Please find below the minutes for the latest Formby Parish Council meeting. A copy of the minutes is available to download at the bottom of the page.
MINUTES OF MEETING
This meeting was held online due to the covid-19 pandemic
Councillors: Bob McCann (Chairman), Colin Appleton, Derek Baxter, Sandra Baxter, Maria Bennett, Dawn Brodie, David Dutton, Dave Irving, Yvonne Irving, Susan McCann, Carol Richards, Joe Riley, Paul Wiencke and Mike Weild
Claire Jenkins (Clerk), Jill Hendry (Administrative Assistant) and 2 members of public.
1.0 Apologies for Absence
There were apologies received from Cllr Prescott
2.0 Members Declaration of Interest
Cllr Appleton declared an interest in minute 7.1 Cllr B McCann declared an interest in minute 7.3
3.0 Public Forum
The meeting was adjourned for this item.
A member of the public brought to the attention of the Parish Council the death of Mr Ian Cowell and reported that:
“He was the first Formby Parish Clerk during the shadow year following the formation of the new Parish Council. He sourced the standing orders which framed the way in which members conducted business. Ian was also the long serving clerk for both Little Altcar and Ince Blundell Parish Councils. He also provided invaluable guidance and support in establishing Hightown Parish Council. He frequently attended meetings and advised the Sefton Association of Town and Parish Councils. He oversaw the content and adoption of the Sefton Council Charter for town and Parish councils.
Finally, he was a very, kind, courteous, modest gentleman, who really deserved more recognition for his persistent efforts in developing our local civic and democratic life. I hope the Council might find a way to honour his life in some way.”
Members agreed that Mr Cowell deserves recognition for his work and advised that they would consider how this would best be achieved.
The meeting was reconvened.
4.0 Minutes of the Previous Meeting
It was resolved that the minutes of the meeting held on 27 April 2020 were approved as a correct record. As the meeting was held online, the Clerk will arrange for the minutes to be signed.
5.0 Matters of Report from Previous Meeting
There were no matters of report.
There was a change to the order of the agenda
9.0 Chairman’s Report
Cllr McCann reported that he had spoken to the Chief Executive of Sefton MBC about the behaviour of visitors, anti-social behaviour, and parking issues that Formby faced recently with approximately 25,000 visitors arriving at the beach and the issue of rubbish being left. The Chief Executive reported that the Police had to bring in reinforcements from Wirral, Liverpool, and Knowsley to support them. Over 100 parking tickets were issued per day over the past few days.
Cllr McCann shared his opinions with the Chief Executive that this isn’t just a Covid-19 related problem, the issues with parking have been around for many years. Formby Parish Council have attended many meetings in the past with Sefton Council, Ward Cllrs, Merseyside Police, and the National Trust with little progress. The Chairman reported that problems are getting worse and there needs to be more traffic control. The Chairman reported that the Clerk has written to Sefton and it is hoped to explore ideas such as additional traffic enforcement officers and residents’ only parking zones. The Chairman advised that residents are asking for help with this issue and he indicated a desire for strong measures such as clamping/tow zones. For example, it was reported that a fire engine couldn’t get to a fire in the pinewoods because of cars double parking.
Members commented that the matrix signs on the by-pass do not giving much warning about the beach car parks being full. It was noted that people were parking as far down as Gores Lane/Timms Lane and then walking 1-2 miles to the beach. Members noted that Ainsdale beach is currently closed to vehicle parking and agreed that this will have contributed to the problems encountered in Formby. It was noted that there is no electricity in the hut at Ainsdale beach to be able to use an electronic card reader, which is why the beach is closed. Members commented that at present there is a shortage of lifeguards and people should not be swimming at Formby beach without lifeguards.
Members also commented that people are happy to pay the parking fines when they have driven from as far away as the midlands to get here.
The Chairman returned to the agenda
6.0 Planning Applications
Members discussed the planning applications on Sefton’s weekly list and noted the following:
6.1 Confirmation that 45 Harington Road application has been withdrawn.
7.0 To discuss and approve the following:
7.1 To approve a grant of £1,000 contribution to a new fence for Formby Cricket Club.
Cllrs discussed the grant application and noted that the club is used for many community events and charity events that often involve young children on site. They actively look to engage the wider community and open up many coaching programs to the community, not just members of the club. The fence will be there to act as a safety barrier from the field to the road. Currently the club has no revenue coming in due to the Covid-19 crisis.
It was resolved to approve a grant of £1,000 for a new fence for Formby Cricket Club.
7.2 To approve a project budget for the installation of tree grids.
Cllrs discussed setting up a new project for the installation of tree grids as part of the improvements to the village environment and for the protection of the younger trees. Members noted the quotes for different size grids, but also the difficulty of installing these at the present time. Members agreed that this could be achieved over a few years and it was agreed that £10,000 will be earmarked from the 2020/21 capital projects budget and will be treated as an earmarked reserve for next year if the project cannot start this year. Further funding allocation for 2021/22 will be discussed at a later date.
Members agreed to insert “of £10,000” to the resolution.
It was resolved to approve a project budget of £10,000 for the installation of tree grids.
7.3 To approve expenditure for legal/planning advice regarding unauthorised development of the green belt.
Cllr Brodie, Vice Chairman, chaired this item as Cllr B McCann declared an interest as a member of the Planning Committee.
Cllrs discussed the issue of a company setting up premises on land at Formby Football Club without planning permission. This land had been subject to public inquiry as part of the Local Plan process and the government appointed Inspector ruled against development of this land and confirmed that this land would remain in the Green Belt. This development activity is contrary to both the Sefton Local Plan, Formby and Little Altcar’s Neighbourhood Plan and protection of green belt in National Planning Guidelines.
It was resolved to approve expenditure for legal/planning advice regarding unauthorised development of the green belt.
- Employer expenses – £1551.69
- Office lease, Sefton MBC – £250.00
- Office phone and broadband, BT – £67.58
- Insurance renewal, Came and Company – £1863.24
- Professional advice, Aecom – £2760.00
- Smithy Green Play Park, Sefton MBC – £10,079.00
It was resolved to make the payments as listed above.
9.0 Chairman’s Report
The Chairman thanked everyone for attending
10.0 The following reports were noted (circulated with Agenda)
- Finance and General Purposes Group Minutes
11.0 Date of Next Meeting:
The next Ordinary Meeting of Formby Parish Council will take place in July, but a date is to be confirmed following the completion of the annual internal audit.
It is hoped that the regular first Tuesday of the month meetings dates will resume in September and agendas and meeting minutes will be published on the website at www.formbyparishcouncil.org.uk