Agenda and draft minutes

Western Area Planning Committee - Wednesday 17 January 2024 3.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - County Hall, Bythesea Road, Trowbridge, BA14 8JN. View directions

Contact: Ellen Ghey - Democratic Services Officer  Email: ellen.ghey@wiltshire.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

To receive any apologies or substitutions for the meeting.

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence received.

 

2.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting

To approve and sign as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 20 December 2023.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the previous meeting held on 20 December 2023 were considered. Following which, it was:

 

Resolved:

 

The Committee approved and signed the minutes of the previous meeting held on 20 December 2023 as a true and correct record.

 

 

3.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interests or dispensations granted by the Standards Committee.

Minutes:

Although it was not considered a disclosable interest, for the sake of transparency, Councillor Pip Ridout noted that she had discussed application PL/2023/07380, Agenda Item 7, with the applicant over the course of approximately 2 years by virtue of her role as the area’s Unitary Division Member.

 

4.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive any announcements through the Chair.

Minutes:

There were no specific Chairman’s announcements.

 

5.

Public Participation

The Council welcomes contributions from members of the public.

 

Statements

 

Members of the public who wish to speak either in favour or against an application or any other item on this agenda are asked to register no later than 10 minutes before the start of the meeting. If it is on the day of the meeting registration should be done in person.

 

The rules on public participation in respect of planning applications are linked to in the Council’s Planning Code of Good Practice. The Chairman will allow up to 3 speakers in favour and up to 3 speakers against an application, and up to 3 speakers on any other item on this agenda. Each speaker will be given up to 3 minutes and invited to speak immediately prior to the item being considered.

 

Members of the public will have had the opportunity to make representations on the planning applications and to contact and lobby their local member and any other members of the planning committee prior to the meeting. Lobbying once the debate has started at the meeting is not permitted, including the circulation of new information, written or photographic which have not been verified by planning officers.

 

Questions

 

To receive any questions from members of the public or members of the Council received in accordance with the constitution which excludes, in particular, questions on non-determined planning applications.

 

Those wishing to ask questions are required to give notice of any such questions in writing to the officer named on the front of this agenda no later than 5pm on Wednesday 10 January 2024, in order to be guaranteed of a written response. In order to receive a verbal response, questions must be submitted no later than 5pm on Friday 12 January 2024. Please contact the officer named on the front of this agenda for further advice. Questions may be asked without notice if the Chairman decides that the matter is urgent.

 

Details of any questions received will be circulated to Committee members prior to the meeting and made available at the meeting and on the Council’s website.

 

 

 

Minutes:

The Chairman explained the rules of public participation and the procedure to be followed at the meeting.

 

There were no questions or statements submitted by Councillors or members of the public.

 

 

6.

Planning Appeals and Updates

To receive details of completed and pending appeals and other updates as appropriate.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman invited Kenny Green, Development Management Team Leader, to update the Committee on the pending and determined appeals as per the appeals report included within the Agenda Pack.

 

Prior to providing the appeals update, the officer referred to the post meeting note as detailed within the minutes of the previous meeting of the Committee and advised Members that the Government had published a correction to the 19 December 2023 National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) release on 20 December 2023, when the last Committee meeting was taking place. The Committee was also reminded of the Member Briefing Note that had been circulated prior to the January meeting.

 

In response to Member questions, the officer clarified that any granted outline application would be immune from the principle being reassessed at the reserved matters application stage. This was explained as being due to the fact that outline applications establish the principle, and reserved matters subsequently considers the details such as access, landscaping, and design. As such, the housing land supply position would not be a material determinative consideration for reserved matters applications.

 

It was further emphasised that several housing applications which benefited from a Committee resolution but did not yet benefit from a decision, would return to the respective Committee for Members to make a fresh assessment and resolution having due cognisance to the recently revised NPPF and all material considerations.

 

Mr Green then updated the Committee on the appeals report as per the Agenda Pack, with Members being informed that officers were in the process of finalising the Council’s appeal statement for application PL/2022/08726, pertaining to the erection of 1 dwelling and detached garage.

 

The two decided appeals were then highlighted with officers briefly explaining the respective Planning Inspectors’ reasoning for their decisions.

 

In the case of 19/00529/ENF, this related to the unauthorised installation of a balcony to a property without the benefit of planning permission. The enforcement notice was quashed, and planning permission granted by the Planning Inspector who concluded that overlooking was already present within the urban location, and the additional extent of overlooking was not considered harmful.

 

Case reference PL/2022/02376 was a Listed Building Consent (LBC) application that was refused by Conservation Officers for replacement windows. However, the Planning Inspector allowed the appeal and argued that the windows to be replaced were not historic fabric and the replacement windows would not harm the protected status of the building.

 

Mr Francis Moreland then presented a statement to the Committee under public participation, which focussed on the revisions to the NPPF and the published Member Briefing Note, and he was pleased that Members would reconsider a number of applications afresh in the coming months following the recent changes made to the NPPF.

 

After which, it was:

 

Resolved:

 

The Committee noted the appeals report for the period 8 December 2023 to 5 January 2024.

 

7.

PL/2023/07380: The Coach House, 5c Ash Walk, Warminster, BA12 8PY

Retrospective application for the erection of new fencing.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

Public Participation

 

·       Mr James U’Dell, agent for the applicant, spoke in support of the application.

 

The Planning Officer, Jonathan Maidman, introduced the report which recommended that the Committee refuse the retrospective application for the erection of new fencing. It was noted that prior to the Committee meeting, a Member site visit had been undertaken, with the Case Officer being present.

 

Key material considerations were identified including design; impacts on the setting on listed buildings; the character appearance of the conservation area; and neighbour amenity.

 

Members of the Committee then had the opportunity to ask technical questions to the officer. Details were sought on the materials of the western boundary line, the separation distances from neighbouring properties, and the planning history of the site and previously agreed boundary treatments.

Reference was made to Paragraph 9.1.6 of the report, which stated that the Local Planning Authority (LPA) had previously approved a trellis in respect of the rear boundary treatment to the neighbouring building opposite the application site. The officer confirmed that that was not the principal elevation, and in any event, the applicant for the neighbouring property opted to install metal railings instead, which Members saw during their visit.

 

Officers further confirmed that neighbouring residents had been consulted on the application and no objections had been received, however the Town Council and Conservation Officer raised objection to the impact the unauthorised fencing had on the setting of the curtilage listed building and the conservation area’s character and appearance. Members were also advised that the previous approval for the Coach House had been negotiated by officers to safeguard the character of the heritage asset and still provide a degree of privacy to the future occupiers. The fencing that had been erected was not in compliance with what had been negotiated and approved, and in the absence of any material public benefits, the harm fully justified a refusal.

 

The named public speaker as detailed above, then had the opportunity to present their views to the Committee.

 

The Unitary Division Member, Councillor Pip Ridout, then spoke in support of the application.

 

A debate followed where Members acknowledged the value of preserving the applicant’s privacy but felt that the existing fencing was not sympathetic to the status of the property as a listed building and the character of the conservation area despite Members noting a lack of consistency across the general area in terms of building materials and design. 

 

A motion to grant the retrospective application for the unauthorised fencing, contrary to officer recommendations, and subject to a planning condition capturing the approved plans, was then moved by Cllr Ridout, and was seconded by Councillor Jonathon Seed. Following a vote, the motion was lost.

 

A motion to refuse the application in line with officer recommendations was then moved by Councillor Christopher Newbury and was seconded by Councillor Stewart Palmen.

 

After which, it was:

 

Resolved:

 

The Committee REFUSED the retrospective application, in line with officer recommendations, for the following reason:

 

The unauthorised fencing which has been erected  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Urgent Items

Any other items of business which, in the opinion of the Chairman, should be taken as a matter of urgency.

 

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.