Agenda, decisions and minutes

Council - Wednesday 1st March, 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Wallace Suite - Hundith Hill Hotel, Cockermouth. View directions

Contact: Gayle Roach  01900 516809

No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 132 KB

To sign as a correct record the minutes of the Council meeting held on 7 December 2022.



Councillor I Greaney requested an amendment to minute number 283. for the minute text to include ‘Officers had advised Councillors that there was no option to speak on the report’.

The amendment was seconded by Councillor W Wilkinson.


A vote was taken on the amendment, 9 in favour, 30 against and 6 abstentions. The motion was lost.


A vote was taken on the draft minutes set out in the agenda, 30 in favour, 9 against and 6 abstentions. The motion was carried.




The minutes of the meeting held on 7 December 2022 were agreed as a correct record.



Declaration of Interests

Councillors/Staff to give notice of any disclosable pecuniary interest, other registrable interest or any other interest and the nature of that interest relating to any item on the agenda in accordance with the adopted Code of Conduct.


None declared.



Exclusion of the Press and Public

To consider whether there are any items on the agenda for which the press and public should be excluded.


There were no items on the agenda for which the press and public should be excluded.



Questions and Petitions

To answer questions under Procedural Rule No. 4.16 from members of the public and from Councillors under Procedural Rule No. 4.17 and to receive Petitions under Access to Information Rules.



Councillor A Semple submitted the following question –


‘The forthcoming parish elections will be the first in modern history where an extra requirement to prove identity is imposed upon a voter. The former Brexit Secretary, David Davis, has described the new law as "an illiberal solution in pursuit of a non-existent problem". To help us fact check that statement can Electoral Services confirm how many instances of potential electoral fraud were reported and investigated at the last Borough and General elections and has Allerdale ever successfully prosecuted an individual for Election Fraud?’


Councillor M Fitzgerald provided the following response –


‘I can confirm that there have been no instances of reported electoral fraud at the last Borough and General Elections.

Electoral Fraud is reported to the Police and there has not been any prosecutions within the Allerdale Area.

In relation to Voter ID, the Electoral Services Team and the Communications Team are undertaking a range of activities to raise awareness and a briefing will shortly be arranged for all elected members of the existing district and county councils, as well as those elected to Cumberland Council’.


Councillor A Semple asked whether the Council was going to do all it could to ensure that everyone would be unaffected by the new requirements and be able to vote as usual at the next General election.


Councillor M Fitzgerald confirmed that a lot of information had already gone out both locally and nationally, which she hoped councillors would be sharing with their residents and community groups and said she had confidence that the electoral services teams would do all they could in line with the national guidance to deliver the messages.


Councillor S Stoddart left the meeting


Notices of Motion

Councillor Peter Kendall submitted the following motion –


‘I Peter Kendall would like to call upon the members of Allerdale Full Council and bring to their attention as a notice of motion, the following,


Maryport Town Hall is affected by damp in the walls, which should be dealt with to both protect the health & safety of users of the building, & preserve the structure of an old, important, historic building. In the recent past, fungal growth has had to be removed from internal walls & internal décor is badly damaged. I am concerned that the building is being neglected by Allerdale, which is ignoring its duty of care responsibilities. Whilst the ground floor recently underwent grant funded renovation, it is believed that this was undertaken with no active involvement or advice on the historic damp problems experienced by the building from Allerdale Property Services, & damp areas appear to have just been painted over. Other areas of damp in the building are not been addressed. I move that Council agrees that the issues be resolved as a matter of urgency’.



Councillor P Kendall requested to withdraw his Motion at the start of the item.


Those present were asked to consent to the withdrawal by show of hands.




With the consent of the meeting the Motion on Notice was withdrawn.



Executive Minutes pdf icon PDF 128 KB

To note the contents of the minutes of the meetings of the Executive held on 23 November 2022 and 11 January 2023.


Additional documents:


The minutes of the Executive meetings held on 23 November 2022 and 11 January 2023 were noted.



Governance Update Report pdf icon PDF 214 KB

Additional documents:


The Chief Officer Place and Governance submitted a report which sought approval for a process to sign off final sets of Council and Committee minutes where no future meeting was available to deal with the minutes in the usual manner.

Approval was being sought to delegate authority for sign off of final minutes to the Monitoring Officer, in consultation with the Mayor or relevant committee Chair.


Councillor M Fitzgerald moved the recommendations as per the report; this was seconded by Councillor A Pitcher.


A vote was taken and the motion was unanimously agreed.




That -


1.  The Monitoring Officer, in consultation with the Mayor of Allerdale, be delegated authority to sign off the minutes of this Council meeting, 1 March 2023, as an accurate record of the meeting on behalf of Council;


2.  The Monitoring Officer, in consultation with the relevant committee Chairs, be delegated authority to sign off the minutes of scheduled meetings in March as an accurate record of the meeting on behalf of the committee;


3.  That the following sets of minutes be signed off by Council as an accurate record;

-  Independent Panel for Councillors Allowances, 16 December 2021

-  Standards Committee, 12 August 2021 and 24 February 2022

-  Chief Officers Employment Panel, 9 September and 28 September  2022



Authority to Temporarily Amend Polling Scheme pdf icon PDF 300 KB


The Chief Officer Place and Governance submitted a report which sought approval to delegate authority to the Returning Officer to make timely decisions in relation to polling places and/or stations if necessary for the Town and Parish elections due on 4 May 2023.


The Elections Act 2022 had introduced significant changes to the way elections were to be conducted. Some of the currently used polling stations, even with adjustments may not be able to comply with the new requirements and so changes to the Councils polling scheme may need to be made.   


Councillor M Fitzgerald moved the recommendation in the report; this was seconded by Councillor M Johnson.


A vote was taken and the motion was unanimously agreed.




That the Returning Officer be delegated the authority to make any urgent, temporary changes to the polling place and/or station within the Borough, necessary for the safe and effective delivery of the 2023 Town and Parish elections, due to be held on 4 May 2023.



Urgent Delegated Decision Update pdf icon PDF 277 KB


The Senior Specialist – Elections submitted a report to provide members with an update on a recent Urgent delegated decision taken by the Chief Executive on 20 February 2023.


Under Procedural Rule 4.35.4 of the Councils Constitution the Chief Executive had taken the following decision under the Urgent Action powers;


Community Governance Reviews (CGR) (Allhallows Parish Council and Embleton and District Parish Council) – to amend the total number of seats on the above parish councils following a CGR as below;


Allhallows Parish Council   – 8 seats (from 11)

Embleton and District Parish Council   – 9 seats (from 13)


Due to Local Government Reorganisation and the timings of the next Allerdale Borough Council and Shadow Cumberland Council meetings it was not possible for Allerdale Council to make the recommendations, as such, the Chief Executive Urgent Action was required.




That the report be noted.



Overview and Scrutiny Committee Update Report pdf icon PDF 269 KB

Report to follow.



The Co-Chairs of Overview and Scrutiny Committee submitted their final summary report to Council on behalf of the Committee.


Members were informed that for the last scheduled Scrutiny Committee meeting on 17 March the Committee were due to sign off their final summary report, highlighting the key activities, areas of concern and recommendations from the past twelve months, including the three Task and Finish Group final reports.

That report was to then be sent on to Cumberland Council for consideration.




That the report be noted.



Councillor Speeches

To hear speeches (not exceeding 5 minutes each), for up to a specified period of 15 minutes, may be amended at the discretion of the Mayor, from individual members on a local issue in the Member’s Ward, of which 24 hours’ notice has been given to the Chief Executive.


No Councillor speeches were received.



Portfolio Holder Reports pdf icon PDF 569 KB

To consider reports from Members of the Executive.


Councillor M Johnson, Leader of the Council moved the Portfolio Holder update reports.


Questions were asked on progress on the Sports Village, a permanent Gypsy and Traveller site in Allerdale, Voter ID arrangements and plans for refurbishment of the toilets on Maryport promenade.


Councillor A Semple asked where members could find a copy of the Cultural Strategy for West Cumbria.

It was agreed that the strategy be circulated to members following the meeting.


Councillor S Lansbury asked for further information on the Multi-cultural Women’s Group.

It was agreed information on the group would be circulated to members following the meeting.




That the update reports be noted.



Closing remarks from Leader of the Council


The Leader of the Council Councillor Mike Johnson made his closing speech on the end of Allerdale


‘Today marks a hugely significant day in the history of our council. After more than 49 years, this is the last time all of us as councillors will sit together to debate and make decisions on our services. Over that time the dedication that councillors and officers have shown to working for the good of the people of Allerdale has not changed and we have achieved some great things.

It is quite staggering when you look at it in numbers. There have, of course, been 48 Mayors – though some people have had more than one term in office. Collectively our officers work 7,850 hours in total every week. That’s 377,000 hours a year. I’m sure that our staffing levels would have been higher in years gone by, but even using today’s figures that’s over 18million hours worked’.


…’I’m confident that what has motivated each and every person throughout that time has been a desire to improve the lives of the residents of Allerdale.


As an area we are often at the mercy of Mother Nature. The recent floods tore through our communities. Foot and Mouth devastated parts of our economy and saw our area at the forefront of efforts to deal with the disease. And of course, like everywhere in the world, we recently faced the challenges posed by Covid.

Every time we have risen to the challenge. Our officers and members have rallied round, supported our communities and provided the help and assistance required. It is something we can all be proud of’.


…’Local Government Reorganisation brings further changes to the public sector in our area. Change is naturally unsettling with people fearing for the future. But I do believe that it is an opportunity for everyone to succeed. I would not have been at the forefront of the process if I didn’t think it was the right thing to do.

I know that in 1974 our predecessors faced similar challenges when bringing the councils together as one. But in a relatively short space of time, come together they did, and whilst the local rivalries between towns and areas remained, we have always fought for what’s best for our area. I’m confident that we leave Allerdale in the best position possible to guarantee future success for Cumberland’.


…’So tonight is about celebrating our successes and honouring the people who have made it happen. That’s everyone here and all those who have sat in your place over the years. It’s all the officers who have dedicated their time and energy for our residents, and the partners we have worked with.

But it’s also about thanking the people of Allerdale, who have supported us along the way’.



Closing remarks from Mayor of Allerdale pdf icon PDF 276 KB


The Mayor of Allerdale Councillor Allan Daniels gave the closing speech to Council


‘Firstly, I would like to extend my gratitude to all the council officers and staff who throughout my time as councillor, have been most helpful and extremely professional.

In addition to this, I would like to say a big thanks to my Deputy Mayor, Councillor Bill Pegram, who seamlessly stepped in and attended events that I was unable to attend. A big thanks also goes to my fellow Keswick ward Councillors, Sally Lansbury and Marcus Campbell-Savours, as we put party politics aside to work together for the benefit of our community.


My thanks also goes to all the councillors that I have worked with on several different committees.


When covid restrictions finally ended, Allerdale suddenly burst into life, and Bill and I have attended carnivals, civic services, school awards ceremonies, graduation ceremonies, dance and music competitions, school plays and of course the many schools who took part in the annual Mayor of Allerdale Christmas card competition. This of course is not an exhaustive list, there are simply too many other brilliant events to name.


Last year, we received the sad news of the death of our beloved Queen who brought stability to our country for decades. She will be sadly missed not only in our own country, but across Commonwealth and in many other Countries around the world.


As part of a historic and once-in-a-lifetime occasion, I was called upon to read the Proclamation of our new King Charles 3rd – this is something I’m immensely proud of. 


And so, as my time as Mayor is almost over, I’d like to express what a huge honour and a great privilege it has been to serve the Council and the people of the Borough of Allerdale.


Sadly, of course, it is the end of Allerdale itself, as we become part of the new authority Cumberland Council on April 1st 2023.

But the beginning of a new Council is a fantastic and exciting opportunity to take our outstanding ethos, service and respect for our community forward to benefit the residents of Cumberland’.