretching the capacity to the extent of being almost intolerable. Any increase in the number of vehicles visiting the site would be totally unacceptable.

If however, despite the foregoing objections, the City Council is minded to grant approval to this Application, then we recommend the following conditions:

(a) The number of pupils be limited to 37 at any one time.

(b) The number of pupils during normal School Holidays be limited to 18.

(c) During normal School Holidays, and weekends and Public Holidays, no other use of the premises which results in vehicular traffic be permitted.

(d) No other use be permitted which results in an increase in vehicular traffic.

(e) In an effort to improve the level of safety for all users of narrow lanes, a 15mph traffic order be placed upon Jenny Browns, Hollins Lane and Lindeth Road (up to the 30mph sign) before the new premises are used and as part of the cost of the development.

(f) It should be made a condition of employment on the site that all staff comply with the speed limits and in addition ‘Give Way’ marking, lining/signing is set out at the exit from the School, so as to give Jenny Browns traffic legal preference.

In our previous consideration of this application we made comment: “Members feel confident that a ‘traffic survey’ would endorse their concern about traffic on the approach lanes to the School”. We are now in a position to enhance this comment by submission of the accompanying document, prepared by Councillor Henderson, which contains the results of the traffic survey which he conducted for this purpose.

03/00213/LB – 3 The Green – Listed Building Application for refurbishment and improvement works: NO OBJECTIONS

(3) The following decisions, notified by Lancaster City Council, were noted:

03/00005/FUL – 14 Gaskell Close – demolition of existing utility room and erection of two storey side extension to form enlarged kitchen, utility room, cloakroom, bed/work room and bathroom to first floor: GRANTED.

03/00020/FUL – Haweswater, Moss Lane – erection of extension to side and garage: GRANTED.

03/00030/FUL – 49 Emesgate Lane – erection of an extension to bungalow: GRANTED.

03/00071/FUL – Dyke House, Jenny Browns Point – erection of a study playroom on site of former barn: GRANTED.

03/00110/FUL – 5 Birch Drive – erection of side and rear extensions to form dining room/utility room/kitchen/sun lounge and garage: GRANTED.

03/00118/FUL – 6 Elmslack Lane – demolition of existing pantry and erection of a conservatory: GRANTED.

TPO 130 (1988) – rear of Silvermist, 16 Wallings Lane – request for permission to fell Ash Tree in Wood 1: GRANTED

TPO 344 (2002) – 16 Levens Way – request for permission to remove branches with a diameter of more than 2″ which overhang neighbouring garden at 26 St.Johns Avenue: REFUSED

7320 Correspondence

15 items of correspondence have been received since the last meeting and were tabled for the information of members. The following items were specifically noted:

Payment of £9892.71, Parish Precept, has been received from Lancaster City Council.

Geraldine Smith, MP, will attend the August meeting of the Parish Council.


7321 Community Police Officers

It had been noted, at the Annual Parish Meeting, that Community Police Officers were to be transferred to ‘first response’ duties and would therefore no longer be able to carry out their community policing roles. This announcement had met with considerable dismay and it had been agreed that the matter would be raised at a Parish Council meeting, with a view to very strong representations being made against this change.

Councillor Fishwick stated that the decision has been rescinded, but it was agreed that the Clerk should still write to the Chief Constable and MP, expressing the Council’s strong opposition to the withdrawal of the Community Police Officers. The Clerk will also record the very considerable appreciation of the work undertaken by PC Ged Daley.

7322 Silverdale Cricket Club

A request has been received from Silverdale Cricket Club for financial assistance towards the cost of fitting-out the kitchen in the new Clubhouse. It was noted that the facilities in the Clubhouse are to be made available to other elements of the community, rather than just the Cricket Club and the Clerk advised that a donation could therefore be made under the provisions of Section 137 of the Local Government Act 1972. RESOLVED that a donation of £500 be made at the next meeting of the Council.

7323 Silverdale Churchyard Care Group

A request has been received from Silverdale Churchyard Care Group for financial assistance with the cost of cutting the grass in the Graveyard. It was agreed that additional cutting of the grass is highly desirable in order to maintain the visual integrity of the environment, especially having regard to the location of the site, and the Clerk advised that a donation could therefore be made under the provisions of Section 137 of the Local Government Act 1972. RESOLVED that a donation of £150 be made at the next meeting of the Council.

7324 Contract for Strimming of Playground Area and maintenance of War Memorial Area.

Councillor Fishwick declared a prejudicial interest and withdrew from the meeting for the duration of this item.

RESOLVED to accept the following quotations from Mr D. Fishwick:

Strimming of Playground Area for first strim of the season: £45

Garden Maintenance of War Memorial Area, April to mid-November 2003: £115.

AGREED that additional strimming of the Playground Area would only be considered, if it became necessary, regard being had to the continuing discussions about a possible Parish Lengthsman scheme.

7325 Qualifying Comment to Audit for 2001-2002

It was noted that the External Auditor had made comment, in the Annual Return for 2001-2002, that the Council did not have an Independent Internal Auditor. This matter has already been addressed by the appointment of an Independent Internal Auditor for the year 2002-2003.

7326 End-of-Year balances and Part 2 of Budget for 2003

It was noted that the total end-of-year balance for the Parish Council’s bank accounts is £14,188.58, of which £1,238.15 is held as the balance of the Parish Plan Grant installment. The net balance for the Council is £12,950.43.

RESOLVED that the PART Budget 2 (Reserve funds) for 2003-2004 be:

Playing Field £7000

Clerk’s Gratuity £ 200

Upgrading of administrative systems £ 800

Training and associated costs £1000

General Contingency £3950

The Clerk reported on the costs incurred in transferring registration and credit details for the 2½ % Government Stock and suggested that it might be in the best interests of the Council and the community to sell the Stock. RESOLVED that the Clerk be authorised to sell the Stock via the Bank of England Postal Brokerage Service, with the proceeds of the sale being credited to the General Contingency element of the Part 2 Budget.

7327 Parish Council Bank Accounts

It was noted that the Parish Council bank accounts have now been transferred from the National Westminster Bank to the Alliance & Leicester Bank.

7328 Accounts for Payment

Cheques for the following accounts were signed:

Lancashire Playing Fields Association (annual subscription) £ 11.00 (002)

Lancashire Association of Parish & Town Councils (annual subscription) £303.21 (003)

Mr C.J. Eden (reimbursement of Parish Plan expenses) £ 10.62 (004)

7329 Items for Information

(a) The Chairman advised that: (1) the seats and gate at Cove Lane will be fixed in the next fortnight, (2) the new commemorative seat has been delivered and will be fixed in position as soon as the other two seats have been re-located, and (3) the restoration of the road surface along Bottoms Lane is still outstanding.

(b) Councillor Houghton asked about the old Parish Council signs at the car parking area, on The Shore. It was agreed that, as landowner, he could remove them, if he so wished.

(c) Councillor Graves drew attention to further instances of double-parking on Emesgate Lane.

(d) Councillor Fryers drew attention to the fact that the road sign for Woodlands Drive has been broken.

(e) Councillor Henderson had observed several occasions when there was insufficient car parking available for the amount of traffic visiting the RSPB at Leighton Moss.

(f) The attention of Councillor Greenwell has been drawn to an unsettling situation which can arise when vehicles are parked in Cove Road on the north side, just east of the Bowling Club. Vehicles travelling eastwards are obliged to take the centre of the road and can encounter vehicles driving westwards from the bend in the road, taking both drivers by surprise. This has alarmed at least one motorist, who feels very vulnerable, and Councillor Greenwell has since experienced the same situation.

(g) Before closing the meeting, the Chairman drew attention to this being the last meeting for Councillor Fishwick. On behalf of the members, he expressed thanks for her service to the community, as a Parish Councillor.

7330 Date of Next Meeting – Thursday May 8th 2003, which will be the Annual Parish Council Meeting

Peter G. Challenor – Clerk to the Council.

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