Agenda and minutes

Call in of a decision of Cabinet, Scrutiny Management Board
Wednesday, 18th December, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: Committee Room 2 - County Offices, Kendal, LA9 4RQ. View directions

Contact: Jackie Currie  Email:

No. Item



To receive any apologies for absence.



Apologies for absence were received from Mr P Dew, Mrs S Evans, and Dr S Haraldsen.




To report any changes to the membership of the Board.



There were no changes in membership to report. 


However, the Chair asked that members note that as Mr S Collins was the Lead Call in Member he would not be sitting as part of Scrutiny Management Board on this occasion.




Members are invited to disclose any disclosable pecuniary interest they have in any item on the agenda which comprises


1          Details of any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.


2          Details of any payment or provision of any other financial benefit (other than from the authority) made or provided within the relevant period in respect of any expenses incurred by you in carrying out duties as a member, or towards your election expenses.  (This includes any payment or financial benefit from a trade union within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.


3          Details of any contract which is made between you (or a body in which you have a beneficial interest) and the authority


(a)     Under which goods or services are to be provided or works are to be executed; and


(b)     Which has not been fully discharged.


4          Details of any beneficial interest in land which is within the area of the authority. 


5          Details of any licence (alone or jointly with others) to occupy land in the area of the authority for a month or longer. 


6          Details of any tenancy where (to your knowledge)


(a)     The landlord is the authority; and


(b)     The tenant is a body in which you have a beneficial interest.


7          Details of any beneficial interest in securities of a body where


(a)     That body (to your knowledge) has a place of business or land in the area of the authority; and


(b)     Either –


(i)        The total nominal value of the securities exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body; or


(ii)          If that share capital of that body is of more than one class, the total nominal value of the shares of any one class in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest exceeds one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that class.


In addition, you must also disclose other non-pecuniary interests set out in the Code of Conduct where these have not already been registered.




A “disclosable pecuniary interest” is an interest of a councillor or their partner (which means spouse or civil partner, a person with whom they are living as husband or wife, or a person with whom they are living as if they are civil partners).



There were no disclosures of interest made on this occasion.




To consider whether the press and public should be excluded from the meeting during consideration of any item on the agenda.



RESOLVED,     that the press and public be not excluded from the meeting during discussion of any items of business.




To consider a valid call in of a decision of Cabinet on 14 November 2019 – Cumbria Care – Reshaping of Services.


The grounds for call in were clarified at a meeting between the 3 call in members, the Chair, and Vice Chair of Scrutiny Management Board, the Leader of the Council and relevant officers on 3 December 2019.


The Scrutiny Management Board will consider the grounds for call in as set out in the letter dated 25 November 2019, signed by Mr S Collins (lead call in member), Mr P McSweeney and Mr J Bland.


The following documents are appended to this agenda:-


a)    Cabinet Report 14 November 2019

b)    Published draft minutes of Cabinet 14 November 2019

c)    The call in letter dated 25 November 2019 signed by Mr S Collins, Mr P McSweeney and Mr J Bland.

d)    Supplementary information

e)    Call in meeting format



The Chair of Scrutiny Management Board explained that the Monitoring Officer had received a valid call in of a Cabinet decision in respect of Cumbria Care Reshaping of Services. 


The call in members considered the decision to be flawed for a number of reasons, which were set out in the call in letter dated 25 November 2019, which had been published with the agenda for the meeting of Scrutiny Management Board.


The grounds for call in were clarified at a meeting between the call in members, the Chair and Vice Chair of Scrutiny Management Board, the Leader of the Council and the Area Manager for South Lakeland Local Committee on 3 December 2019.


Scrutiny Management Board was being asked to consider the call in on the grounds that:-


1.    Contrary to the report there has continued to be a demand from the public for places in the Abbey which could have been met but were refused.

2.    The costings for bringing the home back to full functionality were not made clear or adequately considered.

3.    The most popular alternative from the public consultation, of a reduced capacity home with extra care housing attached, was not considered and a full closure at this stage would make more difficult the public’s preferred option.

4.    The accessibility of this home by public transport for elderly relatives and friends of residents was ignored.


The Chair described the procedure that would be followed at this meeting, and which had been published with the agenda.


Cabinet report - 14 November - Cumbria Care Reshaping of Services pdf icon PDF 157 KB

(copy enclosed)


Additional documents:


Scrutiny Management Board received and noted the Cabinet Report from 14 November entitled Cumbria Care Reshaping of Services.



Cabinet Minutes - 14 November 2019 pdf icon PDF 131 KB

(copy enclosed)



The Cabinet Minutes from 14 November 2019 were noted.



Call in letter pdf icon PDF 887 KB

(copy enclosed)



Mr S Collins, Lead Call in Member, presented the reasons for the call in.  In his presentation he made a number of, points, including:-


Mr Collins was aware that there had been issues in the past at the Abbey with both the lift and the roof.  All of these works had been completed, and yet people were still being refused places in the home, he knew of people who had not been offered a place in the Abbey, even though there were spaces.  Mr Collins asked the Cabinet Member whether it had been a deliberate policy not to use this home.


As part of the consultation process one of the options discussed was the possibility of keeping a smaller care home with extra care housing on site, which had been popular with many of the consultees.  However, this appeared to have been ignored by Cabinet during their decision making.


Mr Collins was concerned that Cabinet had based the decision to close the Abbey on the previous CQC Report from 2016, which was out of date.  The latest CQC Report indicated that all the issues from the previous inspection of the Abbey had been resolved and there were now no outstanding concerns.  He felt that Cabinet had failed to recognise this when they had taken the decision to close the home.


Mr Collins said the Abbey Care Home was easily accessible for friends and relatives and should have been a serious consideration for Cabinet.  The accessibility of public transport was crucial for older relatives.


The proposals for a community take-over of the home do not appear to have been considered by Cabinet at all.  If the home closed and then reopened with a care home and an extra care facility sharing the site, the cost of opening a ‘new’ home was far greater than the cost of refurbishing a home which was currently operational.


With reference to South Lakeland Local Committee being consulted as part of the area planning process, he had no recollection of this decision ever being taken to the South Lakeland Local Committee for consideration.


The Area Manager for South Lakeland confirmed that following an initiation meeting to set the wider ‘whole village’ approach with the ED Member, the late Deputy Leader and the previous Portfolio Holder, she continued to work very closely with the local ED Member, updating him at every juncture.  He had remained fully involved in the planning, which included the conversations with the Parish Council and the wider community.  The Local Committee were updated verbally on progress through their Strategic Planning Working Group. 


Mr Collins was asking for this to be referred back to Cabinet for a complete review of all the options.


Mr McSweeney had concerns about the public consultation and whether this had been properly considered by Cabinet.  The public consultation closed on 1 November, and the Cabinet meeting was held on 14 November, which he did not think was sufficient time to consider all the proposals before the decision was taken.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 39c


Supplementary Information pdf icon PDF 96 KB

The following information is enclosed:-


(i)        CQC Inspection Report

(ii)       David Brockbank Letter

(iii)      SCLT Letter

(iv)      The Abbey Timeline

(v)       All Consultation Forms

(vi)      Fire Risk Assessment

(vii)    Bus Timetable

(viii)   Train timetable


Additional documents:





call in flowchart pdf icon PDF 43 KB

(copy enclosed)


The call in flowchart was noted.