Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Planning Control Committee - Tuesday, 20th September, 2022 7.30 pm, NEW

Venue: Council Chamber, District Council Offices, Gernon Road, Letchworth, SG6 3JF

Contact: Committee Services - 01462 474655 - Email: committee.services@north-herts.gov.uk 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Members are required to notify any substitutions by midday on the day of the meeting.

 

Late substitutions will not be accepted and Members attending as a substitute without having given the due notice will not be able to take part in the meeting.

Decision:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Alistair Willoughby, Simon Bloxham, Sean Nolan and Ian Moody.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 59 seconds

 

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Alistair Willoughby, Simon Bloxham, Sean Nolan and Ian Moody.

 

Having given due notice Councillor Amy Allen substituted for Councillor Alistair Willoughby, Councillor Michael Muir substituted for Councillor Simon Bloxham and Councillor Nigel Mason substituted for Councillor Sean Nolan.

 

Councillor Phil Weeder was absent.

2.

NOTIFICATION OF OTHER BUSINESS

Members should notify the Chair of other business which they wish to be discussed at the end of either Part I or Part II business set out in the agenda. They must state the circumstances which they consider justify the business being considered as a matter of urgency.

 

The Chair will decide whether any item(s) raised will be considered.

Decision:

There was no other business notified.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 1 minutes 37 seconds

 

There was no other business notified.

3.

CHAIR'S ANNOUNCEMENTS

Members are reminded that any declarations of interest in respect of any business set out in the agenda, should be declared as either a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest or Declarable Interest and are required to notify the Chair of the nature of any interest declared at the commencement of the relevant item on the agenda.  Members declaring a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest must withdraw from the meeting for the duration of the item. Members declaring a Declarable Interest, wishing to exercise a ‘Councillor Speaking Right’, must declare this at the same time as the interest, move to the public area before speaking to the item and then must leave the room before the debate and vote.

Decision:

(1)       The Chair advised that, in accordance with Council Policy, the meeting would be audio recorded;

 

(2)       The Chair drew attention to the item on the agenda front pages regarding Declarations of Interest and reminded Members that, in line with the Code of Conduct, any Declarations of Interest needed to be declared immediately prior to the item in question.

 

(3)       The Chair clarified matters concerning times to speak for Members and Registered Speakers.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 1 minute 41 seconds

 

(1)       The Chair advised that, in accordance with Council Policy, the meeting would be audio recorded;

 

(2)       The Chair drew attention to the item on the agenda front pages regarding Declarations of Interest and reminded Members that, in line with the Code of Conduct, any Declarations of Interest needed to be declared immediately prior to the item in question.

 

(3)       The Chair clarified matters concerning times to speak for Members and Registered Speakers. 

4.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

To receive petitions, comments and questions from the public.

Decision:

The Chair confirmed that the 5 Member Advocates and 7 registered public speakers were in attendance.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 3 minutes

 

The Chair confirmed that the 5 Member Advocates and 7 registered public speakers were in attendance.

5.

18/01502/OP - LAND BETWEEN ROYSTON ROAD AND, CAMBRIDGE ROAD, BARKWAY, HERTFORDSHIRE pdf icon PDF 639 KB

REPORT OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND CONSERVATION MANAGER

Outline application with all matters reserved other than strategic point of access onto Royston Road and Cambridge Road for the erection of up to 140 dwellings and a new shop.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Councillor Tony Hunter declared he was predetermined on this item due to comments he had previously made in the consultation process. He advised that he would move to the public gallery where he would speak as Member Advocate against the item, before leaving the Chamber for the remainder of this item.

 

Councillor Gerald Morris called for a recorded vote on this item.

 

The result of the vote was as follows: 

 

YES:

6

ABSTAIN:

1

NO:

1

TOTAL:

8

 

The individual votes were as follows:

 

Cllr Terry Tyler

YES

Cllr Val Bryant

YES

Cllr Amy Allen

YES

Cllr David Levett

YES

Cllr Morgan Derbyshire

YES

Cllr Nigel Mason

YES

Cllr Daniel Allen

NO

Cllr Tom Tyson

ABSTAIN

Cllr Michael Muir

Cllr Tony Hunter

 

Therefore, it was:

 

RESOLVED: That application 18/01502/OP be DEFERRED until a response had been received from Herts Ecology. 

Minutes:

Audio recording – 4 minutes 05 seconds

 

Councillor Tony Hunter declared he was predetermined on this item due to comments he had previously made in the consultation process. He advised that he would move to the public gallery where he would speak as Member Advocate against the item, before leaving the Chamber for the remainder of this item.

 

Following a request on behalf of Barkway Parish Council for a recorded vote, the Chair took advice and confirmed that this request could not be made by a Parish Council. However, a Member Advocate or member of the Committee could make this request.

 

Councillor Gerald Morris called for a recorded vote on this item.

 

The Senior Planning Officer advised of the following updates:

 

·         Following notification of errors in the report, labelling on the plans and three of the Highways conditions had been updated.

·         Confirmed that the meeting had been called legally and was in line with advice surrounding meetings during the official mourning period.

·         The Local Plan Inspectors Report had been received and sections relevant to this application had been supplied as an addendum.

·         Newsells Park Stud had provided a document which had been circulated to Members ahead of the meeting.

 

The Senior Planning Officer presented the report in respect of application 18/01502/OP supported by a visual presentation consisting of photographs and plans.

 

The following Members asked questions:

 

·         Councillor Michael Muir

·         Councillor Tom Tyson

·         Councillor Nigel Mason

 

In response to questions, the Senior Planning Officer advised:

 

·         Herts County Council owned the reserved school site, but the rest of the site is owned by the applicant. The reserved school site was not part of this application.

·         There had been no response from Herts Ecology so far, despite Officer communications.

·         Herts Ecology had three options, they could respond with no objections, they could have concerns that need addressing and this would be done alongside the applicant and they could object in principle, in which case the application would return to the Planning Control Committee.

 

The Chair invited Mr Julian Dollar and Ms Jacqueline Veater to speak against the application and advised they had been allocated 10 minutes to share.

 

Mr Dollar thanked the Chair for the opportunity to speak and advised the Committee of the following:

 

·         He had been involved in Stud breeding for 25 years, and manager at Newsells Park Stud for the last 16 years.

·         The Newsells Park Stud is one of the most successful stud farms in the UK, with an international reputation.

·         The stud employs 42 people, the majority of who live on the site and support local businesses.

·         The stud purchases goods and materials from local suppliers and has taken a keen interest in the local community, especially through support provided to the local school.

·         The land bordering the BK3 site is the most suitable for raising foals and was the reason for the stud being established 100 years ago. The newer land is not of as good quality for the raising of foals.

·         The development of site BK3  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

22/00170/FP - THE LORD LISTER HOTEL, 1 PARK STREET, HITCHIN, HERTFORDSHIRE, SG4 9AH pdf icon PDF 253 KB

REPORT OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND CONSERVATION MANAGER

Change of Use from Hotel (C1) to Sui Generis (accommodation with support) and associated external alterations (as amended by plans and additional information received on 6 May 2022)

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED: That application 22/00170/FP be GRANTED planning permission subject to the reasons set out in the report of the Development and Conservation Manager.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 66 minutes 04 seconds

 

Councillor David Levett noted for the Committee that the Overview and Scrutiny Committee had made a call to account to explore how the Urgent Decision was taken. This call to account would take place at the Extraordinary Overview and Scrutiny meeting on Wednesday 28 September. While this would not take into account the planning decisions, in the interest of transparency, he would recuse himself from the Committee and sit in the public gallery.

 

The Development and Conservation Manager advised that there was one correction to the report, in which paragraph 4.1.1 referred to 24 bedrooms, this should be 21 bedrooms.

 

The Conservation and Development Manager presented the report in respect of application 22/00170/FP supported by a visual presentation consisting of photographs and plans.

 

In response to a question from Councillor Daniel Allen, the Development and Conservation Manager confirmed that secondary glazing had not yet been installed as it would require Listed Building Consent, as requested in Item 7 tonight.

 

The Chair invited Mr Scot Moir and Ms Emily Best-English to speak against the application.

 

Mr Moir thanked the Chair for the opportunity to address the Committee and advised the Committee of the following:

 

·         He was a neighbouring resident to the Lord Lister hotel, joined by Ms Best-English who was the landlady at the Half Moon pub.

·         At the previous meeting it was confirmed that this was accommodation with support and this was a relevant planning consideration, but the 24/7 support was only temporary.

·         Keystage have plans to install kitchenettes in rooms which would turn them into self-sustained flats.

·         There was a lack of amenity space in the building, with one shared kitchen between all residents and no specific place to eat.

·         The proposals should be safe, accessible and inclusive, but there is no separate female accommodation, no wheelchair access throughout the site and the bathrooms were not accessible. This means these proposals fail to provide accommodation suitable for all.

·         The Secure by Design measures means the waste bins would be 30m from the boundary of the property, contrary to North Herts Council policy, and collection of these would cause obstructions on the public highways.

·         There is no access for emergency vehicles, who have frequent attendance on site.

·         The Highways consultee had acknowledged that the sites vehicle access was narrow, with no details of how access via the gate would work.

 

Ms Best-English thanked the Chair for the opportunity to address the Committee and advised the Committee of the following:

 

·         She had owned the pub for 5 years and the change of use of Lord Lister has had a negative impact on the business and the lives of local residents.

·         Regular pub users were no longer attending, musicians no longer wanted to perform following abuse and there was a loss of revenue from hotel residents.

·         Bradshaw and Johnson Accountants had prepared a financial statement comparing revenue from 3 months when the Lord Lister operated as a hotel, compared to 3 months when it was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

22/00171/LBC - THE LORD LISTER HOTEL, 1 PARK STREET, HITCHIN, HERTFORDSHIRE, SG4 9AH pdf icon PDF 229 KB

REPORT OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND CONSERVATION MANAGER

Internal and external alterations to facilitate Change of Use from Hotel (C1) to Sui Generis (accommodation with support) (as amended by plans and additional information received on 6 May 2022).

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED: That application 22/00171/LBC be GRANTED planning permission subject to the reasons set out in the report of the Development and Conservation Manager and the following additional condition:

 

“Condition 5

 

Document entitled ‘Gate installations works’ dated 1 December 2021 by Firelec Securelec states that the single leaf swing gate will have manual operation (including a manual key lock into the catchment post) whilst at 4.3 and 6.8 of the submitted Design, Access and Planning Statement January 2022 it states that the gate will be controlled ‘electronically’. For the avoidance of doubt, full details of method of operating this gate together with a 1:20 scale elevation indicating the design of the gate and method of installation including whether the gate is to be mechanically fixed directly to the building or to posts that are themselves fixed to the building or to free-standing posts, shall be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority prior to the installation and commissioning of the gate. If fixed directly to the listed building, further larger scale plans confirming the mechanical fixing detail shall also be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority prior to the installation and commissioning of the gate. Once approved the gate shall be implemented in accordance with the approved details and thereafter retained and maintained for the lifespan of the current use of the building to the satisfaction of the Local Planning Authority.

 

Reason: For the avoidance of doubt and to ensure that special regard is paid to protecting the special architectural and historic interest and integrity of this grade II listed building under Section 16(1) of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990.”

 

Minutes:

Audio recording – 108 minutes 23 seconds

 

The Conservation Officer advised Members of the following updates:

 

·         HCC Archaeological representatives have removed the requirement for a written scheme of investigation, on the basis there is little to no archaeological implication of this scheme.

·         The Lavata Group had provided a report which clarified certain points.

·         As confirmed, the report should refer to 21 bedrooms on site, not 24.

 

The Conservation Officer presented the report in respect of application 22/00171/LBC supported by a visual presentation consisting of photographs and plans.

 

N.B. Councillor David Levett left the meeting at 21.35.

 

In response to a question from Councillor Amy Allen, the Conservation Officer confirmed that the installation of the gates would be set back to the rear of the carriage entrance.

 

The Chair invited Mr Scot Moir to speak against the application.

 

Mr Moir thanked the Chair for the opportunity to address the Committee and advised of the following:

 

·         It was not possible for Members to make this decision when no information had been provided on how the gate would look or be installed. It would have to be attached to the building itself with metal.

·         If the gates cannot be affixed, then the Secure by Design measures cannot be adhered to.

·         Secondary glazing is only to be installed on 22 windows, with 9 windows in the main building and 4 in the annexe remaining without secondary glazing, therefore noise from these rooms will not be limited.

·         Ventilation should be considered and the only option for this it to open windows, which leads to noise for neighbouring properties. This will only be made worse with the installation of kitchenettes.

·         Environmental Health consultee recommends refusal as no noise assessment has been carried out in accordance with guidance.

·         The following conditions should be considered; if Keystage cease providing temporary accommodation the building should return to its last use as a hotel, Keystage to provide a definition of what constitutes 24/7 support, all Secure by Design measures to be installed and operational within 3 months, and Keystage to make good damage done to the exterior of the building.

 

In response to a point of clarification from Councillor Daniel Allen, Mr Moir advised that Environmental Health had recommended that the building not be occupied until a noise assessment could be carried out. The Conservation and Development Manager confirmed that they had originally made this recommendation, but that it had been withdrawn, with details of this provided in the appendix.  

 

The Chair thanked Mr Moir for his contribution.

 

The Chair invited Councillor Sam Collins to speak against the application as Member Advocate.

 

Councillor Collins thanked the Chair for the opportunity to speak and advised the Committee of the following:

 

·         He was surprised to see the objections from Herts Archaeology had been withdrawn, without detailed investigation.

·         The installation of the gate would not be possible without disturbing what is underneath.

·         If permission was granted, it would be for a building, the Manager’s flat, that does not exist as detailed in the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

CURRENT ENFORCEMENT NOTICES pdf icon PDF 344 KB

REPORT OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND CONSERVATION MANAGER

Decision:

The report entitled ‘Current Enforcement Notices’ was presented by the Conservation and Development Manager and noted by the Committee.

Minutes:

Audio recording – 153 minutes 34 seconds

 

The Conservation and Development Manager presented the report entitled ‘Current Enforcement Notices’ and advised there were no further updates.

 

There were no questions from Members and the report was noted by the Committee.

9.

EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC

To consider passing the following resolution:

 

That under Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972, the Press and Public be excluded from the meeting on the grounds that the following report will involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 5 and 7 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the said Act (as amended).

 

Decision:

RESOLVED: That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 5 and 7 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the said Act (as amended).

Minutes:

Audio recording – 154 minutes

 

Councillor Val Bryant, as Chair, proposed and Councillor Tom Tyson seconded and, following a vote, it was:

 

RESOLVED: That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 5 and 7 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the said Act (as amended).

10.

CURRENT ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS

REPORT OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND CONSERVATION MANAGER

Decision:

Details of decisions taken on this item are restricted due to the disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 5 and 7 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of Section 200A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Minutes:

Details of decisions taken on this item are restricted due to the disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 5 and 7 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of Section 200A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972.