To consider the planning applications contained in the list.
RESOLVED that the following application be determined or otherwise dealt with in accordance with the various recommendations contained in the list namely:
(i) No 5 on the Plans List (18/00284/ADVERT – Advertisement consent to display 8 non-illuminated heritage trail information panels – St Boniface Church, East Street Junction with Charlotte Street, Crediton Parish Church Car Park (The Old Organs House), Newcombes Meadow Park, Crediton Methodist Church, Town Square, Crediton Congregational Church and St Lawrence Green, Crediton) be approved subject to conditions as recommended by the Head of Planning, Economy and Regeneration.
(Proposed by the Chairman)
(b) No 2 on the Plans List (18/00915/MFUL –Erection of Lidl food store (Class A1) and non-food unit (Class A1) with associated parking, landscaping and access arrangements following demolition of existing buildings – Foundry Estate, Blundells Road, Tiverton).
The Principal Planning officer outlined the contents of the report acknowledging the support for the application during public question time and highlighting the additional information within the update sheet: the latest representation from the Environment Agency; a further letter from the planning consultant acting on behalf of the objector; a letter of response received from the landlord; a response from the Local Highway Authority with regard to the submitted HGV plan; a further letter of support and amendments to condition 5 and 14.
The officer then outlined by way of presentation the site location plan, the existing site plan where the original buildings would be demolished, the proposed site layout with buildings, service yard and car park, work to the northern boundary to improve flood risk mitigation, floor plans for the food and non-food buildings, the elevations of the food and non-food store, proposed boundary treatment plans, the HGV tracking plan and how deliveries would be made to the service yard, the tree protection plan, detailed landscape proposals and photographs from various aspects of the site. He reported that the Local Highway Authority and the Environment Agency were happy with the proposals. He continued outlining the delivery yard, the lighting scheme, the ecology issues which had been addressed, the view of the Conservation officer and the details of the S106 agreement.
Consideration was given to:
· Safety issues with regard to the movement of heavy lorries
· Whether the proposal would increase traffic in the area
· The opening hours and delivery times
· The views of the objector with regard to the impact of the development on MST and the legal issues surrounding this, the area being used currently for storage and the implications for the business whilst the development was taking place
· The views of the applicant with regard to the application being policy compliant, the improvements to flood risk mitigation, the S106 contribution, the provision of new jobs, the visual improvement of the area following demolition of the existing buildings on the site and the support that the application had received from local residents.
· The suitability of the access
· The design of the proposal and the contributions via the S106 agreement
· The lighting scheme and the impact of the development on neighbouring properties and the hotel
It was therefore:
RESOLVED that planning permission be granted subject tothe signing of a S106 agreement to provide the following:
· £13,000.00 – towards works identified by the Tiverton EUE to come forward at an earlier trigger time due to the impact of the development on the Heathcote away roundabout and Lowman way roundabouts
· £30,000.00 - Tiverton Shop Front Enhancement Scheme
· £30,000.00 - Tiverton Town Centre Public Wi-Fi Project
· £10,000.00 - Public Realm Improvements (signposting and seating)
· Inclusion of the Travel Plan
and conditions and informative notes as recommended by the Head of Planning, Economy and Regeneration with an amendment to Condition 5 to state: 5. Arrivals of deliveries or collections of goods to and from the stores including the collection of packaging, waste or other items shall only take place between the hours of 7 am and 10.30pm Monday to Saturday and 8 am - 9 pm on Sundays and bank holidays and an amendment to Condtiion 14 to state 14. Notwithstanding details as submitted allowing for changes to the embankment along the northern part of the site, all existing trees identified to be retained on the Tree Protection Plan, drawing no. 3026 TPP Rev B, shall be protected throughout the construction of the development hereby approved with protective barriers to be erected in the areas shown prior to construction works being undertaken on site. Any trees shown for retention that within a period of five years from the completion of the development die, are removed or become seriously damaged or diseased, shall be replaced in the next planting season with others of similar size and species.
(Proposed by Cllr F W Letch and seconded by Cllr H Bainbridge)
i) Cllrs: Mrs H Bainbridge, Mrs C Collis, Mrs G Doe, P J Heal, F W Letch, B A Moore, J D Squire and R L Stanley made declarations in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as they had all received correspondence regarding this application.
ii) Mr Miller spoke on behalf of the objectors;
iii) Mr Daly spoke on behalf of the applicant;
iv) The following late information was reported: 5 December 2018
Letter received from Environment Agency dated 30th November commenting as follows:
‘We are satisfied the applicant has demonstrated that an appropriately graded access can be constructed from the edge of the application site into the neighbouring land to the south as shown on drawing Proposed Site Plan AD 205. We advise that the final details of this arrangement will need to be secured by planning condition. We also advise that it will be necessary to have a gate included on the northern boundary visi rail fence to provide pedestrian access to the steps on the Moorhayes Stream. Our suggested wording for these conditions:
Prior to the commencement of development the final details of the graded access shown on drawing Proposed Site Plan AD 205 shall be submitted to and agreed in writing by the LPA. The graded access shall be fully implemented as approved prior to first use of the site.
To ensure access (on foot, with vehicles, plant and equipment) for the Environment Agency to the River Lowman for the purposes of inspecting, maintaining, repairing and construction of existing and new flood risk management works.
The visi rail fence on the northern boundary shown on drawing Proposed Boundary Treatments AD 114-Rev C shall include a gate for pedestrian access to the new access steps on the Moorhayes Stream.
To ensure access on foot, with equipment, for the Environment Agency to the Moorhayes Stream for the purposes of inspecting, maintaining, repairing and construction of existing and new flood risk management works.
Informative to applicant:
We note that the revised drawings do not show an extension to the corridor improvements opposite the sub-station near the confluence of the River Lowman as advised in our last consultation response. We would strongly encourage the applicant to provide minor river corridor improvements at this far downstream extent which would optimise the performance of an improved corridor. Whilst the proposed site plan drawing does not show a route for access through the non-food retail unit car park our expectation is that the road through the car park will remain free of obstruction between the two sites to allow for movement of cars around the car park. We would request that a car parking space, closest to the gate and access steps on the Moorhayes Stream, is marked out / hashed for the Environment Agency’s use to ensure we have access at all times.
Letter of objection received from Planning Consultant acting on behalf of MST outlining the following:
· That MST’s ‘warehouse’ lease provides for two means of access to its site but the proposal results in a less than commodious access arrangement whereby articulated vehicles would be required to reverse back into the access road to Lidl which is not safe or a practical solution.
· It is commented that the landlord has suggested that they could grant MST more area as part of their lease at the South West corner to enable a turning circle be created so that HGVs could turn and exit by the North gate but this has not been done.
· Therefore access arrangements should be available through the car park of the non-food store with swept path analysis provided in order that the existing two way access is continued allowing for the operational and financial viability of an existing major employer and supply chain provider.
Letter of response received from the Landlord, Lowman Manufacturing Company Limited advising:
· Lease granted to MST in 2011 which states that the Landlord “reserves the right to re-route any means of access to or egress from the Property and to change the areas over which the Rights … are exercised; Provided that…the new routes to the Property shall be no less commodious and adequately surfaced than those existing at the date of the Lease…"
· Rights under the 2011 lease are commercial matters and if MST thinks rights have been breached then that is a matter for discussion at Law, not at Planning. Nevertheless we can confirm that in conjunction with Lidl there has always been a clear intention to safeguard any leasehold rights benefitting the Property.
· The new arrangement has been explained to MST whereby the route available would be the spine road under the Lidl application, entering the MST site at the north east corner, approximately as now, and that extra land would be made available on land at the far end of the Property (the west end) which was not part of the 2011 lease but is adequate to turn lorries around so they can drive back out the way they came in.
· The new access route would be commodious as would be a two way road to highway standards
Response from the Local Highway Authority in terms of the submitted HGV Plan:
‘I have checked the swept path analysis which is accurate and the turning circles work, more over both the MST Yard and the non-food retail can accommodate other turning circles. However it is for the Local Planning Authority to consider if the change to MST is an impact on amenity as the swept paths would be reliant on the areas remaining free from obstruction so outdoor storage would possibly be lost and the swept path area should be conditioned to be kept clear. It would be down to the legal rights of the land owner/ tenants which you may consider to be a civil matter’.
A letter of support has been received from H.J. Bedward with grounds of support similar to those appearing within the committee report.
Amendments to conditions as stated within Committee Report:
Condition 5 – Reference can be included to relate to bank holidays so new wording would be:
5. Deliveries or collections of goods to and from the stores including the collection of packaging, waste or other items shall only take place between the hours of 7 am and 10.30 pm Monday to Saturday and 8 am - 9 pm on Sundays and bank holidays.
Condition 14 – The new tree plan needs to be referred to so new wording would be:
14. Notwithstanding details as submitted allowing for changes to the embankment along the northern part of the site, all existing trees identified to be retained on the Tree Protection
Plan, drawing no. 3026 TPP Rev B, shall be protected throughout the construction of the development hereby approved with protective barriers to be erected in the areas shown prior to construction works being undertaken on site. Any trees shown for retention that within a period of five years from the completion of the development die, are removed or become seriously damaged or diseased, shall be replaced in the next planting season with others of similar size and species.
(c) No 1 on the Plans List (17/02061/MFUL –Remodelling and modernisation of existing garden centre follow demolition of existing structures, to include erection of retail areas, café and warehouse, formation of new vehicular access, provision of parking areas and landscaping – Crediton Garden Centre, Barnstaple Cross, Crediton).
The Area Team Leader outlined the contents of the report stating that this was a revised scheme to that previously considered. He outlined the contents of the late information within the update sheet, that of continued letters of support, further submissions from the objectors with regard to independent reports and the views of Crediton Town Council.
The officer outlined the application by way of presentation highlighting the location of the proposal, the highway improvements proposed, an overview of the site identifying the storage and retail areas and the key changes between the present and previous applications, the fact that the scope of landscaping had been improved and that the building fitted much better on the site, the block plan which identified the buffer around the site, the ground floor plan and the scope of the floor space, section drawings and the proposed highways works along with photographs from various aspects of the site.
Addressing the questions posed in public question time he sought to provide answers: In terms of whether the application was for a retail use and/or a change of use – the Local Planning Authority had assessed the scheme in the same way as other garden centre applications; an appropriate response had been given with regard to a full landscape assessment, whether it was reasonable to restrict merchandise to be sold: it was not reasonable to impose a restriction with regards to the ranges of merchandise that you would expect to be sold at a garden centre; with regard to an amended application, the applicant was entitled to amend the application as a decision had not been made at the previous meeting; regarding a restriction on garden products that could be sold: there would not be any restriction on the sale of garden products at Tesco. At the Mole Avon store, the terms of the planning permission restricted the amount of floorspace within the unit that could be used for unrestricted retail sales as is the case with this application in terms of how the development may impact of the vitality and viability of Crediton High Street, and that this had been covered in Conditions 13, 14 and 15 as set out in the report; with regard to the highway improvements, this would only be delivered as part of the proposal, the Highway Authority would not deliver this as part of ordinary transport plans. Whether the development was sustainable it was noted that the number of car parking spaces had been increased but this was a typical arrangement for a garden centre where the majority of trips tended to be by car. Whether the proposed café would have an impact on the cafes in the high street, the conditions addressed this by only allowing the café to open when the garden centre was open. Whether this was a brownfield site; the site was an existing garden centre and the application had been tested against planning policy.
Mr Sorenson (Devon County Council, Highway Authority) stated that he had been in discussions with local residents and that it was unlikely that any road improvements would come forward as part of planned work, improvements would only take place through development and would include land owned by the applicant, there would be a new footpath and a relocated bus stop, the provision of a footpath would improve visibility, the trip status was reasonable and with regard to highway safety, the visibility splays were appropriate. The views of the Highway Authority remained unchanged.
Consideration was given to:
· The location of the bus stops
· Comparisons between the original and amended scheme
· In comparison with other garden centres, the distance of locations from main towns
· Whether the impact on other local garden centres was a material consideration and that the sale of garden centre material could not be restricted
· The impact of the development on air quality issues in Crediton
· The views of the objectors with regard to the garden centre being a massive retail unit and that the proposal would be a significant impact on the local shops in the area; the establishment of Tesco in the town had had major implications and the garden centre application would further the damage to independent shops.
· The views of the applicant with regard to the application, other garden centres in the area had been a success, online shopping impacted on high street sales, not just garden centres, the application was policy compliant and he urged the committee to let him grow his business.
· The views of the local parish council who supported the proposed safer access and felt that the proposal would improve the viability of the rural community.
· The views of the ward member with regard to the improved proposal and the fact that garden centres are not classed as retail outlets.
· Road safety issues and the history of the site.
· Whether the proposal would really have an impact on the high street.
· The concerns of Crediton Town Council
· The size of the development
· Whether the proposal would actually benefit the town, which it might
It was therefore:
RESOLVED that members were minded to refuse the application and therefore wished to defer the application for consideration of an implications report to consider the following issues:
• Whether the application proposal would result in harm to the vitality and viability of the Crediton Town Centre and surrounding villages which would be contrary to policy DM17 and DM19.
• Whether given the size, scale and massing of the proposed buildings and the scope of hardscape introduced to accommodate the car parking requirements the application scheme would be detrimental to the visual amenities and overall character of this site in the open countryside which would be contrary to DM2, DM19 and DM20.
In addition concern was expressed about the level of lighting that would be required and how this would affect the overall character of the site especially given it is in open countryside.
• Whether given the amount of car parking proposed and the increase in number of vehicular trips on the highway network travelling to and from the application site as it proposed to be remodelled, the application scheme is considered to be an unsustainable form of development which would be contrary to DM2, DM6, DM19 and DM20.
· Whether there would be a likely increase in traffic to the destination site and whether it would impact on the air quality of Crediton High Street.
(Proposed by Cllr F W Letch and seconded by Cllr R L Stanley)
i) Cllrs: Mrs H Bainbridge, Mrs C Collis, Mrs G Doe, P J Heal, F W Letch, B A Moore, J D Squire and R L Stanley made declarations in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as they had all received correspondence regarding this application;
ii) Cllr Mrs J Doe made a further declaration in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as she had had discussions with the objectors;
iii) Cllrs D R Coren and P J Heal made a further declaration in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as they had had discussions with both sides as Ward Members;
iv) Mr Adams spoke on behalf of the objectors
v) Mr Broad (applicant) spoke;
vi) Cllr Mortimer (Crediton Hamlets Parish Council) spoke;
vii) Cllr D R Coren spoke as Ward Member;
viii) A proposal to support the application was not supported;
ix) The following late information was reported:
3 December 2018
Page 17: Since the report was drafted additional letters of representation have been received confirming support for the application scheme (38 now in support) outweighing the number of comments objecting to the application.
5 December 2018
Mr Tucker from the Bow Garden centre, and writing on behalf of the objectors group, has submitted a number of reports from consultants covering the following topics, the legal position regards the basis for the assessment, an independent appraisal of the planning application submission, and an independent highways and transport assessment and a landscape review. Each of the reports presents the view that the planning application should be refused without providing any detailed analysis of the officer recommendation as presented in the report pack.
Mr Tucker in his letter states that: Because we do not feel that objectors concerns have been sufficiently taken into account we hereby provide independent reports. Many of the issues highlighted in these report have been previously raised via our objectors letter, our direct meeting with the Council, and in the last planning meeting.
Officer comment: Following a review of the documentation no further comments are provided supplementary to the report as already circulated. As stated the application presents a scheme to improve and modernise the trading/customer environment at an existing garden centre and the policy framework against which it has been assessed is the same as other applications to extend and improve other garden centres in the district as confirmed in the report. Members’ attention is drawn to conditions 13, 14 and 15 of the recommendation in terms of building in safeguards to protect the vitality and viability of the Crediton High Street.
The documents as submitted have been uploaded against the application record.
5 December 2018
Comments from Crediton Town Council received on 5/12/2018 at 11:56 am:
It was resolved to strongly support the comments made by the Mid Devon District Council’s Economic Team in that the A1 retail offer is limited to garden and garden related products as this should not result in a negative impact on Crediton High Street. If the A1 retail offer cannot be limited to garden and garden related products the Town Council would strongly object to the application.
The Town Council is also very concerned about the level of hard surfacing and the lack of green landscaping at the site. The site will also generate increased traffic through the High Street which will negatively impact on the air quality issues that Crediton already has.
(d) No 3 on the Plans List (17/02034/FULL – Change of use of land for the siting of premises for falconry business and 1 associated dwelling – land at NGR 283959 102949 (Barton Cross) Upton Hellions).
The Area Team Leader outlined the contents of the report highlighting the late information available on the update sheet which included additional information from residents in Upton Hellions and local stakeholders.
The officer outlined the proposal by way of presentation highlighting the site location plan and access to the site and the position of the nearest neighbouring properties. He provided a block plan of the proposal which identified the area of residence and the hawk building, floor and section plans, an aerial photograph and further photographs from various aspects of the site. In the absence of the Environmental Health Officer he informed the meeting about noise levels and how they were measured.
Referring to questions posed in public question time: with regard to the size of the application site and the proposal for a dwelling to support the rural business, the applicant had submitted enough evidence to meet the recommendation of approval. With regard to noise issues and why it had taken so long to resolve the issues of noise impact: there was a need to work with the applicants through their evidence base. What were the benefits of the application to Upton Hellions, this was not a policy requirement. Question with regard to noise levels and how the levels were recorded, whether future technology would supersede the need for birds, he did not feel that this was applicable. With regard to the impact of the presence of the birds on local animals, there should be no issues with how the birds reacted to local animals and with regard to the visual impact of the development, he reported that the proposal was for a low impact building.
Consideration was given to:
· Why firearms would be needed
· The position of the footpath
· Whether the business was sustainable
· The views of the local Parish Meeting with regard to noise issues, the proposal was in the middle of the village, 20 raptors would be exercised separately; it was a good proposal in the wrong place and would have an impact on local residents and impact on local animals.
· The views of the applicant who informed the meeting with regard to her profitable business and how it had grown in the south west, she identified local businesses who had used her hawks as part of their pest control.
· The views of the Ward Member highlighting the local footpaths in the area, how the birds would be exercised, whether Upton Hellions was the place for such a proposal and whether a temporary dwelling would be more appropriate.
· Natural noises in the countryside
It was therefore:
RESOLVED that planning permission be granted subject to: the signing of a S106 agreement to include:
a) Tying the dwelling to the relevant holding so that the land within the holding and the dwelling can be safeguarded as a single unit.
b) To provide a contribution of £1160.00 towards the provision of improvements to Play Area facilities including new adult exercise equipment at Sandford Play Area, Sandford.
and conditions as recommended by the Head of Planning, Economy and Regeneration.
(Proposed by Cllr R L Stanley and seconded by Cllr Mrs C A Collis)
i) Cllrs Mrs H Bainbridge, Mrs C Collis, Mrs G Doe, R Evans, P J Heal, F W Letch, B A Moore, J D Squire, Mrs M E Squires and R L Stanley made declarations in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as they had all received correspondence regarding this application;
ii) Mr Fyfe (Upton Hellions Parish Meeting) spoke in objection to the application;
iii) Ms Bennett (applicant) spoke;
v) Cllr Mrs M E Squires spoke as Ward Member;
vi) Cllr J D Squire requested that his vote against the decision be recorded;
vii) The following late information was reported: 3 December 2018
Page 80: In addition to the letter already circulated to members (dated 30 November 2018) the parishioners of Upton Hellions have submitted an additional representation (dated 28 November 2018) to the planning application that questions the robustness of the assessment that has been undertaken by the LPA team in terms of the noise impact of the development, suggesting that further impartial independent research should be undertaken to confirm the likely noise impacts of the development. The officer report presents the conclusion on this matter at page 89/90 of the report pack.
Additional comments: There are no further conclusions to present on this matter at this stage; however the Environmental Health Officer will be present at the meeting on Wednesday to clarify any outstanding concerns that members may still have.
Furthermore two additional letters from stakeholders, who have already made representations against the application, have been received expressing concern about the noise impacts and the potential use of electronic robot type birds which to question the validity of the proposed scheme in terms of the use.
The following correction to the report:
On page 88 – paragraph 3:
Furthermore the noise produced by the birds themselves is such that close proximity to neighbouring occupiers within a village and/or more urban location wouldnot be sensible and/or practical. Please also refer key issue 4 below.
ix) Cllr Mrs C A Collis left the meeting at this point.
(e) No 4 on the Plans List (18/01260/FULL – change of use of agricultural land to mixed agricultural and equestrian, erection of a timber framed barn and construction of a ménage – land at NGR 316219 116022 (Poachers Rest), Clayhidon).
The Area Team Leader outlined the contents of the report highlighting by way of presentation the detail of the proposal, the change of use of the land, the barn and the ménage. She identified the landholding, the existing site plan, and explained the dimensions of the proposed barn and ménage, the floor plans and elevations and indicative floor and ménage plans as well as photographs from various aspects of the site. She informed the meeting of a late submission by the applicant’s vert with regard to animal welfare and the need for stabling.
Consideration was given to:
· The views of the applicant with regard to management of manure, the proposal was for agricultural buildings on agricultural land which was surrounded by agricultural land with agricultural buildings, the proposal met policy requirements and that there was a need for stabling for the horses.
· The views of the Parish Council who wanted a new and fully documented planning application, the fear that this would be a rural strip development, additional piecemeal applications could follow, there had been no scrutiny of their financial, environmental or agricultural sustainability or viability, the future expansion of the business, the harm to the visual amenity and issues with drainage.
· The views of the Ward Member with regard to the integrity of the AONB, there was a fear that an application for a dwelling would follow, there needed to be an effective process in place to safeguard the AONB.
· There was a need to consider animal welfare
· The contents of Policy DM29.
It was therefore:
RESOLVED that planning permission be granted subject to conditions as recommended by the Head of Planning, Economy and Regeneration.
(Proposed by Cllr Mrs H Bainbridge and seconded by Cllr R L Stanley)
i) Cllrs Mrs H Bainbridge, Mrs G Doe, R Evans, P J Heal, F W Letch, B A Moore, J D Squire, Mrs M E Squires and R L Stanley made declarations in accordance with the Protocol of Good Practice for Councillors dealing in planning matters as they had all received correspondence regarding this application;
ii) Mr Fairhurst (Applicant) spoke;
iii) Cllr Langford (Clayhidon Parish Council) spoke;
iv) Cllr F J Rosamond spoke as Ward Member;