DPD Minutes 19th August 2015

Planning & Development Policy Committee

Minutes of the Myland Community Council Planning & Development Policy Committee Meeting held on Wednesday 19th August 2015, 7.15 pm @ 101 Nayland Road, Mile End Road, Colchester, CO4 5EN

Present:        Cllr John Stewart (Chair)

Cllr Jean Dickinson

Cllr John Dickson

Cllr Pete Hewitt

The Assistant Clerk

There was one member of the public present.

098-15/16     Apologies

Cllr Sutcliffe. Cllrs Graham and Gray did not attend the meeting.

099-15/16     Declarations of Interest – Councillors to declare individually any interests they may have in the items on the agenda.  If a Councillor declares a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in any item on the agenda he/she shall withdraw from the room where the meeting is being held when that item is discussed unless he/she has received a dispensation from the Clerk.

Cllrs Dickinson, Dickson, and Hewitt declared a pecuniary interest in application 151634 due to the application site being close to their residences. All Cllrs had requested dispensation in writing to the Clerk, on the grounds that so many members of the decision-making body (P & DP Committee) have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in the matter that it would “impede the transaction of the business.”

With regard to application 151634 – North Colchester Urban Extension Mile End Road, Colchester, as per provisions in the Localism Act and having had regard to all relevant circumstances, the Clerk and the Chairman consider that dispensation be granted to all Cllrs on the grounds that so many members of the Committee have Disclosable Pecuniary Interests in the matter that it would “impede the transaction of the business” not to do so.

100-15/16     Have Your Say

Mrs White said regarding the declarations of Councillors’ interests that it was an individual’s choice whether or not to disclose a pecuniary interest. She said it was requisite that Councillors declared their interest individually and that this was recorded.

Cllr Dickinson said that she was sorry she had not been at the last meeting when the application for Leechs Lane had been discussed. She asked for a discussion of issues of concern arising from the processes of determination of application 151494. In her opinion the matter was listed too hastily and should have been deferred. She felt there was no legal or planning argument contained in MCC’s reply. She was not happy that contact with the Developer’s agent had been made or that he attended the meeting. She referred to previous applications as an example e.g. the Hollies, Play Barn and Severalls. She suggested a training session should be arranged for the quieter months to look at and agree responses to future applications which may be regarded as ‘contentious’. She was critical of CBC planners’ responses to MCC views on planning applications.

Cllr Hewitt said that if an application was called in by CBC, MCC were entitled to attend that meeting and would have three minutes to express their arguments. He said the Planning Officers see all individual responses.

Cllr Stewart asked how MCC could decide if an application was contentious. He asked if, for example, there was a difference between the Leech’s Lane application and the 248 Mill Road application.

Cllr Dickinson said an application could be considered contentious if a number of residents were concerned.

Cllr Hewitt expressed concerns over the number of applications which seemed to involve over-development of sites or infill in residential areas.

Cllr Dickson asked if the agent was going to change the application as he had indicated at the previous meeting.

Cllr Hewitt said the Neighbourhood Plan, once adopted, would be a useful tool for MCC in commenting on future applications.

Cllr Stewart agreed and said it would ensure CBC Planning officers were aware of to what MCC would be likely to object.

The Assistant Clerk said that one of Cllr Dickinson’s points seemed to be that MCC needed to be able to make a reasoned, officially worded objection to applications where this was necessary. She said that training for herself and Councillors would be very useful in this respect.

The Chairman said that for certain applications a formal letter could be written, which CBC would then scan on to their website, and that this would be a better way for MCC  to respond to applications. He said that this would be put on a future agenda.

Mrs White asked if the training would be private. The Chairman said that training sessions would be for Councillors and staff only but that all meetings would be open to the public as they are now and there would be no change in this procedure.

Cllr Dickson said he was concerned by CBC’s lack of response to objections raised by MCC on planning applications. He said the recent application for 89 Nayland Road was a good example, where MCC had commented on access and light issues. He said the conditions imposed by CBC had made no reference to these issues. He said feedback on our comments would be extremely useful.

Cllr Hewitt said that Simon Cairns had confirmed that every application site was visited.

Cllr Dickson said that MCC had had very valid reasons for objecting but that there had been no feedback as to why these objections had been overridden.

Cllr Hewitt suggested that MCC write to CBC stating that we were disappointed that approval had been given despite our strong objections and that for our future understanding and for training purposes we would appreciate clarification of their criteria for approving the application as against our reasons for objecting. He said 89 Nayland Road would be useful as a test case.

The Chairman said he would draft a letter which he would then circulate to committee members. He said training would be arranged for this committee at a future date. He said once feedback from 89 Nayland Road had been received, we could arrange to meet with CBC planning officers.

Cllr Hewitt said that the Neighbourhood Plan would be a useful tool for planning purposes, especially as it also quoted national guidelines.

Cllr Dickson said a higher level of clarity was required.

The Chair said he had asked the Clerk to contact Simon Cairns regarding the process for pre-planning advice; specifically were CBC following guidelines regarding fee-paying and putting reference numbers on their website. He said the answer received had been irrelevant and had not addressed the question at all.

101-15/16     Chairman’s Announcements and Correspondence

There were none.

102-15/16     Minutes of the meeting held on 5th August 2015 to be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman

The minutes of the meeting held on 5th August 2015 were approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman.

Proposed:  Cllr Dickson                Seconded:  Cllr Hewitt            (3 For; 1 Abstention)

103-15/16     Matters arising from the Minutes

This was amended to Item 103a – 15/16.

There were none.

103-15/16     To consider and possibly resolve to support the proposed parking restrictions on Boxted Road – Cllr Hewitt

This was amended to Item 103b – 15/16.

It was resolved to support the proposed parking restrictions on Boxted Road.

Proposed: Cllr Hewitt                  Seconded: Cllr Dickson           (Unanimous)

104-15/16     Monitoring

There was no report.

105-15/16     Pre-planning matters for review

Cllr Hewitt read from an email he had received from the SLCC which gave details of planning reform proposals for England. He said some of the key measures included automatic planning permission for sites included in the planned statutory registers of brownfield land suitable for housing, tightening of the planning performance “regime” and help for rural communities to allocate land for Starter Homes developments, including through Neighbourhood Plans.

106-15/16     Planning, Licensing & Highways Applications/Appeals – To make recommendations, including requests for Section 106 money where applicable, on applications received

151591 – 248 Mill Road, Colchester CO4 5JE – Demolition of existing house, garage and outbuilding. Erection of four two-storey houses. (Resubmission of 150104) – Received 26th July 2015

Because a new site plan had been published on the CBC website on 17th August 2015, this application was deferred to the meeting on 2nd September 2015 so full consideration could be given.

151634 – North Colchester Urban Extension Mile End Road, Colchester – Application to remove condition 23 of planning permission 121272 – Comment

It is confirmed that the Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH) has been withdrawn by the Government. Condition 23 therefore no longer has any standing provided that retrospective withdrawal is permissible. Is this the case?

Proposed: Cllr Hewitt                   Seconded: Cllr Stewart           (Unanimous)

151653 – 125 Bergholt Road, Colchester CO4 5AG – Side dormer window to existing loft conversion – Support

Proposed: Cllr Dickson                 Seconded: Cllr Hewitt             (Unanimous)

DM146A 13 – Proposed restrictions on traffic using Nayland Road and Fords Lane – Support

With the additional comment that some form of indication of the presence of a footpath should be shown on the map. Cllr Stewart said he would prepare a response to Mr Andras.

Proposed: Cllr Stewart                 Seconded: Cllr Hewitt             (Unanimous)

107-15/16     To receive copies of Planning/Appeal Decisions

Copies of Planning/Appeal Decisions were received.

097-15/16     Date of next meeting – 2nd September 2015 7.15pm @ 101 Nayland Road

The meeting closed at 8:18pm