Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee
Wednesday, 13th September, 2017 7.00 pm

Venue: David Hicks 1 - Civic Offices, Shute End, Wokingham RG40 1BN. View directions

Contact: Arabella Yandle  Democratic & Electoral Services Specialist

Link: Watch the video of this meeting

Items
No. Item

33.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

34.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held on  9 August 2017

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 9 August 2017 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

Members' Update pdf icon PDF 294 KB

There are a number of references to the Members' Update within these minutes. The Members' Update was circulated to all present prior to the meeting.  A copy is attached.

 

35.

Declaration of Interest

To receive any declaration of interest

 

Minutes:

Councillor Angus Ross declared a personal interest in Item 37, application 171944 – Parcel Q, Nine Mile Ride, Arborfield, on the grounds that he had taken part in discussions relating to the development of the wider Arborfield Garrison site in his previous role at the Council.  He had an open mind with regard to the decision.

 

 

36.

Applications to be Deferred and Withdrawn items

To consider any recommendations to defer applications from the schedule and to note any applications that may have been withdrawn.

Minutes:

There were no applications deferred or withdrawn

37.

Application no 172005 - Parcel Q, Nine Mile Ride, Arborfield Garrison, RG2 9LN pdf icon PDF 529 KB

Recommendation:  Conditional Approval, subject to legal agreements

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Councillor Angus Ross declared a personal interest in Item 37, application 171944 – Parcel Q, Nine Mile Ride, Arborfield, on the grounds that he had taken part in discussions relating to the development of the wider Arborfield Garrison site in his previous role at the Council.  He had an open mind with regard to the decision.)

 

Proposal:  Reserved Matters application pursuant to Outline Planning Consent O/2014/2280 for the construction of 114 apartments with communal space, access from the Nine Mile Ride Extension (NMRE), with associated internal access roads, parking, landscaping and open space, footpaths/ cycle ways, Sustainable Urban Drainage (SuDS), and substation (Parcel Q).

 

Applicant:  Crest Nicholson Operations Limited C/O Savills

 

The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 11 to 44.

 

The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:

 

·           Comments from the Parish Council;

·           Proposed amendments to Condition 2 and Condition 9;

·           A correction to the amount of the commuted sum for affordable housing;

·           A proposed Deed of Variation of Heads of Terms of Reference, and

·           Clarification regarding affordable housing.

 

Members had visited the site in 2015.

 

Chris Tinker, Executive Director at Crest Nicholson, spoke in favour of the application, outlining the issues around the availability of rental properties for 2-30 year olds both nationally and locally, and the egregious state of much of the private rentals.  He described the nature of the proposed development.  It was suburban in nature and designed to a high specification that would weather the high turnover of tenants in this transient market, offering short to medium term lets at competitive rates.

 

In response to Member questions regarding parking, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that the proposed managed unallocated parking offered greater flexibility to the development, resulting in a more efficient use of the spaces with all spaces being available for all to use rather than spaces being left vacant as it was allocated to someone that may not own a car.  There would be an on-site manager, which would aid in managing the parking. The application offered a ratio of 1.3 spaces per dwelling which is higher than set out within the guidance. 

 

In response to Member queries regarding rents and tenure, the Service Manager, SDL Planning Delivery, indicated that the levels of rent would be dictated by the market.  The development comprised a range of 1-2 bedroom flats which are likely to be occupied by transient professionals on a 1-3 year tenure.

 

In response to Member questions regarding access to open space, the Case Officer indicated paths would link the site with the SANGs.  He stated that there would be links to bridleways and footpaths throughout Arborfield development.  The Service Manager, Highways Development Management, went on to state that the access route to Bohunt School was open to vehicles and also made good provision for both foot and cycle users.   The roads on the application before the Committee would not be adopted and as such not governed by  ...  view the full minutes text for item 37.

38.

Application no 171944 - Land to the West of Faringdon Road, Earley, RG6 1HX pdf icon PDF 177 KB

Recommendation:  Conditional Approval

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Proposal:  Full application for the erection of temporary sales and marketing office, with associated parking and landscaping (part retrospective).

 

Applicant:  Cala Homes

 

The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 45 to 60.

 

The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included confirmation of the dates of the installation and opening of the play space.

 

Members had visited the site on 8 September 2017.

 

Viv Hill, Cala Homes, spoke in favour of the application.  He referred to the ongoing issues regarding the development and offered a range of solutions that Cala Homes were planning to take to move forward.  He stated that the Show Home that was the subject of the application before Committee did not infringe on the area allocated to the play area and reiterated the intention for the play area to be open for use in October.  He explained the importance of a show home in maintaining sales and stated that it would be powered by mains electricity.

 

Laura Blumenthal, Ward Member, spoke on the application.  She acknowledged the statement by Mr Hill and that the building would be of a temporary nature.  She stated that residents had concerns regarding parking and safety and asked that the hours of operation be confirmed.

 

In response, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that there was no parking standard associated with show homes.  The parking provision on the site in question, when compared with other similar sites, was adequate.  The road was not currently adopted by the Local Authority and was still in the ownership and management of Cala Homes until such time as the development was complete and associated maintenance periods had been achieved.   

 

The Case Officer went on to clarify the size of the development and the number of properties still to be sold by Cala Homes.  The application included a condition which limited the length of permission to a year or until the last property was sold, which ever was sooner.  There could be no breach, as the application would need to come back to Committee if they wanted to extend.  The opening times would covered by a condition, to be agreed with the Chair and Vice Chair.

 

Resolved:  That Application no 171944 be approved, subject to the conditions set out in Agenda pages 45 to 60; the confirmation regarding the play space as laid out in the Members’ Update, and a condition relating to the hours of business, with full wording to be agreed between the Case Officer and the Planning Chair and Vice Chair.

 

39.

Application no 170794 - Land to the rear of 39 and 41 Lowther Road, Wokingham, RG41 1JB pdf icon PDF 601 KB

Recommendation:  Conditional Approval

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Proposal:  Full application for the proposed erection of 2no detached 4xbedroom two storey dwellings and new access driveway.

 

Applicant:  Mr Francis

 

The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 53 to 80.

 

The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:

 

·           Revisions to the street scene section plan relating to the front elevation;

·           Additional comments on the plans and Officer responses to same, and

·           Proposed amendments to Conditions 2, 6 and 9.

 

Members had visited the site on 8 September 2017.

 

Martin Battersby, Embrook residents Association, shared a presentation and spoke in opposition to the application, stating that the proposed development went against the Borough Design Guide due to being a backland development, its size and the degree of overlooking, and would cause harm to the amenity of the existing residents. 

 

Frederick Randall, agent, spoke in favour of the scheme, stated that the application had been amended in response to concerns from local residents and in discussion with planning officers.  The principle windows faced away from neighbouring properties and the development, as a whole was similar in size to others in the area and provide two efficient and sustainable homes.

 

Ulla-Karin Clark, Ward Member, spoke against the application, stating that backland developments were not supported by Members.  A previous application on the site submitted in 2006 had been refused as overbearing and out of character and the proposal contravened the Borough Design Guide.

 

In response, the Case Officer stated that there had been two applications in 2006.  One had been for three dwellings with smaller gardens.  It had contravened standards and had been rejected.  The second had been refused due to lack of infrastructure, namely the lack of submission of a section 106.  Members discussed the wording of the Design Guide in relation to backland development at some length.

 

In response to Member questions regarding access to the properties, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that number 43 had a large driveway and there was no need for them to have to park on the access road. 

 

The Committee voted against the recommendation that the application be approved.

 

Councillor Rachelle Shepherd-DuBey proposed that the application be refused on the grounds that the proposed backland development would result in an unacceptable degree of overlooking from windows in the new dwellings, which would be harmful to the amenity of existing residential propertiesadjoining the site. As such, the proposal is contrary to Policy CP3 of the Core Strategy, Policy TB06 of the Managing Development Delivery Document and Sections 4.7 and 4.10 of the Borough Design Guide

 

The proposal was seconded by Councillor Philip Houldsworth.

 

Resolved:  That Application no 170794 be refused on the grounds listed above.

 

 

40.

Application No 172013 - 2 Budges Cottages, Keephatch Road, Wokingham, RG40 5PY pdf icon PDF 128 KB

Recommendation:  Conditional Approval

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Proposal:  Proposed erection of single storey front extension to dwelling and covered porch.

 

Applicant:  Mr Fred War

 

The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 95 to 100 and Supplementary Agenda pages 3 to 8.

 

There were no further updates on this item

 

Andrew Walters, Wokingham Town Council, spoke against the application, emphasising the unique nature of the Budges Cottages and stating that their distinctive nature had not been considered in the application.  He referred to the Borough Design Guide in relation to character and the impact of the development on neighbouring properties.  He suggested that the Cottages should be seen as a ‘created place’ and referred to the infringement of the 45o site line, implying that the small windows added to its impact.

 

Councillor David Lee, Ward Member, spoke against the application, reiterating the unique character of the site.  He stated that the neighbouring development had a subservient extension, which did not have the same impact. The proposed extension was not in keeping with the other properties.

 

In response, the Case Officer stated that the site was not a conservation area and the property had no listing.  The building was set back and not distinctive.  He explained that the degree of shading had been calculated using the Building Research Establishment guidance, which indicated a maximum of 50% of daylight loss was acceptable.  The property was set back, resulting in less visual impact.  The established building line was that of the terraced houses to the north. 

 

Councillor Bill Soane proposed that the application be deferred to permit a site visit for the purpose of examining the distinctive nature of the area, the impact of loss of light and the materials to be used.

 

Councillor John Kaiser seconded the proposal.

 

Resolved:  That Application no 172013 be deferred in order to allow the Committee to undertake a site visit.

41.

Application no 171187 - 5 Hatchgate Cottages, Hatchgate Lane, Cockpole Green, RG10 8 NE pdf icon PDF 289 KB

Recommendation:  Refusal

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Proposal:  Householder application for the proposed erection of a part single/part two storey side, rear and front extension to dwelling plus erection of an open front porch.

 

Applicant:  Mr and Mrs C Copland

 

The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 101 to 108 and Supplementary Agenda pages 9 to 14.

 

The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included a response to an objection received from the Wokingham Town Council.

 

Members had visited the site on 8 September 2017.

 

David Bates, agent, spoke in favour of the application.  He outlined the history of the site, stating that a number of the properties had been extended, all within their gardens.  The street scene maintained the rural outlook.  The development would offer improved accommodation for a local family.  The objections that had been raised had been addressed and unsightly buildings removed.  The development was in keeping with neighbouring properties and was permissible. 

 

Councillor John Halsall, Ward Member, spoke in favour of the application, referring to the fact that new dwellings in a greenbelt area should be avoided but the extension of existing buildings was acceptable.  The 35 % rule referred to in the Officer’s report was a guideline.  This was the only building of the group that had not been extended.  There would be no harm to the greenbelt as the extension was within a garden. 

 

In response, the Case Officer stated that the National Planning Policy Framework was clear in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment.  An extension was acceptable if not disproportionate.  Any extension over 35% was unacceptable.  There had been several other applications made historically that had been refused on that basis.  Other properties had been extended more than 35% but that had occurred before the regulations had been introduced. 

 

In response to Member questions, the Service Manager, Regulatory Services and Compliance, stated that policy TB01 of the Managing Development Delivery was adopted policy.  The Case Officer went on to state that the property could be extended under the rule on permitted development rights, which would amount to more than 35%, but that the applicant did not want to follow this route.  

 

Resolved:  That Application no 171187 be refused on the grounds listed above.