Drigg & Carleton Parish Council / NWS Liaison Group – Minutes 31st January 2023

Minutes Uploaded on February 16, 2023



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Present John Jennings, D&C PC (JJ) Andy Pratt, D&C PC (AP) Martin Walkingshaw (MW) Mike Pigott (MP)


Samantha McKenzie (SM) Ben Wilson (BW)


Jake Iceton (JI) Samantha Ward (SW)


Apologies: Suey Browne, D&C PC


Martin welcomed everyone to the meeting and John gave apologies on behalf of Suey Browne.


Minutes of the last meeting (29/11/2022) – There were no issues raised and the minutes were deemed accurate and approved by the committee.


Outstanding Actions


Stakeholder engagement from BEIS for policy and consultation document.


No developments to report currently on this action. Consultation is expected in February and a placeholder has been set on the agenda for the next WCSSG meeting should there be any update and inform relevant stakeholders. Action ongoing MW


To provide updates for working hours at the site.


Discussions on working hours at site are paused awaiting conclusion of Pay Reward discussions. Action ongoing MP


Community bench, new area to be located.


JJ provided an update to the group. A location has been identified and now has approval. Action placed on JJ to provide a date that is suitable for us to deliver the bench in coordination with any preparation works. Action ongoing JJ


HR Job Portal link is now live.


Link to the portal was shared prior to the meeting . The portal is live and so will give all current vacancies at any time accessed and can be filtered by location. SW also provided detail to a query from JJ, location to be used on the search function on Mitie’s website is ‘Holmrook’ when searching for jobs specifically at the Repository and Pelham House. Action Closed.


Nuclear Waste Services Update from Martin Walkingshaw


Safety performance continues to be very good, with no reportable injuries in the last quarter and we continue to be on track to meet operating targets.


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Nuclear Waste Services celebrates its 1st birthday today. It’s been a busy year where functions are working much more closely, providing strength in depth, and working across the organisation collaboratively.


AP asked if there were any planned dates for building Vault 10. MW confirmed there are no firm dates as there are another approximate 5-10 years left in Vault 9, we are currently exploring development of Vault 9A in conjunction with enhancements to the leachate management system for this area, this will provide additional vault capacity if required.


GDF Update from Martin Walkingshaw


Karen Wheeler, Head of Major Capital Programmes and Deputy CEO leaves the business today, she has made great strides with the GDF programme over her 3 year tenure. Corhyn Parr will be taking over as Senior Responsible Officer of the programme in the interim and has asked MW to assist with this and other delegated responsibilities, HR teams are currently looking at the organisation structure, and once understood, a risk assessment will be undertaken to ensure we comply with Site License Condition 36.


The programme is now preparing for Tranche 3, involving work on siting conditions. We are looking at using commercial contracts to support this work together with development consent order work. Business cases that underpin are being prepared and will need to go through our governance process. We hope to have more information on siting viability by the end of this tranche.


Major permissions team under Simon Hughes visited Pelham House last week, looking at integration of our ways of working, where the work lends itself to do this. AP asked why the team was moving this way, as working groups wanted the GDF identity kept as separate. MW clarified that this was to reduce unnecessary duplication and therefore save taxpayers money. This integration intends to clarify the enabling functions. This would not impact the public facing GDF teams. This will result in a wider pool of people to support. AP said that we need to ensure that GDF remains an independent project in the eyes of public perception and the waters do not become muddy.


Site Operations Update from Mike Pigott




Continued focus on Nuclear and Conventional Safety, Compliance, and responsible Stewardship, with an additional focus on securing finances for Site.


Continued busy period of activity, notable highlights over the period since the last meeting:


7 December – ONR Security Intervention handover transitioned from Alan Husher to David




15-21 December – 7 x Sellafield and 1 x Tradebe container received.


Over the Christmas period, RDP and TRS aggregate imports went as planned with escorts


and speed cameras.


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10 January – Initial site safety tour held with NDA. Will be a 6 monthly occurrence to help


maintain the safety record.


11 January – Repository Stewardship Council held, liaising with BEIS, NDA, EA etc with


specific focus on Repository Development where ONR expressed keen interest in


construction arrangements.


19 January – Receipt of 100 x TRS Drums.






Year to date – 32 containers received to site of 70 forecast


Groutable – 37


On hold – 58 plus 160 Overweight top-ups


RACER handover has been completed with a grouting campaign planned for 6 March


lasting 20 weeks.


Treated Radwaste Store Drums


270 of 500 drums have now been emplaced into Vault 8, of the total of 1068. Emplacements were paused early January due to the severe weather conditions; these recommence this week for a short time, prior to void infill operations around the drums emplaced to date and balancing these with infill material. MW shared an image of the infill material going into the Vault, explaining this is quite a significant step as this is permanent and irreversible with a lot of work done prior to select the correct type of pea gravel with the right levels of permeability and stability.


Noting we only imported material on the Monday and Tuesday before Christmas, our road imports will continue until the end of March. The next TRS drum delivery is planned for mid-March.




The PCM re-characterisation is complete, and conversion remains at 99% confirmed by final records. There are 23 shipments to go to VLLW Augean landfill Peterborough, with 2-3 shipments destined for LLW Tradebe super-compaction.


Office refurbishments continue with investment into welfare facilities working the way down to B749.


Repository Asset Care, Enhancement and Remediation (RACER)


DGF has been handed over to operations. Focus going forward is the Leachate Management System, with a wave of investment to get them to a responsible stewardship state.


Repository Development


Infill via road is continued, with RDP aggregate imports to the Port of Workington. They have a holding area for us, so we will likely take advantage of this the final three weeks of March.


Lagoon C tree clearance to commence from 01 February. This is to make way for water management for interim trench cap membrane repairs. Fawcett’s will be carrying out the work,


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which has been carefully planned with our site ecologist. There will be a couple of days with limited noise from chipping machinery, being conscious to avoid the school half term holidays.


Priorities and focus for next period


Safety, security and environmental compliance, and good stewardship


01 February – 1 x Tradebe container due in


06/07 February – RDP Delivery Options workshop


13 February – NWS LLWR Site Familiarisation Tour


13 February – ESC geophysics site characterisation work commences, underpinning the


ESC work already done. This is non-intrusive and will run from the middle of February until


the end of March. The vast majority of the work will be carried out within the site boundary,


with a short period where there will be presence on the beach. Equipment will be


accompanied by a security guard for this time and there will be welfare facilities provided. A


letter will go out to local residents to make them aware of the works.


W/C 20 February – CNC Strategic Escort Group will be carrying out some training on the


site in the area of the rail sidings. It is recognised this is half term week and so sound will


be monitored and managed as much as possible. Again, residents close to the site will be


notified by letter the week before.


Requests made by Reverend and Canon Bracegirdle to look at the biodiversity of the grass


verges, stating concern this had been limited in recent years. Our site ecologist and


security teams have worked on this to encourage wildflower growth. A selection of seeds


will be spread, with public information being displayed in the area. This will be cut


biannually with the road edge being strimmed. This will be managed and evaluated going




HGV summary report from Jake Iceton


Jake Iceton gave the following detail from the HGV summary report


December – Total HGV deliveries was x 90, with 1 x rail and 0 x curfew breaches


January – Total HGV deliveries are x 133, with 1 x rail and 1 x curfew breach (delivery of


diesel for RDP, accessed site at 15:30)


There will be an increase in TRS deliveries before half term to reduce the number of deliveries


needed around the half term week (extra 1 – 2 a week)


RDP increase in rail deliveries up to three per week beginning in March


No further planned abnormal load deliveries


Next TRS train delivery planned for mid-March




JJ provided detail on the discussion on Marquee insurance. Peter Lockhart confirmed his insurance does cover the marquee while installed. SM apologised for the confusion and confirmed that information has been recorded.


AP asked if there was any further information on the south end of site. MW confirmed a strategic site development plan is being worked on. Were currently still looking at suitable accommodation


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for those working on site but are hoping to combine something that provides amenity to the village. No conversations have been had with planning or have progressed, so is very early stages. With the growth of the company, we need to look at this strategy. AP asked about the potential procurement of the council tip. We have been approached previously about taking this on and MW doesn’t think the stance will change with the transfer to Cumberland Council. Any procurement of land would be done via the NDA, and this is not within the current Strategy. AP said parking in the villages has been a difficulty, so this may be worth a consideration. MW said whatever development we undertake, transport would be factored in, obviously with encouragement to use rail.


MW spoke about a recent visit by Calderbridge and Ponsonby Parish Council to Pelham House to look at the tree planting plans for the grounds, and we also included tour around the building. It was good to make the connection and we were kindly gifted a portrait of a former teacher at Pelham House which we gratefully received.


We also have recently installed a plaque with the support of the Drigg History Group and were undertaking a history walk on 03 February. MW has some documents on the history of the site which he hopes to share with Alan Bell.


A prompt was given to remind the Parish Council to submit the application via the portal for the Drigg Bursary funding. JJ to progress.


MW informed the group that SM was leaving, and this was her last meeting. Thanks were given for her support to the group over the past 8 years.


New actions


No new actions recorded.


Date of Next Meeting


Date of next meeting Tuesday 28th February 2023, to be held at Pelham House.