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Agenda item

21/00868/FUL - Land Adjoining Blenheim Way, School Lane, Shurdington

PROPOSAL: Erection of a single dwelling and associated access.

 

OFFICER RECOMMENDATION: Delegated Permit

Minutes:

56.31         This application was for erection of a single dwelling and associated access.  The Planning Committee had visited the application site on Monday 20 March 2023.  It was noted that the Officer recommendation was permit, rather than delegated permit as set out in the Committee report.

56.32         The Planning Officer indicated that an objection had been received the previous evening from the property at Phoenix Meadow, formerly New Haven, raising concerns in relation to amenity; however, the amended plans reducing the front garage element, making it single storey, were welcomed.  The Planning Officer advised that the application site comprised a parcel of land to the western side of School Lane which lay between two dwellings – Blenheim Way to the south and Phoenix Meadow to the north.  The eastern part of the site lay within the settlement boundary to Shurdington, with the remainder of the site being within the Green Belt.  Planning permission was sought for the erection of a two storey detached dwelling and single storey front garage. The proposed dwelling would have a contemporary appearance and the proposed materials would comprise a mix of buff facing brick, zinc cladding, zinc roofing and grey aluminium windows.  As mentioned, amended plans had been submitted reducing the 1.5 storey garage to a single storey detached garage.  A permission in principle application had been refused by the local planning authority as it was then considered that the proposed development for one dwelling would not constitute limited infilling in the village; however, the applicant had submitted an appeal and the Inspector had commented that the proposed dwelling would be flanked on either side by existing dwellings and would also face houses on the opposite side of the road, as a result, it would relate well to the existing pattern of development along the road, assimilating effectively with the wider streetscene and, given this surrounding context, it was considered that the proposed development would constitute infill development, as envisaged by the National Planning Policy Framework.  Furthermore, in terms of design, the Inspector had noted that the dwelling would be set back from the road and had a ridge height appropriate for its setting as shown on the streetscene elevation.  In terms of amenity, any side facing windows would be obscurely glazed and the first floor rear balcony had a privacy screen.  The existing windows at Phoenix Meadow served non-habitable rooms such as a toilet, utility room and stairwell.  There were no objections from County Highways, the Council’s Flood Risk Management Engineer, the Environmental Health Officer or Severn Trent Water and the Planning Inspector considered a single dwelling would be appropriate in this location.

56.33         The Chair invited the applicant’s agent to address the Committee.  The applicant’s agent advised that, as set out in the Committee report, permission in principle had already been granted for this development.  At appeal, the Inspector had agreed that the proposal would constitute infill in the Green Belt and would not be inappropriate, thus finding the site location to be suitable for a single residential dwelling.  Given this decision, which remained extant, the principle of a new dwelling at the site had already been established so the main planning considerations for the application were related to design and visual amenity and impact on neighbouring properties.  In terms of design, it was worth noting the Inspector’s comments that the lane was distinctly residential in character, with a built-up frontage running along the substantive part of each side.  The Inspector had stated that “given this location, the proposed dwelling would be flanked on either side by existing dwellings and would also face houses on the opposite side of the road.  As a result, it would relate well to the existing pattern of development along the road, assimilating effectively with the wider streetscene.  When viewed from the more open fields to the west, the proposal would also be read within the context of surrounding residential development, which would again allow it to integrate effectively within the existing built fabric of the village”.  He went on to conclude that an additional dwelling in this location would help form an effective transition between Phoenix Meadow and the ribbon of houses to the south.  As acknowledged by Officers, the proposal had been sensitively designed and would sit comfortably within its surroundings, resulting in a visually attractive building that was sympathetic to the surrounding area.  It was therefore of an appropriate design and would have an acceptable impact on the character and appearance of the streetscene.  In terms of amenity, the Committee report was clear there would be no adverse impacts in terms of overlooking, loss of light or overbearing effects on the neighbouring property.  The applicant’s agent reiterated that the windows in the side elevation of the property to the north of the site served a ground floor utility room, a toilet and a stairwell so were not habitable rooms.  As such, there could be no reasonable grounds to object to this application based on any alleged impact on these windows.  In terms of drainage, no objections had been raised by the Flood Risk Management Engineer or Severn Trent Water in respect of the proposed surface water and foul drainage details.  Regarding highway matters, County Highways raised no objection in terms of highway safety; however, the comments from residents regarding construction traffic had been acknowledged and, in direct response to this, alternative access to the site for construction traffic and materials could be obtained via the land to the rear of the site.  There was also sufficient hardstanding for several vehicles, including Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs), away from the highway at the farm off Church Lane, which the applicant had negotiated access to.  This could form the basis of the construction environmental management plan which could be secured by condition.

56.34         The Chair indicated that the Officer recommendation was to permit the application and he sought a motion from the floor.  It was proposed and seconded that the application be permitted in accordance with the Officer recommendation.  A Member asked for clarification on the principles on which a permission in principle application must be determined and was informed that those applications must be assessed in terms of location, land use and amount only.  Another Member noted that the Parish Council had previously raised concern in relation to traffic and access to the site; the applicant’s agent had stated that the site could be accessed from the adjoining Church Farm and he asked if that had been confirmed.  In response, the Planning Officer explained that the applicant had confirmed that the site could be accessed via the agricultural land during the construction phase in light of the objection from local residents and those details would be included in the construction environmental management plan which was required by proposed Condition 5, as outlined at Page No. 141 of the Committee report.

56.35         A Member expressed the view that the Committee should refuse the application in line with the previous decision on the permission in principle application as he did not feel the Inspector had come up with justifiable reasons regarding Green Belt use and flooding had also been mentioned in the Inspector’s findings, as such he would be voting against the motion.  Upon being put to the vote, it was

RESOLVED          That the application be PERMITTED in accordance with the Officer recommendation.

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