Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: The Anglia Room, Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham

Contact: Committee Services  Tel 01362 656870

No. Item


Minutes (Agenda Item 1) pdf icon PDF 117 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2008.


The minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2008 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 Mrs. M.P. Chapman-Allen, Mr. J.P. Labouchere, Mr. M. Kiddle-Morris and Mr. M. Broughton.



Declaration of Interest (Agenda Item 4)

Members are asked at this stage to declare any interests that they may have in any of the following items on the agenda.  The Members' Code of Conduct requires that declarations include the nature of the interest and whether it is a personal or prejudicial interest.


The following declarations were made:


  1. Mr. W.P. Borrett – Personal and prejudicial interest in regard to LDF matters relating to North Elmham as landowner and a family member has land submitted under the LDF.
  2. Councillor C. Bowes – Personal interest in regard to LDF and site specific matters relating to Watton, Saham Toney and Hilborough.
  3. Mr. R. Childerhouse – Personal and prejudicial interest in relation to Weeting Local Service Centre allocation.
  4. Mr. A.P. Joel – Personal interest in regard to LDF matters as a member of Old Buckenham Parish Council and has a friend and knows others who have submitted applications under the LDF.
  5. Mr. I.A.C. Monson – Personal and prejudicial interest in relation to LDF site specifics relating to Oxborough.
  6. Mr. J.D. Rogers – Personal and prejudicial interest in regard to LDF and site specifics matters as landowner in Carbrooke and submitted land application in LDF.
  7. Mr. W.H.C. Smith – Personal and prejudicial interest by virtue of site specific land application for inclusion in LDF relating to Great Ellingham.
  8. Mr. A.C. Stasiak – Personal interest as a close associate of the above-named Members.



Non-Members Wishing to Address the Meeting (Agenda Item 5)

To note the names of any non-members wishing to address the meeting.


The following Members were in attendance:


  • Councillor C. Bowes
  • Mr. W.P. Borrett
  • Mrs. S. Howard-Alpe
  • Mr. B. Rose
  • Mr. W.H.C. Smith – Executive Member (Business Transformation)
  • Mr. A.C. Stasiak
  • Mrs. A. Steward – Executive Member (Planning & the Environment)



Guidelines on submitting the LDF Core Strategy (Agenda Item 6) pdf icon PDF 84 KB

Report of the Strategic Director for Transformation.

Additional documents:


The Principal Planning Policy Officer presented the report, which advised Members on the closing stages in the preparation for the submission of the Council’s Local Development Framework Core Strategy and Development Control Policies document to the Secretary of State.


The report outlined the process and consultations that had taken place to date and explained that the next step in the process was effectively the Council’s final opportunity to shape the document before it was submitted for Government Inspection and subjected to Public Examination.


Completion of the final document should involve no more than minor amendments, as any changes made should be within the scope of previous discussions and agreements and the submission document should focus on the comments received from the public consultation process and show how the Council had responded to those comments.  It was also the opportunity to reinforce and bolster the submission documents to demonstrate that they met the tests of soundness (as set out in Appendix A to the report).


The documents were due to be submitted in November 2008 and the documents that would be considered by the Panel at its next meeting would be very similar to those presented previously, with only minor wording modifications made to enhance their overall soundness.


Following that, the documents would be submitted in accordance with the new Regulations and would be published and made available for comment for a period of six weeks, during which time key stakeholders (as listed in Appendix B of the report) would have the opportunity to submit representations, which would be referred to the Secretary of State for examination as part of the submission material.  The purpose of this publication stage was to gather representations on the soundness of the development plan document, including a conformity statement from the Regional Planning Body.  If there were any grave comments about the soundness of the document at this stage, there was an opportunity for the Council to withdraw its document and return to an earlier stage of the plan production.


The Panel was invited to note the contents of the report as an introduction to the next phase of the work programme for the Panel over the forthcoming months.


A member referred to the statement on flexibility of the Core Strategy in Appendix A (paragraph 4.4.6) as he understood that national policy would be changed in the future to require combined conformity with the regional economic strategy in addition to the regional spatial strategy.  He asked whether the Council’s LDF had sufficient flexibility to accommodate such a change.


The Environmental Planning Manager replied that it was expected that the Government would produce new policies but such changes would take time before they took effect.  The Core Strategy had been developed to allow for changes and, at this stage, national and economic strategies had been embedded in the LDF as far as possible.


A further question was asked about what, if any, national or local performance indicators the Council would be required to meet in regard  ...  view the full minutes text for item 52.


Breckland Local Development Framework: Core Strategy for the Rural Area (Agenda Item 7) pdf icon PDF 150 KB

Report of the Strategic Director for Transformation.

Additional documents:


The Senior Planning Policy Officer presented the report which provided Members with an analysis of the larger villages in Breckland that had the potential to accommodate sustainable growth as part of the Core Strategy for the Breckland LDF.


Revisions to national planning policies and the emerging Regional Plan recognised that larger villages had a role to play in providing employment, services and housing to meet local needs and work to date on the Council’s Core Strategy had consistently proposed that there were a number of larger villages in Breckland that could fulfil the role of Local Service Centres.


These proposals had produced significant consultation at the various stages of the consultation process and it was important that this locally determined element of the LDF was considered and a view given on what formed the basis of the forthcoming submission of the Core Strategy to the Planning Inspectorate.


The Panel was accordingly invited to consider the policy response to Local Service Centre villages in Breckland as the basis for submission to the Planning Inspectorate in November 2008 and to consider the role of non-Local Service Centre villages and the strategy for the rural area in general.


The report set out the context for the Strategy for the rural area and the regional assessment criteria.


From the responses to the consultations to date, there had been no substantial objections to the rural strategy as a whole or to the overall approach proposed through the suite of positive policies developed to support the larger and smaller villages in the rural areas.


The recent Matthew Taylor Report – “Living, Working Countryside” to the Government recognised the tensions in national policies and, in particular, highlighted the low supply of affordable housing in rural areas.  The Council’s policies were aimed at positively supporting housing in rural Breckland, as well as reflecting other Council strategies.


So far as the assessment criteria for Local Service Centre villages were concerned, it was evident that not all of these could be met, specifically so far as primary health care facilities were concerned, as these were not generally found in the villages.  A balance, therefore, had to be drawn.  In the Breckland context, the approach had been taken that where villages met three or four of the criteria these should be evidenced and justified for selection as Local Service Centres.


The Panel then discussed various aspects of the approach to the selection of local service centres and, in particular, whether the adoption of a one- or two-tier category of villages was desirable.


Referring to the proposed two-tier category (i.e. tier 1: those villages identified for development and tier 2: those for service protection only), one member felt that the second tier was key for Breckland, as it highlighted the wider understanding in the Regional Plan and the LDF of the issue of protection, which was an important message for the primary health care and other county service providers.  However, he was concerned that the proposals appeared to indicate that those smaller  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53.


Work Programme (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 56 KB

Members are invited to consider any additional items or topics for inclusion on the future work programme.


The Environmental Planning Manager advised that there were no items ready to bring forward to the meeting provisionally scheduled for 2nd September and it was therefore proposed that that meeting be cancelled.


It was intended to bring the final draft of the Core Strategy and Development Control Policies document to the meeting on 23rd September.  This meeting was anticipated to last into the afternoon due to the size of the documents to be considered.



Next Meeting (Agenda Item 9)

To note the arrangements for the next meeting on 2nd September 2008 at 10.00 a.m. in the Norfolk Room, Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham.




(1)    the meeting provisionally scheduled for 2 September 2008 be cancelled; and

(2)    allowance be made for the meeting scheduled for 23 September 2008 to be extended into the afternoon and a buffet lunch be provided.