Venue: Norfolk Rooms, The Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham
Contact: Committee Services Tel: 01362 656870
To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday, 28 April 2010.
The Minutes of the meeting held on 28 April 2010 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
Apologies (Agenda Item 2)
To receive apologies for absence.
Apologies for absence were received from Mr R. Duffield (see Declaration of Interest - Minute No. 58/10).
Declaration of Interest (Agenda Item 4)
Members are asked at this stage to declare any interests that they may have in the following items on the agenda.
The Members’ Code of Conduct requires that declarations include the nature of the interest and whether it is personal or prejudicial interest.
Having declared a personal and prejudicial interest as a friend of the applicant, and since there was only the one Hearing on the Agenda, Mr R. Duffield sent his apologies.
Report of the Deputy Chief Executive.
The Hearing, which was heard in accordance with the Council’s agreed procedure, took place in the presence of the appellant and his wife. Mr M Horn, the Council’s solicitor, was in attendance.
The Tree and Countryside Officer (TCO) presented the report, explaining that the Tree Preservation Order had been drawn up following an application to remove two silver birches from the appellants’ front garden.
On his visit the TCO had noted that there were actually four trees on the site: two Silver Birches and two Scots Pines. The Pines stood on the boundary between the two properties. However, one of them was growing at an angle, quiet close to one of the properties and, as such, was likely to be subject to removal, or some form of management, at a later date.
The TCO had assessed the trees on site and their wider location (which fell in the Narborough Conservation Area). The street was mostly new-build and along that side of the road there were relatively few mature trees remaining. Consequently, he believed that these four trees were prominent, and believed that it would be important to retain one of the Silver Birches and one of the Scots Pines. He was also concerned that without a TPO all four trees on the site could potentially be reduced to just one in due course.
The Chairman drew attention to the gap between the submission of the Section 211 Notice by the appellants (giving 6 weeks’ notice of their intent to fell the two Silver Birches), and the actual site visit.
The TCO acknowledged this, although he had been in touch with the appellants in the interim about a visit.
The TCO explained that the two Silver Birch trees were of a similar age and physical condition. He understood the appellants’ view, but felt that putting a TPO on just one was a reasonable compromise. He had also placed the order on one of the Scots Pines.
Mr Grass, the appellant, stressed that they were not ‘anti-tree’. He said that they wanted to remove both Silver Birch trees because they were already higher than the property itself. In addition, the trees overshadowed the house and made it impossible to plant grass or to carry out other major gardening work. The appellants wanted to improve the appearance of their front garden and therefore planned to relay the lawn, reposition a flower bed and to plant a smaller ornamental tree such as a Flowering Cherry. They had no plans to remove the Scots Pines, (and indeed they had assumed that these were already covered by a TPO). He disagreed with the view that there was a lack of trees in the area, not least because Narborough Park was opposite the house, with numerous mature trees.
Mrs Grass also expressed concern about possible root damage to the foundations of the property over time.
With the agreement of the Chairman, further photographs of the area, submitted by the appellants, were circulated to Committee Members.
A discussion ... view the full minutes text for item 59.