Venue: David Hicks 1 - Civic Offices, Shute End, Wokingham RG40 1BN
Contact: Callum Wernham Democratic & Electoral Services Specialist
To receive any apologies for absence.
An apology for arriving late was received by Malcolm Richards, whom arrived at 8:10pm.
To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 June 2019.
The Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 12 June 2019 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
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.
Declaration of Interest
To receive any declaration of interest
There were no declarations of interest.
Applications to be Deferred and Withdrawn items
To consider any recommendations to defer applications from the schedule and to note any applications that may have been withdrawn.
No applications were recommended for deferral, or withdrawn.
Recommendation: Conditional approval subject to legal agreement
Proposal: Full planning application for the proposed erection of 1 no. 4 Bedroom detached house and 2 no. 3 Bedroom semi-detached houses with associated parking, access and landscaping.
Applicant: Hicks Development Ltd.
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 17 to 44.
The Committee were advised that the Members Update included:
· Clarification to paragraph 8;
· Inclusion of Table 1 to paragraph 24.
Rosemary Cook, Earley Town Council, spoke in objection to the application. Rosemary stated that Earley Town Council had concerns over the height of the proposed dwellings and the impact on the SULV which the development would take place within. Rosemary added that there were also concerns over the maintenance of the buffer on the eastern size of the development.
Jenny Lissaman, on behalf of the Residents’ Association, spoke in objection to the application. Jenny stated that TB22 set out the Site of Urban Landscape Value (SULV) for the Bulmershe area, and added that the proposed development site was situated within it. Jenny commented that there had been a long history of planning applications within the area and its surrounding parts. Jenny stated that Woodley Town Council had made no comments on this application, however Jenny added that this was the case as Woodley Town Council had not been consulted regarding this application. Jenny was of the opinion that the new development would be out of keeping with the character of the area and added that many trees within the garden had been cut down, in addition to a TPOd tree which had been severely ‘pruned’. Jenny felt that the proposed dwellings would overlook the existing properties in the area, would be a case of overdevelopment and would look out of place in the context of the surrounding area. Jenny felt that there was a risk that the access road for this development could be used as a free local car park. Jenny asked that new planting and soft landscaping take place in the separate 10 dwelling development that had been allowed at appeal, as per the S106 agreement. Jenny asked that the Committee carefully consider the impact of this application on the character of the area and the SULV, and subsequently refuse it.
Steve Hicks, Applicant, spoke in favour of the application. Steve stated that a planning application for further development at Addington School had recently been approved whilst also being located within the SULV. Steve stated that the landscape buffer reduced the proposed development’s impact on the SULV and suggested that this buffer would be commuted to Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) for maintenance. Steve stated that no TPOd trees would be removed as part of this application, and added that the proposed dwellings were no higher than those of properties found on Pitts Lane. Steve stated that landscaping would be provided and a commuted sum for affordable housing contributions formed part of this application. Steve commented that each of the proposed dwellings would now comply with all amenity ... view the full minutes text for item 19.
Recommendation: Conditional approval subject to legal agreement.
Proposal: Full application for the proposed erection of 6 No residential apartments with associated parking and access following demolition of existing.
Applicant: Mr Bal Hans.
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 45 to 74.
The Committee were advised that the Members Update included:
· Clarification regarding Technical Housing Standards;
· Clarification that Woodley Town Council did not discuss the application;
· An additional neighbour comment;
· Updated response from Earley Town Council that the application should be refused;
· Correction to Councillor Shirley Boyt’s name;
· Update to table on agenda page 56;
· Clarification that images on agenda pages 57 and 69 were duplicates.
Rosemary Cook, Earley Town Council, spoke in objection to the application. Rosemary stated that Earley Town Council had concerns regarding the visual impact of the development on the Site of Urban Landscape Value (SULV). Rosemary added that the SULV was being eroded ‘bit by bit’ and needed protection and commented that Church Road was already very busy with traffic and Earley Town Council had concerns that this development would only add to this problem.
Tim Marsh, Residents’ Association, spoke in objection to the application. Tim stated that the proposed development site was situated on an exposed corner of the SULV and was therefore sensitive in terms of visual impact on the SULV. Tim added that it was Wokingham Borough Council’s (WBC’s) policy to protect the status of the SULV. Tim stated that the existing bungalow was in keeping with the character of the area and was not intrusive. Tim felt that the proposed two storey building would not be effectively screened by the tree to the front of the property, as the tree was deciduous and would not screen the property in the winter months. Tim stated that towards the rear of the development unit 5 was located in an exposed position which would be a prominent feature which would dominate the remaining open area of the SULV. Tim raised concerns over the parking allocation at the proposed development, and felt that the application should be refused as it was not appropriate to the area in which it would be located and was overbearing on the SULV.
Paul Butt, Agent, spoke in support of the application. Paul stated that the current scheme had been significantly reduced in scale compared to a previously refused application, with the bulk of the property being reduced. Paul commented that the inspector had no objection to the principle of development, and additional space would be provided at the front of the property for car parking. Paul stated that three outbuildings currently located within the SULV would be demolished as part of the application proposals, and tree planting would take place to provide a softer edge to the SULV. Paul stated that there would be an improved relationship with number 13 Church Road who had posed no objections. Paul concluded by stating that the application would retain the large garden, protect two TPOd trees, provide soft landscaping benefits and ... view the full minutes text for item 20.
Recommendation: Conditional approval.
Proposal: Householder application for the proposed first floor side extension, conversion of existing garage to create habitable accommodation, two storey rear extension following the demolition of existing single storey rear, plus changes to fenestration and internal alterations.
Applicant: Mr M Joshi.
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 75 to 100.
The Committee were advised that there were no Members’ updates.
Laura Blumenthal, Ward Member, spoke in objection to the application. Laura stated that there were several issues with the application. Laura queried why a manhole would be concreted over as part of the application. Laura stated that the proposed development was opposite a primary school which was consequently situated on an extremely busy road with cars using on street parking. Laura raised concerns over the tandem parking at the proposed development, stating that it could encourage the residents of the proposed development to park on the already congested road. Laura was of the opinion that should the application be approved, then construction on the main extension should not occur prior to the completion of the driveway as otherwise construction vehicles may be forced to park on-street. Laura asked that in its current state, the application be refused.
Simon Weeks reminded the Committee that they could only consider whether the previous reasons for refusal, parking spaces and setback distance, had been addressed.
Pauline Jorgensen queried whether the proposed development could be split up into three separate apartments in the future. Marcia Head, Development Management Team Leader, stated that a change of use to three apartments would require further planning permission.
Rachelle Shepherd-DuBey queried what parking restrictions were present outside of the proposed development site. Judy Kelly, Highways Development Manager, stated that there was an advisory no parking during school hours restriction in place.
Gary Cowan queried why the proposal was recommended for approval considering there was not a separation distance of at least 1m at the site boundary. Adriana Gonzalez stated that although this element of the application was not compliant with the borough design guide, number 22 Campbell road had a single storey rear extension built to its site boundary. Simon Weeks added that the issue of boundary separation distance was not a previous reason for refusal and was therefore considered acceptable in the context of the application.
A number of Members queried the covering up of a manhole on the development site. Simon Weeks clarified that this was not a matter for the Planning Committee to resolve as it was a building control regulation and was therefore outside of the remit of the Planning Committee.
Malcolm Richards queried what extra permission the applicant would need to obtain in order to extend the dropped kerb outside of the proposed development site. Judy Kelly stated that the applicant would need to apply for a S184 licence. Judy added that several other properties in the area had successfully applied for such permission previously.
Simon Weeks proposed that a further condition be added, in ... view the full minutes text for item 21.
Recommendation: Conditional approval
Proposal:Full planning application for the proposed alterations to the site wide landscaping including amendments to the car parking provision, erection of cycle parking store, provision of electric charging points plus bin store and other associated works.
Applicant: Speer Street Capital.
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 101 to 118.
The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:
· Summary update to agenda page 101;
· Updated condition 2, 3 and 9;
· Updated informative 4;
· Clarification of proposed parking spaces to 316;
· Additional consultation responses;
· Revised proposals following comments from Trees and Landscape Officers;
· Replacement of paragraph 9;
· Replacement of paragraph 13;
· Replacement of paragraph 14;
· Removal of paragraph 18;
· Amendment of paragraphs 21 to 30.
Kenya Sharland, Agent, spoke in support of the application. Kenya stated that the scheme before the Committee was uncontentious and was proposed to renovate and modernise a long term vacant building. Kenya stated that the site had recently been purchased by a new owner whom was committed to undertaking a scheme of refurbishment works to the existing building for prospective new tenants. Kenya stated that prospective new tenants now came to expect features such as additional disabled parking spaces, electric car charging bays and bicycle storage as standard.
RESOLVED That application 191243 be approved, subject to conditions and informatives as set out in agenda pages 102 to 106, updated conditions 2, 3 and 9, and updated informative 4 and various other amendments, clarifications and replacements as set out within the Members’ Update.
Recommendation: Conditional Approval subject to legal agreement.
Proposal: Full planning application for the use of existing side extension as an independent dwelling (retrospective).
Applicant: Mr A Hussain.
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 119 to 132.
The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included clarification that pages 129 to 132 were duplicate plans for a different application.
Rosemary Cook, Earley Town Council, spoke in objection to the application. Rosemary stated that the property was originally a small bungalow which had been developed in to a very large house. Rosemary added that the original annex was intended to be a granny annex however neighbours had stated that it was never used as such and was used as a second dwelling and rented out to tenants. Rosemary stated that there were frontage concerns and Earley Town Council would like to see soft vegetation at the front of the property. Rosemary was of the opinion that this was a concerning application due to the order in which it had come about.
Tim Marsh, Residents’ Association, spoke in objection to the application. Tim stated that there was no greenery towards the front of the property, and the brick did not match between the original property and the subsequent annex. Tim felt that the property was out of keeping with the character of the area. Tim was of the opinion that there had been planning breaches related to this property which had subsequently encouraged the owner to apply for retrospective planning permission to turn the property into two separate dwellings. Tim stated that there was a need for soft vegetation and planting outside of the annex.
Brenda Cutler, Resident, spoke in objection to the application. Brenda stated that the annex was a three bedroom property which was being rented out to tenants, and added that there was a further extension towards the other side of the property. Brenda outlined that there was no vegetation or greenery towards the front of the property and the property was out of keeping with the street scene.
Adlan Hussain, Applicant, spoke in favour of the application. Adlan stated that he had purchased the property in a dilapidated state for himself, his wife and family and parents. Adlan added that both parents were now ill and were in need of specialist care which he could no longer provide in a home environment. Adlan stated that his wife’s cousin had lived in the annex for a period of time, and had subsequently left. Adlan outlined that this application intended to make no changes to the external portion of the property and there was sufficient parking for both the annex and the original dwelling to function as separate dwellings. Adlan stated that he had tried to procure the same bricks as used on the original dwelling, however that particular brand were no longer in production and he subsequently found as similar a colour as possible. Adlan felt that the application was in keeping with national planning policies and parking ... view the full minutes text for item 23.