St John Parish Council

St John Parish Council covers the settlements of St John village and Freathy/Tregonhawke, as well as the farms and businesses within the overall parish.

The population of the parish is approximately 400 people, and the parish is one of the smallest in Cornwall.

The boundaries of the parish are shown on the map presented on this website.

The Parish Council owns no land assets, and is responsible for the upkeep of the public footpaths shown on the parish map, as well as the memorial garden in St John.

The local Cornwall County Councillor responsible for the parish is Kate Ewert..

St John PC works closely with the other four parishes on the Rame Peninsula (Millbrook, Sheviock, Antony and Maker with Rame) with several initiatives driven by the “Cluster” of parishes including the Rame Neighbourhood Development Plan.

Community Fund

The parish receives an annual Community Fund of £3000 each year from British Solar Renewables in respect of the Freathy Solar Farm,

This annual sum is managed by the St John Parish Council and will be used on behalf of the Community.

If you have any ideas for using this funding, then you are invited to add your suggestions on the Contact Us page of this website.

If you do this then we would request that you give as much detail as possible and also say whether you could assist the PC in implementing your idea.

All suggestions will be considered at the next meeting of the Community Fund Committee.

Click here to see the last minutes of the Community Fund Committee,

Draft minutes Solar Committee meeting 15th April 2021

Neighbourhood Development Plan

The Rame Peninsula NDP was approved at the local Referendum.

The documentation is available on the website


Chairman’s Annual Report for 2023/24

This is quite a short report as it has been another generally quiet year. We have moved forward with some initiatives and we have been fairly busy dealing with planning applications in Freathy and Tregonhawke.

We have continued to manage our finances prudently, and this year we have been able to not increase the Council Tax precept for 2023/2024.
Our finances are healthy and we have an end of year balance of approximately £10,750 (which includes £3000 in the Solar Fund account).
We have accrued a provision for next year’s parish councils’ election in May 2025.

We have dealt with several planning applications for chalet improvements/rebuilds at Freathy and Tregonhawke. There is a growing trend of non-residential owners submitting redevelopment plans that are contrary to the special planning conditions (Article 4). Furthermore, the proposed designs are not appropriate in terms of size and appearance, and would harm the unique nature of these settlements. We have held several meetings with Cornwall Council’s planning department and have agreed a Planning Guidance Note which sets out expected approaches to developments of chalets. This note includes advice on several aspects of development from access, cliff stability considerations, drainage, boundaries, roof overhangs etc.
We continue to object to new hot tubs for reasons of health and safety as well as water consumption and safe discharges on unstable cliffs.

There has been only one planning application in St John, relating to Pathfields: this was supported and PP has now been granted by CC.

We have continued with proper transparency with updates to our parish website, bulletins in the local newsletters and notice board coverage. We have funded a new notice board (for Tregonhawke) this year.
We endeavour to be transparent and we encourage open and public opportunity for discussion of planning applications.

We have been active on many issues in the parish in the last year.
We have arranged for repairs to the Freathy bus shelter, at no cost to the parish council. The bus shelters along Military Road are important to residents and visitors to our lovely cliffs.
This summer will be the first with the parking restrictions at Tregantle and we hope that visitors use the improved CC car park across the road so that we can avoid the dangerous street parking which has prevented safe access for emergency services (and buses) to reach the cliffside communities.
We continue to report potholes and road surface problems to Cornwall council via their website
I would request that parishioners do the same if they observe any such problems as more reports tend to raise the priority with Cormac.

The rather sad muddy area down by the ford has improved and we are arranging a new bench to be located to provide there this summer.

Memorial Garden
We continue to use Green Thumb to improve grass quality at the memorial garden, and our gardener has removed the evergreen hedge in the planted section and replaced with improved planting.
I would like to again thank Cllr Everard for his special efforts in this regard. Our popular Christmas Tree will now continue to be supplemented by our floodlights illuminating the church tower. Thanks to Councillor Tanner for his climbing expertise.

Solar Fund
We have continued to receive regular £3083 contributions, each January, from British Solar Renewables and are delighted that we continue to be able to fund local community investment. The fund in the 2023-24 financial year was used to purchase the new noticeboard at Tregonhawke. The benefit fund received in Jan 2024 will be allocated shortly.

Section 137 Donations etc
We have made £250 donations to both St John and Freathy to fund the Coronation celebrations.
A token £100 was donated to support Torpoint town council in their grant application for a planned new all-weather sports pitch.

I would like to express my thanks and appreciation to all councillors, and especially Roy Hoskin who has attended many external meetings and who ably supports all initiatives in Freathy. I am delighted that John Tanner and Ben Crane continue to contribute greatly to our parish activities, their time and efforts are greatly appreciated.
I would as always like to thank Caroline for the solid, outstanding service she has given as Clerk, despite personal health problems.
We are all very grateful to the way Cllr. Kate Ewert has given the parish much support over the last three years.

2025 Election
New parish council elections will be held next spring and I look forward to parishioner candidates coming forward to support our community.

 Achievements over the past five years

Achievements in St John and Freathy that councillors have been responsible for over the past several years have included taking an active role in developing theRame Neighbourhood Development Plan, and the Rame Traffic Studies, involving liaison with Cornwall County, Antony, Sheviock, Maker with Rame and Millbrook PCs (Rame Cluster parishes).

They have pursued Cornwall County (and Cormac) on flooding and road cleaning, speeding, parking problems (along Military Road), dealt with planning applications (successfully supporting all those in St John Village and most of the chalet developments in Freathy), supporting two major solar farms whilst successfully objecting to two overpowering proposed wind turbine developments in our parish. They have liaised with CC Planning Enforcement regardingunauthorised development, including serious flooding failure of an unauthorised dam.

To aide transparency they have set up and maintained your new parish websiteand created new noticeboards in St John and Freathy. They have provided sound financial management enabling a freeze to the Precept on your Council Tax for several years and arranged donations on your behalf to many local charities.

Your Councillors have successfully negotiated a funding agreement with British Solar Renewables granting the community £3000 pa, and allocated this funding to a range of projects, from defibrillators to improvements to footpaths, improvements to Freathy and St John community halls, St John church etc.

The Councillors have enabled the upgrading of our local infrastructure including footpaths, steps, styles etc and annual vegetation clearing, new finger post, bus shelters, and new road signage covering speeding and Neighbourhood Watch in St John, Clearway signage on Military Road, yellow lines in Freathy and significant upgrading and maintenance of our War Memorial garden (PC’s only physical land asset) and improvements to St John Church graveyard and drainage. The Councillors are responsible for winter gritting, and this past winter have endeavoured to lift morale during this difficult period with two new Christmas tree displays, both in our St John Memorial Garden and in Freathy village.

In order to maintain our wonderful environment, the councillors liaise with The Wildlife Trust and The Woodlands Trust in respect of woodland management and have physically worked with them in clearing woodland.

Most of this work has been undertaken by Councillors themselves, including physical work in the parish environment, in many cases assisted by ad-hoc working groups where time has been willingly given by parishioners, effort for which is extremely appreciated.