Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, Cannards Grave Road, Shepton Mallet BA4 5BT. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services Email: democraticserviceseast@somerset.gov.uk 

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Items
No. Item

109.

Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence and notification of substitutions.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Adam Boyden, Dawn Denton and Helen Kay. Councillor Philip Ham substituted for Councillor Denton.

 

110.

Minutes from the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 109 KB

To approve the minutes from the previous meeting.

Minutes:

The Committee was asked to consider the Minutes of the meeting held on 9 January 2024.

 

Councillor Martin Lovell proposed and Councillor Tony Robbins seconded that they be accepted. These Minutes were taken as a true and accurate record and were approved.

 

111.

Declarations of Interest

To receive and note any declarations of interests in respect of any matters included on the agenda for consideration at this meeting.

(The other registrable interests of Councillors of Somerset Council, arising from membership of City, Town or Parish Councils and other Local Authorities will automatically be recorded in the minutes: City, Town & Parish Twin Hatters - Somerset Councillors 2023 )

Minutes:

Cllr Tony Robbins declared a non-registerable interest in Item 9 and said he would leave the room when it was discussed.

 

112.

Public Question Time

The Chair to advise the Committee of any items on which members of the public have requested to speak and advise those members of the public present of the details of the Council’s public participation scheme.

 

For those members of the public who have submitted any questions or statements, please note, a three minute time limit applies to each speaker.

 

Requests to speak at the meeting at Public Question Time must be made to the Monitoring Officer in writing or by email to democraticservicesteam@somerset.gov.uk  by 5pm on Wednesday 31 January 2024.

Minutes:

There were none.

 

113.

Planning Application 2023/1135/FUL - Land at 351605 155774 Burrington Road, Charterhouse, Cheddar, Somerset pdf icon PDF 100 KB

To consider an application for the demolition of existing stable buildings and the erection of 1no. dwellinghouse with associated access and track.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That planning application 2023/1135/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – Unanimous in favour

Minutes:

The Officer’s Report stated that this application related to the demolition of stable buildings and the erection of a dwelling. Also, the stopping up of vehicular access from Burrington Road and the creation of a new access track further east along Burrington Road. There would be a new package treatment plant and associated works to convert the site from equestrian to residential.

 

The site was outside any development limits in open countryside and within the Mendip National Landscape.

 

As the application was recommended for approval, this would be a departure from the local plan and therefore was referred to the Planning Committee for determination.

 

It was noted that previous permission had been granted on the site in February 2023 for the conversion of the main stable building to a residential dwelling with the stopping up of the existing access and creation of a new access to the east.

 

In summary, the Planning Officer stated that, given that the site already benefited from a fall-back position in the conversion, the new proposal would not result in any additional harm above that already permitted in terms of sustainability, and no material harm has been identified. The application was therefore recommended for approval subject to conditions, as a departure from the Development Plan.

 

The Planning Officer explained the application to the Committee with the aid of a PowerPoint presentation.

 

The Committee was then addressed by the agent for the application. He made the following comments:

 

  • This is a brownfield site, previously used for keeping and stabling horses.
  • Previous planning permission granted in 2023 was granted to convert the largest concrete stable into a 2-bed single storey dwelling. The new application is only slightly larger and is for a 3-bed single storey dwelling.
  • There is no change to the previously approved access.
  • The proposed new position 10m further east would mean less impact on the neighbouring property and will be well screened in the wider landscape.
  • No objections have been received from the Parish Council or neighbours.

 

There was a brief discussion in which Members expressed their approval of the application and were happy to see that the access to the proposed dwelling would be located further away from the bend in the road. The development would tidy up a site which was run down in appearance.

 

At the conclusion of the debate, it was proposed by Councillor Philip Ham and seconded by Councillor Edric Hobbs to approve the application in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

On being put to the vote the proposal was approved unanimously.

 

RESOLVED

 

That planning application 2023/1135/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – Unanimous

114.

Planning Application 2023/1535/FUL - Barn at Lower Shots, Ashmoor Drove, Bleadney, Somerset pdf icon PDF 96 KB

Application for the conversion of an existing barn to 1no. dwelling with erection of two storey extension.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That planning application 2023/1535/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

Votes – Unanimous in favour

 

Minutes:

The Officer’s Report stated that this application related to a site located outside the settlement limits as identified in the Mendip District Council Local Plan. As the Officer’s recommendation was for approval, the application had been referred to the Planning Committee for determination. The proposal would utilise the existing access from Ashmoor Drove which is a single lane, unclassified carriageway.

 

The Report continued that there was existing permission to convert the barn to a 2no. bed dwelling. To facilitate the new extended element of the dwelling, existing barn buildings surrounding the main barn (to be retained and converted) would be demolished. The new build would largely sit within the footprint of the demolished barns.

 

In the summary, the Planning Officer recommended that that planning permission be approved as no adverse impacts had been identified which would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits of the development, when assessed against the policies in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

 

The Planning Officer explained the application to the Committee with the aid of a PowerPoint presentation.

 

The Committee was then addressed by the agent for the application. He made the following comments:

 

  • To accommodate the applicant’s large family, they would like to demolish a concrete barn abutting the milking parlour which was already approved for conversion.
  • It would have a modern, contemporary appearance to complement the red brick milking parlour.
  • No new issues for highway safety, ecology or flood risk.
  • The Parish Council had recommended approval and there were no objections from neighbouring properties.

 

Members had a brief discussion and were happy with the proposal.

 

At the conclusion of the debate, it was proposed by Councillor Philip Ham and seconded by Councillor Edric Hobbs to approve the application.

 

On being put to the vote the proposal was carried unanimously.

 

RESOLVED

 

That planning application 2023/1535/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – Unanimous

 

115.

Planning Application 202/0910/FUL - Land East of Squires, Mardis Lane, West Lydford, Somerset pdf icon PDF 109 KB

Application for the erection of a single storey dwelling with associated access and parking.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That planning application 2020/0910/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – 7 in favour, 3 abstentions

 

Minutes:

The Officer’s Report stated that this application would be a departure from the existing adopted Development Plan, so in accordance with the scheme of delegation the application had been referred to the Planning Committee for determination. The application site was adjacent to, but fell outside of, the designated development limits.

 

In the summary, the Planning Officer said that the application would deliver one dwelling which should be given significant weight in the planning balance, particularly in the context of the lack of five-year housing land supply within the ex-Mendip area. The proposed dwelling would not be considered isolated. The occupiers would have access to some services and facilities within the nearby villages of Lydford and Keinton Mandeville without having to necessarily rely on private vehicular travel. It would deliver simultaneously, economic and social benefits in the form of employment opportunities during the construction period.

 

No adverse impacts had been identified which would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits of the development, when assessed against the policies in the NPPF.  Therefore on this basis, the proposed development represented a sustainable development and the application was recommended for approval.

 

The Planning Officer explained the application to the Committee with the aid of a PowerPoint presentation. She also clarified that only 1 letter of objection had been received, not 2 as indicated in her report.

 

The Committee was then addressed by the agent for the application. He made the following comments:

 

  • No part of the application site lies within a green or open space which is designated in the Local Plan, contrary to what the Parish Council had stated.
  • A neighbouring property had been approved at appeal in 2016.
  • The Conservation Officer had raised no objections and had complimented the application on its good quality design and materials.
  • Both the Conservation Officer and the Planning Officer were content that there was no harm arising to the character of the area or setting of the nearest Listed Buildings.
  • The lane only serves two existing dwellings, a stables and a sewage works. It would only require a short 70m drive along the lane to the new dwelling and would therefore not be prejudicial to highway safety.

 

In the discussion which followed, Members made a number of comments including the following:

 

  • The concerns of the Parish Council regarding the design of the dwelling, its proximity to 4 listed buildings and safety of the lane should be taken into consideration.
  • Why have permitted development rights been removed from the property?
  • Considering that the Conservation and Planning Officer had no objections, it would be difficult to identify what harms would outweigh the benefits and therefore difficult to refuse.
  • The building to the west of the site was approved in recent years and if access via the single-track lane was acceptable then, it still would be now.

 

In response to Members comments, the Legal Adviser made the following point:

 

116.

Planning Application 2023/1850/FUL - Land at 364102 150298, Stockhill Road, Chilcompton, Somerset pdf icon PDF 94 KB

Application for the erection of 1no. dwelling.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That planning application 2023/1850/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – Unanimous in favour 

 

Minutes:

The Officer’s Report stated that this application would be a departure from the existing adopted Development Plan, so in accordance with the scheme of delegation the application had been referred to the Planning Committee for determination.

 

In the summary, the Planning Officer said that there were benefits to the proposal in terms of contribution to the housing shortfall within the Council area, and there would be some economic benefits for the duration of the construction phase. No demonstrable harm had been identified and the site was within walking distance of a primary school and other services, including public transport. The application site was situated outside of the development limits, but not in a remote location.  As there was no specific identified and demonstrable harm, and taking into account the limited benefits, the application was recommended for approval.

 

The Planning Officer explained the application to the Committee with the aid of a PowerPoint presentation.

 

There were no public speakers for this application.

 

In the discussion which followed, Members made comments including the following:

 

  • Although just outside the Development limit, Chilcompton  is the biggest village in the Mendip area with many facilities, so is in a sustainable location.
  • Initial concerns of overdevelopment, but content that it would fit in with the location.
  • The Environmental Protection Officer has reviewed this application and has no objections despite the small holding next door.
  • The small holding has been located within the residential area for decades and there is no known history of complaints.

 

At the conclusion of the debate, it was proposed by Councillor Tony Robbins and seconded by Councillor Edric Hobbs to approve the application in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

On being put to the vote the proposal was carried unanimously.

 

RESOLVED

 

That planning application 2023/1850/FUL be APPROVED in accordance with the Officer’s recommendation.

 

Votes – Unanimous

 

117.

Planning Application 2023/0167/VRC - Duke of Cumberland Inn, Edford Hill, Holcombe, Somerset pdf icon PDF 78 KB

Application for the removal of condition 3 (delivery hours) and condition 9 (parking) on consent 2020/0242/FUL (The conversion of a free house into a farm shop and kitchen cafe. Attached micropub and side extension for added seating areas. First Floor alterations for 2 separate staff accommodations).

Additional documents:

Decision:

That planning application 2023/0167/VRC be APPROVED contrary to the Officer’s recommendation but subject to the following variations to the two conditions, namely that:

 

Condition 3 and Condition 9 of planning permission 2020/0242/FUL shall remain in full effect until:

  1. an operational plan for deliveries has been submitted to and approved by the Council; and
  2. the off-site car park approved pursuant to planning permission 2022/1618/FUL has been implemented and brought into use.

 

Thereafter, Condition 3 of planning permission 2020/0242/FUL shall be varied to read as follows:

 

“Condition 3 - Deliveries shall be taken at or despatched from the site only between Monday - Saturday 06:00 hours till 20:00 hours, and not at any time on Sundays”

 

Minutes:

At the start of this agenda item Cllr Robbins left the meeting due to his earlier Declaration of Interest at Agenda Item 3.

 

The Officer’s Report stated that the application had been referred to the Planning Committee at the request of the Chairman and as the Officer’s recommendation to refuse differed from that of the Parish Council.

 

Since the Officer’s recommendation was completed on this application, approval had been granted for a self-contained car park away from the pub site under application number 2022/1618/FUL. Despite this, the proposed arrangements for deliveries to the pub and the changes to the use of the area for vehicular parking directly opposite the pub site were still considered  unacceptable by Officers.

 

In the summary, the Planning Officer’s report concluded that the removal of conditions 3 and 9 from 2020/0242/FUL would result in unacceptable harm in terms of amenity loss, highway safety impacts, loss of parking and visual harm. This harm would outweigh any benefits which might  result from the removal of the conditions and the application was therefore, recommended for refusal.

 

The Planning Officer explained the application to the Committee with the aid of a PowerPoint presentation.

 

The Committee was then addressed by an objector to the application. The comments included:

 

  • Speaking on behalf of the nearest neighbour whose access has been badly affected by the location of the rubbish bins.
  • A prescriptive easement was already in place when the pub was purchased. This makes it difficult for the neighbour to enter his property or turn his car.
  • All delivery vehicles are a disturbance and some arrive earlier than the conditioned 7.00 am. Removal of that condition would cause greater disturbance at earlier hours.

 

A representative from the Parish Council was the next to speak. He said the Parish Council had recommended approval of the application. The village has very few facilities and the pub was a great asset to the village. He noted that the application had been submitted over a year ago and objections dated back to February 2023. It was not acceptable to be making a decision based upon old information and that many of the issues raised in the objections had been resolved.

 

The final speaker was the applicant. He made the following comments:

 

  • He has owned and operated the business for 14 years.
  • There have 25 comments of support only 1 neighbour has made objections.
  • The Parish Council are in full support.
  • He has requested his suppliers not to make deliveries until after 7.00 am, but occasionally they do come earlier. This does not happen often.
  • The Council has asked the neighbouring property owners if there has been noise disturbance from the deliveries. None were identified apart from the 1 neighbouring property.
  • The storage of the waste bins near to the windows of the pub is not ideal and causes a blockage in the road when the lorries come to empty them. There is also the odour and unsightly look to consider.
  • Would like to return the bins to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 117.

118.

Appeals Report pdf icon PDF 652 KB

To consider the report on appeals decisions made by the Planning Inspectorate between 19th December 2023 and 22nd January 2024.

Minutes:

The report of decisions made by the Planning Inspectorate between 19 December 2023 and 22 January 2024 was noted.