Agenda and minutes

Extraordinary Planning Committee, Planning Committee - Monday, 25th June, 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: David Hicks 1 and 2 - Civic Offices, Shute End, Wokingham RG40 1BN. View directions

Contact: Callum Wernham  Democratic & Electoral Services Specialist

Link: Watch the video of this meeting

No. Item



To receive any apologies for absence.


There were no apologies for absence.

Members' Update pdf icon PDF 117 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.  It also contains details of properties to be visited prior to the next Planning Meeting.  A copy is attached.



Declaration of Interest

To receive any declaration of interest



Councillor Smith declared a personal interest in item 16 on the grounds that he had listed the application. He stated that he had an open mind and would not come to a decision until he had heard representations from Officers and Speakers.


Applications to be Deferred and Withdrawn items

To consider any recommendations to defer applications from the schedule and to note any applications that may have been withdrawn.


No applications were recommended for deferral, or withdrawn.


APPLICATION NO 172048- Land between Thames Valley Business Park and Napier Road ( Bulmershe and Whitegates) pdf icon PDF 341 KB

Reccommendation: Conditional approval subject to legal agreement.

Additional documents:


Proposal: Full application for proposed construction of a segregated fasttrack public transport, pedestrian and cycle bridge and viaduct, comprising concrete bridge structure with a river span of 59.5m and a land span of 316m, supported by concrete columns, steel beams and reinforced soil embankment, together with new footpath links and existing footpath alterations, replacement supermarket car parking provision, junction improvements and landscaping.


Applicant: Reading Borough Council Highways and Transport Department. 


The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 5 to 82.


The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:


·         an update to the report regarding tree removal from other land users;

·         clarification of alternative schemes, cables, accommodation bridge, marshland and journey time savings;

·         an additional 16 objections. 


Bill Luck, Earley Town Council, spoke in objection to the application. Bill stated that the design of the bridge was ‘unsightly’, and that it had not adhered to the required ‘good design’ as stated in the NPPF paragraph 17. He added that the proposed development would result in a loss to wildlife and that it would fail to protect the local biodiversity. Bill stated that flooding compensation would be provided but it would be located in woodland. Bill added that the viaduct would not be screened and at its closest point to the river it would only be 5 metres away from the bank. Bill stated that the proposed development would not retain the existing features and felt that it contravened paragraph 9 of the NPPF which stated that development should seek a positive improvement in the quality of the natural environment. Bill was of the opinion that there was no policy justification for the proposed development and asked that the Committee refuse the application on the grounds of severe impact on the setting, damage to the nearby grade II listed bridge and the flood risk that the development would propose.


Tamzin Morphy, Resident, spoke in objection to the application. She felt that the proposed development would ruin the visual amenity and green space provisions and would contravene local and national planning policy. Tamzin felt that the proposed development would negatively affect the most densely populated area of Reading and that less intrusive methods (of reducing traffic congestion and improving public transport services) had not been trialled Tamzin stated that the development would cost £24 million and felt that it would devastate the local wildlife population and result in at least 766 trees being felled as a result of the development (with only 77 trees to be planted as replacements). Tamzin was of the opinion that the local grass snake and slow worm populations at the proposed development site had not been accounted for and that there would be a net loss in biodiversity as a result of the proposed development. Tamzin added that traffic levels had been falling on the London Road in recent years and felt that this application (if approved) would increase the overall traffic on the London Road as a result  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.


APPLICATION NO 180846 - Arborfield Garrison and Adjoining Land (Barkham; Finchampstead South; Swallowfield; Arborfield) pdf icon PDF 188 KB

Recommendation: Conditional approval.

Additional documents:


Proposal: Application for the approval of Reserved Matters, including layout, scale, appearance and landscaping in relation to the erection of a new primary school including nursery to be undertaken on a phased basis – Phase 1 (2FE Primary School) and Phase 2 (3FE Primary School), including the provision of hard court play area, all-weather pitch, ancillary club house block and associated access, parking and landscaping.


Applicant: Wokingham Borough Council.


The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 83 to 116.


The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included three additional conditions.


Piers Brunning, on behalf of the Applicant, spoke in favour of the application. He stated that the scheme would deliver key components of the Arborfield SDL and would be the first of two new primary schools to be built as part of the scheme. He added that the school would be developed in two phases, with the first phase offering 420 places for pupils. Piers continued by stating that phase two would be initiated if the demand increased, with this phase offering up to 630 places for pupils. Piers stated that the school would provide a good teaching environment with a good range of teaching spaces and age appropriate areas. He stated that an all-weather sports pitch would be built on the site which would be worth double the area of a grass pitch as it could be used far in excess of a grass pitch. Piers added that the all-weather sports pitch would be available for community use when appropriate at the weekends. It was noted that there would be a dedicated community and school drop off point to supplement the staff car park. 


Members commented positively on the provision of a sprinkler system at the school. Alex Thwaites, Case Officer, stated that although sprinkler provision was not a planning consideration the planning department had worked closely with the developer to ensure that the school would be sprinkler protected.


Members queried the allocation of 11 parking spaces (excluding the 37 staff spaces provided) for Phase 1 and asked whether there was any scope to increase this number. Chris Easton, Highways Development Manager, stated that the proposed parking had provisions for more than one space per staff member and therefore exceeded the Council’s policy in respect of parking. He added that a parking management strategy had been secured and would be enforced should the need arise.


RESOLVED: That application 180846 be approved subject to the conditions set out in agenda pages 84 to 89 and the additional 3 conditions as set out in the Members’ Update.



APPLICATION NO 180072 - Land adjacent to Cartef Farm, Islandstone Lane (Hurst) pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Recommendation: Grant permission to vary a conditional planning permission subject to conditions.

Additional documents:


Proposal: Application to vary conditions 4 (approved plans) and 5 (number of caravans on site) of planning consent 153360 to increase the number of caravans on site from 2 caravans to 4 (no more than 2 being static caravans), thereby increasing the number of gypsy pitches from 1 to 2.


Applicant: Mr and Mrs Henry and Samantha Giles.


The Committee received and reviewed a report, set out on agenda pages 117-134.


The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:


·         an update to the name of the applicant;

·         a correction to paragraph 24;

·         a representation from Hurst Parish Council.


Howard Larkin, Hurst Parish Council, spoke in objection to the application. He felt that the application would result in major intensification of the site and failed to address CP11. He added that the site was an unsustainable location, with the nearest shop and school being too far away for pedestrian access. He stated that the roads leading to the site were single track and that the area had experienced six instances of flooding since 1947. Howard stated the Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) had an 11.54 year traveller land supply. He asked that the Committee refuse the application for the reasons stated.


Lou Robinson, Spokesperson on behalf of the Hurst Village Society, spoke in objection to the application. She stated that WBC had an 11.54 year traveller pitch land supply and it was therefore not appropriate to intensify the existing site. She added that the existing dwelling on the site was very large and the Council should limit traveller sites being excessively far away from existing developments. Lou felt that the Council needed to do more to check that occupants of GRT sites indeed met the definition of a traveller and asked that the Committee refuse the application for the reasons stated.


Matthew Green, Agent, spoke in favour of the application. He stated that this application would not be for a new development and that the use of the land had already been permitted. He added that there would be intensification on the site but this would not constitute a material change of use. Matthew stated that Officers had agreed that the site was sustainable and that Landscape Officers had agreed that this application to vary conditions would result in the betterment of the local scene.


Daniel Ray, Case Officer, responded to a number of Member queries regarding intensification, land supply, flooding and change in character of the area. He stated that the site had no named consent and that the occupants would have to meet the criteria of the conditions. Regarding land supply, Daniel stated that the site was acceptable in all other matters. Daniel stated that at appeal (for the original planning application) the site was deemed an accessible location, which was a strong material consideration. Daniel stated that the inspector had deemed that there were other options available should the road become inaccessible due to flooding and had found the site acceptable on these grounds. Daniel stated that there  ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.