Agenda and minutes

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No. Item


Minutes (Agenda Item 1) pdf icon PDF 100 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 20 January 2014.


Councillor North noted that she had not seconded the proposal at Minute No 6/14a (Watton) and had voted against it.  Councillor Carter had seconded the amendment.


Subject to the removal of the reference to Councillor North at Minute No 6/14a the Minutes of the meeting held on 20 January 2014 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.



Apologies & Substitutes (Agenda Item 2)

To receive apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Bowes, W Richmond, Robinson and Sharpe.


Councillors Duigan and Joel were present as Substitutes.



Declaration of Interest and of Representations Received (Agenda Item 3)

Members are reminded that under the Code of Conduct they are not to participate and must leave the room, for the whole of an agenda item to which they have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest. 


In the interests of transparency, Members may also wish to declare any other interests they have in relation to an agenda item, that support the Nolan principles detailed within the Code of Conduct.


The following declarations were made regarding Agenda Item 9:


Schedule Item 1 (Watton) – All Members had received direct representation.


Schedule Item 2 (Attleborough) – for clarity Councillor North declared that she was acquainted with the applicant as a former Town Councillor and Mayor.  She had received direct representation; plans of the site and a letter of objection, which she had passed on to all Committee Members.


Schedule Item 3 (Croxton) – All Members had received direct representation.  Councillors Armes, Lamb and Spencer all declared that as the Town Council was the applicant and they were all Town Councillors under the rules of natural justice they would not vote on the application.


Schedule Item 4 (Dereham) – Councillor Duigan had received direct representation from the Applicant which he read out.



Chairman's Announcements (Agenda Item 4)


The Chairman had expected a representative from the local press to attend the meeting to sing to the Committee.  That option had been offered when the local reporter’s mobile phone had interrupted the previous meeting.  The representative had failed to attend and the EDP was therefore reminded that the £10 fine to be paid to the Chairman’s Charity, which was imposed for such interruptions, was still due.



Local Development Framework (Agenda Item 7)

To receive an update. 


The Director of Planning & Business Manager presented an update on the Local Plan and thanked all the Members who had attended the Local Plan Visioning Session on 27th January. The discussions in the individual groups had been very informative and would help the Team to formulate the key issues and options within the first draft of the Local Plan.


The Issues and Options consultation document for the Local Plan would be included within the Council’s committee cycle in the coming months. It would reflect the key themes discussed at the Visioning Session of Housing, Employment and the Environment and would also present a range of options for the spatial strategy.


As part of the consultation on the Local Plan, it was intended to include a new Call for Sites to allow members of the public to submit any land they would like to be considered as part of the Local Plan.  A similar Call for Sites had been undertaken in 2013 and had received a good level of response. The Call for Sites would ask for a map of the land and also the type of use proposed, ie. residential, employment, or retail.


Community Infrastructure Levy – the Government had proposed a number of amendments to the CIL regulations and the impact of those, on the potential of a CIL charge in Breckland, was being assessed. The amended regulations were initially meant to come into force in January. Due to further discussion and amendments they have been delayed.  


Neighbourhood Plan - The Local Plan Working Group meeting on 11th February had been advised that:

  • Limited progress has been made on the Attleborough Neighbourhood Plan following its launch event last year. The Deputy Planning Manager would be attending a meeting of its steering group.
  • The consultation on the Croxton Neighbourhood Plan Area would close on 19th February. The consultation period had been extended beyond the six week period to account for the Christmas break. A report on the plan area would be presented to Cabinet on 1st April.
  • No further parishes had expressed a formal interest in producing a Neighbourhood Plan.



Deferred Applications pdf icon PDF 39 KB

To consider applications deferred at previous meetings including some but not all of those shown on the attached Schedule of Deferred Applications.


North Elmham: Station Yard: Residential Development for 19 Dwellings: Reference: 3PL/2013/1045/O pdf icon PDF 851 KB

Report of the Director of Commissioning.


The Senior Planner recapped the application for 19 dwellings on a site adjacent the railway line.  The application was Outline with only access to be considered.


The applicant had now served notice on two additional land owners and a revision had been made to the red line surrounding the site to exclude land owned by No 9 Station Road. 


The site had planning history and had received a recent refusal due to failure to sign a legal agreement.


Significant discussions had taken place regarding highway safety and a railway crossing upgrade had been agreed in principle.  However there were still concerns over visibility and the application was recommended for refusal on those grounds.


Mr Read (Objector) lived at No 9 Station Road and was concerned about the proposed road layout as it formed part of the ‘safe route to school’.  The site was also on the edge of the built up area where drivers started to accelerate out of the 30mph zone.  It was also a dangerous junction.  The required visibility splay included front garden land of Nos 9 and 7 Station Road.  The Applicant owned No 7.  Mr Read said his land was available but the applicant had failed to complete on two contracts which would allow the footpath to be set back and the road width maintained.


Mr Thompson (Applicant) apologised that the application was before Members again.  He had not refused to sign the previous legal agreement but had been advised not to by an Officer.   The old yard was a brownfield site.  The required visibility splay to the west could be achieved by setting the railway gates back.  To the east visibility was below requirements but traffic from the east, driving on the left, would have adequate visibility.  By moving the gates and narrowing the road the exit from Eastgate Street was improved.  Curbing would be created and a footpath provided behind the crossing gates so pedestrian safety would be maintained.  The development would provide much needed housing.


Councillor Lamb asked why the application was now recommended for refusal when it had been acceptable before.


It was explained that the application had originally been presented to Members in 2007/8 and had received a positive recommendation subject to a legal agreement.  That agreement had not been concluded successfully.  More time had been given and it had come to light that the required visibility splay could not be secured because it was reliant on third party land.  Members had approved the application subject to a sub-standard access, but the legal agreement had still not been secured.


Councillor Lamb asked whether the applicant’s inference that the entrance was OK included the land owned by the objector.  He was advised that it did not.


Councillor Carter asked if the application should be deferred to allow time for agreement of the visibility splay but the Planning Manager advised that there was no guarantee that agreement would be reached within a reasonable timescale.


RESOLVED that, subject to the expiration of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18a


Schedule of Planning Applications (Agenda Item 9) pdf icon PDF 50 KB

To consider the Schedule of Planning Applications:


Item No



Page No


Lifestyle Living Group


14 - 20


Wright’s Attleborough Ltd


21 - 25


Thetford Town Council


26 - 32


William H Brown


33 - 36


Mrs J Syrett


37 - 40



RESOVED that the applications be determined as follows:


a)         Item 1: WATTON: Redhill Mobile Homes Park, Town Green Road, Redhill Lane: Extension to Mobile Home Park: Applicant: Lifestyle Living Group: Reference: 3PL/2013/1054/F


All Members had received direct representation.


This application proposed an additional 54 mobile homes in a similar form to the existing 96.  In planning terms, mobile homes counted as dwellings.  Although the Council had a housing land supply shortage, the application was not considered sustainable: the access road was in poor condition; motor vehicles would be needed; and no affordable housing provision had been offered.  There was a strong highways objection and negotiations to address that had resulted in a variety of plans.  The latest included a footpath closer to the site but the landowner had not agreed to that.  The required flood risk assessment had not been submitted.


Councillor Gilbert (Ward Rep) thanked Officers for keeping the local Members well informed about the application.  He knew the site well but thought that it was already big enough.  It was outside the Settlement Boundary and the road network was totally inadequate.  He did not believe that the proposed footpath would decrease vehicle movements as it was a long walk to town and back.


Councillor Rogers (for the Town Council) said they were in favour of the development.  The footpath would allow residents to walk safely into the town.  The additional entrance would improve access for emergency vehicles.  The church would benefit from a new wall and the £50,000 offered to the Town Council would enable the development of play areas for youngsters in the town.


Mr Lincoln (Objector) had lived nearby for 42 years.  He used the road regularly and there was not room for two cars to pass.  Parked cars and delivery vehicles impeded progress as well as pedestrians.  Weddings and funerals at the church made the problem worse.  Sometimes the ditch smelled of sewage and the bridleway flooded.  It was a well maintained site but the entrance was not clearly marked and was near a dangerous bend in the road.


Mr Campbell (Agent) pointed out an error on the layout plan presented to Members.  A revised plan was shown which had an area of Open Space in the middle together with visitor parking provision.  The original application had been for 58 additional mobile homes and that had been reduced to 54 to provide those changes.  The total number of homes would be dependent upon the site licence.


Mr Campbell went on to say that the site was a retirement site and the amount of people using cars was substantially lower than other types of residential development.  There was no policy for mobile homes in the LDF therefore there was a presumption in favour of the development due to the housing land shortage.  The proposal should be determined on its merits.  The extension would make a successful site more sustainable.  The £50,000 contribution was confirmed as well as the Open Space provision.  Negotiations  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.


Applications determined by the Director of Commissioning (Agenda Item 10) pdf icon PDF 44 KB

Report of the Director of Commissioning


Members are requested to raise any questions at least two working days before the meeting to allow information to be provided to the Committee.





Appeal Decisions (Agenda Item 11) pdf icon PDF 49 KB





Applications Determined by Norfolk County Council (Agenda Item 12) pdf icon PDF 30 KB