Agenda and minutes
Venue: Council Chamber, Priory House, Monks Walk, Shefford
Contact: Leslie Manning 0300 300 5132
Webcast: View the webcast
Chairman's Announcements and Communications
To receive any announcements from the Chairman and any matters of communication.
The Chairman advised the meeting that the order of business for the planning applications would be as follows:
Items 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 11
To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Development Management Committee held on 25 April 2018 (copy to follow).
(Note: The minutes of the meeting held on 23 May 2018 will not be ready for approval).
that the Minutes of the meeting of the Development Management Committee held on the 25 April 2018 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
To receive from Members any declarations of interest including membership of any Parish/Town Council consulted upon during the planning application process and the way in which a Member cast his/her vote.
To consider the report of the Director of Regeneration and Business which provides a monthly update of planning enforcement cases where action has been taken.
The Chairman advised Members to raise any issues they might have with regard to planning enforcement cases with the Planning Enforcement and Appeals Team Leader.
Address: Clifton Farm, Church Street, Clifton, Shefford, SG17 5EX
Outline Planning Application for the residential development of The Paddocks, Clifton Farm Barns Road, Clifton, SG17 5EX with the erection of 7 detached houses and 7 semi-detached/terraced assisted houses.
Applicant: The Hale Trust
The Committee had before it a report regarding Planning Application No. CB/18/00192/OUT, an outline application for the residential development of The Paddocks, Clifton Farm Barns Road, Clifton, SG17 5EX with the erection of 7 detached houses and 7 semi-detached/terraced assisted houses.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committees attention was drawn to the additional consultation/publicity responses and additional comments as set out in the Late Sheet.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representations from Clifton Parish Council, two objectors and the applicant under the public participation scheme.
In response to an objectors comments the Chairman assured the speaker that the meeting was non political. It was noted that the agent for the applicant who had registered to speak had suffered a bereavement and the applicant spoke as a substitute.
A member asked the applicant to clarify the location of the development with regards to the conservation area. In response the applicant stated that the development was outside the conservation area and the access was within it.
A Member asked the applicant to explain his work with the Parish Council and a reported offer from North Hertfordshire Homes (now known as Settle) for the Affordable Housing as described in his statement. The applicant responded as follows:
· North Hertfordshire Homes had seen the site and made an written offer subject to planning and had not yet entered in to a contractual agreement.
· The Hale Trust has historically owned land around Clifton and had retained a right to approve the design of the development. On one occasion the Trust did not retain rights, it caused disappointment within the village.
A Member asked if Aragon still maintained the housing within the Bilberry Road estate and if the access from the estate has been secured. The applicant responded that he did not know who managed the existing housing and that when the land was originally sold to the developers of the Bilberry Road estate, access into the adjoining land was retained by the Trust.
In a ward Members absence from the meeting a statement was read on his behalf by a fellow ward Member, the following points were raised;
· The development had generated considerable opposition within the village with 78 objections.
· It would have an impact on the wider infrastructure of the village and the resources in Clifton are limited.
· Among others, the development goes against policies DM4 and SP7.
· The development site was not in the Local Plan and would be building in the open countryside with a loss of Grade 2 farm land.
· There were serious concerns around access to the site, downplayed by the outline application.
· The social housing element was ring fenced away from the market sale houses and should be pepper-potted across the development as a whole.
· The access to the west of the site was unsuitable with vision splays only suitable for a 15mph road. This road was well used by vehicles accessing the small car park located at the north end of ... view the full minutes text for item 31.
THE COMMITTEE ADJOURNED AT 11.20 A.M. AND RECONVENED AT 11.30 A.M.
Address: Land off St Andrews Way, Langford (nearest postcode
Outline Application for a residential development of up to 32 new homes (all matters reserved except access).
Applicant: Warden Developments Ltd
The Committee had before it a report regarding planning Application No. CB/18/00432/OUT, an outline application for residential development of up to 32 new homes (all matters reserved except access) at Land off St Andrews Way, Langford. Nearest Postcode: SG18 9QL.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committees attention was drawn to additional consultation/publicity responses and additional comments as set out in the Late Sheet.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representations from Langford Parish Council and an objector under the public participation scheme.
In response to the Parish Councils concerns a Member asked for clarification on reported objections to the application from the Fire Brigade, after discussion it was noted that the comments were not related to the application and related to another matter.
A Member asked for clarification around reported pre-application advice given from Central Bedfordshire Council on previous applications. As the date of this advice was not available and in the past, the Member was advised that the comments must be disregarded.
A Member responded to a request from the Parish Council to be included in S106 consultations, it was noted that the Planning Officer had received a response from the Parish Council and included it within the report. He noted that the Parish Council made no request for provisions within its response. He continued to advise the Parish Council that any suggestions put forward would be taken into consideration when making the S106 agreements. The Parish Council responded that it had engaged with the S106 process for many years, had made suggestions and notified Officers of the lack of facilities within the village. The Member responded that he would ask an Officer to investigate this and respond to the Parish Council directly.
The Chairman commented on concerns raised by an objector. He stated that the value of existing properties and the temporary disruption caused by construction noise and dust cannot be taken into consideration when considering an application.
A Member clarified to the objector that although the layout would not be taken into account when considering the outline application, if Members were minded to approve the application her comments would have been taken on board by Officers to be addressed at the Reserved Matters application.
The Planning Officer responded to concerns raised by the public speakers with the following:
· It was accepted that there had been substantial growth within Langford in recent years but the Committee must only consider the impact of the application before it.
· Various agencies and Central Bedfordshire’s own SUDS team had been consulted and no concerns were raised with regard to infrastructure.
· Health Services had been contacted to confirm if they sought contributions to offset the new infrastructure burden but they had not provided a sufficient response and they had not identified specific projects.
· Central Bedfordshire Highways had returned no objections to proposed access.
· In relation to the pre application advice mentioned by the Parish Council, the Officer believed that related to advice given in 2016, however ... view the full minutes text for item 32.
Address: The White Hart Hotel, Northbridge Street, Shefford, SG17 5DH
The development of 3 detached new dwelling houses.
Applicant: REL Group Ltd
The Committee had before it a report regarding Planning Application No. CB/18/00464/FULL, an application for the development of three detached dwellings at The White Heart Hotel, North Bridge Street, Shefford, SG17 5DH.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committees attention was drawn to additional consultation/publicity responses as set out in the Late Sheet.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representations from Shefford Town Council and the applicant under the public participation scheme.
A ward Member addressed the Committee with the following points:
· The site had been eliminated from consideration for inclusion within the Local Plan as it was on a flood plain.
· With regard to windfall development, he noted that there were over 60 new properties being developed in Shefford, all of which fell below the government requirement to supply contribution/community funding as they were developments of 10 or less dwellings.
· He referred to a previous approved application in Shefford in which the education contribution would be used to transport children out of the local area to school due to lack of places at local schools. He noted that the children from this development would be subject to the same issues and would have to travel to school at the expense of the Council.
· He raised concerns about the guarantees of the flood mitigations and their effects on the existing dwellings.
· He noted that the size of the plots and gardens went against the Councils design guidelines.
· On the basis of the points raised above, he asked Members to reject the application.
The Planning Officer responded to points raised by the public speakers and the ward Member as follows:
· In relation to the garden size of Plot 1, the Officer noted although they did not strictly comply with the design guidelines, there was some flexibility within those standards, an example given was if the site was an infill site. The Plot did however comply with the guidelines in the overall area of the garden size. It was also noted that as a condition, the right for permitted development on plot 1 would be removed to maintain adequate amenity space.
· He noted that the application could not be considered against the emerging Local Plan, as a different process was used to consider sites for allocation into the Local Plan.
· With regards to flood risk, it was noted the Environment Agency had raised no objections to the flood risk assessment, they felt that the recommendations within the report were acceptable and they have been conditioned within the application.
· With regards to schooling, it was noted that as the development was for three houses, the NPPF guidance was against any education contribution being sought from a development of that scale.
A Member noted that design guidelines cannot be seen to bind the hands of an Authority, especially when demand for properties in the area was phenomenal. He noted that the Environment Agency was satisfied with the flood risk recommendations and he recommended the application be moved for ... view the full minutes text for item 33.
Address: Land east of 7 Biggleswade Road, Dunton, Biggleswade,
Outline: Erection of two detached two-storey dwellings. All matters reserved except for means of access.
Applicant: Central Bedfordshire Council
The Committee had before it a report regarding planning application No. CB/18/0064/OUT, an outline application for the erection of two detached two-storey dwellings with all matters reserved except for means of access at Land East of 7 Biggleswade Road, Dunton, Biggleswade, SG18 8RL.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committees attention was drawn to additional comments as set out in the Late Sheet.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representations from an objector and an agent for the applicant under the public participation scheme.
A Member asked the agent for clarification about his statement referring to more efficient use of the site, the agent responded that two dwellings would maximise the capacity of the site to provide additional housing.
A Member asked why the application has changed from one house to two, the agent replied that since the original application, the character of the area had changed and the site would be more suited to two dwellings.
In response to the objectors comments, the Planning Officer responded as follows:
· With regards to objections on the basis of policy DM3 and DM4, it was stated that DM3 does allow more than one dwelling therefore falls within the policy. With recent changes within the area, the proposed application was not out of character with existing properties therefore is within policy DM4.
· It was noted that Right to Light is a legal matter not a planning matter. However consideration of any impact on light would be taken into account at the Reserved Matters stage.
· With regards to concerns about two houses destroying the open feeling of the area, the Officer noted that recent changes had changed the mix of character within the area and although the plans are indicative only, the developer should take on board the feeling that the dwellings are somewhat cramped and address that in Reserve Matters.
· In response to comments relating to precedents set within area, the officer responded that the application has been assessed against the existing character of the area.
A Member stated that there was nothing disgraceful about being efficient with the use of land as people do need to be accommodated. He noted that it was right to be driving forward with the Councils own density figures and it should set the pace for the rest of the Authority.
A Member added that it was not a good layout and he did not agree with the principle of two dwellings on this site. It was noted by the Chairman that the layout was indicative.
On being put to the vote 7 Members voted for approval, 1 voted against and 4 abstained.
That the planning application No. CB/18/0064/OUT, an outline application for the erection of two detached two-storey dwellings with all matters reserved except for means of access at Land East of 7 Biggleswade Road, Dunton, Biggleswade, SG18 8RL, be approved as set out in the Schedule attached to these minutes.
Address: The White House, High Street, Eggington, Leighton Buzzard, LU7 9PQ
Removal of hedge and construction of panel fence facing highway with replacement yew (Retrospective).
Applicant: Mr Janes
The Committee had before it a report regarding Planning Application No. CB/18/01837/FULL, a retrospective application for removal of hedge and construction of panel fence facing highway and replacement Yew, at The White House, High Street, Eggington, Leighton Buzzard, LU 9PQ.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committees attention was drawn to additional consultation/publicity comments and additional comments as set out in the Late Sheet.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representations from an objector under the public participation scheme.
A Member asked for clarification from the objector regarding his concerns about ownership of land, the objector responded that the fence has been erected on the boundary of land owned by the White House, any planting therefore would be on land outside of the applicants ownership. It was acknowledged by the Chairman that the land is under Highways ownership and any suggested planting to soften the appearance of the fence would be under permission from the Highways department.
The objector then raised comments made by the Conservation Officer that there would be no objection providing there was adequate room for planting on land within the applicants control. The Chairman addressed that the applicant does not claim that they have the right to plant. The planting was a suggested condition from the Conservation Officer to soften the appearance of the fence, this was along side suggestions muting of the colour.
The Planning Officer responded to the objectors comments as follows:
· It was noted the impact of the concrete posts and gravel boards can be muted during the muting process. Should the Yew trees be planted they would be hidden.
· The Tree and Landscape Officer has deemed that there was sufficient space to grow a meaningful Yew Tree hedge.
The Highways Officer added the following comments:
· With regards to loss of visibility for pedestrians, it was noted that the previous boundary hedge was over a meter in height and there was no information to suggest that an accident had ever occurred in the area.
· It was noted that the applicant will have to apply to Highways for permission to carry out planting and it would have to be maintained to no more than 600mm in height.
A Member commented that a Yew hedge would grow more than 600mm in height, the Highways Officer responded that the appropriate height of the hedge would be an issue for subsequent negotiation. The Member felt that clarity on the size of the hedge was an important point due to the emphasis of the hedge in the conditions of the application. The Planning Officer responded that the hedge shown on the plans was 600mm.
A Member added that she thought that to contain a Yew tree at 60cm tall would not be practical. In support a Member added that within his ward there has been a problem with hedges overgrowing on to the footpath, with regards to the hedge in question he noted there would be a risk of the sprawl of ... view the full minutes text for item 35.
The Committee broke for lunch at 13.35pm and reconvened at 14.00pm
Address: Land at East Lodge off Elliot Way, Fairfield, SG5 4AA
Reserved matters approval is sought for access, appearance, landscaping, layout and scale pertinent to Outline approval reference CB/16/03885/OUT.
Applicant: P J Livesey Living Space (5) Ltd
The Committee had before it a report regarding Planning Application No. CB/17/05974/RM, a reserve matters application for access, appearance, landscaping, layout and scale pertinent to Outline approval reference CB/16/03885/OUT at Land at East Lodge of Elliot Way, Fairfield, SG5 4AA.
For this application there were no additional comments or additional/amended conditions in the Late Sheet.
It was reported that there was no registered speakers on this matter and no representations from the Parish Council.
The Chairman sought clarification from the Planning Officer about a paragraph on Pg96 of the report which stated there was no objection from the Parish Council yet the reason for the Committee to determine the application was based upon the Parish Council objection. In response the officer explained that it was thought the original Parish Council objection to the outline application had been withdrawn but on further communication with the Parish Council the reasons for objection still stood against the Reserve Matters application.
A member asked if the concerns of the Parish Council had been dealt with to which the Planning Officer responded that they had been.
On being put to the vote 11 members voted for approval and 1 abstained.
That Planning Application CB/17/05974/RM relating to reserved matters for access, appearance, landscaping, layout and scale pertinent to Outline Approval reference CB/16/03885/OUT be approved as set out in the schedule attached to these minutes.
To determine whether parts of Toddington Footpath No. 58 should be stopped up and replaced with a bridleway to resolve issues relating to the fact that the current footpath is obstructed where it passes through several rear gardens and connects to a bridleway which is a legal dead-end (copy to follow).
The Committee had before it a report regarding The Proposed Extinguishment of Part of Toddington Footpath No. 58 and the Concurrent Creation of a Replacement Section of Toddington Bridleway No. 58.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee’s attention was drawn to additional consultation/publicity responses and additional comments as set out in the Late Sheet.
During the Definitive Map Officer’s presentation, a report from the Highways Tree Officer concerning the condition of an apple tree that would be removed as part of the works was read as additional information. It stated that the Tree Officer had no objection to the removal of the tree and although it had normal vigour for a tree of its age, it was definitely considered as structurally unsound due to historical wounds to its stems. It was recommended it would be appropriate to replace the tree with one or two of the same or similar varieties.
In advance of consideration of the application the Committee received representation from a resident under the public participation scheme.
The ward Member acknowledged the points raised by the public speaker and stated he was also in support of the application and went on to raise the following points.
· He noted it was understandable why the farm owner was unhappy about losing a corner of his land to walkers so something has to be done.
· He was entirely supportive of a cycle route through to the recreation ground but of critical importance would be the creation of pram and disabled vehicle access.
· He noted that there may be future issues with motorcycle and traveller access on to the field through the route but that the Committee should not be held hostage by that and that the bridleway would be of significant benefit the village.
· With regards to the loss of the apple tree, it was stated that over time replacement would have been the right thing to do due to the damage on the existing tree.
A Member asked for clarification on comments in the Late Sheet relating to a resident being unaware of the footpath when the property was purchased from the Council in 2014. The following points were discussed:
· The Officer responded that the resident purchased her property of which she had been a tenant for a number of years, through the Right to Buy scheme, she had detailed plans from the Council that did not show the footpath through the garden but she did not undertake any property searches of her own, therefore the footpath was not highlighted. The Officer added that in 2014, it was not compulsory to search for Rights of Way on a piece of land and that in 2018, it is now a compulsory question.
· The Member commented further that it was a contradictory position for the Council to be in given that the Council was responsible for Rights of Way. The Officer responded to a question by the Chairman that all affected residents were written to by the Council about ... view the full minutes text for item 37.
To receive and note, prior to considering the planning applications contained in the schedules above, any additional information detailed in the Late Sheet to be circulated on 19 June 2018.
In advance of consideration of the planning applications attached to the agenda the Committee received a Late Sheet advising it of additional consultation/publicity responses, comments and proposed additional/amended conditions. A copy of the Late Sheet is attached as an appendix to these minutes.
Site Inspection Appointment(s)
Under the provisions of the Members Planning Code of Good Practice, Members are requested to note that the next Development Management Committee will be held on 18 July 2018 and the Site Inspections will be undertaken on 16 July 2018.
that the next meeting of the Development Management Committee will be held on 18 July 2018.
that all Members and substitute Members along with the relevant Ward representatives be invited to conduct site inspections on 16 July 2018.