Agenda and draft minutes

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

Contact: Committee Services  Tel 01362 656870

Items
No. Item

71.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 121 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 28 October 2008.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 28 October 2008 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

 

72.

Apologies

To receive apologies for absence.

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Mr. M. Kiddle-Morris.

 

73.

Declaration of Interest

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.

Minutes:

The following declarations of interest 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.        Mr. R. Childerhouse – Personal and prejudicial interest in relation to Weeting Local Service Centre allocation.

3.        Mr. P. Cowen – Personal interest as an Architect in practice in relation to LDF matters generally and a prejudicial interest in regard to LDF site specifics, if raised.

4.        Mr. P.J. Duigan – Personal interest as a Member of Dereham Town Council in relation to LDF matters.

5.        Mrs. D. Irving – Personal interest as a Member of Dereham Town Council in relation to LDF matters.

6.        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.

7.        Mr. R. Kemp – Personal and prejudicial interest in relation to LDF matters relating to East Harling.

8.        Mr. J.P. Labouchere – Personal and prejudicial interest in regard to  LDF site specifics relating to North Elmham and personal interest in LDF matters generally relating to Hermitage Ward.

9.        Mr. I.A.C. Monson – Personal and prejudicial interest in relation to LDF site specifics relating to Oxborough.

10.    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.

11.    Mr. A.C. Stasiak – Personal interest as a close associate of the above-named Members.

12.    Mrs. L. Turner – Personal interest as a Member of Dereham Town Council in relation to LDF matters.

 

74.

Non-Members Wishing to Address the Meeting

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

Minutes:

The following members were in attendance:

 

Mr. W.P. Borrett

Mr. P. Cowen

Mrs. D. Irving

Mr. R. Kemp

Mr. J.P. Labouchere

Mr. B. Rose

Mr. A.C. Stasiak

 

75.

Local Development Framework - Thetford Area Action Plan - Preferred Options (Agenda Item 6) pdf icon PDF 103 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Transformation)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

An introduction to the report was given by the Environmental Planning Manager and the Principal Planning Policy Officer (Growth Point) presented the details of the Action Plan Preferred Options.

 

A member drew attention to the proposed retail park development area adjoining the existing Sainsbury’s area and pointed out that the Town Council had raised the need for more family leisure facilities, which did not appear to be addressed in the Action Plan.  She questioned the merit of further supermarket/retail provision when the town had need for family recreation/leisure facilities.

 

It was explained that the majority of retail provision was focused in the town centre.  Any major leisure facility (e.g. bowling), had to be supported and delivered by market demand.  At this stage, it was unclear whether the town had sufficient population to support such a facility, even if the market was willing to deliver it.  It was not the role of the Council to enforce such provision.  However, the policies could be adjusted to either allocate some area of the retail park land for leisure use or to include a policy for leisure provision in the growth locations.

 

A member was concerned about whether budgetary funding for the proposed bus interchange had yet been committed by the County Council for this project.  The Panel was informed that a report was to be considered at the next meeting of the Moving Thetford Forward Board on the question of funding and time-frame, which would provide more detail about the scheme’s deliverability.   Officers felt that the situation was looking more positive.

 

The Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission was concerned that some wider strategic issues were not sufficiently addressed.  He cited issues about the number of jobs to meet housing growth, the need to enable future leisure provision to meet growth and, more particularly, the issue of sustainable transport provision for the town.  He felt the current location of the railway station was unsustainable and also that the Action Plan went against people’s wishes for development north of the A11 and did not say why.  

 

Another member commented that some of the statements in the document were rather “sweeping” (e.g. the use of the word “lots”) and could be more appropriately worded.

 

The Environmental Planning Manager responded that the Plan could be amended to take account of members’ views regarding retail and leisure provision.  However, there were more fundamental concerns about the comments regarding development north of the A11, because of the difficulties that would occur from the impact on the European Protection Bird Species, problems in traffic movement and junctions on the A11 (particularly for the village of Croxton) and the severance of communities that would result.  These would create real problems and raise the question of the Plan’s consistency with the Core Strategy.

 

Other arguments against development north of the A11 were that Thetford’s growth had historically been along the river valleys to the south of the A11.  Development to the south was achievable and gave the best fit with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 75.

76.

Regional Spatial Strategy Review to 2031 - Housing Figures (Agenda Item 7) pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Transformation)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members concurred with the disquiet expressed by EERA about the use of the NHPAU’s advice to Government and agreed with the views in paragraph 3.2.3 of the report that Norfolk would struggle to provide the growth even at the GVA level or the lower NHPAU rate.  The higher NHPAU rate was felt to be totally unsustainable and unachievable.

 

RECOMMEND to the Overview and Scrutiny Commission that it supports the view of the Panel that the NHPAU rates are unsustainable and unachievable and that the GVA level represents a more realistic target.

 

77.

Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment Findings (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 126 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Transformation).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Senior Planning Policy Officer presented the report, which advised members of the findings of the annual review of the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA).

 

In noting that the SHLAA was a statutory requirement under Planning Policy Statement 3: Housing, as part of the LDF evidence base and was a tool for the development of the Core Strategy and site specifics documents, members felt that this might not be clearly understood by the public.  It was felt the public would rely primarily on the maps in the report and that it was not clear from these as to the reasons why sites were identified as either achievable or unachievable.

 

It was explained that the supporting detail formed part of the Core Strategy, which was due to be published in the New Year, but that the two primary reasons for excluding sites were related to highways issues or the proximity of statutorily protected sites.  Most of the ‘red’ sites in the maps were considered unachievable for either of those two principal reasons as set out in the agreed methodology.

 

Members felt that it would be helpful if an explanation was included on the maps and ensure that the nature of this document as a theoretical exercise was communicated to the press and public to avoid any confusion or misunderstanding over the use of the information contained in the report.

 

The changes to the SHLAA methodology and the use of the findings of the assessment in the preparation of the LDF were noted by the Panel and officers were asked to insert clear explanations and advice to explain the information given in the report and the maps contained in the published versions of the report and on the website to avoid any confusion or misunderstanding over the use of the information contained in the report.

 

78.

Site Specific Policies and Proposal Document - Additional Sites Consultation (Agenda Item 9) pdf icon PDF 97 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Transformation)

Minutes:

The Panel has received and noted an update on the anticipated programme for further consultation on the statutory Site Specific Policies and Proposals Document, which is a Development Plan Document of the Local Development Framework.

 

79.

Breckland Annual Monitoring Report 2007/08 (Agenda Item 10) pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Transformation)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members made reference to the position of development sites at Snetterton, which were constrained by issues of energy supply, and felt that the report should include notes to explain where sites were constrained by particular factors.

 

The report was noted and officers were asked to include explanatory notes in the report on those sites where constraints existed.

 

80.

Final Meeting - Chairman's Closing Remarks

This is the final meeting of Policy Development and Review Panel 1 as presently constituted, before the change-over to dedicated Task and Finish Groups as part of the changes made to the Council’s Constitution.

Minutes:

As this was the last meeting of the Panel, the Chairman concluded the meeting by thanking all members and officers for their work on behalf of the Panel.