Aspatria & District Neighbourhood Forum
Minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 17 January 2007 at
Allhallows Community Centre
Welcome and Introductions
The meeting was chaired by County Councillor Jim Buchanan. Apologies were received
from Jacqueline Mounsey, Janet Mansfield and Audrey Tinnion.
West Cumbria Council for Voluntary Service
Deb Muscat and Jan Naylor from West Cumbria Council for Voluntary Service
(WCCVS) were at the forum to offer advice to community groups on funding and
volunteering. Call 01900 819191 for further information.
Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service
Dave Edgar Group Manager in charge of Aspatria, Cockermouth and Workington Fire
Stations outlined changes in the service to make it more pro-active and their first priority
being to address incidents before they happen. They have worked on fire awareness
for 10 years and the statistics are the lowest they have been for 60 years. For example,
there are 300 deaths caused by fire per year in the country compared to 1000 deaths 10
In addition to this the Service also offers:-
Fire Fighter experience days – which gives young people real life experience of
discipline and standards at a fire station including the fitness and practical tests.
Young Fire Fighter Scheme – this is an 8 week day release scheme for young
people at risk of being excluded from the education system and gives that person
the experience of a disciplined environment.
Fire and rescue service training programme and presentations for the
Working with local GP practices to identify vulnerable people in communities
The appointment of an Elderly Person’s Advocate who visits homes to see the
wider picture and can give advice on benefits etc.
FREE Home Safety Check
A home safety check takes approx 30-40 minutes to complete and involves devising a
fire escape plan, discussing fire hazards in the home and fitting a free smoke detector
with a ten year battery. When the smoke detector is installed your details are entered
onto the database and you will receive a new one when the battery expires. This is a
free service funded by the government.
Last year Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service visited 7000 homes and has set a stretch
target of 10,000 for this year.
Call 0800 358 4777 to arrange for a Fire Safety Officer to complete a FREE Fire Safety Check.
We are 20-30 times more likely to be killed on the roads than in a fire. In Cumbria 59
people died last year and over 500 people were seriously injured. The A595 and A596
in Cumbria are statistically high risks. Drinking and driving is also on the increase in
Cumbria again and this might be more of an issue in rural locations.
The fire service is now raising awareness by offering road safety training to sixth
formers, organisations and community groups.
What does the Road Awareness Training Scheme consist of?
Local firefighters talking about their experiences
Causes of road accidents
Consequences of road accidents and who is affected
Details of what happens to the body during impact
A young person who was involved in an accident through no fault of his own 3
years ago and was given a 5% chance of survival assists in Road Awareness
schemes by giving an account of how he was affected, how his family was
affected and the indignity of being in hospital.
Finally they show a hard hitting video from Essex Fire and Rescue Service
showing actual footage from collisions and the aftermath.
What can you do?
Take ownership when in a vehicle
Check the NCAP star rating when deciding on which car to buy
Purchase a good set of tyres
Get your car serviced regularly
If someone is driving dangerously tell them you don’t feel well and ask them to
stop the car and then get out.
Comments from the Forum:
A query was raised regarding statistics of road accidents in Cumbria. Dave advised that
you can log onto the safer roads for Cumbria website – www.saferroads4cumbria.org.uk
– for further information.
Cumbria Constabulary has a Traffic Management Officer who may be able to make
available some statistics and information and Neighbourhood Police Officers may also
be able to provide some parish specific information.
Jim Buchanan and Dave Edgar will look into getting this information available for the
Old Station Bridge
Concern was raised about the safety of Old Station Bridge at Mealsgate which is
experiencing an increase in heavy traffic. Jim Buchanan will investigate when the
bridge was last inspected and the results of that inspection
Criminal Damage in Aspatria
There has been an increase in criminal damage in Aspatria and residents asked why
the cameras are not operational.
The town council met on 16 January to discuss this matter and the issue will not be
resolved until there is agreement with a local business who owns the premises where
the cameras will be situated. PC Lee confirmed that patrols will increase in order to
reduce incidents of criminal damage.
Some parish councils were finding it difficult to raise the £299 cost in order to be
included in the SIDS scheme. Jim informed the Forum that some parish councils are
precepting for this cost.
A representative from Woodside parish council who is in the scheme gave very positive
feed back saying that they position the SID near to the playground at Oulton and this is
succeeding in reducing speed. The Police are able to have a presence in villages in the
week following the SID being in operation and will ticket speeding drivers.
Ougterside & Allerby and Allhallows used local people to log speeds and times of day
and forward this information to the police.
If any Parish Council would like to join the next scheme starting on 11 February they
need to forward a cheque for £299 to pat Ackred as soon as possible.
Parking in Fletchertown
Parking is an issue in the village with double parking on the Main Street. The Police no
longer deal with parking offences but can deal with obstruction offences and these will
be dealt with. PC Lee will issue warning notices when cars are parked within 10 metres
of the junction, although an element of discretion has to exist.
Since HGVs have been banned from using Wigton town centre lorries are detouring
through Allhallows and this is having an impact on residents. There are 3 companies
who have heavy vehicles using the road in and out of Aspatria. A request was made for
the companies to be contacted to discuss this issue and try to reach a solution. The
police confirmed that they can use radar and track licence numbers and then approach
The Cumbria Playing Fields Association can offer up to £250 to small sports groups and
sports activities around the county. Applications from any type of voluntary group are
welcome, including local recreational organisations, sports clubs, play organisations or
parish councils; the funding can be used to support any type of small sports and
physical activity project around the county. Cumbria Playing Fields Association is
financed by the county council, district councils, parish councils, local sports
organisations and other private and public bodies around the county.
It has been giving grants for over 50 years and has already supported hundreds of local
organizations including Aspatria Town Council, to buy tennis balls, nets and rackets for
their newly formed tennis club.
For more information contact Richard Johnston at Cumbria Sport on 01228 601255 or
New Applications considered at the Forum and recommendations made as follows:-
Aspatria Parochial Church Council £100
Maryport & North Allerdale Credit Union £245
RNLI Silloth £300
West House £250
Plumbland Out Of School Club £300
Prospect Garden Club £350
Oughterside & Allerby Parish Council £211
Sitting on the Grants Panel were:-
Jim Buchanan * Cumbria County Council
Richard Tuphope Chair of Boltons PC
Margaret Abbott Chair of Allhallows PC
Andrew Johnson Westnewton PC
John Ryden Westnewton PC
Paul Pearson CALC
Mike Bacon * Oughterside & Allerby PC
* Declared an interest in one of the applications being considered and took no part in
the discussion and recommendation.
Aspatria & District Neighbourhood Forum will next meet on 15th May 2007 at Prospect
Post Meeting note: this date has now been changed to 16 May 2007 to avoid
clashing with Aspatria TC.