Meeting date: 1st November 2010

From: Chief Executive



1.1 This report gives details of the work programme being undertaken by the Rural Projects Officer.

1.2 The Rural Projects Officer works in and Wards in Barrow-in- delivering a work programme determined by the Rural Joint Committee. The Rural Joint Committee comprises members and officers from Barrow Borough Council, County Council and members of the Parish Councils.

1.3 The Rural Projects Officer’s post is funded by , Barrow Borough Council, Dalton with Newton Town Council and Askam and Ireleth Parish Council. Cumbria County Council is the employing authority. The post is funded for five years and is in year two. The second project officer came into post on 6th April 2009. Initially the post was part-time, it is now full-time. This is the fifth report from the full-time Rural Projects Officer.


2.1 This project supports the delivery of the Community Plan by developing “community capacity through thriving parish councils, supporting parish charters and community plans”

2.2 In supporting the rural community and developing their voice this project will ensure that Councillors and colleagues will have “better intelligence on local views, concerns and wishes.”

2.3 This project supports the aims of the Council Plan; Better council services connected to people and places, Wealthier – a sustainable and prosperous community, Healthier - Improving the health and well being

of adults, Safer – stronger and inclusive communities, Greener – world class environmental quality and effective connections between people. In particular the project aims to support: “Enhance opportunities for people and communities to influence decisions and services.”

2.4 All projects will be assessed to ensure that the equality and diversity impacts are addressed.


3.1 That the report is noted.


4.1 Completed projects in Askam and Ireleth and Dalton-in-Furness –

Askam and Ireleth – The following projects have been completed in Askam and Ireleth: The Community Centre – total refurbishment, Duddon Road Car Park interpretation and environmental and physical improvements, the Rankin Hall disabled access and disabled toilet, and the Temperance Hall – minor works. Dalton-in-Furness – A major piece of work has been completed on behalf of Barrow Borough Council with groups, individuals, young people and residents who have a stake in or will be affected by the development of a multi-use games area, playground and skate park in front of the Leisure Centre. The Borough Council are now taking the project forward.

4.2 Current Projects Askam Young Lines – Regeneration project Askam Station – The Rural Projects Officer is working with the Askam Young Lines Committee and Borough and County Councillors on this project. Capital funding for the works to the Station building is being brought together, the lease from Network Rail is under negotiation. Listed building planning consent is underway and a bill of quantities being prepared prior to going out to tendered costs for the works. The Rural Projects Officer has now been asked by the Directors of the Askam Young Lines Community interest company to take a co-ordinating role in the project to ensure deadlines are met.

4.3 Dalton-in-Furness Drill Hall – The Rural Projects Officer is working with the Dalton Community Association on a programme of refurbishments for the Drill Hall on Nelson Street. Two first stage elements of the programme have been completed including the toilets and disabled toilet and the flat roofed area. Two next stage projects are now being progressed. The first being the entrance area including a dropped counter for the reception area for disabled users and visitors and external work to the front of the building. A number of funding applications have been made for both projects. Works to the entrance area will be funded by a grant from the Borough Council Rural Projects Fund. Funding applications continue to be made for this project. An open day will be held later this year to invite funders, stakeholders, councillors and the community to view progress so far and plans for the future. Planning continues on a wider development strategy for the Drill Hall.

4.4 Askam Village Hall Charity – The Lots – The Lots Committee have raised funding themselves for new play equipment for the childrens’ playground area on the Lots land. To enhance this area it has been decided that a Lottery Community Wildlife application should be undertaken. The Rural Projects Officer is working up this project with the Committee and local schools.

4.5 Dalton-in-Furness Innovation and Skills Centre – The Rural Projects Officer as a member of the Steering Group is assisting Dowdales School with planning and fund raising for the Innovation and Skills Centre Feasibility Study.

4.6 Projects in early stages – Askam Allotments, Dalton Disability Group, Dalton Station platform improvements, Dalton Festivals Committee – sustainable funding for future events and festivals.

4.7 Members £12k Capital Fund – The Rural Projects Officer continues to work with Dalton North and Dalton South Councillors on £12k capital fund projects.

4.8 Parish and Town Council, Rural Joint Committee – The Rural Projects Officer is attending council meetings on a regular basis to update council members on the status of projects, received feedback and report on a variety of issues including Highways. Two meetings have now taken place of the new Rural Joint Committee. An action is now being taken forward to develop a Parish Charter for the parished areas of Barrow. Parish planning is also due to start shortly for Askam and Ireleth with the Parish Council.

4.9 Match and Levered Funding – Members may be interested to note that to date the Rural Projects Officer has brought in additional funding to assist with projects in Askam and Ireleth and Dalton. This has included £4,750 from Eon Climate and Renewables for projects at the Rankin Hall, Duddon Road Car Park and the Temperance Hall. Successful applications to WREN have brought in £20,000. To date successful applications to the Hadfield Trust and Cumbria Community Foundation have realised £2,000 towards the Drill Hall projects. Additionally for the Drill Hall a further £25,000 has been made available from Barrow Borough Council Rural Capital Fund. A total of £51,750 has been brought in to date to enable community projects to be completed. Applications for project funding on behalf of community groups not yet submitted total £110,000.


5.1 Members are invited to discuss the report and note the progress made on projects.


6.1 There are no financial implications in this report


7.1 There are no direct legal implications in this report.


8.1 The Rural Projects programme is progressing well with a good distribution of projects between Dalton and Askam and Ireleth. Good and productive relationships are being embedded with the two rural communities.

Jill Stannard Chief Executive

12th October 2010


No appendices

Electoral Division(s): Dalton North Ward and Dalton South Ward.

* Please remove whichever option is not applicable

Executive Decision No

Key Decision No

If a Key Decision, is the proposal published in the current Forward Plan? N/A

Is the decision exempt from call-in on grounds of urgency? No

If exempt from call-in, has the agreement of the Chair of the relevant N/A* Overview and Scrutiny Committee been sought or obtained?

Has this matter been considered by Overview and Scrutiny? No If so, give details below.

Has an environmental or sustainability impact assessment been N/A undertaken?

Has an equality impact assessment been undertaken? No

N.B. If an executive decision is made, then a decision cannot be implemented until the expiry of the eighth working day after the date of the meeting – unless the decision is urgent and exempt from call-in and the Head of Member Services and Scrutiny has obtained the necessary approvals.


No previous relevant decisions


Not considered by Overview and Scrutiny


No background papers


Contact: Angela Knowles, Rural Projects Officer [email protected] Tel: 01229 407577