Meeting of Dent Parish Council - 04 November 2013


Agenda Item


Councillors Graham Dalton, Chris Evans, Rita Corpe, Tom Stafford, Jenny Pilgrim,

Geoffrey Woof.


County & District Councillor Nick Cotton.

District Councillor Evelyn Westwood.


The meeting opened at 7.30pm.




Councillor Elaine Lewis.

District Councillor Ian McPherson.




Minutes of the meeting of Monday 07 October 2013 were presented. It was agreed to remove the word ‘public’ from minute reference 13.2. The minutes were then signed as a true and accurate record.



Parish Plan:

3.1 A presentation was received from Heather Fraser on the Parish Plan (2008-2013) which included:

3.2 The purpose of the Parish Plan was to build a statement of how the community would see itself developing over a period of 5 years (2008-2013).

3.3 Topics covered within the Plan included: economy, housing, environment, community facilities, services, young people, transport, leisure & recreation and local government.

3.4 Views of the community had been gathered by community meeting, survey of residents and focus groups which had engaged all age groups.

3.5 It had involved a Steering Committee, over 120 people within Dentdale, Yorkshire Dales National Park, South Lakeland District Council, ACTion with Communities in Cumbria and Cumbria County Council.

3.6 Initiatives resulting from the Parish Plan have included: the allotment & play areas, Parish Council newsletter, litter picking, the community bus, improved library facilities, development of broadband services and the YDNPA Dent Initiative.

3.7 Options for the Parish Plan going forward ranged from: a) do nothing, b) develop a new Plan for 2014-2019, or, c) update the current plan and have a rolling strategy for the future.

3.8 It was resolved that updating the current Parish Plan and having a future rolling strategy was the preferred option.

3.9 Councillors Tom Stafford and Rita Corpe agreed to join the Parish Plan Committee  in the development of a rolling Parish Plan and it was resolved that a proposed Parish Plan structure would be presented at the Parish Council meeting in February 2014.

3.10 Councillor Graham Dalton thanked Heather Fraser for her presentation and all the hard work she had put into the Parish Plan over the last 5 years together with the Parish Plan Committee. Congratulations were also received from District Councillor Evelyn Westwood and County & District Councillor Nick Cotton.


Declarations of Interest:




Clerk’s Report:

5.1 The Clerk’s report was presented and accepted.

Further information was given on:-

5.2 (Item 3) Several communications had been made with CCC Highways concerning  the damage at St John’s Church Bridge. To date no details of action regarding repairs had been received. Further enquiries will be made to ascertain a date for commencement of repair work.

5.3 (Item 9) Cumbria County Council had released its budget consultation document concerning proposed savings for the financial year 2014/15 and potential savings between 2015 and 2017. It was resolved that the consultation document should be considered at the Parish Council meeting in December.

5.4 (Item 15) Notice had been received of a road closure on the A684 road at Dandra Garth (east of Garsdale Church). This will be a full road closure 24 hours a day with no vehicles being allowed to pass through the road works although pedestrian access will be maintained wherever possible. The date given by CCC Highways for the start of work was Monday 04 November until Tuesday 24 December 2013.

Information received since the publication of the Clerk’s report included:

5.5 Niki Child, YDNPA Woodland Officer, is currently compiling a report on the Parish Council annual tree risk assessment. Additionally, she is working with the Music and Beer Festival Committee on the implications for tree management raised as a result of the impending work on the car park track. 

5.6.1 A Police report had been received which included:

5.6.2 A request for help in tracing a small red van seen in the area at 2.30am on Friday 01 November.

5.6.3 Cumbria Police has established a Community Speedwatch programme. Its aim is to share the responsibility for addressing speed related offending between the community, the Police and other agencies. It is hoped that councils will acquire speed monitoring devices, either for themselves or in conjunction with their respective LAP or Neighborhood Forum. The equipment will be used by members of the local community to monitor the speed of vehicles at appropriate locations. These volunteers will receive training in the use of the speed monitoring equipment.

5.6.4 There has been an increase in vehicle diesel thefts throughout the area and residents are asked to keep their vehicles locked and within sight of their home.

5.6.5 Monday 04 November starts ‘sheep theft awareness week’. The Police will be stopping vehicles that are seen to be transporting sheep and asking for their documents.

5.7 CCC Highways has advised the Clerk that the planned closure of the U5509 road between Lea Yeat and Dent Station from Monday 18 November 2013 has been suspended until early 2014.

5.8 The declaration of interests of Councillors has been extended to disclosure of trade union interests. Any Councillor affected by this change will need to declare it.

5.9 The National Association of Local Councils has invited applications from Councillors to join its Smaller Councils’ Committee. An application form is available from the Clerk which should be submitted no later than Monday 25 November 2013.

5.10 The Department of Energy and Climate Change is holding national stakeholder workshops on the Government’s consultation on a revised siting process for a Geological Disposal Facility. A workshop will be held on Tuesday 12 November 2013 at Penrith. Further details are available from the Clerk.


Chair and Member Announcements:




County and District Councillor Announcements:

Councillor Evelyn Westwood reminded the meeting that each District Councillor was issued with an allowance of £1,000 to be used to support community schemes. She wished to use her funding allowance to support community projects that were unable to gain funding from other charitable sources. Councillor Westwood welcomed an approach from anyone within the community with suitable projects requiring financial support.


Public Forum:

Information was received of difficulties experienced with the CCC ‘Highways Hotline’ when reporting blocked drains within the Parish. Several calls had been made concerning the same issue with promised replies not being met and no action taken to resolve the problem. County and District Councillor Nick Cotton stated he would investigate the communication problems experienced from the Highways Hotline.



Local Area Partnership:

9.1 The notes of the meeting of Monday 14 October 2013 were received. Members raised no issues of concern.

9.2 The next meeting is expected to be held in March 2014. Date to be announced.



Playing Field Committee:

9.1 The minutes of the meeting of Thursday 10 October 2013 were received.

It was further reported:-

9.2 Mr Callow who is the owner of the land adjacent to the Playing Field had agreed to make arrangements for the dead tree overhanging the Playing Field to be removed.

9.3 The Committee would welcome consideration of a three year grass cutting contract in the future. The field was reported as looking particularly good at present.

9.4 Dentdale Show articles had still not been removed from the pavilion. Councillor Tom Stafford reported that there seemed little enthusiasm for the Show Committee to retain the articles.  


Planning Forum:

11.1 A Planning Forum between representatives of Dent & Sedbergh Parish Councils and the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) was held on Monday 21 October 2013, at the People’s Hall, Sedbergh. Notes of the meeting were received and presented by Councillor Jenny Pilgrim.

11.2 It was reported that in the three years from September 2010, of the 71 applications received, 63 were approved, 2 refused and 6 withdrawn. Throughout the YDNP area 93% of planning applications had been approved.

11.3.1 Communication had been seen as a major concern and actions agreed included:

11.3.2 A poster advertising planning surgeries would be distributed.

11.3.3 Parish Councils can address the monthly Planning Committee if there is a contentious issue with regard to a specific application.

11.3.4 A design guide focusing on materials acceptable for use locally is being prepared by YDNPA.

11.3.5 Names and contact details of the relevant planning officers were distributed. 

11.4 Performance targets are in place for the Planning Service with the expectation that planning applications will be decided within a period of 8 weeks.



Land at Beech Hill:

12.1.1 A draft of Cumbria County Council’s (CCC) documentation in respect of the two parcels of land at Beech Hill to be transferred to the Parish Council was received.

12.1.2 A number of administrative errors had been highlighted for amendment and no definition had been given to the ‘blue area’ of land to be retained by CCC.

12.1.3 The overage provisions contained within the documentation appeared restrictive.

12.1.4 It was resolved that the Chair and Clerk would negotiate outstanding matters with CCC and report the outcome at a future meeting.

12.2 South Lakeland District Council had not yet responded to the Parish Council’s request to limit its overage provision to 5 years, in respect of the transfer of land at the flower bed area of Beech Hill. 




Sedbergh & District Community Meeting:

13.1 It was reported that there is to be a Sedbergh & District Community meeting on Tuesday 12 November 2013 at the People’s Hall, Sedbergh. It is the aim of the meeting to invite as many groups, organisations, charities and individuals as possible with a view to establishing a Forum or Steering Group within the area, for the purpose of community enhancement.

13.2 Councillor Rita Corpe had previously agreed with the organisers that she would attend the meeting.




Parish Lengthsman Scheme:

14.1 Details were received of a Parish Lengthsman Scheme project currently operated in the Parish Council areas of Preston Richard, Burton-in-Kendal and Holme.

14.2 The Scheme enables parishes to carry out small scale, community determined, maintenance works to an acceptable standard for the benefit of all the community.

14.3 Work would be carried out by a contractor involving general highways maintenance including; clearing gully grates, digging out blocked gullies, clearing verges and soak-aways, cleaning blocked drains if practical, cleaning dirty signs, removing vegetation obstructing signs and amenity cutting of verges & grassed areas.

14.4 County & District Councillor Nick Cotton stated that there would possibly be some funding for the scheme available through the LAP.

14.5 It was resolved, in principle, to support the scheme subject to evaluation of the financial implications involved when known.





Health and Safety Policy Statement:

15.1 A proposed Parish Council Health and Safety Policy Statement was received.


15.2 The document is a statement of the Parish Council’s commitment to all aspects of health & safety for which it is responsible covering the key principles, persons to whom it applies and responsibility for its implementation. It is an over-arching statement complemented by the Parish Council’s current health and safety risk assessment. 

15.3 It was resolved to adopt the Health and Safety Policy – Statement of Commitment with immediate effect.



Parish Council Grants 2013/14:

16.1 A proposed timetable was received for advertising Parish Council grants for the financial year 2013-2014.

16.2 It was resolved that applications for Parish Council grants should be advertised in Dent, Cowgill and Garsdale with completed applications to be received no later than Friday 22 November 2013.



Budget – Financial Year 2014/15:

17.1 A request was made to Councillors to support a Budget Working Group to consider the Parish Council’s budget proposals for the financial year 2014/15.

17.2 It was resolved that Councillors Jenny Pilgim, Tom Stafford and Graham Dalton together with the Clerk as the Responsible Financial Officer would form the Budget Working Group.

17.3 It was agreed that the Group would meet at 7.30pm on Monday 18 November 2013 at the Library.






  Payments authorised:             

E.on (street lighting – October 2013)


A. Stephenson (administration & Clerk’s expenses – October 2013))


United Utilities (water & wastewater car park – October 2013)





19.1 Applications



19.2 Decision – Approved with Conditions

     S/01/230A – Gale Garth, Dent. Application for full planning permission for

     construction of a roofed and walled enclosure over existing midden.



20.1 Close of Meeting:

The meeting closed at 9.29pm.

20.2 Next Meeting:

Monday 02 December 2013, 7.30pm, in the Sedgwick Room.