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TO RECEIVE APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND DETAILS OF ANY SUBSTITUTE MEMBER(S)
An apology for absence was received from Councillor A Brown. There was one substitute Member in attendance.
To approve as a correct record the Minutes of a meeting of the Committee held on 30 April 2020.
The minutes of a meeting of the Committee held on 30 April 2020 were approved as a correct record for signature by the Chairman.
ITEMS OF URGENT BUSINESS
(a) To determine any other items of business which the Chairman decides should be considered as a matter of urgency pursuant to Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972.
(b) To consider any objections received to applications which the Head of Planning was authorised to determine at a previous meeting.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Members are asked at this stage to declare any interests that they may have in any of the following items on the agenda. The Code of Conduct for Members requires that declarations include the nature of the interest and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest.
The Chairman declared that Members of the Committee had received email correspondence from some of the public speakers.
NORTH WALSHAM - PP/20/0160: Permission in principle for the demolition of the existing buildings on site and the erection of four dwellings with associated parking and gardens and an extension of 30mph speed limit; Land East of Bacton Road, North Walsham, NR28 0RA; for Cincomas Ltd PDF 636 KB
The Major Projects Manager presented the application. He explained that whilst only location, land use and amount of development could be considered under this “Permission in Principle” application, other matters of detail had been included in the report as they had an influence on the amount of development that the site could accommodate. He outlined the issues for consideration and recommended refusal of this application as set out in the report.
David Taylor (supporting)
Councillor E Seward, Ward Member, referred to the redevelopment of the adjacent Melbourne House which had been previously approved. He considered that the site was not detached from North Walsham. It was part of the settlement area although the site itself was not within the settlement boundary. He referred to the disagreement between the applicant and officers as to whether housing could be permitted on the brownfield site and considered that this issue needed clarification. He considered that safe access was not an issue as the applicant was willing to provide a footpath link. He referred to a new woodland and orchard which had been developed by the applicant, which did not suggest that he would cause damage to trees and the landscape. He requested constructive dialogue to address the contaminated land issue. He considered that the best way to judge the impact of the nearby poultry farm was to visit the site, and referred to a recent appeal case which determined that it was necessary to have clear evidence of complaints which could not be satisfactorily resolved if refusing an application close to a poultry farm. Environmental Health had raised no objection in respect of the development at Melbourne House. He considered that the only way to arrive at an informed and proper decision in this case was to undertake constructive dialogue with the applicant and for the Committee to carry out a site inspection.
Councillor P Heinrich, Ward Member, stated that he had had no contact with the applicant or visited the site and that Councillor Seward had dealt with this matter. He stated that this was a brownfield site, which was part of the grounds of Melbourne House where conversion of outbuildings had recently been permitted. He considered that the notion that development could not take place outside the development boundary was inconsistent. It was unclear as to whether or not the proposal would breach Local Plan Policies SS1 and SS2. He considered that small scale development would complement the existing buildings at Melbourne House and that bungalows were very much needed given the age profile of the District. He supported Councillor Seward’s views in respect of highway issues and considered that further information was required in respect of noise and odour nuisance. There was no evidence that protected species and trees would be damaged. He considered that more information on layout and how the buildings would sit in relation to Melbourne House would be useful. In view of the complexity of the site and the need for the applicant to ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
HOLT - PF/19/1913 - Formation of concrete surfaced bus turning area, overflow bus parking area with permeable surface and staff car parking area with associated drainage (revised plans and additional information); Kongskilde UK Ltd, Hempstead Road Business Centre, Hempstead Road, Holt, NR25 6EE for Sanders Coaches Ltd PDF 449 KB
The Development Manager presented the application. She reported that two additional representations had been received, which raised issues that had been addressed in the report and additional issues in respect of the consultation period and the proper implementation of mitigation measures secured through conditions and future compliance with those conditions. In response, the Development Manager stated that there had been three rounds of consultation on this application and it was considered that the consultation had been adequately addressed. Any issues that arose in respect of the implementation of mitigation measures and non-compliance with conditions could be dealt with by Planning Enforcement. The Development Manager recommended approval of this application as set out in the report.
Charles Sanders (supporting)
Representations from Councillor D Baker, Ward Member, were summarised in the report.
Councillor Mrs G Perry-Warnes, Ward Member, emphasised the importance of compliance with the conditions and requested that the management plan be diligently implemented by the applicant. In addition, she requested that a clear line of communication be established to enable the local residents to notify the applicant of any disturbances or departure from the management plan and give confidence to the local residents that any issues could be dealt with quickly. Despite those concerns, she supported this application and requested that the Committee approve this application. She referred to Section 6 of the NPPF and the importance of the applicant’s business to the local economic infrastructure. She considered that the services provided by this business would be jeopardised if the application were refused.
Councillor G Mancini-Boyle requested clarification of the use of spill kits and the monitoring and logging of any pollution.
At the invitation of the Chairman, Mr Sanders explained that spill kits were used to ensure that any fluid leak could be cleared up. All spillages on all sites were logged.
Councillor J Toye stated that he had worked in the industry in the past. He had worked for Mr Sanders but had not declared it as it was many years ago. He agreed with Mr Sanders’ concerns that speed bumps and traffic calming would generate noise rather than reduce it, particularly when driving an empty vehicle over them.
The Chairman requested details of drainage from the hard surfacing, particularly in relation to solvents.
Mr Sanders explained that it was not intended to use solvents on the site as washing and maintenance took place at another site. A swale would be built to take rainwater from the site.
The Senior Environmental Protection Officer explained that the traffic calming measures had been suggested by the acoustic consultant. She considered that it was unlikely that neighbouring dwellings would be affected by noise as the speed bumps would be shielded by a building. Vehicle speeds and noise would be reduced before they entered the open area at the rear of the site.
At the invitation of the Chairman, Mr Sanders explained that a speed limit of 5mph was imposed at all the company’s sites and monitored to ensure strict ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
KETTLESTONE - PF/19/1966 - Demolition of light industrial buildings (B1) and erection of 8 dwellings and associated works (C3); Church Farm Barn and East Barn, Kettlestone, Norfolk, NR21 0JH for Mr & Mrs Ross PDF 233 KB
The Interim Development Manager presented the application. He reported that an email had been received from the office of Jerome Mayhew MP referring to concerns raised by the occupants of Church Court. He advised the Committee that although the application was contrary to Local Plan policies SS1 and SS2, the fallback position in the event that planning permission for the current proposal was not granted was a material consideration in this case. He stated that two additional slides showing the relationship of the application site to Church Court would be shown after the objector had spoken. He recommended approval of this application as set out in the report.
John Hirst (objecting)
Councillor V FitzPatrick, Ward Member, considered that this application was finely balanced. He considered that the current proposal was preferable to the extant permission in terms of its contribution to the built environment and it would improve the character and amenity of the site. Whilst the application was contrary to policy, he considered that other material considerations indicated that it should be approved. He supported the officer’s recommendation.
The Interim Development Manager displayed slides demonstrating the relationship of the proposed dwellings which were closest to the neighbouring dwelling. He referred to the floor plans which had been included in the presentation pack previously circulated to the Committee, and indicated the position of the windows and their relationship with the neighbouring dwelling. He considered that any overshadowing would not be sufficiently significant to warrant refusal of this application. He clarified that the extant permission related to conversion of the existing buildings and the external appearance was not known. The current application related to new build dwellings.
Councillor Mrs A Fitch-Tillett referred to similar applications which had been refused as they were outside the development boundary. She did not consider that the current application was any different from those applications.
The Development Manager stated that each application should be considered on its own merits and she did not have the detail of the cases quoted by Councillor Mrs Fitch-Tillett to advise if a fallback situation had been in existence in those circumstances. She advised Members to consider the weight that should be given to the fallback position in this case, and if it was considered that the weight was less than the report suggested, the Committee could overturn the recommendation on grounds that the proposed dwellings were new build in the Countryside and therefore contrary to policy.
The Head of Planning advised the Committee with regard to matters of balance and planning judgement in this case.
Councillor Mrs W Fredericks requested clarification as to the sustainability of this location. She considered that the proposal would generate at least 16 cars and that it was not possible to access services without a car.
The Interim Development Manager stated that whilst the site was not physically remote, it was remote from everyday basic facilities and services. He understood that there were no facilities in Kettlestone, apart from the village hall, the ... view the full minutes text for item 7.
NORTH WALSHAM - PF/20/0444 - Change of use from retail use and residential flat to office and residential flat (sui generis); 15 - 17 Mundesley Road, North Walsham, NR28 0DA for Mr D Simpson PDF 134 KB
The Interim Development Manager presented the application. He recommended approval of this application as set out in the report.
Councillor N Lloyd explained that he had called in the application in order to uphold the spirit of the Council’s Constitution when it became clear that it related to a constituency office for the local MP. He had no objection to this application. Although the Town Council had objected to the application as it involved the loss of retail space in the town, he considered that it was preferable that the building was occupied and the proposed office use would provide employment.
The Head of Planning explained that due diligence had been carried out in respect of this application. The application had been made by a private individual. It had not been made under the terms of the constituency, political party or as a constituency office. The application related only to the change of use from a retail premises to office accommodation and was compliant with policy. There had been no requirement to bring the matter before the Committee for determination.
Councillor P Heinrich stated that he had no objection to this application. He considered that it was unlikely to be used for retail in the future.
It was proposed by Councillor C Cushing, seconded by Councillor G Mancini-Boyle and
That this application be approved in accordance with the recommendation of the Head of Planning.
(a) New Appeals
(b) Inquiries and Hearings – Progress
(c) Written Representations Appeals – In Hand
(d) Appeal Decisions
(e) Court Cases – Progress and Results
(a) NEW APPEALS
The Committee noted item 11(a) of the agenda.
(b) INQUIRIES AND HEARINGS - PROGRESS
The Committee noted item 11(b) of the agenda.
(c) WRITTEN REPRESENTATIONS APPEALS - IN HAND
The Committee noted item 11(c) of the agenda.
(d) APPEAL DECISIONS
The Committee noted item 11(d) of the agenda.
(e) COURT CASES – PROGRESS AND RESULTS
The Committee noted item 11(e) of the agenda.
In response to a question by Councillor P Heinrich as to the timescale for dealing with appeals, the Development Manager explained that the Council was bound by the Planning Inspectorate’s timescales. The Planning Inspectorate was considering how unaccompanied site visits could be undertaken, and it was likely that site visits would not be carried out in some cases.
The Major Projects Manager informed the Committee that there had been some appeals which were due to be dealt with by informal hearing, but the Planning Inspectorate had now agreed to deal with by way of written representations which would speed up the process. An appeal had been received in respect of the Heath Farm site at Holt which would be dealt with by written representations.
The Chairman requested an update on the five-year housing land supply.
The Officers confirmed that the Council currently had a five-year land supply of housing land, which was supported by recent appeal decisions and the Council’s Annual Monitoring Report. Any updates to this position would be reported through the Planning Policy and Built Heritage Working Party.