Planning Committee meeting 22 September 2015 – Minutes

PONTELAND TOWN COUNCIL

MINUTES OF THE PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING 22 SEPTEMBER 2015

Present: Councillor Mrs E Thompson (in the Chair), Councillors Mrs S Johnson and A Varley

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Mrs L Noble and Mrs C Greenwell

1. PLANNING APPLICATIONS

A list of planning applications received since the previous Committee meeting had been circulated

1.1 15/02898/FUL: West Farm Cottage, West Farm Mews, Prestwick NE20 9TX – Construction of two storey and single storey extension with associated works

COMMENT: Is this proposal acceptable/excessive given the location in the Green Belt?

1.2 15/02891/VARYCO: 9 Bell Villas, Ponteland NE20 9BD – Variation of condition 15 (landscaping) from application APP/P2935/A/12/2169537

OBJECTION: We object on many grounds:

1. In the Appeal decision:
• Condition 14 refers to the landscaping scheme for the area to the front of the building (to be submitted and approved before development commences).
• Condition 15 deals with how the planting, seeding or turfing in the landscaping scheme is to be carried out.
• The conditions are concerned with soft landscaping; there is no mention of any construction work.

2. Given the above point, should what is proposed be considered a ‘variation of a condition’ as it does not relate to a landscaping scheme but introduces new development; therefore, should this not be a ‘material change’ or the subject of a new retrospective planning application? Until Condition 14 has been fulfilled, Condition 15 cannot be activated.

3. This application would contravene a condition specifically imposed in the Appeal decision to restrict development and activities within the fabric of the building. (Condition 8)

4. The development of the outside frontage seating area was specifically removed from the application which went to appeal.
• Applicants Planning Statement – Operating Description 3.2 – The external seating previously proposed was removed during the consideration of the previous application at the request of local residents
• A second access was proposed to the side to the ‘garden area’ – both were removed.
• Appeal Reasons – The proposal – Point 3: … the ‘exit to garden area’ was removed, together with external seating, to respond to residents’ concerns.

5. This proposal goes directly against a fundamental aspect of the original proposal upon which the appeal decision was based: residential amenity.
• Appeal Reasons – Planning policy and the main issues – Point 9: … I consider that this case turns on whether the scheme would: … iv) seriously impair the residential amenities of nearby residents.
• Appeal Reasons – Conditions – Point 28: The suggested conditions generally ensure that the proposal would operate as intended without impinging on the living condition of those nearby.
• Appeal Reasons – Conclusion – Point 29: … subject to the conditions set out above, I consider that the residential amenities of nearby residents would be safeguarded.

6. Undermines the permission granted by the Inspector as he suggested only soft landscaping
• Appeal Reasons – Amenities – Point 26: … it would be possible to transform the tired hard-standing on the street frontage with landscaping reflecting the more verdant street scene immediately to the west. In my view, appropriate landscaping would not only improve the street scene but also enhance the appearance of the Conservation Area here.
• Appeal Reasons – Conditions – Point 28: The requirement to submit a landscaping scheme is intended to enhance the frontage of the site. A few further details are required to control aspects of the design and appearance of the building. My conclusion depends on all those requirements.

7. The design and materials used are out of character with the Conservation Area and the development is intrusive, imposing and of questionable quality.

8. Prior to this retrospective application, drawings supplied gave no indication of a raised decking area with a particularly high surrounding wall.

9. The visual impact of the raised outside decking and surrounding walls, together with its position right on the edge of the pavement, is considerable and a hazardous distraction to motorists.

10. The excessively high front wall adjacent to the public highway poses safety issues for pedestrians whose presence may not be apparent to those leaving the bar/bistro.

11. The ramp finishes directly onto the narrow pavement without any barrier to stop a wheelchair or buggy/pram running directly onto road. Does the ramp comply with development regulations?

12. The scale of the raised outside decking and surrounding walls create a large obstruction right on top of the relatively narrow public pavement at a point where taxis and other motorists are frequently causing a hazard when dropping off and picking up passengers using the bar/bistro. Obstruction difficulties are also caused when deliveries are made. These activities, close to traffic lights, are interrupting the free flow of traffic and are prejudicial to road safety.

13. Some of the patrons of the bar/bistro are causing problems in the area by indiscriminate parking and stopping directly outside the premises to drop off other patrons.

14. There are noise issues from patrons outside and noise (music etc) emanating from inside the building as the front entrance door remains open from people frequently coming and going, as well as a member of staff standing next to the door keeping it open (negating the purpose of the self closing devise and contravening Condition 8).

15. The ventilation/extraction equipment is very noisy, up until late at night, contrary to Condition 6. Also, the flue is excessively high, overly reflective and detrimentally visually intrusive (and not in the position shown in the discharge of conditions).

16. Odours emanate from inside as the front entrance door is frequently open.

17. This development has been carried out with scant regard to the planning permission: seeking the retrospective discharge of some conditions, attempting to retrospectively vary one and ignoring others. Many of the drawings supplied, even retrospectively when the development has already taken place, are inaccurate or misleading.
Also, one of our Councillors has now been told that the unlawful outside seating area is only temporary; consequently, we should be grateful for your clarification of this statement.

Various emails and copy letters, together with many phone calls, objecting to the development had been received from: Muriel Sobo, Philip Ham (Ponteland Civic Society), Jennifer Ham, David Butler, Paul Holliday (Diamond Inn and Smithy Bedrooms), other local residents.
Objection issues included: contravenes planning permission, safety issues for pedestrians, design out of character in Conservation Area, traffic and delivery problems, adverse effect on neighbours amenity.

The Committee made no comments about the other 8 applications considered.

2. DECISIONS: APPLICATIONS AND APPEALS; WITHDRAWN APPLICATIONS

2.1 DECISION 15/02321/FUL: 35 Errington Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9LD – Proposed new roof with dormer windows & roof terrace to rear to form 7m high dormer bungalow, erection of detached double garage to front and new boundary wall & gate to front boundary
Permission granted under delegated powers on 4 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.2 DECISION 15/02271/FUL: 26 The Beeches, Ponteland NE20 9SZ – Proposed new front porch extension and first floor extension above garage
Permission granted under delegated powers on 4 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.3 DECISION 15/02320/FUL: 103 North Road, Ponteland NE20 9UR – Proposed rear and side single and two storey extensions.
Permission granted under delegated powers on 8 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.4 DECISION 15/02581/PRUTPO: 10 Hawthorn Way, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9RU – Tree preservation order application to reduce height of Conifer hedge line by 30%
Permission granted under delegated powers on 10 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.5 DECISION 15/02571/FUL: 6 Hadrian Court, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9JU – Proposed tiled roof over existing garage and porch extension
Permission granted under delegated powers on 10 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.6 DECISION 15/01997/FELTPO: 10 Edgewood, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9RY – Tree preservation order application
Permission granted under delegated powers on 9 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.7 DECISION 15/02519/FUL: 73 Darras Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9PQ – Ground floor front lobby, garage, kitchen & dining room extension. Enlargement of rear boiler room for installation of bio-mass boiler. First floor bedroom extensions to front and rear; extension to loft space and internal alterations.
Permission granted under delegated powers on 11 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.8 DECISION 15/02587/FUL: 46 Darras Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9PA – Extension to form dormer bungalow with double garage re-built
Permission granted under delegated powers on 10 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.9 DECISION 15/02639/FUL: 8 Wentworth Court, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9PR – Construction of proposed kitchen and lounge extension with bedrooms over and new front entrance with portico
Permission granted under delegated powers on 16 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

2.10 DECISION 15/02595/FUL: 130 Darras Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland NE20 9PG – Demolition of existing property on site and construction of new 5-bedroom dormer style bungalow.
Permission refused under delegated powers on 16 September 2015.
The Committee had made no comment about this application.

3. ANY OTHER BUSINESS

3.1 DECISION 15/01474/FUL: Land West of Meadow Court House, Runnymede Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland – Erection of 1no. dwelling house. Associated access to serve Plot 1 as well as adjacent development area between Plot 1 and Meadow Court. Change of use of Paddock land to Garden for Meadow Court.

In the Planning Committee meeting on 2 June 2015 a consultation response had been made as a comment expressing concern that this proposal contravened the Section 106 Agreement relating to land at Meadow Court and Runnymede Road, Darras Hall, Ponteland (entered into on 25 February 2014)

Permission had been granted under delegated powers on 27 August 2015 and in the Delegated Report by Joanne Wood (Case Officer), under ‘Other Matters’, it was stated that ‘the s106 agreement does not relate to this planning application and does not form a material consideration in the determination of this proposal’.

Following agreement at the Town Council meeting on 9 September 2015, a letter had been sent to Miss Joanne Wood, NCC Development Services, asking for clarification on this statement and requesting answers to the following questions:
• What was the purpose of the S106 agreement?
• How can the S106 agreement not be pertinent to this application when this site comes within the area covered by that agreement?
(The applicant has clearly linked the two applications.)
• Under what circumstances would the S106 agreement be applied; when would it be applied; how would it be enforced?
• What implications does this approach have for other S106 agreements and their enforcement?

3.2 NCC Planning Protocols

Information had been received from NCC (Bart Milburn, Major Development and Delivery Manager) in connection with the ‘Process for Engagement with Town and Parish Councils in the Pre Application and Section 106 processes’.

3.3 Northumberland Local Plan Core Strategy Pre-Submission Draft

Information about the above had been received from NCC (Kevin Tipple, Planning Strategy), providing details of consultation, together with dates and locations for small exhibition events.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING: 6 October 2015