Agenda item

Schedule of Planning Applications (Agenda Item 9)

To consider the Schedule of Planning Applications:


Item No



Page No


Clayland Estates Ltd

Saham Toney



Breckland Council




Mr Stuart Neal




Mr H S Thompson

North Elmham



Mr Richard Bailey





RESOLVED that the applications be determined as follows:


(a)       Item 1: SAHAM TONEY: Cley Lane: Erection of 29 new dwellings: Applicant: Clayland Estates Ltd: Reference: 3PL/2013/0869/F


Councillor Bowes declared that she knew the applicant.


This application included 40% affordable housing on a site outside the Settlement Boundary which satisfied all the Core Strategy requirements.  A footpath link would be provided across the site frontage.  The Archaeological  Unit had carried out groundworks and had no objection to the site’s development.  Power lines would be placed underground and the applicants had agreed to a two year time limit on any permission.  They would also supply a speed reactor sign.  Anglian Water had confirmed that there was sufficient drainage capacity.


Mr Bunce (Parish Council) objected to development outside the Boundary.  42% of villagers had raised concerns about over-development in the village appraisal carried out in 2008.  Cley Lane had a narrow bridge and presented a pedestrian hazard.  The nearest bus stop was half a mile away and there was no village shop so people would have to travel to Watton for services.  If approved the Parish Council requested additional conditions requiring a pedestrian walkway into Watton and a footbridge over the river.


Ms Stephan (for Applicants) advised that the Environment Agency had significantly upgraded the drainage in response to previous flooding concerns.  Rainwater would be harvested on-site.  700m of footway and speed reactive signage would be provided and they had offered to put the power lines on the adjacent recreation site underground as well, at their own expense.  They were a local firm with a workforce of 22 and two apprenticeships would be provided if the application was approved.  The legal agreement covering affordable housing and recreation and library contributions was ready to sign.


In response to a question from Councillor Sharpe it was confirmed that the Applicants were the landowners, developers and architects of the site.


Councillor Lamb was concerned about the invasion of the countryside and thought the application probably represented many times the allocated housing provision for the village.


The Officer felt that the site satisfied the NPPF requirement to have minimal impact.


Councillor Bowes commended the applicants on the design and variety of the proposed housing but was also concerned about the road between the bridge and the Golf Club which had poor visibility and restricted width.  She asked if a footbridge would be possible.


The Officer advised that it would not be viable or reasonable to expect such improvements for the size of development.


Deferred and the officers authorised to grant approval, subject to conditions, on completion of the section 106 agreement.


(b)       Item 2: DEREHAM: Breckland Business Centre, St Withburga Lane: Provision of Smoking Shelter: Applicant: Breckland Council: Reference: 3PL/2013/0921/F


Deferred from the Agenda.  See Minute No 4/14.


(c)        Item 3: THETFORD: 55 Hawthorn Walk: Erection of two and a half storey (four bedroom) dwelling: Applicant: Mr Stuart Neal: Reference: 3PL/2013/0981/F


Councillor Robinson declared that he lived very close to the site and knew the applicant and most of the objectors.  Councillor Armes declared that she also lived on the estate but not close to the site.  Councillor Spencer declared that the site was in her Ward.


This application proposed an attached dwelling in the side garden of the existing house with an additional bedroom in the roof served by dormers and rooflights.  The main issues were visual impact; highway safety and parking provision.


Councillor Armes thought it represented overdevelopment in a high density area which already seemed cramped and had parking problems and poor access for emergency vehicles.  She was also concerned that the skylights would lead to overlooking.


Councillor Robinson agreed.  He noted that the land sloped away from the site so the new house would dominate the streetscene.  Parked cars already caused problems for the refuse lorry.


Councillor Spencer also agreed and said that the photographs did not show how claustrophobic the area already was.


It was proposed by Councillor Lamb and seconded by Councillor Carter that the application be refused.


Refused, contrary to the recommendation, on grounds of overdevelopment demonstrated by the lack of parking, mass and impact on the streetscene.


(d)       Item 4: NORTH ELMHAM: Station Yard: Residential development for 19 dwellings: Applicant: Mr H S Thompson: Reference: 3PL/2013/1045/O


Deferred from the Agenda.  See Minute No 4/14.


(e)       Item 5: LITCHAM: Rear of 8 Church Street: Proposed residential development: Applicant: Mr Richard Bailey: Reference: 3PL/2013/1111/O


Councillor Carter declared that he lived in the village and knew the applicant.


This application proposed three dwellings on garden land accessed by a driveway from Church Street.  The Applicants had raised concerns about the viability of the affordable housing contribution which had been agreed by the Council’s Housing Enabling Officer.  It was therefore proposed to reduce the contribution from £33,000 to £8,000 and to add a claw-back clause to the legal agreement.  The main issues were access, amenity, site context and the loss of trees.


Mr Parsons (Agent) said the site was immediately adjacent the Settlement Boundary and surrounded on three sides by development.  The drive served two dwellings and some lock up garages used for storage only.  It was proposed to widen the access and provide a type three turning head.  The application was outline and the layout indicative only.  The dwellings would be orientated to the south to limit loss of amenity and a single storey restriction would be accepted.  The viability issues were caused by the long access drive.  The applicant was ready to start and would accept a reduced time limit.


Councillor Sharpe noted that the Tree & Countryside Officer was not happy about the loss of trees.  He was advised that the trees had some value but were not to Tree Preservation Order standard.


Councillor Carter pointed out that as well as being outside the Settlement Boundary the site was adjacent the Conservation Area.  He advised Members that the traffic outside the shop usually parked up to the edge of the access drive and delivery vehicles were often parked there too.  Lorries stopped at the shop and there was an access to the school opposite and vehicles were often parked on both sides of the street narrowing the road to a single lane.  The access drive had bins stored in it and he was concerned about potential damage to the old flint wall.  The access was also restricted by Post Office vans and sometimes people had to reverse out of the drive causing danger to pedestrians.


Councillor Chapman-Allen thought that the access/exit alleyway was a concern with vehicles having to reverse a considerable distance if they met.


Councillor Duigan commented that it was an Outline application and he did not see how the affordable housing contribution could be decided until the quality of design and number of houses had been confirmed.


The Planning Manager agreed and said that the viability could not be understood and the matter was far from sorted.


Councillor Duigan proposed a deferment until the proper figures were provided.  Other Members asked for other matters to be considered such as trees and the widening of the access.


The Solicitor confirmed that if deferred all issues could be discussed when the application came back to Committee.


Councillor Lamb proposed that the application be refused and not deferred. 


The Planning Manager noted that Members were far from satisfied with the access arrangements and viability and had concerns about the loss of trees.  He asked them if they considered the principle of development of the site was acceptable.


Councillor Chapman-Allen seconded Councillor Lamb’s proposal.


After further discussion of the access arrangements and the use of the proposed turning head by non-residents Members voted on Councillor Lamb’s proposal.


Refused, contrary to the recommendation on principle and that, notwithstanding the highway technical requirements, there was likely to be conflict of vehicles manoeuvring into and out of the site and other access problems.


Councillor Duigan abstained from the vote.


Notes to the Schedule

Item No


Deferred Report

(Agenda Item 8a)


Councillor Rogers – Ward Representative

Mr Denempont – Objector

Mr Smith - Applicant


Mr Bunce – Parish Council

Mr Tilley – Applicant

Mr Swaby – Agent

Ms Stephan – for Applicant


Mr Parsons - Agent


Written Representations taken into Account

Reference No

No of Representations














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