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					                                                                  Mr P J Whalan
           To the Chair and Members                               742226

                      of the                                      PJW/ED - R82/1/1

           PLANNING COMMITTEE

                                                                  15 April 2005


Dear Sir/Madam

A meeting of the PLANNING COMMITTEE will be held in the COUNCIL CHAMBER,
CIVIC OFFICES, MERRIAL STREET, NEWCASTLE on TUESDAY, 26 APRIL 2005 at
7.00pm.

                                    AGENDA

1.    Minutes of meetings of this Committee held on 1 February, 22 February and 15
      March 2005 (circulated with Council agenda for 20 April 2005).
2.    To consider the report of your Officers on items requiring decisions (copy
      attached - white paper).
3.    To consider any business which is urgent within the meaning of Section 100(B) of
      the Local Government Act 1972


                                   Yours faithfully
                                   D A DIMOCK
                                 Head of Legal and
                                Democratic Services

Officers will be in attendance prior to the meeting for informal discussions on
agenda items.
Copies of written representations from third parties will be on display in the
Council Chamber, collated together by agenda item number, for the information of
Members.
A schedule of supplementary information, not included on your printed agenda
and itemised by agenda item number, will also be available for Members in the
Council Chamber before the meeting.
Site plans relating to applications included on this agenda are attached for your
assistance
                                       CHIEF OFFICERS REPORT TO THE
                                           PLANNING COMMITTEE

                                                   26 April 2005

                               PART 1(a) – PLANNING APPLICATIONS (MAJOR)


1.   BASFORD METHODIST CHURCH, BASFORD PARK ROAD, BASFORD
     KELLY HOMES (STAFFS) LTD. 05/91/FUL

     The Application is for the demolition of a Church and Church Hall and the erection of 12 apartments. The site
     is occupied by a former Church and Church Hall and is in a predominately residential area, although some
     commercial premises are in the surrounding area. The site is approximately 0.097 ha in extent.

     The development would provide 8 two bed and 4 one bed apartments and 16 car parking spaces and cycle
     storage.

     Basford Park Road is a classified road - the B5369

     Consideration of this site is located within the urban area, and is not the subject of any particular policy
     designation in the Local Plan.

     This application was deferred at the 5 April Planning Committee for a site visit and additional information.
     Officers have contacted the agent for details of the ridge and eaves heights of buildings in the vicinity. The
     agent is endeavouring to provide this information within the available time. If the information is available it will
     be reported to the Committee on the 26 April 2005.

     RECOMMENDATIONS

     (a)     That, subject to the prior completion within 3 months of a planning obligation securing a
     financial contribution of £10,800 towards off site public open space provision/enhancement and the
     provision of bus passes for the first year of occupancy, permit subject to conditions relating to the
     following:

              Prior approval of facing materials
              Prior approval of boundary treatments
              Prior approval of surface materials
              Landscaping scheme
              Drainage
              highway and parking matters

     (b)     That failing completion of the above planning obligations within the above period, that the
     Head of Regeneration and Planning Services be given delegated authority to refuse the application on
     the grounds that without such obligations the development would be contrary to policy on the
     provision of open space within residential development, and would not achieve a form of
     development that encourages a modal shift from use of the private motor car.

     Reason for Recommendation

     The proposal accords with provisions of the development plan and the national planning guidance and it is not
     considered that residential development on this site would not cause demonstrable harm to the appearance
     and character of the area or result in demonstrable harm to residential amenity. Provided the indicated
     planning obligations are secured the development is considered to be acceptable

     Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy 2004

     Nil

     Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011



                                                          1
Policy D1    Sustainable Forms of development
Policy D2    The design and environmental quality of development
Policy H1    Housing provision
Policy H2    Location, phasing and density of housing development

Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1    Sustainable Development
Policy S10   Quality of life and the public interest
Policy S15   The design of the development
Policy H1    Residential development: sustainable location and protection of the countryside
Policy H3    Residential Development – priority to brownfield sites
Policy H5    Backland and infill sites
Policy T14   Development and the highway network
Policy T16   Development – General parking requirements
Policy C4    Open space in new housing areas

Other Material Considerations include

       National Planning Policy

       PPS        Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
       PPG 3      Housing (2000)
       PPG13      Transport (2001)

       Supplementary Planning Guidance

       Space around Dwellings 2004

       Report to August 2004 Cabinet on clarification of housing policy

       Sustainable Development Issues

       The issue is development of a brownfield site in a sustainable location

       Crime and Disorder Act 1998

       This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
       likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
       prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

2004 04/970/FUL       Withdrawn     Demolition of existing church and church hall and erection of 12 two
                                    bedroom apartments

Views of Consultees

The Highway Authority has no objection to the application, subject to the imposition of a number of
conditions relating to the access, a frontage service bay, parking and turning areas and other matters. The
recommendation assumes that the LPA will secure bus passes for a minimum of one year for the occupiers of
the apartments.

The County Archaeologist raises no archaeological concerns

When consulted in September 2004 on 04/970/FUL, the Environmental Health Division had no objections
subject to conditions relating to noise insulation, refuse storage and disposal arrangements.

The Landscape Development Section - raised no objection subject to financial contribution of £10,800 being
obtained for improvements to play (facilities) or public open space.

The Education Authority did not respond.

Representations


                                                  2
The Parochial Church Council of St. Mark's whilst having no specific objections to the development did
have concerns regarding the additional traffic generated given close proximity to A53. They also advise that
they are preparing plans for a community/church hall and wonder whether any funding could be secured from
the development for this by means of a Section 106 agreement.

There has been 9 letters of representation to date concerning:

       The demolition of a traditional building
       The erection of flats in place of a Methodist Church
       Area presently becoming derelict and open to vandalism
       Car parking is not sufficient
       The extra cars will add to the high pollution of noise, fumes and light within the area
       The introduction of a three storey building would be out of character in the locality, call for two storey
        development only
       Invasion of privacy of some of the dwellings
       Highway problems on Basford Park Road caused by the development

Applicant/agent’s submission

The applicants/agent has submitted a supporting statement justifying the proposal‟s design and parking
arrangements, and believes that the scheme allows for:

       Safe and acceptable traffic flow to and from the site
       Soft landscaping where none exists currently
       Re-development of the site with good quality housing to meet current local demand, where the re-
        development of the existing buildings are not economically viable nor would provide car parking or
        landscaping

Consideration has been given to adjacent properties in the design process to minimise the impact of the new
development and in fact to improve the impact of the new buildings on nearby properties.

The agent indicates that, as revised, the scheme has addressed previous highway concerns, includes details
of a suitable cycle enclosure, and the design of the building has been amended to reduce further any impact
upon surrounding property, by reducing the scale of the development.

Key Issues

There are no concerns in principle for the site being used for residential development - the site lies within the
urban area, is previously developed land, in a sustainable location close to public transport and other facilities
and of a size that is less than the 0.15 hectare threshold referred to in the August Cabinet Housing
Clarification report. The main issues for the Planning Authority to consider are:

       Is the design of the development acceptable in terms of the streetscape?
       Would Residential amenity be materially harmed by the development?
       Would highway safety be materially harmed by the development?

Is the design of the development acceptable in terms of the streetscape?

Policy D2 of the Staffordshire Structure Plan and policy S15 of the Newcastle Local Plan both focus on the
need for a design that would be in keeping for the character of the area and surroundings, whilst trying to
secure innovative designs.

This is an area of varied styles of development. The frontage would face onto Basford Park Road and like the
existing building, would be stepped slightly back from the pavement. The building would be of a scale and
footprint proportionate to some of the buildings in the vicinity and would not look out of place.

Car parking to the rear would ensure that the building would be directly fronting onto Basford Park Road and a
condition could require the local planning authority's agreement to the choice of external materials to be
obtained prior to the commencement of development.

Would Residential amenity be materially harmed by the development?



                                                    3
Policy S10 of the Local Plan seeks to ensure that development would not adversely affect the quality of life of
the occupants of the surrounding dwellings, and if this does occur then the application should not be
permitted. Good neighbourliness is a proper material consideration although the planning system is not
designed to protect private interests only public interests. Local Plan Policy H5 on residential infill development
requires that development should not be harmful to the amenities of adjacent residents, because of the
unsatisfactory disposition and inter-relationships of buildings, spaces and accesses.

This is a site which already has a building upon it with certain dimensions and relationship to adjoining
properties. The existing building is a red brick church whose frontage faces onto Basford Park Road. The front
of the existing building provides a focal point with two wings. The maximum height of the main ridge of the
existing building is 9.5 metres and each wing ridge reaches 8.5 metres in height. The profile of the existing
building is now shown for comparison purposes on the proposal drawing. The site is bounded by 2 metre
fences which provide the boundary treatment for the two storey houses on Etruria Road whose rear elevations
face onto the development, and for a detached bungalow to the side and a two storey house to the rear of this.

Access to the building would be via an access running along the boundary with the access to No.126 Basford
Park Road the dwelling at the rear. On the other side of the access to 126 is the adjacent property No. 124
which has a principal window in its side elevation. The space between the proposed building and this dwelling
would be greater than it is at present to the existing side gable of the church. The building would however be
an additional 2 metres higher at its central ridge than the existing church and the gable facing this window
slightly wider than that which exists. The eaves height of the side elements of the apartment block is 5 metres,
and the remaining 6 metres to ridge height would now be broken up to give the appearance, viewed from the
side, of a two storey element, before the introduction of the three storey element. Guidelines under the SPG
Space around dwellings, advises that a 16.5 metre distance should be obtained between an elevation with
principal windows and a 3 storey elevation with no windows it.

The design of the roof would therefore result in a distance of 13m from the side elevation of the bungalow to
the two storey element and 16m to the three storey element. Although this is still under the required distance of
16.5m as advised in the Council's adopted Space around dwellings (Guidance), the existing building is sited
closer to the bungalow than the proposed new building would be, and therefore amenity would not be
demonstrable worse than presently experienced.

The other adjacent dwellings which are on Etruria Road are two storey semi-detached properties with
additional flat roof single storey rear elements. Rear elevations and therefore principal windows also face onto
the site from the south east direction. The distance from the main plane of these dwellings to the two storey
element of the proposed development would be 14m, and to the three storey element 16m, again although this
is under the minimum spacing distance detailed in the SPG, it is not considered that a materially adverse
impact on neighbour amenity would be caused from the proposal, taking into account its design.

The design of the roof would help reduce the mass and bulk that would be experienced by the occupiers of the
adjacent properties, and would not result in the over dominating or over bearing appearance of a full sloping
roof. Furthermore the block would not project as far to the rear as the existing church does - thus creating a
more open aspect. In conclusion the development would not have an unacceptably adverse impact on
residential amenity despite its gable being wider and closer to the Etruria Road properties than the existing
building.

Would highway safety be materially harmed by the development?

Basford Park Road is a B classified road and the site lies quite close to the junction of that road with Etruria
Road (A53). There are essentially two considerations - whether an appropriate level of parking is provided and
secondly whether the access arrangements in term of their geometry and visibility are satisfactory.

Parking
With respect to parking Local Plan Policy T16 does not permit development that exceeds the maximum levels
of parking as specified in an Appendix to the Local Plan. It also indicates that developments which fall
significantly below such levels will not be permitted if this would create or aggravate a local on street parking or
traffic problem which cannot be overcome by measures to improve non-car modes of travel to the site and/or
measures to control parking and waiting in nearby streets. Parking upon part of the Basford Road frontage
towards the Etruria Road junction is already prohibited reflecting the safety implications of on street parking in
that location.

Parking provision on the site (16 spaces) is below the maximum parking standards stipulated in the Local
Plan, but not to such a degree as before - because of the inclusion now of 4 one bedroom units in the
proposal. PPG13 indicates that housing developments which exceed overall 1.5 parking spaces per unit are


                                                     4
     unlikely to be achieving objectives of sustainable development, and that only in exceptional circumstances
     where there are significant highway safety implications should applications be refused on the grounds of
     insufficient parking. Just under 1.4 parking spaces are achieved in the scheme. The site lies in close proximity
     to public transport facilities on Etruria Road so residents will have the option of using public transport, and the
     scheme includes provision for cycle parking. Bus passes for the initial period of occupancy - to pump prime
     the use by residents of non car modes of travel - could be secured by a planning obligation.

     The Access
     The access proposals now include explicit provision for servicing vehicles.

     The Highway Authority no longer object to the proposal, provided a number of conditions and the above
     planning obligation are applied. The scheme is considered to represent an appropriate balance between
     highway safety and sustainable development objectives.

     Background Papers
     Planning File
     Structure plan
     Local Plan
     National planning Policy Guidance Notes

     Date report prepared
     15 March 2005




2.   MOSS HOUSE FARM, EARDLEY END ROAD, DUNKIRK, BIGNALL END
     R W EDWARDS. 04/893/FUL

     The Application is for full planning permission for change of use from agricultural use to use of land for
     storage of caravans, cars and similar and use of buildings for storage.

     The site is within the North Staffordshire Green Belt and an Area of Landscape Enhancement.

     Determination of this application was deferred at your meeting on 22 February to enable members to visit the
     site and again at your meeting on 15 March to enable the applicant to revise the proposals to delete part of the
     open storage area. The verbal update given by your officer to Planning Committee on 5 April of the applicant's
     response to this invitation is reproduced at the end of the Key Issues section of this report. A decision on the
     application was again deferred at that meeting for a further report on the planning history of the site, with
     particular reference to the outdoor storage of vehicles. It is intended to bring a supplementary report on this
     matter to your next meeting.

     RECOMMENDATIONS

     (a)           That the application be refused for the following reasons:-

           (i)        The proposed development insofar as it involves outdoor storage is inappropriate
                      development in the Green Belt and would, if permitted, harm the openness of the Green
                      Belt and be contrary to the purposes of including land within the Green Belt. Having
                      regard to the above harm the required very special circumstances that are needed to
                      justify inappropriate development do not exist and the development is accordingly
                      contrary to Policy D5B of the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011,
                      Policy S3 of the Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011 and the guidance in PPS7.
           (ii)       The development insofar as involves the outdoor storage of caravans and similar is
                      detrimental to the character and appearance of the landscape and conflicts with relevant
                      national and local policies
           (iii)      The development would be harmful to the interests of highway safety having particular
                      regard to the nature of the access roads that would be used, their restricted visibility and
                      the nature of the movements associated with the proposed use, and would not accord
                      with relevant local policies.

     (b)    That discussions be commenced with the applicant and the Highway Authority with a view to
     the removal of the outdoor storage element and a resolution of the breaches of planning control,


                                                          5
failing which a report be submitted to a future meeting of the Planning Committee with respect to the
expediency of enforcement action

Reason for Recommendation

The proposal does not comply with the aims and objectives of national planning policy guidance and policies
within the development plan and there are no special circumstances to justify the development. The
application is retrospective and should the use not cease it will be necessary to consider, having first
undertaken the appropriate consultations, the expediency of taking enforcement action

Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

Policy QE3    The Conservation, Enhancement and Restoration of the Region‟s Landscape
Policy T7     Car Parking Standards and Management

Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 2011

Policy D1     Sustainable Forms of Development
Policy D2     The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
Policy D4     Managing Change in Rural Areas
Policy D5B    Development in the Green Belt
Policy T1A    Sustainable location
Policy T16    Development: General Parking Requirements
Policy NC1    Protection of the Countryside
Policy NC2    Landscape Protection and Restoration

Newcastle Under Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1     Sustainable Development
Policy S3     Development in the Green Belt
Policy N20    Areas of Landscape Enhancement
Policy T1     Sustainable Development
Policy T14    Development and the highway network
Policy T16    Development – General Parking Requirements
Policy E12    The conversion of Rural Buildings

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1     Securing Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG2     Green Belts (1995)
        PPS7     Sustainable Development in the Rural Area (August 2004)
        The Planning System     General Principles ( February 2005)

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

1994      94/00569/COU         Permission for use of farm building for repair and maintenance of motor
                               vehicles
1996      96/00697/COU         Permission for continued use of farm building for repair and maintenance of
                               motor vehicles

As indicated above a further report on the planning history will be provided at your meeting.

Views of Consultees



                                                   6
Highway Authority – Recommend refusal on the grounds that the access roads leading to the site in parts
are of inadequate width to allow two vehicles to pass and, owing to their tortuous alignment, afford restricted
forward visibility, and the increased use of such roads would result in an increase in the likelihood of danger to
road users. Additional comments have been received orally. Based on information received from the applicant
regarding the storage uses within the buildings, they have no objections to this particular aspect of the
application although they have emphasised that more storage uses involving towing vehicles would be harmful
to highway safety.

Audley Parish Council made no decision regarding this application as Mr. Edwards has connections with the
Parish Council. They are aware however, of farmers‟ need to diversify.

Environmental Health Division – No objections

County Council as Strategic Planning Authority – No observations

Applicant’s Submission

The applicant has submitted an explanatory statement in support of his application.

Firstly, he confirms that there is no change proposed to the exterior of the buildings, except by repair or
replacement and he considers that the repairs require no planning permission.

He goes on to explain that the farm and the remaining small amount of land is all that remains of a farm that
consisted of 500 acres. He is the third generation that has farmed the land and hopes that a fourth generation
will occupy the house. The farm has declined due to the foot and mouth epidemic. The buildings now need to
be used in some way, without attention they will deteriorate and attention costs money. The applicant states
that his pension will not subsidise the maintenance but sensible use of the site will. He did look at converting
some or all of the buildings for residential use and he has also explored the option of holiday accommodation.
However, he did not envisage starting such a venture at this time in his life and he could have found no way of
financing such a venture.

The applicant states that he offered a friend somewhere to store his caravan and as others got to know of this
they made enquiries as to whether they could do the same. He now has twenty-five caravans at the site.

He concludes that for these buildings to be saved as they are, the only way forward is to pass this application.

In response to the recommendation to refuse this application, the applicant has submitted an additional letter
relating to the issues of highway concerns and intrusion into the Green Belt.

Regarding highway concerns, he comments that if traffic was to turn left out of the drive it would go towards
the small hamlet of Dunkirk whereas the exit to the right follows Eardley End Road to its junction with Alsager
Road, and on to the A500 and the M6. He states that this is the route taken by the majority of owners of
caravans and he acknowledges that although he can recommend this route, he cannot enforce it.

Regarding the issue of intrusion into the Green Belt, the applicant states that the caravans stored to the west
of the farm stand on an area of hardstanding which was originally the base for two poultry units which were
removed to tidy the site up. He includes some photographs of the site which show the western site viewed
from the nearest footpath and he suggest that the site can be viewed only occasionally. He confirms that he is
willing to put up a screen fence along the western and southerly boundaries of the site behind the caravans.

See also concluding section of the Key Issue section of this report.

Key Issues

This is a retrospective application for the change of use of land from agricultural use to use for storage of
caravans, cars and other vehicles and the use of farm buildings for storage.

There are currently approximately 25 touring caravans stored at the farm, the majority on land to the west of
the site marked „A‟ on the submitted location plan (which will be available for inspection by members at the
Committee), and others in the areas marked „B‟, „C‟ and „D‟ to the east and the north of the site. Approximately
10 cars are stored to the east of the site on land marked „F‟. Scaffolding equipment is stored on land
immediately to the rear of the farm buildings in the area labelled „E‟.




                                                    7
The farm buildings are a mix of traditional brick and tile construction and more modern block and corrugated
sheeting. The buildings are currently being used for the storage of cars, machinery, scaffolding and UPVC
window frames. The applicant has confirmed that no external alterations are proposed.

Given the location of the site in the Green Belt, the main considerations in the determination of this application
are:

       Whether the proposals are appropriate or inappropriate development in Green Belt terms.
       Whether there are very special circumstances in allowing the development.
       Whether the development would result in an unacceptable visual impact on the existing landscape.
       Whether harm to the interests of highway safety would result.
       Whether the development accords with policies on the reuse of rural buildings


Appropriate or inappropriate development in Green Belt terms?

Local and national development plan policies identify a presumption against inappropriate development in the
Green Belt. Whilst when in use for recreation purposes, touring caravans may be used in rural as well as
urban environments, their storage does not have a functional connection with rural activities. The storage of
caravans and cars therefore represents an encroachment into the countryside of a non-rural activity contrary to
that purpose of including land within Green Belts that refers to the safeguarding of the countryside from
encroachment and to its principal attribute – its openness. Such a change of use of the land is not
development that is appropriate as set out in the policies of the development plan or the guidance in PPG2.
The storage of caravans and other vehicles in the open is therefore inappropriate development.

The reuse of buildings however can be appropriate development provided it meets various criteria. The use of
these buildings for storage purposes could be considered to be appropriate development.

Very special circumstances?

In order to determine whether very special circumstances exist which warrant setting aside established local
and national planning policy it would have to be concluded that any harm to the interests of the Green Belt and
any other harm would be clearly outweighed by other material circumstances. Inappropriate development is by
definition harmful to the interests of the Green Belt.

The applicant has indicated that the main farming use has ceased and that the income that would be achieved
by the storage of the caravans would enable the existing buildings to be maintained. Whilst it is recognised
that farmers increasingly look to diversify beyond agriculture to supplement their incomes, diversification
should both benefit economic activity and maintain or enhance the environment.

Whilst it would appear that there is a demand for caravan storage and that the use provides a useful facility, no
evidence has been submitted demonstrating that there is an overriding need for this type of storage which
could not be met elsewhere than in the Green Belt. As such there is no exceptional need demonstrated in this
regard. The applicant raises no circumstances that can be considered to be very special.

Visual impact on the surrounding countryside?

The caravans and other vehicles are stored outside the farm buildings adjacent to the boundaries with the
open countryside. The site is open in nature and thus, the vehicles can clearly be seen from the surrounding
countryside and this is visually intrusive. It is considered that the proposed use of the land has the effect of
extending development into the open countryside. The applicant has confirmed that he is willing to put up a
screen fence along the western and southerly boundaries of the site behind the caravans. However, it is
considered that any such enclosures would themselves be visually intrusive and would reduce the openness of
the Green Belt. They would not overcome the objection to the principle of such outdoor storage in the Green
Belt.

Harm to highway safety?

The access to Moss House Farm is from Eardley End Road. In part, this road is of inadequate width to allow
two vehicles to pass and because of its alignment, visibility is poor in places. The applicant has provided
additional information regarding the number of vehicle movements to and from the site. Although movements
generally would be relatively low with caravans and cars likely to be left on site for long periods between trips,
during peak times in the summer, it is likely that there would be significant vehicle movements. The Highway



                                                    8
Authority considers that the increased use of the roads by vehicles towing caravans would result in an increase
in the likelihood of danger to road users.

The applicant‟s comment that the majority of caravan owners exit the site to the right along Eardley End Road
is noted, however, it is considered that a condition requiring this would not be enforceable and so attaching
such a condition is not an option. The Highway Authority has confirmed its view that if vehicles towing
caravans were to exit the site to the left, because the inadequate width of the road and the restricted visibility,
highway safety would be compromised. A refusal on highway safety grounds is considered reasonable.

Is the reuse element in accordance with policies on the reuse of rural buildings?

Insofar as the reuse can be considered to be a use that has some positive employment benefits it would be
compatible with policy were it to meet the various criteria set out within policy E12 of the Local Plan. On its own
it does meet these criteria and the Highway Authority has confirmed that it has no objection to the current use
of the buildings for storage.

Update given to the Committee on 5 April 2005
Your officer has contacted the applicant as instructed by the Committee and given him the opportunity to
revise his plans to delete part of the area of open storage adjacent to the western boundary of the site. The
applicant has submitted additional information regarding this issue.

Although three caravans and a farm livestock trailer are visible from a hundred-yard stretch of Eardley End
Road at the top of his drive, the applicant states that the site is not visible from the public footpath to the west
of his property or from the Audley to Alsager Road.

With two concrete hardstandings, the applicant considers the area to the west of the site to be the best site for
the storage of caravans. He reiterates his willingness to screen the site, both on the western and southern
sides and suggests three possible methods of screening. These include an eight feet high fence, painted
green, a line of leylandii trees allowed to grow up to eight feet tall, or an eight-feet high wire netted fence on
which climbing plants could be encouraged to grow. The applicant’s preference is this third option which would
have the least resistance to strong winds.

The applicant states that if Members decide that this is not the right site, an alternative site would be to the
north-east of the farmyard to the east of the pond. There is a mound of soil on the site currently that was
removed from the fishing pond some years ago but if the soil can be moved, this could be a possible
alternative for the siting of the caravans. The applicant is not convinced that this would make a better site.
Another alternative would be to site some caravans within the farmyard but caravanners need room to
manoeuvre and this could cause chaos. In conclusion, the applicant states that he is providing a service that is
in great demand and for which the locality is desperately short.

Comments on further submission made

Members will note the response received from the applicant. Your officer has already commented negatively
upon on the argument that such outdoor storage in the Green Belt can be made acceptable in policy terms by
screening.

The alternative site being referred to – to the north east of the farm buildings – does not lie within the
application site boundary (although it is in the applicant’s ownership), and therefore no third parties have had
the opportunity to comment upon the proposal that this alternative site be used for caravan storage and they
would have justified cause for complaint against the Council should it now grant permission for such. On this
basis Members should determine the application as submitted. For information your officer considers that
use of the area to the north-east of the farm buildings would have an adverse impact on the openness of the
Green Belt.

With respect to the submitted application the concerns about the development being inappropriate,
the lack of the required very special circumstances, its visual impact and highway safety remain and
the recommendation on the application remains unaltered – one of refusal for the reasons indicated
above.

Background Papers
Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996 - 2011
Newcastle under Lyme Local Plan 2011
PPS1
PPG2


                                                     9
     PPS7
     Planning file

     Date report prepared
     12 April 2005




3.   LAND AT THE JUNCTION OF SEAGRAVE STREET/WATER STREET AND GEORGE STREET,
     NEWCASTLE
     ROBINTREES LIMITED. 04/1155/OUT

     The Application is for outline planning permission for the redevelopment of a site measuring 0.48ha. to
     provide a block of 96 residential apartments (comprising one and two bedroom units), and approximately 320
     sq.m. of commercial floor space. The development involves the demolition of all of the existing buildings on
     the site and will result in the cessation of the various commercial uses currently in operation (fruit and flowers
     wholesalers; Tool Hire; Tyre and Battery Sales; a Builders Merchants). Details of the external appearance,
     siting, design and means of access have been submitted for approval at this stage, with just the landscaping
     reserved for subsequent approval.

     Access to the site is to be via Seagrave Street, and 112 parking spaces are shown on two levels of the
     building and within the internal courtyard.

     The rear part of the site adjoins areas of surface car parking (the Council‟s King Street public car park). The
     Council is currently consulting on an extension to the Brampton Conservation Area which includes the
     properties on the south side of King Street the backs of which face onto the latter public car park.

     The site is within the urban area of Newcastle. It is not the subject of any particular designation.

     The application was deferred at the meeting of 5 April 2005 to enable Members to visit the site and for
     amendments to the scheme to be considered by the applicant.

     RECOMMENDATIONS

     (a)     That the First Secretary of State be advised that the Council is minded not to refuse the
     application as a departure from the Development Plan.

     (b)     That subject to the prior completion, within 3 months of the First Secretary of State indicating
     that he does not wish to call-in the application, of a planning obligation to secure appropriate public
     realm improvements adjoining the site, to secure an appropriate contribution to public open space
     improvements off-site, in lieu of provision within the development, and to secure a £2000
     contribution for traffic management measures in Seagrave Street and Water Street.

     Permit subject to the following conditions:

            Restriction of commercial use to appropriate Use Classes
            Relevant conditions relating to the submission of reserved matters (landscaping). Such
             scheme to include the deletion of parking spaces 74-79 and its landscaping.
            Control over precise details, including materials and boundary treatments if proposed, levels.
            Contaminated land conditions.
            All surface water drainage from parking areas and hard standings to be pass through oil
             interceptor.
            Prior to construction of the flats, details of the design measures to be incorporated into the
             construction of the flats facing onto George Street, Water Street and Seagrave Street
             elevations to ensure suitable noise attenuation.
            No mechanical ventilation or refrigeration/air conditioning unit to be installed without prior
             approval of details.
            Prior approval of refuse storage.
            Archaeological watching brief.
            Television reception survey and mitigation works if necessary
            the recommendations of the Transport Assessment, with regard to the access; junction
             modifications; pedestrian crossing points; and closure of existing, redundant accesses to be

                                                         10
        implemented before the building is brought into use.
       Gradient of the access.
       provision of parking, turning and servicing areas prior to the development being
        brought into use.

(c)    That failing the completion of the planning obligation within the period indicated, the Head of
Regeneration and Planning Services be given delegated authority to refuse the application on the
grounds that without such an obligation the development would not be ensuring appropriate
improvements to the public realm to the detriment of the town centre and the development would not
accord with policy on the provision of public open space, and the provision of a satisfactory access.

Reason for Recommendation

The proposal insofar as it involves further housing provision does not accord with Policy H1 of the Structure
Plan but it does lie close to the Town Centre of Newcastle and is of a type and design appropriate to the town
centre, and is considered to be supportive of the aims of Renew North Staffordshire and the Council‟s Housing
Strategy. It involves the redevelopment of previously developed land for a mixed use development, in a
sustainable location and the proposed development would provide an appropriate form and scale of
development within the urban context of the application site.

Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

Policy CF1    Housing within the Major Urban Areas
Policy CF3    Levels and distribution of housing development
Policy CF4    The reuse of Land and Buildings for Housing
Policy QE1    Conserving and enhancing the Environment
Policy T7     Car parking standards and management

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

Policy D1     Sustainable Forms of Development
Policy D2     The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
Policy H1     Housing provision
Policy H2     Location, phasing and density of housing development
Policy T1A    Sustainable location
Policy R6     Open space in Urban areas

Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1     Sustainable Development
Policy S10    Quality of Life and the Public interest
Policy S15    The design of the Development
Policy S16    Written design statements for “significant development proposals”
Policy S17    Design of new buildings and significant alterations to existing buildings
Policy H1     Residential development: sustainable location and protection of the countryside
Policy H3     Residential Development – Priority to brownfield sites
Policy H5     Backland and infill sites
Policy H14    Bedsits, flats with shared facilities, self contained flats, residential institutions and other
              dwellings in multiple occupation
Policy H16    Density of Residential development
Policy H17    Residential Design and Security
Policy T1     Sustainable development
Policies T4, T5, T6 and T8 on Sustainable Transport modes
Policy T14    Development and the Highway Network
Policy T16    Development – General Parking Requirements
Policy C4     Open Space in new housing areas
Policy IM1    Provision of essential supporting infrastructure and community facilities

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy


                                                 11
        PPS1     Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG3     Housing (March 2000)
        PPG8     Telecommunications (August 2001)
        PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
        The Planning System - General Principles ( February 2005)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance

        „Space around dwellings‟ (July 2004)

        Housing Clarification report (August 2004)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        The location of the development in relation to facilities and sustainable modes of transport, the level of
        parking provision within the development, the mixed use nature of the development and its design

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

Members should be aware that an application to redevelop for residential purposes the Zanzibar nightclub site,
which is located opposite this application site, was validated on 7 March 2004, reference 04/1309/OUT. This
application will be reported to Committee in due course.

Views of Consultees

Staffordshire County Council, as Strategic Planning Authority, advises that the proposals have no
significant strategic implications for the natural and cultural environment.

This proposal is within 500m of the town centre and is therefore within the „walk-in catchment‟ that has been
defined by the Borough Council when considering the sustainability credentials of housing proposals. Both the
location and density of the proposals conform with strategic policy.

The County Council has no objections to this proposal.

Urban Vision’s Design Review Panel initially commented on the application on 9 December 2004 and the
comments were as follows:

“The Panel welcomed the fact that this was an urban scheme, providing a degree of mixed use and a strong
built frontage on a main approach road to Newcastle under Lyme town centre. However, the Panel considered
that the scheme as currently conceived was deficient in a number of ways.

The Panel acknowledged and welcomed the fact that this vicinity is undergoing significant change. The
regeneration process requires clear area and site urban design guidance. Positive relationships between new
developments and the retained urban fabric must be thought through, so developers can appreciate how their
project can contribute to a wider vision for the area around. The panel saw an urgent need for the planning
authority to take be more proactive in guiding development.

As an outline planning application with indicative detail, the aim at this stage should be to establish design
principles, which proved that the general scale of development and number of residential units for which
permission was sought could be satisfactorily achieved in design terms on the site. The material presented did
not convince the Panel that development at the intensity proposes could be appropriate as currently indicated.

The scale of the proposal, at up to seven storeys, shows little apparent regard for its setting, which is mainly
two storey commercial and residential development. A simple physical model showing the massing of the
proposed building in its area context would have been helpful for the Panel and the planning authority to
understand the relationships. The scale of building seemed to have been dictated by commercial concerns,
without explicit analysis of the appropriate urban form for this location.



                                                   12
The siting and form of the rear block lacks a coherent relationship either to Seagrave Street or to a concept of
how the new building might create and define coherent public and private space within and around the
development.

The panel welcomed the intention to achieve a lively commercial frontage to George Street but saw problems
with the illustrated approach with a plinth (over car parking) rising above the pavement. Very careful detailing
would be needed to make such an arrangement feel part of the street to avoid discouraging people from using
the upper level or accessing the commercial units.

No provision had been made to access the residential units from the street frontage: both pedestrian and
vehicular access was provided from the rear of the development. Some direct access from street frontages
should be considered to increase convenience for residents and visitors arriving on foot and to enliven the
street elevations.

The architectural composition illustrated lacks coherence, particularly at high level where somewhat arbitrary
changes appear to have been introduced in an attempt to create variety.

There was no clear concept for landscaping either to create an attractive private environment for residents
within the scheme or to help resolve the relationship of the scheme to Seagrave Street.

Overall the panel felt that the illustrative material was unconvincing and that the urban design principles for the
site in its area context need to be thought through more carefully before they are confirmed as part of an
outline planning consent.”

In response to the initial comments of Urban Vision, and following discussions with Officers, revised plans
                                                   th
were prepared and considered by Urban Vision on 10 March 2005. The comments received are as follows:

“The Panel visited the site, from which it was apparent that the surrounding urban fabric did not provide many
strong reference points for the proposed development. The area largely comprised 2-storey terraces whose
ground floors provided a lively mix of commercial uses: but it was clearly about to undergo significant change,
with several substantial developments either planned or underway in the vicinity.

It was considered that the revised proposal established a more positive relationship with both George Street
and Seagrave Street, with the ground floor commercial uses having a stronger, more active presence and
improved accessibility for the pedestrian. Some landscaping had been provided around the part of the building
fronting Seagrave Street.

The Panel considered that the proposal as a whole did not have a sufficiently clear architectural language, with
the result that there was a dislocation between the George Street frontage and the linked block to the rear.
The scheme attempted to provide two landmark elements: one as an end to the vista along Marsh Parade and
the other as a gateway tower on the corner of Water Street and George Street. The sloping nature of the site
and the weaknesses of the Water Street corner made the latter difficult to achieve successfully. The Panel
considered that the vista along Marsh Parade was the more important and that the most substantial element of
the development should be situated at the end of this vista. The tower on the corner of Water Street and
George Street was thought to be too high in relation to the two storey terrace fronting Water Street; and the
seven storey block to the rear was considered too high in relation to the George Street frontage.

The Panel recognised that there would have to be a reduction in the number of units proposed for the site in
order to achieve a satisfactory form of development. This would allow the level of car parking also to be
reduced thus creating the capacity for increased amenity landscaping within the site.

It was considered that the design as proposed failed to take the opportunities available for improving the
character and quality of the area. However, all of these issues could be resolved by adopting a more
consistent and coherent architectural form better integrated with its urban context, and using a more distinctive
palette of materials.

Recommended Actions.

       The number of proposed residential units should be reduced to allow an improved architectural form to
        be created, and less car parking and more amenity space to be provided.
       The massing of the proposal should be reconfigured to make the part of the development ending the
        vista along Marsh Parade the most powerful element and the dominant landmark in the scheme.
       The other elements of the development should be scaled down so that the building reduces in height
        towards Water Street and towards the rear of the site.”

                                                   13
The Local Education Authority has indicated that it is not their current policy to request a developer
contribution towards education from this type of development

The Environment Agency has no objections in principle, but recommends the following conditions;

       Contaminated land conditions.
       All surface water drainage from parking areas and hard standings to be pass through oil interceptor.

The Council‟s Environmental Health Division recommends the following conditions;

       Prior to construction of the flats, details of the design measures to be incorporated into the
        construction of the flats facing onto George Street, Water Street and Seagrave Street elevations to
        ensure suitable noise attenuation.
       No mechanical ventilation or refrigeration/air conditioning unit to be installed without prior approval of
        details.
       Contaminated land conditions
       Prior approval of refuse storage.

The Police Architectural Liaison Officer indicates that the site is directly opposite the former Zanzibar night-
club, which although closed at present may re-open as a late night licensed venue. There has been a history
of problems in this area associated with late night drinking coupled with persons lingering in the area around
the takeaways.

The proposed residential element will be on the direct route, along Seagrave Street, to the nearest pay and
display car park.

In its present form the proposed development could experience many problems associated with its proximity to
the night-time economy ranging from anti-social behaviour to criminal activity.

It is requested that the access to the site is secured with regard to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic by
using appropriate fencing and gating.

The County Historic Environment Officer (Archaeology) advises that it is evident that a canal constructed
by Sir Nigel Gresley extends along the south-western boundary of the site. This canal was one of the earliest
                                                                                                  th
in the country, constructed between 1775 and 1778 and it continued operating until the early 20 Century. The
line of the canal runs beneath Water Street and ground works particularly in the western portion of the
application site may encounter the canal basin or the remains of structures associated with the canal during its
working life. Taking into account the location of the application site adjacent to the line of the canal, there is
the potential for groundworks to encounter archaeological deposits. Therefore, the relevant stages of
development should be accompanied by a programme of archaeological fieldwork in the form of a watching
brief.

The Landscape Development Section raises no objection to the development in principle subject to the
submission of a detailed landscape scheme. A developer contribution of £900 per unit to upgrade
play/recreational and public open space facilities in the vicinity of the development is requested in line with
policy.

The Highway Authority has no objections to the application subject to conditions requiring that the
recommendations of the Transport Assessment, with regard to the access; junction modifications; pedestrian
crossing points; and closure of existing, redundant accesses are implemented before the building is brought
into use. In addition conditions will be required with regard to the gradient of the access and the requirement
to provide parking, turning and servicing areas prior to the development being brought into use. They also
seek a financial contribution of £2,000 for traffic management measures in Seagrave Street and Water Street.

Representations

A letter of objection was received from Paul Farrelly MP raising concerns regarding the impact of the
piecemeal development as proposed on the appearance of the town centre and surrounding area. Due to
representations he had received with regard to the Brunswick Court development he fully understands the
concerns of Urban Vision in respect of overdevelopment and design and considers that they have been too
lightly disregarded by Officers. This, he considers, is a dangerous precedent as they are an expert reference
point for the commission of good architecture and design in the area.



                                                   14
He requested deferral of the application for a site visit to be undertaken by Officers, Members, Urban Vision
and himself.

Applicant/agent’s submission

A number of documents in support of the application have been submitted as follows;

       A Planning Statement which concludes as follows:

        “this development accords with recent policy clarification in respect of housing development and with
        the provisions of PPG3 and accordingly it is expected that the council will consider it acceptable in
        principle.

        The scale of the development has been discussed with Council officers beforehand and it accords with
        their advice and recently permitted and successful development currently taking place on the edge of
        the town and as such a precedent for this scale of development is established.

        There are no ground conditions or other technical constraints on this development and an expert
        highway consultant appointed by the applicant has confirmed the suitability of the access,
        sustainability of the location and adequacy generally of this scheme.”

        “The Council and most prominent local estate agents confirm the need for high quality residential
        development such as that now proposed and in the absence of any material planning objections to this
        application it is expected that the Council will look favourably on this application.”

       A Transport Assessment which has the following summary and conclusion;

        “An appraisal of the site for accessibility by non-car modes is undertaken, and it is concluded that the
        site has very good accessibility for residents to make journeys, for a variety of purposes, on foot, by
        cycle and public transport.

        The existing access arrangements to the site comprise:

               A number of accesses onto Seagrave Street, and
               An access on Water Street.

        The proposed development site access arrangements achieve a significant highway benefit by:

               Closure of the existing site access on Water Street, and
               Replacement of the existing multiple site access locations on Seagrave Street with a single
                site access, which is to provide all vehicular access to the site.

        Quantitative assessment of the traffic impact of the proposed residential development is undertaken
        for the TA study network for the 2006 (year of opening) am and pm peak hours. This establishes that
        the change in traffic generated on the TA study network by the proposed development is not material,
        being only an additional 22 two-way vehicles in the am peak hour and 36 vehicles two-way traffic in
        the pm peak hour, and this is then distributed over the highway network. Indeed, the estimated
        change in peak hour traffic consequent upon the proposed residential development is generally less
        than a 1.8%.

        It is concluded that the proposed redevelopment of the site is acceptable in highway/transportation
        terms.”

               A Geo-environmental Assessment which recommends further ground investigation works,
                boreholes so that recommendations on pile design can be made; and enquiries to determine
                the state of the buried fuel storage tank in the south west corner of the site.
               A Phase 1 Environmental Audit.
               An Urban Framework Assessment has been submitted and is copied and attached to this
                agenda.
               A letter from the agent submitted with a set of revised plans following comments of the Urban
                                    th
                Vision Panel on 10 March, which can be summarised as follows:




                                                  15
                    o    The proposals have been prepared in close liaison with the Conservation and Urban
                         Design Officer.
                    o    Urban Vision suggested that the height of the building at the rear was too tall, and
                         consideration should be given to lowering the height by a floor; the front when viewed
                         from George Street had two competing towers, and the western end ought to be
                         lowered and the eastern block increased in height; the building at the rear ought to be
                         moved to lie adjacent to the car park and no landscaped buffer „skirt‟ was required;
                         and the two main buildings have different styles and they ought to relate better.
                    o    These comments are not agreed with and concern is expressed that further changes
                         may be required with no certainty that they will be supported by Committee.
                    o    Producing good design is a difficult task and often parties do not agree, however in
                         this instance the disagreement between the applicant and Urban Vision are over
                         relatively minor matters. Urban Vision accept that the site is appropriate for medium
                         to tall buildings, the site layout is generally appropriate, that the general design
                         approach is acceptable and that the development is not out of context.
                    o    To demonstrate that they are fully supportive of a constructive design dialogue further
                         changes have been made. The height of the building at the rear has been reduced by
                         a floor. The building at the rear has been moved outward towards the car park
                         retaining the green skirt to the north of the building. The number of dwellings has
                         been reduced by 10 to 96.
                    o    No changes to the George Street/Water Street elevation have been made.
                    o    The applicant has engaged fully and positively in the design process in accordance
                         with advice in PPS1 and feels that they cannot do any more.

       A letter from the likely selling agent for the proposed development has been submitted. It indicates
        from their experience there are a wide variety of purchasers seeking this type of accommodation and
        lifestyle. The changing market place for first time buyers and younger professionals has forced them
        to adapt and most are buying as couples rather than as individuals. The apartments are suitable for
        those who enjoy low maintenance, high security and proximity to town centres. In addition more
        mature buyers wishing to downsize are attracted to the type of accommodation proposed. They
        advise that a good level of buyers of similar accommodation close to Newcastle Town Centre is from
        the local market.

Key Issues

The main issues for consideration in the determination of this application are the principle of the development;
impact on the form and character of the area; the public realm; residential amenity; provision of public open
space; archaeology; environmental issues and highway issues.

The principle of new residential development on this site

The proposed development is in accordance with policy H1 and H3 of the adopted Local Plan as the site is
located within the urban area of Newcastle and is previously developed land.

The latest annual Housing Development Monitoring Report shows that by 2011 there is likely to be an over
provision, in relation to the Structure Plan allocation of 3000 dwellings, by nearly 14%. In response to this the
Council adopted a document last year that sets out to clarify the way which the Development Plan policy on
housing numbers will be implemented in these circumstances. It indicates that no further residential
development should be permitted in the Borough during the current plan period unless it is on previously
development land and within one or more of the following categories;

       Within or close to the Town Centre (within 500m from the inner ring road) and is of a type and design
        appropriate to a town centre location.
       It makes a positive contribution to regeneration in its widest sense.
       It is part of a comprehensive package of clearance and new build and no net increase in the number
        of dwellings would occur.
       It is on a site of less than 0.15ha.

In this case the site is previously developed land and is sited within 500m of the inner ring road around the
Town Centre. In the housing clarification report it is emphasised that any residential development allowed in
the town centre must be functionally linked to the town centre and of a type and design that exploits the
sustainability of the location and contributes to the aims of Renew and the Council‟s housing strategy. The
Renew prospectus includes a specific programme for Newcastle town centre as follows:-



                                                   16
“Renew will pump prime a strategy to support Town Centre living by focussing on the following:

       Providing a balance between high quality and affordable housing
       Achieving a high quality of design
       Creating an attractive and effective gateway to the town
       Raising the profile of the Town Centre as an exemplar for town centre living
       Providing valuable lessons for other locations within the Market Renewal Area
       Acting as a catalyst for renewed confidence across a wider area.

This is a gateway site to the town centre being on the principal route from Stoke town centre (the A 52). The
proposal does not include any affordable housing. The site is in a highly sustainable location, and falls within
one of the categories where residential development has been identified as being acceptable. On that basis it
is considered that the development is acceptable in principle.

The proposal also includes commercial floor space, and whilst the precise nature of the use is not known at
this stage, it is considered that a mixed use proposal, as submitted, would accord with local and national policy
and should be encouraged in principle. That said it would be appropriate at this stage to impose a condition on
any permission that controls the potential range of uses to those considered appropriate in this location.

Impact on the form and character of the area

The proposed building, in its current form, has various elements as follows:

       A block fronting onto George Street which includes two „towers‟ at the George Street/Water Street and
        George Street/Seagrave Street corners, each tower containing seven floors with a six floor link
        between. The approximate maximum height of this element of the building is 20m.
       A block fronting onto Water Street which has 5 floors with the upper floor set in from the front facades
        of the building. The approximate maximum height of this element of the building is 15m.
       A large, „L‟ shaped block at the rear of the site adjacent to the King Street public car park and a
        building known as the Police House. This block has a basement car parking area, a ground floor
        parking area and 5 floors of residential accommodation facing towards Seagrave Street, stepping
        down 2 floors where it adjoins the Police House. The approximate maximum height of this element of
        the building is 18m – it is no taller than the building fronting onto George Street.
       A 4 floor link between the block fronting onto George Street and that adjoining the car park. Vehicular
        access to the inner courtyard, containing surface parking and landscaped areas, and providing access
        to the undercover parking areas, is through this element of the building. The approximate maximum
        height of this element of the building is 15m.

The building is proposed to be constructed in brickwork, render, cladding and cedar boarding, with aluminium
standing seam roof covering.

Directly adjoining the site on Water Street are terraced properties all in commercial use, which are two storeys,
with additional accommodation in the roof space. To the east of Seagrave Street there are single storey
commercial properties with two storey properties facing onto George Street which are also in commercial use.
On the north and north east of the site is the King Street public car park. Opposite the site is the Zanzibar
nightclub which is also the subject of a residential application.

Berkeley Court and Brunswick Court (former Quasar site currently under construction) lie to the west of the site
closer to the town centre. Further to the east of the site are blocks of flats. Overall there is a varied context
within which the proposed building is set in terms of the scale and height of the buildings.

The applicant has worked closely with officers to address concerns of the Urban Vision Panel raised in
December with regard to the design of the building as initially submitted. The amendments were as follows;

       The external design detailing has been amended to provide a more coherent appearance, particularly
        with regard to the rear block and the George Street frontage.
       The position of the commercial floor space has been amended so that it is now within the part of the
        building at the corner of Water Street and George Street. This has resulted in the plinth, which was
        seen as a barrier that would discourage people accessing the unit/s being removed and pavement
        level access being achievable.
       Pedestrian access into the internal courtyard area has been provided between the building and the
        Water Street buildings increasing convenience for residents and visitors and providing an alternative to
        the rear access off Seagrave Street.


                                                   17
       The landscaping of the internal courtyard has been improved and some will be visible from Seagrave
        Street.
       In addition amendments have been made to the height of the building at its interface with Water Street
        as detailed above and addressed below.

Following the comments of Urban Vision in March further amendments to the scheme were made. In summary
the applicant has reduced the number of residential units from 106 units to 96 by removing a full floor from the
rear block of the building adjoining the car park. This part of the building was also moved so that it directly
abuts the Seagrave Street boundary, whilst maintaining a landscaped buffer between the rear elevation of the
building and the car park and adjoining Police House on its northern boundary. Whilst there is a considerable
jump in height between the proposed building and the two-storey Police House, it is considered that the
landscaped buffer strip would provide a suitable separation distance and that this relationship is acceptable.

Members will recall, however, your officer expressed concern with regard to the placing of building right up
against the public car park on its eastern side the scheme and the loss of the landscape setting on this side.
Satisfactory amended plans have now been received which reintroduce the 4 –5m gap within which planting
can take place, and the full extent of the gable of the rear block facing toward Marsh Parade is no longer
exposed to view. Notwithstanding the comments of the Urban Vision Panel, your officer considers that the
provision of the buffer landscaped strip is necessary in this location to afford a satisfactory level of amenity for
occupiers of the units, particularly in view of the proximity to the public car park.

The amendments have not reduced the number of car parking spaces or provided an increase in amenity
space within the internal courtyard as suggested by Urban Vision. This internal space is private and will only be
visible from the point of access and includes a landscape feature within the courtyard directly opposite the
point of access which will be visible to anyone passing by along Seagrave Street and will reduce the
appearance of hard surfacing within the scheme. The latest amendments has also resulted in the deletion of
the additional parking spaces provided within the internal courtyard and the level of landscaped area has
returned to that which was reported to Urban Vision in March. It is possible to achieve more landscaping if a
further six parking spaces were deleted (nos. 74-79 on the plans). Such amendments would afford future
residents of the scheme significantly improved levels of amenity without reducing the level of parking below
100%. A condition could be attached to secure this.

The Urban Vision Panel considered that on the George Street elevation, the scale of the building should be
reconfigured to enable the tower at the corner of George Street and Seagrave Street to close the vista along
Marsh Parade thereby making it the dominant feature and that the other elements of this block should be
scaled down so that the building reduces in height towards Water Street.

Your officer does not entirely agree with these views. The building will be very visible when travelling up
Brunswick Street towards Stoke, and it is considered that the tower at the corner of George Street and Water
Street would be an important element of this vista and should be emphasised; in particular it would help to
articulate the movement of the building through this pivotal tower feature. The reduction in height of this
element of the building would diminish it, and any increase in height of the tower at the corner to George Street
and Seagrave Street to give it the dominance suggested would result in it being disproportionately higher than
the surrounding buildings. The design of this part of the building is considered to be acceptable in this
location.

There is a full two storeys height difference between the building and the ridge height of the Water Street
properties at the point where they adjoin. However the upper floor is set a full 1.75m in from the external
elevation which will assist in the transition from traditional terrace to the new building, and the facade of the
new build is slightly set back from that of the existing Water Street building line which should also help to
minimise the potential visual impact of the difference in scale of the two blocks.

Overall it is considered that the building is acceptable in terms of its external appearance, scale and massing
in this locality and can be supported on this issue.

Public Realm

Your officer considers that this application, together with the proposal to develop the Zanzibar site presents an
opportunity to secure necessary public realm improvements on this primary route into the town centre. On that
basis an Urban Framework Assessment has been requested which reviews the context of the two
developments and would conclude with an identification of suitable public realm improvements.

The Assessment has been carried out and submitted, and an initial plan prepared suggesting improvements to
the grassed area of land opposite this site, and the Rigger Public House and the wide pavement in front of the


                                                    18
Zanzibar nightclub, which would include Marsh Parade and the existing access to the shops between George
Street and the pub. The submitted plans suggest a hard landscaped feature, creating a „plaza‟ giving greater
pedestrian emphasis.

The submitted plans have been submitted to illustrate potentially suitable public realm improvements, and
demonstrate that a suitably designed scheme would enhance this visually significant gateway into Newcastle.

A Section 106 Agreement could be entered into to secure the design of appropriate public realm
improvements.

Residential Amenity

The building does not directly adjoin any residential properties and it is not considered that it will result in the
loss of amenity for any nearby residents.

The level of amenity achieved for the occupiers of upper parts of the proposed building is based upon the fact
that they will have extensive views over the town. At a lower level there are some concerns particularly insofar
as the block at the rear is concerned even though the views will be over the public car park - the public car
park level being occupied by car parking within the building. Moving the building back to where it was in an
earlier version of the proposal, and some loss of car parking spaces in the rear courtyard could make the
scheme acceptable.

Public Open Space

The proposed development does not achieve the required level of open space and therefore in accordance
with the requirements of the Landscape Development Section it would be appropriate to secure a contribution
towards play and open space facility in the vicinity of the site.

Highway issues.

The applicant has been in lengthy discussions with the Highway Authority who have no objections to the
scheme provided certain conditions and a planning obligation are attached.

The scheme currently incorporates more than 100% parking provision which is considered to be more than
sufficient for a residential scheme as proposed in a highly sustainable location. A reduction down to 100% (i.e.
one space per dwelling) provision would be fully in line with national and local policy. The provision of more
parking spaces would be contrary to local and national policy, which seeks to keep the level of parking
provision to a minimum. Furthermore by reducing on-site parking provision it provides greater scope to
introduce amenity open space/landscaped features in the interests of future residents.

Environmental Issues

Subject to conditions to the conditions as recommended by the Environmental Health Division it is considered
that the application is acceptable in this regard.

Due to the scale of the building a Television Reception Survey was requested prior to the determination of the
applicant. A survey has not been submitted, however following advice from OFCOM it is considered that a
refusal on this basis would not be sustainable. Nonetheless due to the scale of the building it would be
reasonable to attach a condition to secure a survey prior to commencement of development, and following its
completion, and the implementation of any necessary mitigation.

Archaeology

It is considered, following the advice of the County Archaeologist, that a condition to secure a watching brief
would be necessary and appropriate due to the archaeological circumstances of the site.

Background Papers
Planning Policy documents referred to
Planning files referred to

Date report prepared
12 April 2005




                                                    19
4.   LYMEDALE CROSS, LOWER MILEHOUSE LANE, NEWCASTLE
     DEUTSCHE UK INDUSTRIAL PROPERTY FUND. 04/1301/FUL

     The Application is for full planning permission for the erection of an industrial warehouse for use falling
     within Class B1 (c) light industry, B2 General Industry and B8 storage and distribution, with ancillary offices,
     trailer car parking and landscaping. The proposal involves the demolition of existing buildings on the former
     Leoni site, and is to be sited partially where these existing buildings are within the site, partially on the former
     football pitches with the remainder of the site formerly comprised within the Holditch colliery. The warehouse
     building will measure 140m by 280m and 18m in height measured to the top of the parapet, with a total floor
     space of 38,345 sq.m., with an the adjoining three storey office block comprising 1,858 sq.m. 100 trailer
     parking spaces are proposed and 271 car parking spaces. Access to the site would be from a road within the
     Lymedale Employment Park.

     On the Local Plan Proposals Map the site lies within the urban area of Newcastle and part of it is the subject
     of a designation E9 – Renewal of employment permissions.

     Consideration of this application was deferred at your meeting on 5 April 2005 to enable amendments to be
     discussed with the applicant to secure a reduction in the height of the building relative to the adjoining
     dwellings.

     RECOMMENDATIONS

     (a)       That subject to

                  The receipt of satisfactory amended plans being received reducing the height of the
                   building relative to the adjoining dwellings; and
                  the prior completion, within 3 months of a planning obligation to secure an appropriate
                   financial contributions towards footway/cycleway construction and Travel Plan
                   monitoring, and the provision of a Travel Plan framework, and ensure that the public open
                   space contribution already paid under a previous S106 Agreement can be utilised for the
                   purposes required if either this development, or the development related to the existing
                   Agreement are implemented.

     PERMIT subject to the following conditions:

              Prior approval of facing materials, surfacing materials, levels, drainage and landscaping, and
               implementation.
              Construction works shall not take place between 1800 and 0700 hours on Monday to Friday;
               1300 and 0700 hours on Saturdays and not at any time on Sundays, Bank Holidays.
              Prior to development of the warehouse and commencement of any associated groundworks,
               details of the combined 5m high acoustic fence and bund to the southern boundary to be
               approved and implemented.
              Prior to the development coming into use details of the 4m high acoustic barrier positioned
               along the southern boundary of the trailer park to be approved and implemented.
              Development not to exceed specified noise levels at specified locations.
              HGV vehicles together with shunting vehicles etc shall be fitted with reversing alarms which
               are self adjusting to no more than 5dB above background noise levels.
              Prior approval of external lighting.
              Within 3 years of permission being implemented a noise survey is to be carried out and
               thereafter once every 3 years to identify level of compliance with conditions.
              Contaminated land conditions to be imposed.
              No development to commence until a scheme of surface water run-off limitation has been
               submitted and approved and subsequently shall be implemented.
              All surface water drainage from parking areas and hard standings to be pass through oil
               interceptor.
              Suitable facilities for the storage of oil, fuels or chemicals.
              Archaeological condition.
              5m x 90m visibility splays
              Parking and turning facilities to be provided prior to occupation.
              Adequate, secured, covered cycle storage facilities to be provided prior to occupation.


                                                          20
       Vehicular access gradient not to exceed 1 in 12
       A Travel Plan Framework shall be submitted for approval with a detailed travel plan submitted
        by occupier when known.
       Clarification on the method of controlling pedestrian access to Gort Road.
       Further TV Reception survey to be carried out and any recommendation mitigation
        implemented.
       Mitigation measures to be carried out prior to commencement of building development in the
        area highlighted in the TV Reception survey as having the greatest potential for impairment.

(b)     That if satisfactory amended plans are not received, REFUSE, the application as the building
by virtue of its relative height in relation to adjoining dwellings would be unacceptable in terms of the
outlook and residential of adjoining residents.




Reason for Recommendation

The proposals bring increased employment opportunities to this Neighbourhood Regeneration area. The
proposals are considered to contribute to the sustainable development framework of the wider Lymedale area.
They are also in accordance with policy S12 and are also considered to be acceptable with regard to highway
issues as the increase in vehicle movements is not considered to be significantly detrimental to the existing
highway network. Provided satisfactory revised proposals concerning the height of the building relative to the
Gort Road properties are submitted, they will also accord with policy S10 of the Local Plan and other
employment development policies. Various extant planning permissions for proposals which include B8
development and a resolution to approve 04/482/FUL subject to the securing of planning obligations also need
to be taken into account.

Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

Policy QE1    Conserving and enhancing the Environment
Policy T7     Car parking standards and management
Policy PA1    Prosperity for all

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

Policy D1     Sustainable Forms of Development
Policy D2     The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
Policy E3     Locational factors for new employment sites
Policy T1A    Sustainable location
Policy T1B    Integrated Transport Strategy


                                                 21
Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1      Sustainable Development
Policy S4      Development and brownfield, derelict or potentially contaminated land.
Policy S6      Air Quality
Policy S10     Quality of Life and the Public interest
Policy S12     Noise nuisance
Policy S13     Light spillage
Policy S15     The design of the Development
Policy S16     Written statements for „significant development proposals‟.
Policy E1      Support for new economic development proposals
Policy E3      Lymedale Park Extension
Policy E9      Renewal of planning permission for employment
Policy T1      Sustainable development
Policy T3      Traffic related air pollution and noise
Policy T14     Development and the Highway Network
Policy T15     Road freight
Policy T16     Development – General Parking Requirements

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1     Delivering Sustainable Development (2005)
        PPG4     Industrial and Commercial Development and Small Firms (1992)
        PPG8     Telecommunications (2001)
        PPG13 Transport (2001)
        PPS23 Planning and Pollution Control (2004)
        PPG24 Planning and Noise (1994)
        The Planning System - General Principles (2005)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance

        Space about Dwellings (July 2004)

        Lymedale West Design Brief

        When outline planning permission was granted for the adjoining Lymedale West extension site a
        Design Brief was produced to provide background information and development guidance for
        prospective purchasers, investors and occupiers. It sets out;

             (a)   The aspects of design that the County Council as landowner, and the Borough Council, as
                   Local Planning Authority consider to be significant.
             (b)   The policies and standards that will be applied.
             (c)   Those matters that the developer should address when preparing planning application.

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Sustainable Development issues relate to whether the proposals result in an increase in traffic
        movements generated by the estate, whether alternative modes of travel have been considered and
        designed into the proposals such as encouraging employees to walk or cycle to work and whether the
        proposals include a Green Travel Plan.

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

In 2002 a Certificate of Lawful Use or Development (02/144/ELD) was issued with regard to the Leoni site
which concluded that the site at that time comprised a single planning unit, with the primary use falling within


                                                  22
Class B2, and uses within Class B1 and B8 were ancillary to this primary use. A subsequent application
(04/482/FUL) was submitted in 2004 which included the erection of 5 new buildings for B1c, B2 and B8 uses
involving the partial demolition and alteration to the external appearance of existing buildings within the site,
and the change of use of existing buildings for all Class B uses. Planning permission was granted for this use
subject to the completion of a S106 obligation (on 10 August 2004). The obligation has not yet been entered
into, the period of time for its completion was extended at the Planning Committee meeting of 1 February
2005.

On the Leoni Sports Grounds, and the adjoining Lymedale Business Park the following planning permissions
have been granted:

2004      02/430/OUT        Outline planning permission granted for development of B1 (Business), B2
                            (General Industrial) and B8 (Storage and distribution) uses.

2004      02/843/FUL        Full planning permission granted for a new distribution warehouse with associated
                            offices and loading yard and access road.

Views of Consultees

The Highway Authority has no objections on highway grounds subject to the following conditions;

       4.5m x 90m visibility splays provided
       Parking and turning facilities provided prior to occupation.
       Adequate, secured, covered cycle storage facilities provided prior to occupation.
       Vehicular access gradient not to exceed 1 in 12
       Approval of site parking for construction traffic prior to commencement.
       Approval of wheel wash facilities which are to be provided during construction.
       A Travel Plan Framework shall be submitted for approval with a detailed travel plan submitted by
        occupier when known.
       Clarification on the method of controlling pedestrian access to Gort Road.

The Environmental Health Division, based on the submitted noise report, recommends the following
conditions are imposed on any subsequent grant of planning permission.

       Construction works shall not take place between 1800 and 0700 hours on Monday to Friday; 1300 and
        0700 hours on Saturdays and not at any time on Sundays, Bank Holidays.
       Prior to development of the warehouse and commencement of any associated groundworks, details
        of the combined 5m high acoustic fence and bund to the southern boundary to be approved and
        implemented
       Prior to the development coming into use details of the 4m high acoustic barrier positioned along the
        southern boundary of the trailer park to be approved and implemented.
       Development not to exceed specified noise levels at specified locations.
       HGV vehicles together with shunting vehicles etc shall be fitted with reversing alarms which are self
        adjusting to no more than 5dB above background noise levels.
       Prior approval of external lighting.
       Within 3 years of permission being implemented a noise survey is to be carried out, and thereafter
        once every 3 years to identify level of compliance with conditions.
       Contaminated land conditions to be imposed.

They also recommend that the applicant be advised of the following:

       Due regard must be given to advice in BS5228:Part 1: 1997 “Noise and vibration control on
        construction and open sites.”
       Attention to be drawn to the Considerate Contractors Scheme.
       The details that are required for any submitted lighting scheme.
       Compliance with planning conditions does not necessarily prevent action being taken with regard to
        statutory nuisance.

With regard to the Television Reception Survey the Environmental Health Division, advise that they do not
have any technical expertise regarding TV reception signal strength and are not able, therefore, to critically
assess the survey. However, they indicate that the report concludes that the construction of this warehouse
will affect TV signal strength and recommends the installation/provision of Digital Terrestrial TV receptors for
those properties affected. In addition the report recommends a further survey is undertaken once the
warehouse is constructed to precisely establish the extent of mitigation required. However this would mean


                                                   23
that residents would be subject to impaired TV reception during construction and it would therefore be prudent
to attempt to resolve these issues in the highlighted areas before the local residents suffer from loss of TV
signal.

The Environment Agency initially objected to the proposed development on the grounds that the application
may present a significant flood risk from the generation of surface water run off, and was not supported by a
Flood Risk Assessment. Following the submission of drainage details to them, they comment that the site
attenuation and discharge rate meets with the satisfaction of the County Council, and they therefore have no
objections to the proposed surface water drainage on site. They indicate that the surface water drainage
design incorporates a pumping station which they do not consider to be a method of sustainable drainage and
would usually consider unsatisfactory. Nevertheless they are now in a position to withdraw their objection.
They recommend the following conditions;

       No development to commence until a scheme of surface water run-off limitation has been submitted
        and approved and subsequently shall be implemented.
       Contaminated land conditions.
       All surface water drainage from parking areas and hard standings to be pass through oil interceptor.
       Suitable facilities for the storage of oil, fuels or chemicals.

The County Archaeologist advises that the Historic Record indicates that there are no known historic or
archaeological references within the current application site, although in the area immediately surrounding
there is evidence of a mill and associated features located on the eastern bank of the Ashfield Brook, and an
area of medieval ridge and furrow. Considerable Romano-British activity has been identified within the area
around the application site and the area has been the focus of some previous archaeological investigations.

On this basis it is recommended that an archaeological evaluation be undertaken upon the application site. A
condition to secure this is therefore recommended.

Severn Trent Water has no objections subject to a condition requiring approval of drainage works.

The Landscape Development Section ask for a new planning obligation to be entered into to ensure that
£176,000 already received as a result of a previous Section 106 agreement towards the provision of a
replacement sports facility at Apedale Country Park can be spent if the applicant constructs either this
proposal or the previous consent. Landscaping works indicated should be conditioned

Representations

Nil received

Applicant/agent’s submission

The following supporting documents have been provided:

A Planning Statement which is available for inspection at the Civic Offices.

An Environmental Noise Assessment which concludes as follows;

“The study noise assessment from the proposed revised scheme for the Lymedale Cross Industrial Estate
shows a very favourable situation. The position and orientation of the building, together with a mitigation
programme involving a compound acoustic screening arrangement, ensures that noise has been adequately
controlled to meet the Local Authority’s requirements and to conform to the appropriate British Standard, while
SRL’s calculations show that there is only a marginal likelihood of noise complaints from even the most
sensitive of neighbours.

On the basis of this study, SRL sees no justification for planning refusal on grounds of noise.

An Air Quality Assessment which concludes as follows:

“ The Review and Assessment and USA reports prepared for Newcastle under Lyme BC shows that the
current levels of all AQS pollutants in the vicinity of the development site are within current standards and
objectives. No air quality management areas have been declared within the Borough.




                                                   24
Guidance on the impact of increased traffic flows and in particular heavy goods vehicles movements on air
quality indicates that the impact of the proposal will not be significant since increased traffic flows on major
approach roads are expected to be well below the 25% criteria provided by DEFRA.

The introduction of the scheme will increase local pollutant generation associated with road traffic accessing
the site. However, the DMRB screening assessment indicates that air quality at all local residential properties
in proximity to the site (residential properties on Gort Road and Wilmot Drive ) will meet both existing air quality
standards and objectives.

It is therefore concluded that since the development will not impact significantly on local air quality, and that air
quality at the nearest sensitive receptors is predicted to meet all air quality standards and objectives, that
planning restrictions on air quality grounds should not be made.”

A Transport Statement which concludes as follows:

“…This development represents an alternative to the approved development of B1, B2 and B8 use (circa.
18579 sq.m.) on the sports field and would also involve the demolition of 21730 sq.m. of employment
floorspace on the Lymedale Cross site.

Therefore, there would be a net reduction in floor area as a result of the development.

The development is proposed to be accessed from the new spine road, with separate access points for the
cars and HGV’s.

The level of parking provided has been compared to that of other similar developments and is considered
sufficient for the needs of employees and visitors.

Staffordshire County Council (SCC) have prepared a Transport Assessment in support of the development of
Lymedale Business Park extension that included the committed development trips from the Lucas Sports Field
site (as approved). This TA stated that with the committed highway improvements and the sustainable
transport infrastructure the development trips can be accommodated on the highway within capacity up to
2013.

SCC have stated a preference for development traffic to be directed towards the new spine road, where the
infrastructure is designed to accommodate industrial traffic, rather than on to Lower Milehouse Lane.

The demolition of units on the Lymedale Cross site would result in a reduction in trips arising from the existing
industrial estate, particularly on to Lower Milehouse Lane.

The forecast development trips from the proposed development are in fact lower than those assumed by SCC
from the site in their TA in the AM peak and with only a marginal increase in the PM peak of one vehicle per
minute on the spine road. As the new roundabout on the spine road with Brymbo Road would operate at just
33% of its capacity this modest increase would not cause any detriment to its operation.

There will be reduced traffic flows on the wider highway network, in particular on Lower Milehouse Lane and
the roundabout on the A34.

The developer has already made a contribution of £14,000 for bus stop infrastructure and committed to
contributing towards footways/cycleways. The developer has already submitted a framework and measures
travel plan for the site and it is considered that this travel plan would still be applicable to this alternative
development.

To facilitate pedestrian access by staff from the south the developer will provide a controlled access point on
the southern boundary to allow convenient access.

In summary, the development access strategy will result in development traffic being routed on to more
appropriate roads, to a level that can be safely and efficiently accommodated. There will also be reductions on
the wider highway network.

Given the contributions already made by the applicant in relation to this site, and the further commitments that
will be made with regard to a travel plan, access to the site by non car modes will also be encouraged.
Parking levels are consistent with these objectives, whilst providing a sufficient number to accommodate likely
occupier requirements. Therefore, it is considered that the proposals are entirely acceptable in transportation
terms.”

                                                    25
Finally a TV Reception Survey has been submitted in response to concerns expressed regarding the
potential impact of the proposed development on TV reception in the local area, and with regard to guidance
contained in PPG8. The agent indicates that whilst potential interference with TV reception is a valid issue to
be considered, PPG8 goes on to infer that only significant interference represents a material consideration.

The assessment identifies the following:

       Given the position of the proposed building relative to the two transmitters serving the area, one would
        expect the primary impact to be to the north west. However, this area comprises primarily industrial
        uses and therefore the potential for impact is significantly reduced.
       Given the location and scale of the proposed building there is the prospect of the development to
        cause reflection of the TV signal. This has the potential to cause a degree of „ghosting‟ of the signal
        received by individual properties.
       A large area of the survey area already suffers from poor reception, with weak signal strengths and
        ghosting.
       There is the potential for impairment of TV reception to occur over a relatively limited area around the
        site, but given the locational relationship between the site and surrounding properties, intervening
        obstacles and the pre-existing poor reception, it is likely that in most cases any impairment will be
        slight and not noticeable.
       There is a confined area immediately to the south of the proposed building where there is the greatest
        prospect of material impact. This comprises properties on Gort Road and Wilmot Drive.
       In this area, digital signal which are less prone to reflection and therefore ‟ghosting‟, can be received.
        As such, it is suggested that any impact that emerges can be mitigated by supplying those properties
        affected with DTTV (Digital Terrestrial Television) equipment.
       To precisely identify the level and extent of impact that emerges it is suggested that a further
        assessment be undertaken following completion of the development.

The agent states that the technical assessment identifies that whilst impairment is possible, material impact is
only likely to emerge in a confined area. This can be confirmed by subsequent assessment, and the impact
remediated by means of the supply of DTTV equipment, or other alternatives listed in the survey.

They therefore suggest a condition requiring a further assessment before occupation of the development and
implementation of any necessary mitigation measures identified by the assessment shall be implemented
within 6 months of the approval of the assessment.

Key Issues

As indicated in the relevant planning history section above, there are extant planning permissions affecting the
site. On the undeveloped part of the site, which was formerly the sports grounds, and part of the adjoining
land, formerly Holditch Colliery, there is outline planning permission for development falling within all the Class
B uses (02/430/OUT), and full planning permission for a distribution warehouse (02/843/FUL). Within the
existing area of the site containing buildings, there is a resolution to grant planning permission for demolition
and erection of five new units, and change of use of the remaining buildings to allow all uses within Class B
(04/482/FUL), subject to the completion of a Section 106 obligation which is well advanced.

On the basis of the planning history of the site it can be concluded that the principle of the development, as
proposed, has been accepted. The main issues to address, therefore, are the acceptability of the design and
scale of the building, particularly in respect of its impact on adjoining residents; impact on the living conditions
of neighbours by virtue of noise, light pollution, and TV reception; air quality; highway safety; flood risk; and
archaeology. In addition it is necessary to consider the need for a S106 obligation.

Acceptability of the design of the building

The proposed building is to be 140m by 280m and 18m in height to be clad in colour-coated steel panels with
the colours grading from the bottom to top of the elevation, darker to light to break up the elevation of what is a
very large building. It is intended that the colours to be used on this building are shades of green, which the
agent considers will assist in integrating the building with the landscaping, with a roof in merlin grey.

The office element of the building is to be sited on the southern end of the building, nearest to the adjoining
residential properties. It is not as tall as the main part of the building (12m) and is to be constructed of similar
materials picking up the greys and greens for the warehouse.




                                                    26
The design of the building is considered appropriate for its function and within the context of an existing
employment site, and adjoining the large employment site of Lymedale. The use of colour accords with the
advice contained within the Lymedale West Design Brief.

Impact on living conditions of neighbours

The siting of the building is very close to residential properties within Gort Road (about 38m at its closest
point), and a building of the scale proposed will have an impact on the living conditions of the occupiers of the
properties. To address this close relationship certain measures have been introduced to minimise its impact
as follows;

        The building has been orientated so that the south west corner of the building is the closest point of
         the building to adjoining residents in Gort Road, and the rest of the building therefore moves away
         from the southern boundary of the site. Therefore residents are not faced with either the end wall, or
         side wall of the building, both of which would be very overbearing in appearance.
        The offices are located on the southern end of the building. As indicated above this part of the
         building is not as high as the main „warehouse‟ section, and this will help to reduce the perception of
         scale. In addition it provides some variation to the building at its most sensitive boundary.
        The colour grading of the building, in differing shades of green will assist in merging it into the
         landscape at the lower levels, and with the sky at the roof levels. The agent argues that this will “draw
         the eye upwards and beyond the building, again reducing the perception of scale.
        A landscape buffer of up to 10m depth and 5m high is proposed on the southern boundary,
         comprising of a steep landscaped bund, and acoustic fence with substantial planting. This will help to
         screen the lower parts of the building, as well as the vehicle parking and manoeuvring areas when
         viewed from the adjoining dwellings, without itself being an intrusive feature.

Whilst it is not specifically designed to address the issue of whether a building of this scale is unduly dominant
or overbearing, the Supplementary Planning Guidance on Space about dwellings, adopted in July 2004, gives
various benchmarks against which to judge the acceptability of the scheme and these are met. However this is
a building of a very considerable mass and scale. The slab level of the building will be critical. The applicant
has indicated that the maximum finished floor level of the building would be 132.5m Above Ordnance Datum
(AOD) and the minimum would be 131.25m AOD, and that to go lower than this may lead to potential flooding,
drainage and access gradient difficulties, rather just a consequence of cost minimisation. Such slab levels
would result in an increase in levels within the site, relative to the residential properties adjoining the site in
Gort Road, by 2-3m. The relative height of the building when viewed from the adjoining dwelling would
therefore be increased, and potentially the effect of any screening barrier reduced particularly at the point
where the building is closest to the boundary and the properties on Gort Road. Your officer considers that the
resultant impact would be unacceptable in terms of the outlook and residential amenity.

To address this issue consideration of the application was deferred on 5 April 2005, to enable amended plans
to be sought to secure a reduction in the height of the building relative to the adjoining dwellings. Subject to
satisfactory amended plans being received it is considered that the above measures would reduce the overall
visual impact of the building and will not be overbearing to the point where a refusal could be justified on the
grounds of adverse impact on visual amenity.

The proposal also has the potential to cause noise nuisance and nuisance by virtue of light spillage. On the
basis of the submitted Noise Assessment and the proposed mitigation by virtue of the bund and acoustic fence
on the southern boundary, it is considered that with the appropriate restrictions in place by way of condition the
development will not result in a significant adverse impact. The use of conditions would also secure an agreed
external lighting scheme.

The applicant has carried out a survey with regard to the possible impact of the building on TV reception and
this survey is currently being considered to assess whether it is adequate. Further information will therefore be
reported in this regard. However, subject to the survey being considered acceptable it is clear that there is the
potential for the building to cause problems in an area where problems already exist. These matters can all be
addressed by suitable conditions as detailed above in the recommendation section.

Air quality

The submitted information demonstrates that air quality at local residential properties in proximity to the site
and the approach roads to the site will be in full accordance with air quality standards and objectives. It is
therefore concluded that this is not a sustainable reason for refusal.

Highway safety


                                                   27
Access to the site is to be through the Lymedale Employment Park and the submitted Transport Assessment
demonstrates that the proposal will not have an adverse impact on the local highway network. Subject to
appropriate conditions as recommended by the Highway Authority it is considered that the proposed
development is acceptable in this regard.

Flood risk

Due to the scale of the development and the amount of surface water run-off which could be generated there
is a flood risk. Following further discussions between the Environment Agency and the applicant with regard to
the proposed drainage methods, the Environment Agency no longer objects to the development subject to
conditions. The proposal is therefore acceptable in this regard.

Archaeology

Whilst there is no known archaeological interest on the current application site, considerable Romano-British
activity has been identified within the area around the site and the area has been the focus of some previous
archaeological investigations.

On this basis it is recommended that an archaeological evaluation be undertaken upon the application site
through a condition.

Need for an Obligation

A contribution of some £176,000 has already been received by the Council to make up for the loss of the
former playingfield on this site. The concern raised by the Landscape Development Section that a further
planning obligation is required to ensure that it can be spent regardless of which scheme is progressed is and
this needs to be addressed by a planning obligation.

The applicant currently intends that the following matters are secured by a Unilateral Undertaking which they
propose to provide in time for the meeting;

       A footway cycleway contribution of £37,000.
       A travel plan contribution of £5,000
       A travel plan framework

The contents as proposed would be consistent with what has been/will be secured through S106 obligations
relating to other developments within the overall site, with one exception. The S106 obligation sought by the
Committee and being entered into relating to 04/482/FUL is to provide an option that a strip of land running
alongside the Lower Milehouse Road access be used by the public as an amenity path could be provided in
the future, which would potentially allow a link from Lymedale through to Lower Milehouse Road. This element
is not included in the draft unilateral undertaking seen by officers.

Notwithstanding this omission from the Unilateral Undertaking your officer‟s view remains that given the site‟s
location, existing pedestrian routes to it, the provision of a pedestrian link from the site to Gort Road, close
public transport links and the provision of the right of access to help secure an additional cycleway/footpath link
in the future would have been a benefit but is not an essential element to the scheme.

Background Papers
Planning Policy documents referred to
Planning files referred to

Date report prepared
12 April 2005




                                                   28
                               PART 1(B) – PLANNING APPLICATIONS (MINOR)


1.   28 – 34 CHURCH STREET, BUTT LANE
     A BOWER. 05/134/FUL

     The Application is for the demolition of the existing property (No.30) and the erection of five 1 bedroomed
     and two 2 bedroomed flats.

     The site is located in the urban area as defined by the adopted Local Plan. The site has an area of
     approximately 0.07 hectares (700 square metres)

     Two Councillors have requested that the application be determined by the Planning Committee for the reason
     that it is a material change to the original planning submission.

     The determination of this application was deferred at your last meeting on 5 April 2005 to enable members to
     visit the site.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Permit subject to the following conditions:-

           (i)      Approval of facing and surfacing materials
           (ii)     Approval of boundary treatments
           (ii)     Approval of floor and ground levels
           (iv)     Drainage condition
           (v)      Relevant highway conditions
           (vi)     Approval of a landscaping scheme
           (vii)    Relocation of pedestrian gate to No.28
           (viii)   Relocation of proposed bin store

     Reason for Recommendation

     The proposal accords with provisions of the development plan for the locality indicated above, there are no
     other material considerations which would justify a refusal of planning permission, and the similarities between
     the scheme now applied for and that which already has planning permission.

     Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

     Nil

     Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

     Policy D1       Sustainable Forms of Development
     Policy D2       The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
     Policy D3       Urban Regeneration
     Policy H1       Housing Provision
     Policy H2       Location, Phasing and Density of Housing Development
     Policy H7       Windfall Sites
     Policy H9       Rural Settlements
     Policy T1A      Sustainable Location
     Policy T16      Car Parking

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

     Policy S1       Sustainable Development
     Policy S4       Development and Brownfield, Derelict or Potentially Contaminated Land
     Policy S10      Quality of Life and the Public Interest
     Policy S15      The Design of Development
     Policy S17      Design of New Buildings and Significant Alterations to Existing Buildings
     Policy H1       Residential Development: Sustainable Location and Protection of the Countryside
     Policy H3       Residential Development – Priority to Brownfield Sites

                                                        1
Policy H5     Backland and Infill Sites
Policy H14    Bedsits, flats with shared facilities, self contained flats, residential institutions and other
              dwellings in multiple occupation.
Policy T1     Sustainable Development
Policy T14    Development and the Highway Network
Policy T16    Development – General Parking Requirements

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1      Securing Sustainable development (February 2005)
        PPG3      Housing (2000)
        PPG13     Transport (2001)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance

        Space about dwellings (July 2004)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        The main issue is the redevelopment of a previously developed site in the urban area.

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

2004 04/275/FUL       Permit     Demolition of existing property and erection of six 1 bedroomed flats and one
                                 2 bedroomed flat

Views of Consultees

Kidsgrove Town Council objects to the proposal on the grounds there is insufficient parking in Church Street
and further residential development would add to current parking problems.

The Highway Authority recommend approval subject to visibility splays, vehicular parking and turning to be
provided in accordance with submitted details, repositioning of proposed pedestrian gate, repositioning of
proposed bin store, no surface water discharge, parking space to be communal and permanently marked out,
reinstatement of existing access, bound surface material, ungated access, maximum gradient and cycling
facility provision.

Environmental Health Division raises no adverse comments in respect of the proposal.

Representations

Three letters of objection has been received raising the following concerns:

       Poorly designed internal layout
       Overbearing impact
       Too high a density
       Only one pedestrian access provided
       No disabled access
       Inadequate parking
       Loss of privacy
       Highway safety issues
       Noise nuisance
       Lack of detail on the submitted details
       Concerns over pedestrian gate to existing property
       No information over the public planning gain which is achieved


                                                   2
       Parking in Church Street.
       Construction traffic using Church Street.
       The form, character and scale of the development.

Applicant/agent’s submission

The applicant‟s agent has advised that his client has purchased the adjoining property (No.28) and as such
now wishes to extend the proposal to the gable of No.28

Key Issues

This application is for full permission for the demolition of an existing property (No.30 Church Street) and the
erection of five 1 bedroomed and two 2 bedroomed flats with off street parking spaces for 10 vehicles at the
rear of the property access through a proposed archway off Church Street.

The site has the benefit of planning approval granted in May 2004 for the demolition of the existing property
and the erection of six 1 bedroom and one 2 bedroom flats.

This scheme differs in as much as the width of the proposal is proposed to be increased (by approximately
one metre) to be built up to the gable wall of No.28 which is now in the control of the applicant. The resulting
increase in internal floorspace has created an additional bedroom to one of the units at second floor level. Two
additional car parking spaces have been provided within the revised scheme. There is no change in the
number of flats proposed.

The site is located within the urban area as defined by the adopted Local Plan .

Policy H2 of the Structure Plan and policies H1 and H3 of the Local Plan support housing development within
urban areas and the defined village envelopes which utilises previously developed land as advocated within
PPG3 (Housing). This is a "previously developed site" having been put to residential use.

Policy H5 of the Local Plan states that planning permission will not be granted for additional dwellings on
backland or infill sites where such development would be harmful to the form and character of the area
generally, or the amenities of adjacent residents.

Policy S15 of the Local Plan requires the external design and appearance of all new development or
extensions and alterations to existing buildings to be in visual harmony with the character of the area in which
the development is situated. Policy D2 of the Structure Plan requires development to be informed by, or
sympathetic to, the character and qualities of its surroundings, in its location, scale and design.

Policy S10 of the Local Plan states that, in determining planning applications for any type of development, the
Council will have regard to the likely effect on the quality of life of people in the locality.

Taking account of the above policy considerations, the existence of the planning permission and the
differences between it and the scheme now applied for, the main issues for consideration in the determination
of this application are as followings:

Impact of the Proposal upon the Form and Character of the Area

The surrounding area is predominantly traditional terraced properties built to back of pavement line. Church
Street is on a slight incline resulting in the terraced properties being stepped along its length.

The siting of the proposal is to build to back of pavement line. The proposal would be two storey however the
applicant is proposing to utilise the roof space to provide more accommodation. Due to this the design would
have a lower eaves level though a higher ridge level than that on the adjacent No.28. Both the eaves level and
ridge level would be higher than that on the adjacent No.36. The applicant has attempted to replicate existing
design features found in the street including window opening detail and proportions, eaves dentil courses, and
the provision of a dummy chimney to break up the roofscape. In the proposed use of materials the applicant
has also taken reference from the local street scene by proposing to use both facing bricks and rendering
which are both present in the existing street scene.

Even though the proposal is slightly larger in elevational terms than the adjacent properties, it is considered
that this would not have a material adverse affects upon the form and character of the area in accordance with
policy H5 of the Local Plan, given it continues the terraced design.



                                                   3
     The area has similar types of development. Policy H14 of the Local Plan refers to this kind of development. It
     is considered the proposal does not conflict with the advice found in this policy including access, amenity
     space, landscaping, loss of amenity and noise insulation.

     The surrounding area comprises mainly high density housing and this proposal continues this high density
     which is considered appropriate for the area and in line with current national and local housing planning policy.

     Finally planning permission already exists for a very similar scheme. In terms of the impact upon the form and
     character of the area, the difference between that and this proposal are inconsequential.

     Residential Amenity

     The principal windows to the proposed dwellings are to the front and rear of the property. Given the location
     and orientation of the adjacent residential properties it is considered the proposal would not adversely impact
     on the residential amenity of the adjacent occupiers. There is no material difference in terms of impact upon
     residential amenity between the approved scheme and that now being considered. The Supplementary
     Planning Guidance adopted by the Council in July last year after the approval of the other scheme represents
     a relaxation of the guidance considered in May 2004 insofar as separation distances across a public highway
     are concerned.

     Highway Safety

     The existing parking on Church Street is predominantly on-street. This development would provide 11, as
     opposed to 9, off street parking spaces at the rear of the proposal gaining access through an archway from
     Church Street. One of these spaces is intended for the occupants of No.28. Notwithstanding the comments of
     the Town Council the parking provision proposed is in accordance with guidance found in the Local Plan,
     which in any case refers to maximum rather than minimum parking levels.

     The Highway Authority recommends approval subject to a number of conditions, which were imposed on the
     earlier planning permission or could now be included on any approval and as such it is considered a refusal on
     highway issues cannot be sustained.

     Background Papers
     Planning file
     Development Plan
     National Planning Guidance

     Date report prepared
     6 April 2005




2.   THE DEANSFIELD HOUSE, 98 LANCASTER ROAD, NEWCASTLE
     S HOOTON. 05/138/FUL

     The Application is to renew planning permission for the erection of a three bedroom detached house,
     permitted under reference 99/925/FUL. The dwelling is sited within the rear garden of an existing property
     and access will be shared for both dwellings.

     The application site is within the Stubbs Walk Conservation Area.

     The application has been called to Planning Committee by two Councillors because of public concern and
     lack of detail on the planning file.

     The determination of this application was deferred at your last meeting on 5 April 2005 to enable members to
     visit the site.




                                                        4
RECOMMENDATION

PERMIT subject to the following conditions:

    (i)        Prior approval of materials, including surfacing materials, levels, boundary treatments
               and landscaping
    (ii)       Implementation of approved access details for both dwellings prior to the occupation of
               the approved dwelling.
    (iii)      Tree protection measures during construction.
    (iv)       Removal of permitted development rights.

Reason for Recommendation

The proposal accords with provisions of the development plan for the locality and there have been no material
changes in planning circumstances since the previous approval was made to justify a refusal of planning
permission.

Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

Policy CF4          The reuse of Land and Buildings for Housing
Policy QE1          Conserving and enhancing the Environment
Policy T7           Car parking standards and management

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

Policy D1           Sustainable Forms of Development
Policy D2           The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
Policy H1           Housing provision
Policy H2           Location, phasing and density of housing development
Policy T1A          Sustainable location
Policy NC13         Protection of trees, hedgerows and woodland.
Policy NC19         Conservation Areas

Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1           Sustainable Development
Policy S10          Quality of Life and the Public interest
Policy S15          The design of the Development
Policy H1           Residential development : sustainable location and protection of the countryside
Policy H3           Residential Development – Priority to brownfield sites
Policy H5           Backland and infill sites
Policy T14          Development and the Highway Network
Policy T16          Development – General Parking Requirements
Policy N12          Development and the protection of trees

Other Material Considerations include

            National Planning Policy

            PPS1      Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
            PPG3      Housing (March 2000)
            PPG13     Transport (March 2001)
            PPG15     Planning and the Historic Environment (September 1994)

            Supplementary Planning Guidance

            Space around dwellings (July 2003)

            Sustainable Development Issues

            The issues to address are the location of the site, impact on the Conservation Area and vehicular
            movements.

                                                      5
        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

In February 2000 full planning permission was granted for a single, detached dwelling on this site (99/925/FUL)
following refusal of planning permission in 1999 for a detached dwelling and single garage (99/193/FUL).

Prior to that planning permission had been granted in 1998 for the change of use of the premise from a hotel
to a single dwelling (98/789/COU).

Views of Consultees

The Highway Authority object to the application for the following reasons;

       The proposal makes inadequate provision for parking and independent turning of vehicles within the
        site.
       The proposed development will result in the likelihood of highway danger due to vehicles waiting on
        the public highway and the access being inadequate to allow vehicles to pass.
       The traffic generated would be likely to increase highway danger owing to increase use of the existing
        access which affords restricted pedestrian visibility.

The Environmental Health Division and the Conservation Advisory Working Party have no objections to
the proposal. The Landscape Development Section have no comments. No observations have been received
from Stoke City Council

Representations

Eight letters of objection and a petition with 15 signatories have been received raising the following
concerns/questions:

       The building would be within a Conservation Area.
       The existing hedge and mature tree provides adequate privacy at present but the proposal will
        diminish privacy, safety and security.
       Is there provision to erect a boundary treatment appropriate to the type of property?
       Will assurances be given that none of the trees between the site and adjoining properties be adversely
        affected?
       The development will alter the appearance of this lovely road and the Conservation Area, and create a
        precedent for similar developments.
       Large mature trees have been recently felled with assurances that they would be replaced by an
        orchard.
       During school cars are parked solidly on both sides of the road making it difficult and dangerous to
        enter and leave the site as no visibility is afforded along Lancaster Road. To allow another dwelling
        would add to the existing problem and danger.
       When planning permission was granted the plans did not show existing dwellings to the rear.
       The proposal will disturb the natural wildlife and have detrimental effect on the trees.
       In view of the overprovision of housing land planning permission for another dwelling would be
        irreconcilable.
       A dwelling so close to the existing Victorian properties would be an unattractive proposition.
       The narrow deep gardens are proportionate to the size of these large properties and it is this special
        character which deserves to be preserved.
       It is also questioned whether the Land Registry has been consulted to determine whether it is
        permissible to build a house as proposed.

Key Issues

The application seeks to renew planning permission for a single detached dwelling which was granted
permission in 2000 (99/925/FUL). In accordance with the advice in Circular 11/95 planning permission should
be granted in such circumstances unless there has been a material change in planning circumstances since
the permission was granted; continued failure to begin development will contribute to unacceptable uncertainty


                                                   6
about the future pattern of development in the area; or the application is premature because permission still
has a reasonable time to run. In this case it is considered that the renewal of permission would not contribute
to unacceptable uncertainty, nor it is premature. It is considered, therefore, that the main issues to address
are the principle of the development, impact on the Conservation Area and protected trees, residential amenity
and highway matters to ascertain whether there has been a material change in planning circumstances.

The principle of residential development

Since planning permission was granted in 2000 Government advice on the location of residential development
was amended with the introduction of PPG3 Housing. This guidance seeks to ensure that residential
development takes place, primarily, on brownfield sites in sustainable locations. This particular application site
is the garden of an existing dwelling and as such is defined as a brownfield site or "previously developed land".
In addition the site is located within easy walking distance of Newcastle Town Centre and therefore the
occupiers have good access to the facilities, services and public transport available in such central locations.

The proposed development is in accordance with policy H1 and H3 of the adopted Local Plan as the site is
located within the urban area of Newcastle and is previously developed land.

The latest annual Housing Development Monitoring Report shows that by 2011 there is likely to be an over
provision, in relation to the Structure Plan allocation of 3000 dwellings, by nearly 14%. In response to this the
Council has recently adopted a document that sets out to clarify the way which the Development Plan policy on
housing numbers will be implemented in these circumstances. It indicates that no further residential
development should be permitted in the Borough during the current plan period unless it is on previously
development land and within one or more of the following categories;

       Within or close to the Town Centre (within 500m from the inner ring road) and is of a type and design
        appropriate to a town centre location.
       It makes a positive contribution to regeneration in its widest sense.
       It is part of a comprehensive package of clearance and new build and no net increase in the number
        of dwellings would occur.
       It is on a site of less than 0.15ha (the site and its access is approximately 0.085 ha (or 850 sq.m) in
        area).

In this particular case the proposal is close to the Town Centre and on a site of less than 0.15ha. In this
regard, therefore, the development is considered acceptable.

Policy on backland and infill sites remains unchanged with the adoption of the latest Local Plan.

Impact on the Conservation Area and protected trees

Since the previous decision a new Local Plan has been adopted. The proposal when approved was
considered against policies in the Local Plan adopted in 1995, however the policy requirements for the
consideration of any proposal within a Conservation Area has not changed with the adoption of the latest Local
Plan. The requirement to preserve or enhance the character and appearance of a Conservation Area remain
in the current and in this regard it can be concluded that Local Plan policy has not changed significantly since
the decision was made. Similarly there has been no change in the legislative requirements.

Government advice on the built heritage has not changed in the interim period since the decision was made.
PPS1 has been introduced, and whilst this document places greater emphasis on the need to achieve good
quality design it is not considered that this constitutes a change in planning circumstances given that there has
always been a requirement to consider the impact of development on the character and appearance of
Conservation Areas. PPG15 which specifically deals with built heritage has not been revised since the
previous decision.

The trees within the site are protected through their siting within the Conservation Area. The Landscape
Development Section do not raise objection to the development provided conditions similar to those previously
attached are applied.

Residential Amenity

Since the previous decision new Supplementary Planning Guidance has been adopted on space around
dwellings. The new guidance does not require greater separation distances than the previously adopted
standards, and therefore it is considered that there have been no material changes in planning circumstances
to warrant a refusal of the application at this stage on the grounds of adverse impact on residential amenity.


                                                    7
     Highway Safety

     Whilst there has been planning permission for development at the High School nearby since the previous
     decision, these permissions were on the lower school site and not off Lancaster Road. It is therefore
     considered that the highway circumstances have not changed in any significant way since the previous
     decision, and a refusal on highway safety would not, therefore, be sustainable.

     The Highway Authority previously objected to the application however the Local Planning Authority took a
     different view that the proposed parking and access arrangements were acceptable, and that the provision of
     the pedestrian visibility splay desired by the Highway Authority would involve the partial demolition of the wall
     which would be damaging to the character of the Conservation Area and was not essential.

     Background Papers
     Planning Policy documents referred to
     Planning files referred to

     Date report prepared
     8 April 2005




3.   CREMATORIUM, CHATTERLEY CLOSE, BRADWELL
     NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME BOROUGH COUNCIL. 05/213/DEEM3

     The Application is for the extension of the building and an access ramp to provide disabled access and
     improved waiting facilities. Other external alterations and the works for which planning permission are sought
     form part of a larger scheme of modernisation. The building is located within the urban area as designated on
     the Local Plan Proposals Map.

     RECOMMENDATION

     That subject to consideration being given to any further views of consultees permit subject to the
     following conditions:

           (i)        Materials
           (ii)       Any highways conditions
           (iii)      Benefit of the consent to enure for the Council only

     Reason for Recommendation

     The development is considered to be in accordance with the relevant policies contained within the
     development plan, and the aims of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. There are no other material
     considerations of such weight as to justify refusal.

     Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

     QE3           Creating a high quality built environment for all
     T1            Developing accessibility and mobility within the region

     Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

     D1            Sustainable development
     D2            The design and environmental quality of development

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

     S1            Sustainable development
     S10           Quality of life
     S15           The design of the development
     T4            Access and facilities for disabled people

                                                               8
Other Material Considerations include

        Disability Discrimination Act 1995

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1 Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        The Planning System: General Principles" ( February 2005)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Nil

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

None

Views of Consultees

Environmental Health Division - no objections

Access for the Disabled Committee – satisfied with the provision that has been made for use by disabled
people.

Highway Authority – no objections.

Representations

None

Key Issues

The principal element of the proposal is a small extension to form a larger meeting room with toilet facilities
and a disabled access ramp to the front elevation of the proposed side extension, which will provide disabled
toilets and assist people with mobility impairments accessing the building.

The other external alterations involved include changes to windows and an ornamental framework by the
entrance to the building.

The main issue in relation to this application is whether the design and appearance of the development is
acceptable?

The brick built extension to the western side of the existing building will be small in scale and comprises a
design that is sympathetic to the style of the existing building. It will be located on the side that is away from
the approach road to the crematorium building although the development will still be slightly visible from the
highway. The building is sited within the grounds of the crematorium and is some distance from the nearest
residential properties and surrounded by railings and landscaping.

The design of the small extension and the construction of a ramp will not cause any demonstrable harm to the
visual appearance or character of the streetscene or area. Furthermore it will ensure that access to the
building meet with the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.

Background Papers
Planning policy documents referred to
Planning files referred to

Date report prepared


                                                    9
     11 April 2005




4.   T G HOLDCROFT, KNUTTON ROAD, WOLSTANTON
     HOLDCROFT. 05/229/ADV

     The Application is for provision of 8 advertisements – 2 non-illuminated wall-mounted plaques, 1 illuminated
     wall-mounted plaque, 2 wall-mounted internally illuminated lettering signs, 1 x internally and externally
     illuminated 4.5 m high totem sign, 2 free-standing signs, and 3 twelve metre high flagpoles with 6.05m tall
     flags.

     The site is unallocated within the Local Plan and lies within the Urban Area as designated on the Proposals
     Map of the Local Plan .

     Two Councillors have requested that the application be determined by the Planning Committee due to direct
     impact on the streetscene and not being in-keeping with a residential area.

     RECOMMENDATION

     That subject to consideration being given to the views of the Highway Authority:

          (a)     Refuse consent for the 3 flagpoles because their siting and scale is harmful to the visual
                  amenity and character of the area

          (b)     Grant consent for the wall-mounted, totem and free-standing adverts subject to conditions
                  relating to the following:

                       Any highways matters, including illumination levels

     Reason for Recommendation

     The 3 flag signs are considered to be detrimental to visual amenity, whilst the remaining adverts are
     considered to be acceptable in terms of both amenity and safety . They are also consider to be in compliance
     with the relevant policies contained within the development plan.

     Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

     QE3:       Creating a high quality built environment for all

     Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

     D2         The design and environmental quality of development

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011 :-

     S15        The design of Development
     T14        Development and the Highway Network
     N16        Protection of a Green Heritage Network

     Other Material Considerations include

                National Planning Policy

                PPS1       Delivering Sustainable Communities (February 2005
                PPG19 Outdoor Advertisement Control (March 1992)
                Companion document to PPS1 "The Planning System: General Principles" (February 2005)
                Circular 5/92 - Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisement) Regulations 1992

                Sustainable Development Issues


                                                            10
        Nil

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

1994      94/00501/ADV         Advertisement Signs           Refuse
1994      94/00807/ADV         Advertisements Signs          Permit
2001      01/00668/ADV         Advertisements Signs          Permit
2003      03/00895/ADV         10 Flag Poles and Flags       Refuse

Views of Consultees

Environmental Health Division has no objections to the proposal

Highway Authority – comments awaited

Representations

4 letters of objection have been received raising the following concerns:

       The erection of 3 illuminated structures 12.5m high would be out of keeping with the surrounding area
       Visual impact upon adjacent area of Common Land
       The siting of the 3 flagpoles close to a busy road junction could result in a traffic hazard to drivers
        unfamiliar with the area
       Noise created by flags „flapping‟ in the wind

Key Issues

PPG19 states that the display of outdoor advertisements can only be controlled in the interest of “amenity” and
“public safety”. Paragraphs 11-14 of PPG19 explain what is meant by the term “amenity” – the effect on the
appearance of a building – which is not applicable here – or on the visual amenity in the immediate
neighbourhood in which the sign is to be developed.

The applicant seeks to erect 8 types of advertisement signs on the premises. The key issues for consideration
in the determination of this application are the design of the adverts and impact upon the streetscene and the
impact upon amenity and public safety.

The 3 proposed flagpoles would stand immediately adjacent to the highway boundary with Knutton Road and
Silverdale Road. A previous application in 2003 for 10 flagpoles of a similar design and scale - 5 along each of
the two side boundaries with residential properties - was refused on this site. Although the exact siting differed
to that proposed in this application, the extent of their visual prominence is similar. The proposed siting would
be visually prominent when viewed across the Wolstanton Marsh (part of the Green Heritage network referred
to in policy N16 of the Local Plan) and it is considered that the proposed flagpoles would diminish the
landscape value of that area.

Although representations have been made regarding the potential for noise pollution effecting the neighbouring
properties, it is not considered that such issues can be considered in the operation of advertisement controls
given that only amenity and public safety can be taken into account. Potential noise nuisance is not outlined
within paragraphs 11-14 of PPG19 as one of these issues.

Of the remaining 7 other types of proposed advertisement, the 2 free-standing signs have already been
erected and they are not considered to result in a visually unacceptable addition to the streetscene. The
proposed internally illuminated totem sign would replace a non-illuminated totem sign approved under
(01/668/ADV), sited in the same location and be of the same height and narrower. The totem sign is not
considered to represent an unacceptably detrimental impact upon the visual amenity of the locality. The
remaining adverts proposed would all be wall-mounted varieties – illuminated and non-illuminated. It is
considered that they would not have a detrimental impact upon the appearance of the building upon which they
are to be sited or upon the wider streetscene.

                                                   11
     Background Papers
     Planning policy documents referred to
     Planning files referred to

     Date report prepared
     6 April 2005




5.   MANOR FARM, MANOR ROAD, MADELEY
     MR J S FURNIVAL. 05/139/LBC

     The Application is for listed building consent for the demolition of outbuildings at Manor Farm.

     Manor Farm is a Grade II Listed Building.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Refuse for the following reason:-

         The applicant has failed to produce clear and convincing evidence to show that all reasonable
         efforts have been made to sustain existing uses or find viable new uses for the outbuildings, and
         thus the proposed development does not comply with Policy B4 of the Newcastle-under-Lyme
         Local Plan 2011 or the aims and objectives of PPG 15 which seek to resist demolition of a listed
         building.

     Reason for Recommendation

     The applicant has submitted no evidence to show that the former use of the buildings as stables is no longer
     practicable and no efforts have been made to use the outbuildings as ancillary residential accommodation or to
     find a suitable commercial use for the property. It is not considered that there are any exceptional
     circumstances to justify the demolition of these curtilage Listed Buildings.

     Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011

     Policy D1     Sustainable Forms of Development
     Policy NC1    Listed Buildings

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

     Policy B4     Demolition of Listed Buildings
     Policy B5     Control of Development Affecting the Setting of a Listed Building

     Other Material Considerations include

             National Planning Policy

             PPG15     Planning and the Historic Environment (September 1994)

             Crime and Disorder Act 1998

             This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
             likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
             prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

     Relevant Planning History

     01/50/FUL       Permit      Conversion of adjacent barn to dwelling with granny annexe
     03/12/FUL       Refuse      Conversion of application barn to single dwelling
     03/789/FUL      Permit      open sided milking parlour, collecting yard and holding pens

                                                       12
Views of Consultees

Environmental Health Division – Comments awaited.

English Heritage – No comments.

Conservation Advisory Working Party – recommend refusal on the grounds of inadequate justification.

Staffordshire County Council (Archaeology) – There is potential for important information concerning the
                               th
design and function of early 19 century farm buildings to survive within the building fabric, fixtures and fittings.
Therefore, it is recommended that a building recording should be carried out prior to any stripping out or
demolition and that the archaeologist is present during works to record any further archaeological information
uncovered.

Madeley Parish Council - comments awaited.

Representations

None received to date.

Key Issues

This application is for the demolition of outbuildings within the curtilage of Manor Farmhouse, a Grade II Listed
Building. As "curtilage" buildings the outbuildings are to be treated as if they were Listed even though they are
not expressly mentioned in the Statutory List. The sole issue to consider in determining this application is the
desirability of preserving the buildings.

The buildings to which this application relate are fairly modest traditional farm buildings and are adjacent to,
and behind, the farmhouse. PPG15 states that whilst it is an objective of Government policy to secure the
preservation of historic buildings, there will very occasionally be cases where demolition is unavoidable. It is
stated that clear and convincing evidence should be submitted to show that all reasonable efforts have been
made to sustain existing uses or find viable new uses, and these efforts have failed. Consent to demolish a
building is not acceptable simply because redevelopment is economically more attractive to the developer than
the repair and re-use of the historic building.

Policy B4 of the Local Plan reiterates this advice and states that the Council will resist the total or substantial
demolition of a listed building, unless exceptionally, an applicant can convince the Council that it is not
practicable to continue to use the building for its existing purpose and there is no other viable use.

Part of the building to be demolished was the subject of a planning application in 2003 for conversion of the
barn to a single dwelling (Ref. 03/12/FUL). Permission was refused because it was considered that the
applicant had failed to show that he had made every reasonable attempt to secure a suitable commercial use
of the premises that would be supportive of the rural economy. No appeal was lodged and no subsequent
submission made seeking to address the above concerns.

The applicant‟s justification for the demolition of the buildings is that they are untidy next to the farmhouse and
other proposed property. The proposed property referred to is an existing barn granted planning permission in
2001 (Ref.01/50/FUL) for conversion into a dwelling. In consideration of this application, it was considered that
the loss of the buildings would be damaging to the character of the listed building, and the only way to secure
the future use of the buildings was to provide an alternative use.

An independent report by a structural engineer indicates that the buildings are structurally sound. The applicant
has submitted no evidence to show that the former use of the buildings as stables is no longer practicable and
no efforts have been made to use the outbuildings as ancillary residential accommodation or to find a suitable
commercial use for the property. It is not considered that demolition of these curtilage Listed Buildings is
justified therefore.

Background Papers
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 2011
Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011
PPG15
Planning file



                                                    13
     Date report prepared
     13 April 2005




6.   46 SUTHERLAND DRIVE, NEWCASTLE
     MR & MRS PINKSTONE. 05/240/FUL

     The Application is for a two storey side extension and single storey rear extension on a large detached
     house, located within the Urban area as identified in the Proposals Map of the Local Plan.

     The application has been referred to the Planning Committee for decision at the request of 2 Councillors on
     the grounds that it is not in keeping with the area to have an extension.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Permit subject to the following condition:

             materials to be used shall match those of the existing building.

     Reason for Recommendation

     The proposed development is in accordance with the requirements of policy D2 of the Staffordshire and Stoke-
     on-Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011 and policies S10 and H18 of the Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011
     by virtue of its being of a form, size and location that is subordinate to the original dwelling and in keeping with
     its general character as well as that of the street scene. Furthermore, there will be no adverse affects upon the
     residential amenity of the occupants of neighbouring dwellings, and the dwelling complies with the Council‟s
     Supplementary Planning Guidance.

     Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

     D1       Sustainable Forms of Development
     D2       The Design and Environmental Quality of Development

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

     S1       Sustainable development
     S10      Quality of life and the public interest
     S15      The Design of Development
     S17      Design of new buildings and alterations
     H18      Design of residential extensions
     T16      General parking requirements

     Other Material Considerations

              Relevant National Policy Guidance

              PPS1     Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
              PPG3     Housing (March 2000)
              The Planning System – General Principles ( February 2005)

              Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

              Space about Dwellings (July 2004)

              Crime and Disorder Act 1998

              This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
              likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
              prevent crime and disorder in its area.”


                                                         14
Relevant Planning History

There is no relevant planning history on the site.

Representations

A letter of representation has been received from agents acting for the occupiers of one of the property‟s to the
side expressing concern about the height of the new external side brick wall (there being a difference in slab
levels between the two properties) and the dominance of it. The agent has submitted an alternative proposal
for consideration by the applicant.

Applicant/agent’s submission

None submitted

Key Issues

This application is for full planning permission for the construction of a two-storey extension to the side of a
two-storey, part gable fronted, detached property, along with a small single storey, rear extension. The
property to which the application relates is located within a residential area comprising properties of different
styles and design. The rear extension is of a very minor and inconsequential nature.

The main issues for consideration in the determination of this application are visual and residential amenity.

Visual Amenity

Policy H18 of the Local Plan requires residential extensions to be of materials and a design to fit in with those
of the dwelling to be extended and not to detract materially from the character of the original dwelling. In
achieving this, the form, size and location of the extension should be subordinate to the design of the original
dwelling. It is also required that an extension must not detract materially from the integrity of the original design
of the group of dwellings that form the street scene or the setting.

The proposed two-storey side extension has a setback of 1.3 m from the face of the front facing projecting
gable at both ground and first floor level. Although the roof is a continuation of the original roofline, the limited
width of the extension, and its design features make it a subordinate addition to the property being extended
and one that would not harm the balance, or the overall visual amenity of the street scene, which features a
variety of different styles and design of dwellings.

In terms of appearance the extension includes design features that match those of the existing building, and
providing a condition is attached to ensure the materials used in the construction of the extension match those
of the existing building it is considered that the proposed extension is acceptable in design terms.

Furthermore the proposal is of a form, size and location that is in keeping with the character of the original
dwelling, by virtue of its design, first floor and ground floor setback and limited width. As a result the extension
would not harm the character of the original property or of the street scene. The proposal is therefore
acceptable in terms of visual amenity so as to comply with the policy guidance outlined above.

Residential Amenity

Notwithstanding the objection received due to the interrelationship between the application site, the proposed
extension and the neighbouring properties and taking into account the difference in levels, the extension is not
considered to be overbearing or result in a material loss of light to the neighbouring properties.

There are no ”principal” windows, as defined in the SPG, on the side elevations of either of the two adjacent
dwellings number 44 or 48 Sutherland Drive, and the large gardens of the Sutherland Drive properties ensure
residential amenity for the occupiers of the house to the rear will also not be affected. Properties facing onto
the site are some distance away, and the required spacing distance is achieved.

As such the proposal is considered to be acceptable in terms of its impact on residential amenity in the area.

Background Papers
Planning File
Planning documents referred to



                                                     15
     Date report prepared
     13 April 2005




7.   BETLEY COURT FARM, MAIN ROAD, BETLEY
     MR & MRS SPEED. 05/63/COU

     The Application is for a barn conversion to a design studio, workshop for the manufacture of curtains and
     soft furnishings and storage area for curtains and soft furnishings, with alterations to the existing access
     including the removal and replacement of the front boundary wall and piers.

     The site lies within the North Staffordshire Green Belt, an Area of Active Landscape Conservation and Betley
     Conservation Area as indicated on the Local Plan Proposals Map.

     Main Road, Betley is part of the A531. The section of road fronting the site is the subject of a 30 mph speed
     restriction.

     The application has been called to Planning Committee by two Councillors because of the potential conflict
     between farm diversification and conservation.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Refuse due to adverse impact of the proposed relocation of the front boundary wall upon the
     character and appearance of the Betley Conservation Area.

     Reason for Recommendation

     Whilst the need for farm diversification is recognised and the reuse of redundant traditional farm buildings
     within the Conservation Area is to be encouraged, it is considered that the harm to the character of this part of
     the Betley Conservation Area as a result of relocating the boundary wall would be significant, contrary to
     policies within the development plan, and would outweigh the above benefits.

     Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Spatial Strategy 2004

     Policy QE3      The Conservation, Enhancement and Restoration of the Region‟s Landscape

     Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011

     Policy D1       Sustainable Forms of Development
     Policy D2       The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
     Policy D4       Managing Change in Rural Areas
     Policy D5B      Development in the Green Belt
     Policy E9       The Rural Economy
     Policy T1A      Sustainable Location
     Policy T16      Car Parking
     Policy NC1      Protection of the Countryside: General Considerations
     Policy NC2      Landscape Protection & Restoration
     Policy NC19     Conservation Areas

     Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

     Policy S1       Sustainable Development
     Policy S3       Development in the Green Belt
     Policy S15      The Design of Development
     Policy E12      The Conversion of Rural Buildings
     Policy T1       Sustainable Development
     Policy T14      Development & the Highway Network
     Policy T16      Development – General Parking Requirements
     Policy N18      Areas of Active Landscape Consideration
     Policy B9       Prevention of harm to Conservation Areas


                                                        16
Policy B10       The Requirement to Preserve or Enhance the Character or Appearance of a Conservation
                 Area
Policy B11       Demolition in Conservation Areas

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS 1    Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG2     Green Belts (January 1995)
        PPS7     Sustainable Development in Rural Areas (2004)
        PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
        PPG15 Planning and the Historic Environment (September 1994)
        The Planning System - General Principles (2005)

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

2001      01/520/COU       Permission for change of use of agricultural building to interior design
                           office/workroom.
2004      04/769/COU       Withdrawn – conversion of barn to commercial use.

Views of Consultees

Environmental Health Division – No objections

The Highway Authority – indicate that they have no objections subject to conditions which reflect in the main
details shown on the submission

Betley, Balterley and Wrinehill Parish Council – recommends approval because it recognises the need to
diversify and supports local businesses and the use of buildings to ensure their preservation. Also, the Council
believes that the historical streetscene would not be damaged by the repositioning of the wall as the existing
materials would be re-used as far as possible.

Conservation Advisory Working Party – No objections subject to the use of material to match existing

Representations

Nil received to date.

Applicant’s/Agent’s submission

The applicant‟s agent has submitted a supporting statement and the main points are as follows:

       The principle and use of the barn is as for the original application, 04/00769/COU, and as before, the
        conversion can be done without the need to alter in any material manner the external appearance of
        the barn.
       The barn is in a sound structural state and will only require minor external repair works to make it
        suitable for the intended use.
       The barn will be used for a design studio, workshop for the manufacturing of curtains and furnishings
        and a storage area for furnishings.
       It is anticipated that the development will provide employment for two additional staff, dependent upon
        the success of the venture.
       It is not expected that the number of parking spaces required will need to be increased as the existing
        activities such as the farm and the permitted commercial uses do not take up all the available parking
        space. Nevertheless, the plans indicate that it would be possible to mark out seven vehicle spaces
        within the existing yard.
       Local and national policies support barn conversion schemes where commercial uses are proposed
        and promote the diversification of farms to assist with their economic viability.

                                                  17
       The applicant still prefers to use the existing site access as it serves the best functional needs of the
        farm, however in recognition of the concerns of the Highway Authority, he is prepared to improve the
        alignment of the access by forming visibility splays. This will involve re-siting the front boundary wall on
        a new splay line.

Key Issues

This report concerns an application for planning permission. The demolition works to the wall involved in the
scheme require conservation area consent. No application for conservation area consent has been submitted
but the information that would form part of such an application for conservation area consent is included within
this application. The publicity given to the proposal explicitly referred to the works to the wall.

Given the location of the site within the Green Belt and the Betley Conservation Area, it is considered that the
key issues to be addressed in consideration of this application are as follows:

       Whether the development is appropriate or inappropriate in Green Belt terms.
       If inappropriate, whether very special circumstances exist to justify approval.
       Whether the development conflicts with other policies relating to development in the countryside.
       Whether the development would have any significant impact on highway safety.
       Whether there would be any adverse impact on the character of the Betley Conservation Area.

Appropriate or inappropriate development in the Green Belt?

Local and national planning policy advises against allowing inappropriate development in the Green Belt. Such
policies give support to the re-use of existing buildings provided the use itself and any associated uses of land
surrounding them will not have a materially greater impact on the openness or quality of the Green Belt. The
proposal would relate to the existing commercial use granted planning permission in 2001 in the adjoining barn
(01/520/FUL) and could be accommodated without any impact on the main farming activity of the site. It is not
considered that the proposed use would have any significant impact on the openness of the Green Belt. There
are a number of other criteria such as that the building must not require complete or major reconstruction, and
be in keeping with its surroundings. These criteria are met and thus the development is “appropriate” in Green
Belt terms and there is no need to demonstrate very special circumstances.

Compliance with policy on the reuse of rural buildings

Local Plan policy relating to the conversion of rural buildings seeks conversions for commercial/business uses
as a priority, and states that the building should be structurally sound and not require rebuilding or significant
extension. PPS7 is broadly supportive of such reuse.

The proposed conversion relates to a commercial use. Although no structural report has been submitted, the
building does appear to be structurally sound. The external alterations proposed are relatively minor and
include the replacement of the doors and windows within the existing openings and the re-pointing of all
defective areas of brickwork. No extensions are involved.

The specific policy on employment conversions lists a number of additional criteria and these will be returned
to below

The conversion of this rural building appears acceptable in principle therefore.

Any conflict with policies on development in the countryside?

Policy NC1 of the Structure Plan seeks to protect the countryside for its own sake and Policy NC2 sets out a
list of criteria by which applications should be determined. Policy N18 of the Local Plan allocates the area for
active landscape conservation and requires that development helps to conserve the high quality and character
of the landscape.

Being a conversion with very little external alteration, it is not considered that the proposal would have any
adverse impact on the character of the landscape.

Insofar as this business use may assist in the farmer‟s need to diversify and supports businesses in this rural
locality, it is to be positively supported.

Highway safety



                                                    18
Highway safety is a material consideration in planning decisions. Policy T14 of the Local Plan indicates that
developments that significantly harm the safety of the highway network will not be permitted, whilst policy E12
requires rural employment conversions not to involve the use of an unsatisfactory access to and from the
public highway. The visibility at the existing access to the site onto the A531 is extremely poor. The access
serves part of the farm, the existing house that also operates as a bed and breakfast facility as well as the
existing interior design business. The application states that the development will provide employment for two
additional staff and one additional vehicle will visit the site during a normal working day. In floorspace terms the
existing “showroom/storage area/interior design business” occupies about a room that is less than one third of
the size of the additional floorspace that it is now proposed to convert. The Highway Authority in its response
on the previous proposal, which did not involve any alterations to the access, recommended refusal on the
grounds that the development would result in an intensification of the use of a substandard access such as to
increase the likelihood of highway danger, and although the application was not determined, this advice was
accepted by your officer.

The application now submitted is for the same use of the building but includes taking down and rebuilding the
front boundary wall to achieve a new visibility splay line. Previously, the Highway Authority has recommended
the provision of 2m x 90m visibility splays on each side of the access. Although the visibility standards now
proposed would be less than previously recommended (at least in the most important direction), the Highway
Authority have advised that they are of the opinion that there will be “minimal intensification of use of the
access such that the proposed alterations to the boundary walls will represent a significant improvement in
highway safety as a result of improved visibility”.

To avoid alterations to the boundary wall, alternative accesses to the site have been considered. An access
some 65 metres to the south of the existing entrance is considered the better one with regards to visibility,
however, it would appear that there is no pedestrian or vehicular link through to the parking area and the land
to either side of the access is not within the ownership of the applicant to enable sufficient visibility splays to be
secured. It would appear therefore, that there is no alternative to the use of the existing access.

Impact on the Conservation Area

Local and national planning policies seek to protect and enhance the character and appearance of
Conservation Areas and development that is contrary to those aims will be resisted. There is a statutory duty
upon the Local Planning Authority to pay special attention to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the
character and appearance of Conservation Areas in the exercise of planning functions.

It is not considered that either the physical conversion works or the proposed use would have an adverse
impact on the character or appearance of this part of the Betley Conservation Area, and indeed the scheme
has merits in this regard in that it provides a new use for what is a redundant traditional farm building.

However, to achieve the necessary highway visibility, it is proposed to take down the front boundary wall for
distance along the frontage of some 50 metres and rebuild it along the back of new visibility splay lines. The
wall would be rebuilt in the existing brickwork or brickwork to match the existing and the brick piers would be
reinstated to match the existing. The coping would be refixed.

The front boundary wall forms part of a substantial length of wall stretching from Brook Cottage to the south of
the site to Betley Court Farm to the north. The wall is parallel and immediately adjacent to the highway along
its full length, on a corner, and it forms a very strong, prominent feature in the streetscene and in the
Conservation Area. It is considered that by setting the wall back from the highway, albeit using the existing
brickwork, the character and appearance of the wall and its contribution to the streetscene would be altered
significantly. The alterations to the wall would have an adverse impact on the character and appearance of the
Conservation Area therefore.

The harm to the character of this part of the Betley Conservation Area as a result of relocating the boundary
wall would it is considered be significant and outweighs the benefits to the Conservation Area arising from the
reuse of the traditional building. Given the duty to pay special attention to this issue, outweighing all others, a
recommendation of refusal is made.

Background Papers
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 2011
Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011
PPS 1 and 7
PPG 2, 13 and 15
Planning file



                                                     19
     Date report prepared
     13 April 2005




8.   300 HIGH STREET, SILVERDALE
     MR & MRS M A NADIN. 05/140/FUL

     The Application is for detached cottage in a side garden. The site lies within the urban area as designated in
     the Proposals Map of the Local Plan

     The application has been referred to the Planning Committee at the request of 2 councillors due to concerns
     of local people in the area.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Refuse permission for the following reasons:

         (i)         The proposed development would be harmful to the form and character of the surrounding
                     area being a cramped over-dominant development out of character with the immediate
                     area, contrary to relevant local and national policies.

         (ii)        The proposed development, by reason of its proximity and relationship to the existing
                     dwelling at No.300 would not achieve required privacy standards, contrary to relevant local
                     and national policies

         (iii)       The proposed development fails to provide adequate vehicular access arrangements, car
                     parking and turning facilities, leading to an adverse impact on highway safety contrary to
                     relevant local and national policies.

     Reason for Recommendation

     The proposed development does not accord with relevant provisions of the development plan for the reasons
     indicated above, and there are no other material considerations in this case which would justify approval in
     such circumstances.

     Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

     West Midlands Spatial Strategy 2004

     QE3:        Creating a high quality built environment

     Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 2011

     Policy D1           Sustainable forms of development
     Policy D2           The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
     Policy H1           Housing Provision
     Policy H2           Location, Phasing and density of housing development
     Policy H5           Housing renewal
     Policy H7           Windfall Sites
     Policy T1A          Sustainable Locations
     Policy T16          Car Parking
     Policy T18A         Transport and Development

     Newcastle Under Lyme Local Plan 2011

     Policy S1           Sustainable development
     Policy S4           Development and brownfield, derelict or potentially contaminated land
     Policy S10          Quality of Life and the Public Interest
     Policy S15          The Design of Development
     Policy S17          Design of New Buildings and Significant Alterations to Existing Buildings
     Policy H1           Residential development: sustainable location and protection of the countryside


                                                             20
Policy H3       Residential Development – priority to brownfield sites
Policy H5       Backland and infill sites
Policy H17      Residential design and development
Policy T1       Sustainable Development
Policy T14      Development and the Highway Network
Policy T16      Development – general parking requirements

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1    Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG3    Housing (March 2000)
        PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
        Companion document to PPS1 - "The Planning System: General Principles" (February 2005)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance

        Space about Dwellings (adopted July 2004)
        Staffordshire Residential Design Guide

        Housing Clarification Report – August 2004

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

None.

Views of Consultees

Severn Trent Water – has no objections to the proposal subject to a condition requiring the prior submission of
details for the disposal of both surface water and foul sewerage and the carrying out of the approved works
prior to development commencing.

Environmental Health Division – No objection.

Highway Authority - Recommend refusal. The proposed development will result in danger to road users due
to vehicles waiting on the public highway because the access is geometrically inadequate to accommodate
passing vehicles and traffic generated by the proposal would increase the use of an access that affords poor
pedestrian visibility. Also the proposal fails to provide adequate turning facilities to the existing and proposed
properties.

Landscape Development Section – Could not comment on the application until a detailed tree survey
showing existing and proposed site levels, accurate crown spreads and tree heights and condition has been
submitted.

Silverdale Parish Council – No objection

Railtrack – Object as any new development where the railway is in cutting would potentially increase the
loading on their embankment. The applicant should supply loading calculations to Network Rail for inspection
and approval.

Representations

None.

Key Issues




                                                   21
The proposal is for construction of a two storey, detached house in the side garden of 300 High Street which
occupies a backland position in relation to other High Street properties and is a substantial traditional two
                                              2
storey brick dwelling on a large plot (1475m ) which has had a number of extensions over the years. The
current proposal has the following details:

    
                                                                                                       2
        The site on which the house is to be built would have an area of approximately 240m , leaving
                             2
        approximately 1235m for the original house (including the accessway).
       The proposed house would be 6.8m wide, 10.05m deep and 7.5m high.
    
                                                         2                                          2
        The property would have a footprint area of 53m and a floor area of approximately 106m .
       The exterior walls would be clad in brick and the roof would be clay tiles to match the existing house.
       The house would have two storeys.
       The roof would be of gabled form with additional front and rear gable features.

Taking account of the above policies the main issues for consideration in the determination of this application
are as follows:

       The principle of the development.
       Impact upon the form and character of the area
       Residential amenity.
       Impact on the safety and efficiency of the adjacent Highway

Principle of the development

Policy H2 and H7 of the Structure Plan and policies H1 and H3 of the Local Plan support housing development
within urban areas which utilises previously developed land as advocated within PPG3 (Housing). The
emphasis is on a sequential and managed release of residential land with priority being given to the
development of previously developed urban sites in preference to greenfield or rural brownfield sites. This site
forms part of the garden area of an existing residential property, is previously developed land and by virtue of
its size meets one of the exception criteria set out in the Housing Clarification Report.

However Policy H5 of the Local Plan states that planning permission will not be granted for additional dwellings
on backland or infill sites where such development would be harmful to the form and character of the area
generally, or the amenities of adjacent residents. These matters are discussed below.

Impact of the proposal upon the form and character of the area

Policy S15 of the Local Plan requires the external design and appearance of all new developments to be in
visual harmony with the character of the area in which the development is situated. Policy D2 of the Structure
Plan requires development to be informed by, or sympathetic to, the character and qualities of its
surroundings, in its location, scale and design.

The site consists of a small portion of the southwestern side garden space for 300 High Street. The proposal
relates to a two-storey detached house with a front and rear gable feature in an area that consists
predominantly of smaller terraced houses and semi-detached bungalows with a few larger detached houses.
In terms of the architecture and design the proposed dwelling is in keeping with the properties in the
surrounding area, and the context of the adjacent dwelling. It is also noted that the proposal would not be
readily visible from the street, so that the character of the streetscene would not be significantly harmed.

However, it is noted that there is a range of house types in the area on a range of plot sizes. Houses with small
footprints have smaller plot sizes and those with larger footprints having larger plots. The proposed dwelling
would have a larger footprint and smaller overall plot size than the adjacent two bedroomed terraced dwellings
and a much smaller garden than existing dwellings, which would contrast with the character and form of the
area. The triangular shape of the property would lead to the dwelling dominating the garden space. It is
considered that the proposal would result in a cramped development that would be incommensurate with the
character of the area and to the detriment of visual amenity of neighbouring property owners.

It is considered that the over development of the site would detract from the form and character of the
surrounding area as well as being unsympathetic to its immediate environment. Allowing the proposal would
also set a precedent for future applications for other similarly inappropriate backland developments in this
area.

Residential amenity




                                                   22
Policy S10 of the Local Plan states that, in determining planning applications for any type of development, the
Council will have regard to the likely effect on the quality of life of people in the locality. There are two aspects
to consider, being the residential amenity of existing adjoining dwellings and the residential amenity that would
be available to the occupants of the existing and proposed dwellings on the application site.

Of particular concern is that the proposal would result in a reduction of the residential amenity that would be
available to the occupants of the existing dwelling. The fact that the application is made by the owners of 300
High Street does not diminish this concern. There would be a significant interlooking between the property and
300 High Street due to the front windows of the development facing some of 300 High Street‟s principal
windows (as defined in the SPG) as well as both of the conservatories, one of which appears to be utilised as a
sitting room. There would be no material loss in daylight terms for 300 High Street. However, the proposed
building would, by reason of its position relative to the existing house, not meet the distance standards set out
within the SPG with respect to principal windows and privacy.

It is considered that the proposal site is of an insufficient size to accommodate a single dwelling whilst not
compromising the reasonable living conditions of nearby dwellings and meeting the requirements of the SPG.
It is considered that the proposal would materially affect the residential amenity of adjoining properties,
particularly 300 High Street and that of the proposed house itself. The development is therefore considered
unacceptable with regard to Policies H5 and S10.

Highway issues

Policy T14 of the Newcastle Local Plan states that development that would significantly harm the safety and
efficient use of the highway network will not be permitted. Policy T16 of the Newcastle under Lyme Borough
Council Local Plan 2011 states that the design and layout of any parking provided for residential development
should accord with the Staffordshire Residential Design Guide.

Access to the site would be off High Street (B5044) via a long (35m) narrow (3.5m) poorly formed single lane
driveway presently serving 300 High Street. The proposal includes 2 car parking spaces to the side of the
proposal for the development and the existing property would utilise the existing garage. The Newcastle Under
Lyme Local Plan 2011 states that for a 2 or three bedroomed house a maximum of 2 car parking spaces
should be provided and that significant underprovision could make a proposal unacceptable.

The Highway Authority have recommended refusal for the development as it would impact on the safety of the
highway for three reasons:

       The access is geometrically inadequate to allow the passing of vehicles resulting in vehicles waiting on
        the roadside.
       Insufficient pedestrian visibility is provided.
       Inadequate provision is made for the independent turning of vehicles within the site curtilage of the
        existing and proposed houses.

The plan shows a very limited area available for a vehicle to manoeuvre in and it is considered highly unlikely
that a vehicle could in reality manoeuvre into and out of the proposal site in forward gear. With the gates and
fences proposed two standard parking spaces could only be provided within the hardstanding area shown if
one car was parked behind the first. This would completely preclude any on site manoeuvring at all and would
result in cars being backed down a long narrow driveway on the B5044. The creation of the new property
would also restrict the car parking and manoeuvring area available to the existing dwelling and would make it
difficult to manoeuvre a vehicle into and out of the garage within the bounds of the present hardstanding area.
It is also noted that the construction of the fence and gates along the site boundaries as shown on the site plan
would restrict access to both properties making it difficult to access either of these properties by car.

As there is no ability for vehicles to pass on the driveway and the current access arrangements would result in
protracted and complex on site manoeuvres, it is considered the proposal would result in a conflict between
users of the access that would result in vehicles having to wait on the public highway thus having an adverse
impact on highway safety. It is also probable that vehicles from the proposal site would have to reverse along
the driveway and onto the highway to exit the site exacerbating problems. Insufficient pedestrian visibility splays
are provided at the entrance to the site due to trees and structures adjacent to the boundary and it is
considered that an intensification of the use of the site would exacerbate this situation to the detriment of
pedestrian safety.




                                                    23
     Other Issues

     A further matter was raised by Railtrack with respect to the increase in loading on the embankment that would
     occur if the house were constructed. It is considered that this matter could be resolved through the submission
     of loading calculations to Railtrack for their approval, and that this could be secured by an appropriately
     worded condition.

     The Landscape Development Syndicate was unable to comment on the application and any potential impact
     on existing vegetation and landscape values due to the provision of insufficient information. In subsequent
     discussions it has been confirmed that the trees in question are not the subject of a Tree Preservation Order or
     of such amenity value as to justify a refusal of planning permission in itself.

     Background Papers
     PPS1
     PPG3
     PPG13
     Local Plan
     Structure Plan
     Planning Files referred to

     Date report prepared
     12 April 2005




9.   81 CLAYTON ROAD, NEWCASTLE
     MR A R TROWERS. 05/167/COU

     The Application is for a change of use of premises from retail use (Class A1) to use partly as a Café (Use
     Class A3), and part for take away of cold food, at a currently vacant shop unit, located on the end of a small
     parade of shops.

     The site lies within the urban area as designated on the Local Plan Proposals Map.

     At the request of two councillors this application has been referred to the Planning Committee for
     determination. It is indicated that the reason for this request is the concern of residents at the risk of anti-
     social behaviour.

     RECOMMENDATION

     Permit subject to the following conditions:

            Opening hours as per application
            Consent to be for new use class A3 (Restaurant and Café Use Class) and not for A5 (Hot food
             takeaway Use Class)
            Any take away to be limited to cold food only
            Details of extraction/odour system
            Details of any air cooling/air extraction equipment
            Prevention of food debris entering the drainage system by grease traps
            Refuse storage
            Prevention of outside dining
            Consent does not relate to any external signage or shopfront alterations

     Reason for Recommendation

     The unit is located in a parade of shops that offers a variety of services, to the local residents. The application
     is not considered to therefore materially reduce the level of goods or services currently on offer. The opening
     hours of the café are less than those of an adjoining retail use and the use would not result in the adverse
     impact on residential amenity. Subject to the application of appropriate conditions as listed above the proposal
     is considered to accord with the provisions of the development plan for the area and there are no other
     material considerations which would justify refusal.



                                                        24
Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Spatial Strategy 2004

T2      Reducing the need to travel

Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011

D1      Sustainable forms of development
D2      The design and environmental quality of development
T1A     Sustainable location
TC4     Local Shops

Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

S1      Sustainable development
S10     Quality of life and the public interest
S11     Crime and disorder
S12     Noise nuisance
R15     Non-retail uses in District centres and other groups of shops
T1      Sustainable locations
T14     Development and the Highway Network
T16     Development – General Parking requirements

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1     Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG4     Industrial, commercial and small firms (November 1994)
        PPS6     Town Centres and Retail Development (March 2005)
        PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
        The Planning System - General Principles (2005)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

        Hot food Takeaways (1996)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Infrastructure and the re-use of existing buildings

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

Although there is no previous history for this particular unit, there is a record of planning history for some of the
other units within the parade. The most relevant past application to this case was in 1998, and was a refusal
for a change of use from retail unit to fish and chip shop at 91 Clayton Road.

Views of Consultees

Environmental Health Division note the very close proximity of residential properties which are located to the
rear and side of the unit. The view is expressed that the problem of food odours can be overcome by a suitable
fume extract ventilation system, and can overcome other issues including potential obstruction of drainage and
noise from equipment. They consider the site falls within a Category A – primarily residential area – as
described in the SPG where the Council will not normally grant permission for a hot food takeaway. In
conclusion the Environmental Health Division have no objection providing a number of conditions are
attached, concerning a range of matters including hours of operation, restriction of use, restrictions on hours of
deliveries, fume extraction and air cooling equipment, prevention of debris entering the drainage system,


                                                    25
refuse storage and litter disposal and collection arrangements. The Division does not object to the use of the
premises as a hot food takeaway subject to the above restrictions.

Staffordshire Police - observe that the area around this parade of shops has historically been associated with
nuisance behaviour of youths and criminal damage. Certain physical measures including fencing and a
scheme of landscaping have been installed which appears to have been successful in reducing these
problems. Any proposal which might encourage a return to these previous problems would be objected to by
the police. Places that serve hot (particularly takeaway) food can be a focus of attraction to youths, but the
restriction on hours, the specimen menu and seating layout all suggest that the youth market is not the one the
applicant is seeking to attract. A hot food takeaway would make the location more attractive to youths with the
potential for crime and anti-social behaviour to return. The Police do not object but having in mind the
concerns that a change of use could alter the status quo in future they request the Planning Authority impose
conditions restricting the hours of operation and prevent the sale of hot food for consumption off the premises.

Representations

There has been 14 letters of objection concerning:

       The shop will be a distraction for drivers looking for it as it is tucked away in the corner of the parade
       People using the site will increase parking problems as the current parking facilities are not friendly to
        larger vehicles, are unsigned and would also cause further congestion on one of the main routes to
        Junction 15 of the M6
       The application could encourage the previous problem of youths gathering outside the premises.
       As the „Spar‟ shop sells alcohol and is open until a similar time as the proposal it could lead to anti-
        social behaviour
       The possibility of dining outside would cause obstruction to the other shops
       The possibility of a take away service would result in increased litter
       Potential of public health risk as waste food would encourage vermin.
       Cooking smells would be smelt in the gardens of the houses
       The current application could lead to other applications for different activities on the site
       Increase in noise from people and cars using the site
       Concern over drainage
       Café not required in a residential area

Applicant/agent’s submission

The agent has submitted a supporting statement, and although this can be viewed in full at the Council Offices,
the main points put forward are:

       The shop would create 3-4 jobs.
       Extraction equipment will be discussed at a later date with the EHO and can be secured by condition.
       Customer parking is available at the rear, with separate staff parking within the fenced compound of
        the unit.
       A row of houses is located to the North, with the adjacent house being no. 79 Clayton Road. The gable
        of this dwelling is separated from the unit by a pedestrian walkway, and to the rear exists a 2m high
        fence.
       The row of shops serves a local need, being situated within a predominantly residential area, and
        attracts passing traffic, being sited on a busy commuter route with ample parking. Bus stops exist
        outside the unit on both sides of Clayton Road.
       There are seven units within the row, including this unit. Five of the units fall within Class A1 and one
        within Class A2, and as such, there is a wide range of goods on offer to the local population, and the
        use of this unit to a café would not undermine the vitality and viability of the centre.
       The applicant considers that the location is ideal for a café with combined sandwich bar (take away
        sales) and that the use would complement the shopping experience of the parade of shops
       The amenities of the occupiers of the adjacent dwellings would not be adversely affected by the
        proposed use.
       The proposal is to open the café no later than 2100 hours Monday to Friday, 1800 hours on Saturdays
        and no opening on Sunday and the applicant is happy to accept a condition that restricts hours of
        opening to these hours. The 2100 hours closing time is earlier than appropriate than that of the
        adjacent Spar shop, and the applicant accepts that if open later, it may result in anti-social behaviour
        that would not be appropriate for the area.

Key Issues


                                                   26
The application as submitted was for a Change of use from retail (A1 Use Class) to café (A3 –Food and Drink
Use Class), with the provision for sales of take away sandwiches. Since the submission the revision of the Use
Classes Order has come into force and the A3 Use Class has now been replaced by the A3, A4 and A5 Use
Classes. A3 is now the Restaurant and cafes Use Class, the use being for the sale of food and drink for
consumption on the premises, whilst Use Class A5 refers to use for the sale of hot food for consumption off
the premises. Given the applicant‟s description of his proposal the relevant new use Class is the A3 use class
with an ancillary A1 (retail) element. The unit in question is located in a parade of shops within the residential
area of Clayton. Although the proposal gives illustrative details of the proposed fascia, these are not of
sufficient detail to approve and it is anticipated that advertisements and fascias would be the subject of a
further planning application.

The main key issues relating to this application are:

       Would the proposal result in a significant loss of retailing in the area?
       Are there any effects on residential amenity?
       Other material considerations

Significant loss of retailing in the area?

The unit is one of seven in a parade of shops, but does not form part of a district centre. Although Policy TC4 of
the Structure Plan and R15 of the Local Plan seek to prevent development that would result in the loss of
retailing units if it would be detrimental to the type and range of goods on offer, five out of the seven units here
are class A1 (retail), with only one A2 (Financial and Professional Services). The change of this unit from A1
would therefore not materially reduce the amount or type of services offered within this location. A café could
be considered to add to the diversity on offer, and the use applied for includes an ancillary retail element – the
sale of sandwiches.

It is therefore concluded that the development would be in accordance with Structure Plan and Local Plan
policies, and would not result in an adverse impact on the vitality or viability of any district or town centre.

Effects on residential amenity?

Although the front elevation of the site faces onto the main road, there are some residential properties within
close proximity to the site. However when assessing the application, regard should be given to the proposed
opening hours, and in this case, the business would be aimed at the day time and early evening trade. Taking
into account the uses of the adjacent unit on the site, these hours would be consistent with the opening hours
of this adjoining unit, and the proposal would not be considered to have a detrimental impact on the area. As
the unit is located below street level, accessed via ramps and stairs this would provide a sound barrier for the
residents of the houses opposite on Abbots Way from any noise of people entering and leaving the unit. The
advice of the Environmental Health Division is that it is possible to address a range of residential concerns by
the attachment of conditions relating to a number of matters, although some only apply to a hot food takeaway.
Subject to the inclusion of the conditions listed in the recommendation section it is therefore not considered that
there would be any demonstrable harm on residential amenity.

Other Material Considerations

Although numbers 89 and 91 Clayton Road, (other units in the parade) have been subject to refused
applications for hot food take away, (application numbers N/12019 and 98/142/COU), this application is
seeking a change of use to a sit in café, with the ancillary sales of cold sandwiches for take away purposes.

The proposed development would not result in the main use of the unit as a take away but in a place where
people eat in, therefore not resulting in the adverse impact on residential amenity. Although it is proposed that
there will be an element of take away this could be conditioned to cold food only. Members will note that this
approach is that sought by the Police.

With respect to the matter of highway safety the premises are adjacent to a bus lay-by that in turn adjoins
Clayton Road, which is part of the Strategic Highway Network as designated in the Structure Plan. There is
however a substantial car park serving the parade and whilst no formal consultation has been carried out with
the Highway Authority, the Highway Authority have verbally indicated that because of the car park and the
nature of the proposed use applied for they have no concerns.

Through the use of conditions, the application can be controlled and there are no other material considerations
that would justify a refusal.


                                                    27
      Background Papers
      Planning application File
      Background Papers referred to

      Date report prepared
      12 April 2005




10.   LAND OFF WETHERBY CLOSE AT THE REAR OF 91 LONDON ROAD, CHESTERTON
      MR & MRS WOAKES. 05/133/FUL

      The Application proposes the erection of a three-storey building containing 4 self-contained flats (2 per floor)
      with four single garages at ground floor level

      The proposal site fronts onto Wetherby Close, which leads off London Road, and stands at the rear of 89 and
      91 London Road. The site lies within the urban area as designated on the Local Plan Proposals Map

      Two Councillors have requested that the application be determined by the Planning Committee due to
      concerns by residents.

      RECOMMENDATION

      Refuse for the following reason:

           (i)      The development, by reason of its scale and mass relative to the site area, and limited plot
                    depth and inadequate space to the rear of the building and insubstantial area available for
                    landscaping, would be a cramped and intrusive form of overdevelopment, contrary to
                    relevant local and national policies on such matters.

      Reason for Recommendation

      Whilst there is merit in the innovative design proposed and there is no objection to the principle of residential
      development proposed it is considered that by reason of its scale and mass relative to the size of the site the
      development would appear cramped and intrusive and would not accord with relevant provisions of the
      development plan. There are no other material considerations which would justify approval in such
      circumstances.

      Policies and Proposals in the approved Development Plan relevant to this decision

      West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

      QE1        Conserving and Enhancing the Environment
      QE3        Creating a High Quality Built Environment for all
      QE4        Greenery, Urban Greenspace and Public Spaces
      UR3        Enhancing the role of City, Town & District Centres
      CF1        Housing within the Major Urban Areas
      T7         Car parking Standards and Management

      Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

      D1         Sustainable Forms of Development
      D2         The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
      H1         Housing Provision
      H2         Location, Phasing and Density of Housing Development
      T1A        Sustainable Location
      T16        Car Parking

      Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

      S1         Sustainable Development
      S4         Development and Brownfield, Derelict or Potentially Contaminated Land

                                                           28
S10     Quality of Life and the Public Interest
S11     Crime and Disorder
S15     The Design of Development
S17     Design of New Buildings and Significant Alterations to Existing Buildings
H1      Residential Development: Sustainable Location and Protection of the Countryside
H3      Residential Development: Priority to Brownfield Sites
H4      Housing Development and Retention of Parking Facilities
H5      Backland and Infill Sites
H14     Bedsits, Flats with Shared Facilities, Self Contained Flats, Residential Institutions and Other Dwellings
        in Multiple Occupation
H16     Density of residential development
H17     Residential Design and Security
T1      Sustainable Development
T14     Development and the Highway Network
T16     Development – General Parking Requirements
T17     Parking in Town & District Centres

Other Material Considerations include

        National Planning Policy

        PPS1    Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPS1    General Principles (February 2005)
        PPG3    Housing (March 2000)
        PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
        Companion document to PPS1 "The Planning System - General Principles" (February 2005)

        Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

        Relating to the Control of Residential Development (July 2004).

        Housing Clarification Report August 2004

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Development of brownfield land and sustainable location.

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

1985      N14864               Pair of semi-detached houses and garages            Permit
1992      92/00095/FUL         Erection of detached house                          Refuse
1999      99/00095/OUT         Erection of dwelling                                Permit
2002      02/00019/OUT         Renewal of planning consent 99/00095/OUT            Permit
2003      03/00452/OUT         Erection of a pair of semi-detached dwellings       Refuse
2003      03/01199/OUT         Erection of one detached dwelling                   Permit

Views of Consultees

The Highway Authority recommends refusal as the proposed application fails to provide the required
alternative parking provision for 91 London Road

Environment Agency has no objections

Environmental Health Division has no objections

Representations

3 letters of objection have been received from neighbours raising the following concerns:

                                                  29
       Difficulty of access for emergency vehicles up Wetherby Close
       Four new dwellings would aggravate the on-street parking problems on Wetherby Close and would
         could the problem to spill out onto the main road (London Road)
       Access to the proposed site would mean driving over a pavement which is not in the interest of
         highway safety
       Overlooking and overshadowing
       The new building would not look like the existing properties and would not fit in to the character of the
         area
       The small scale of the site would prevent the families living there from having any decent sized garden
       As Wetherby Close is an unadopted road, would the Council consider adopting it?
       It costs hundreds of pounds each year to up-keep the pebble drive to their property, should any further
         damage be caused during construction it may cost even more
       If the occupants of the proposed flats had more than one car per household, where would they park?
       The vehicles associated with entering the new flats would be unlikely to have enough room to turn into
         the proposed garages

Applicant/agent’s submission

The agent has submitted a design statement outlining that the proposal is to provide 4 low cost small
apartments for first time buyers with integral garages accessed off a paved courtyard. Each apartment will
have a small yard to the rear that will be paved. The garden walls will be retained with soft landscaping to the
internal perimeter to provide an attractive outlook from the lounges and bedrooms on the upper floors.

The exterior of the building will be of facing brickwork with contrasting feature bands. Projecting bay windows
are proposed to the lounge and bedroom areas overlooking the courtyard. The bathroom and kitchen areas
are relegated to the rear elevation facing adjacent properties. Natural lighting will be provided by glass blocks
which will filter the sunlight from the south facing walls while protecting the privacy of the neighbours. Glass
blocks are also used to effect around the central common staircase providing a bright airy feel to the access.

The roofs will be finished in slate tiles with low maintenance brick detailing to the eaves and gables.

Key Issues

The Structure Plan states that sustainable forms of development will be sought that, among other
requirements, concentrate as much new built development as possible within the fabric of existing urban
areas. Policy D2 states that development should generally conserve and where possible improve the quality of
life and the environment and should be informed by or sympathetic to the character and qualities of its
surroundings in its location, scale and design. Policy H2 states that District Councils should ensure that
development is consistent with the creation of attractive living environments and be in keeping with its
surroundings.

Policy S4 of the Local Plan states that preference will be given to development of brownfield land rather than
greenfield land and to development schemes that allow the remediation of derelict or potentially contaminated
land.

PPG3 (Housing) reflects the above approach to housing development by requiring Local Planning Authorities
to give priority to re-using previously-developed land within urban areas and to create more sustainable
patterns of development by building in ways which exploit and deliver accessibility by public transport to jobs,
education and health facilities, shopping, leisure and local services. However, PPG3 also states that LPAs
should promote good design in new housing developments in order to create attractive, high-quality living
environments in which people will choose to live.

This is reflected in PPS1 (Delivering Sustainable Development) which states that planning policies should
promote high quality inclusive design in the layout of new developments and individual buildings in terms of
function and impact. Design which fails to take the opportunities available for improving the character and
quality of an area should not be accepted.

Policy S15 of the Local Plan states that the external design and appearance of all new development or
extensions and alterations to existing buildings must be in visual harmony with the character of the area in
which the development is situated. Policy S17 states that in determining applications for development that
involves the erection of new buildings the Council will have regard to the character of the buildings and the
area in which the development is proposed to be situated.



                                                   30
The site forms part, but not all, of a walled garden. The application proposes the construction of a 3-storey
gabled building with a central subservient section containing the access staircase linking the two halves of the
building. Four single garages would be located on the ground floor with two self-contained flats on each of the
two floors above. Each apartment would have a small private yard accessed through the garage at the rear of
the building. Each flat would have one bedroom. All "principal" windows, as defined in the SPG, would face
onto Wetherby Close.

Outline planning permission already exists for a single dwelling on the site. Previous to that outline planning
permission was refused for a pair of semidetached dwellings on this site. Proposals for first of all a pair of
dwellings and then more recently for a single dwelling on an adjacent site behind No. 93 and 95 London Road
have recently been refused.

Taking the nature of the proposal into account along with the above policy guidance, the main issues for
consideration in the determination of this application are as follows:

       whether residential development in this location is acceptable in principle?
       whether the density is acceptable?
       whether the impact of the development upon the form and character of the area is harmful?
       does the development achieve a satisfactory standard of residential amenity?
       would highway safety be compromised by the development?
       any landscaping issues raised by the development

Principle of development

The site is an unallocated site lying within the urban area of Newcastle so its development for residential
development accords with Local Plan policy H1. The existing uses surrounding the site are predominantly
residential with some commercial uses fronting London Road. Both PPG3 (Housing) and policy H3 of the Local
Plan give priority to housing development on brownfield sites - and this is a brownfield site within the urban
area and close to the district centre of Chesterton. There is furthermore an existing planning permission for a
single dwelling on the site. The site by reason of its area meets one of the exception criteria identified in the
recently approved housing clarification report. The principle of additional residential development from a
policy/numbers perspective is therefore acceptable.

Acceptable density of housing

Planning Policy Guidance Note 3 states that housing development should make the best use of land outlining
that the standards applied to housing sites should be examined critically, particularly with regard to roads,
layouts and car parking, to avoid the profligate use of land. National policy guidance goes on to suggest that
development should be avoided which make inefficient use of land (those of less than 30 dwellings per hectare
net) and encourage housing development which makes more efficient use of land (between 30 and 50
dwellings per hectare net); where development is proposed close to good transport accessibility such as town
centre localities a greater intensity of development may be appropriate.

The proposal indicates 4 dwellings on a site area of 240 square metres; this equates to 167 dwellings per
hectare whilst the approved scheme achieves a density of about 40 dwellings per hectare. A balance needs to
be struck between the achievement of density objectives without leading to development on a site that is to the
detriment of the character and quality of the area. Policy H2 within the Structure Plan states that development
should be consistent with the creation of attractive living environments and be in keeping with its surroundings.
Given it is a location close to Chesterton local centre, local amenities and close to public transport routes, this
site can be considered sustainable?

Therefore, it is considered that the density achieved accords with national planning policy as well as providing
sustainable development in terms of location, and is appropriate when viewed in its wider context and in terms
of policy H2 of the Structure Plan.

Design of the development and visual impact of the proposal upon the form and character of the area

Planning Policy Guidance Note 3: Housing states that new housing development of whatever scale should not
be viewed in isolation. Considerations of design and layout must be informed by the wider context, having
regard not just to any immediate neighbouring buildings but the townscape and landscape of the wider locality.
The local pattern of streets and spaces, building traditions, materials and ecology should all help to determine
the character and identity of a development. This approach is reflected in Policy S17 of the Local Plan which
states that in determining applications for development that involves the erection of new buildings, the Council
will have regard to the character of the buildings and the area in which the development proposed is to be


                                                   31
located and developments that are unsympathetic to the locality will be resisted. H5 refers to planning
permission not being granted for infill sites where such development would be harmful to the form and
character of the area generally because of the unsatisfactory disposition and interrelationships of buildings,
spaces and accesses.

Due to the proximity of the application to the local centre of Chesterton, there are a number of uses evident in
the locality (residential, commercial and industrial) accommodated in buildings of mixed architectural styles.
The predominant building type is of traditional terraced houses with rear outriggers serving both residential and
commercial purposes, This is the nature of the properties immediately adjacent to the site, Nos. 89-91 London
Road. There are exceptions such as the taller semi detached traditional property diagonally opposite the
appeal site (Nos.85 and 87 London Road). The land rises up on either side of London Road and on this side
there are modest traditional and modern semi-detached two storey properties, on the various streets leading
off London Road, together with a number of bungalows including Wetherby Villa diagonally opposite the
appeal site.

This site is in the rear garden of one of the London Road properties although separated from it by various
single storey garage buildings.

The proposed development can be said to draw on and reflect the existing architectural features of these
terraced properties, such as the roof pitch, square bay windows and materials that contribute to the form and
appearance of the townscape around it. Whilst the proposal would also introduce more modern design
features such a glass bricks and a 3-storey element, it is considered that the design reflects a significant
amount of more traditional features to result in a development that blends modern development with the
existing character of the area.

Whilst the site itself is fairly flat, the land around it increases in somewhat when moving away from London
Road. The site is surrounded by quite a high wall, part of which is a retaining wall on some boundaries and this
would have some effect on the appearance in public views of the development. However the building is a
substantial one - its eaves height is of the order of 7.3 metres above ground level and its ridge 9.7metres. It
would look out of place and intrusive notwithstanding its design by reason of its mass and scale relative to its
site. There is very limited depth to the site, and thus space only for the building and its parking/ turning area at
the front. The cramped relationship of the development to its boundaries would be evident approaching the site
down the footpath from Elizabeth Drive and the overall impression would be of a cramped, intrusive
overdevelopment.

Residential Amenity

Policy S10 of the Newcastle Local Plan states that the Council should have regard to the likely affect on the
quality of life of people in the locality, to the extent that such matters are material to the consideration of the
planning application. H5 refers to the amenities of neighbours not being harmed.

Due to the orientation of the proposed building in relation to the application site and surrounding dwellings,
neighbouring occupiers are unlikely to experience a significant detrimental impact in terms of loss of light. All
the principal windows would face out of the front elevation; therefore, it is considered that the loss of privacy
needs only to be considered in terms of Wetherby Villa, a bungalow that is located on the opposite side of
Wetherby Close but further up the road. This means that the bungalow is not situated directly opposite the
application site. SPG relating to distances between principal windows states that “Where one or both facing
dwellings are over two storeys high the distance between principal windows will be 21m plus an additional set
back of 3 metres for each additional storey”. On this basis, the minimum required distance between the
bungalow and the principal windows should be 21m plus 6m (3m for each additional storey higher than the
bungalow), i.e. 27m. The proposed development achieves a distance of 30m between the bungalow and the
nearest principal windows in the development as well as being set an angle and therefore it is considered to
comply with the SPG

It is material also to consider the standard of amenity that would be achieved for the occupants of the bedsits.
Policy H14 of the Local Plan states that development to create bedsits should include details of provision for
disabled access, amenity space, landscaping and space for outdoor activities. Some provision has been made
for private amenity space for each flat – in the form of a very small albeit south facing, private yard at the rear
of each garage and accessed via each private garage. However there is no space for any meaningful
landscaping after parking and manoeuvring requirements have been taken into account due to the density of
the development. It is considered that for a development of a three storey nature a much more generous
landscaped setting is required than is achieved here.

Highway issues


                                                    32
      Members will note the objection raised by the Highway Authority. However it would appear that in as much as
      the site leaves an access and parking area for No.91 the Highway Authority's concern has been addressed
      and refusal on highway grounds is not recommended. It should be noted that notwithstanding the nature of
      Wetherby Close which is well used for parking because of the difficulties of parking on London Road, the
      Highway Authority do not object - a satisfactory level of parking on site being provided bearing in mind the
      location's proximity to facilities and other modes of travel.

      Other factors

      National guidance states that “The planning system does not exist to protect the private interests of one
      person against the activities of another…The basic question is not whether owners and occupiers of
      neighbouring properties would experience financial or other loss from a particular development, but whether
      the proposal would unacceptably affect amenities and the existing use of land and buildings which ought to be
      protected in the public interest”. On this basis, the potential for damage to any neighbouring property caused
      during the construction of this development is not a material planning consideration.


      Background Papers
      Planning File
      PPG‟s 3 and 13 and PPS1
      Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011
      Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

      Date report prepared
      13 April 2005




11.   119 HEATON TERRACE, PORTHILL
      S HICKMAN. 05/190/FUL

      The Application is for full planning permission for a pair of semi-detached dwellings at 2½ storeys in height
      and associated parking.

      The site within the Urban Area as designated on the Local Plan Proposals Map and measures 0.043 hectares.

      Two Councillors have requested that the application be determined by the Planning Committee due to
      concerns and representations by residents.

      RECOMMENDATION

      Refuse on the following grounds:

             Design
             Scale
             Visual impact upon streetscene
             Inadequate provision of garden space for existing dwelling
             Disturbance caused by shared access

      Reason for Recommendation

      The proposed development would be harmful to the form and character of the streetscene and surrounding
      area as it fails to achieve a successful interrelationship and disposition with the surrounding dwellings by virtue
      of its design, form and scale, contrary to the aims and objectives of PPS1, Policy D2 of the Staffordshire and
      Stoke-on-Trent Structure Plan 1996-2002 and Policies S15 and H5 of the Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan
      2011.

      Policies and Proposals in the approved Development Plan relevant to this decision

      West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

      QE1     Conserving and Enhancing the Environment

                                                         33
QE3    Creating a High Quality Built Environment for all
T7     Car parking Standards and Management

Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

D1     Sustainable Forms of Development
D2     The Design and Environmental Quality of Development
H1     Housing Provision
H2     Location, Phasing and Density of Housing Development
T1A    Sustainable Location
T16    Car Parking

Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

S1     Sustainable Development
S4     Development and Brownfield, Derelict or Potentially Contaminated Land
S10    Quality of Life and the Public Interest
S11    Crime and Disorder
S15    The Design of Development
S17    Design of New Buildings and Significant Alterations to Existing Buildings
H1     Residential Development: Sustainable Location and Protection of the Countryside
H3     Residential Development: Priority to Brownfield Sites
H4     Housing Development and Retention of Parking Facilities
H5     Backland and Infill Sites
H16    Density of residential development
H17    Residential Design and Security
T1     Sustainable Development
T14    Development and the Highway Network
T16    Development – General Parking Requirements

Other Material Considerations include

       National Planning Policy

       PPS1    Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
       PPG3    Housing (March 2000)
       PPG13 Transport (March 2001)
       Companion document to PPS1 "The Planning System: General Principles" (February 2005)

       Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

       Relating to the Control of Residential Development (July 2004)

       Housing Clarification Report August 2004

       Sustainable Development Issues

       Development of brownfield land and sustainable location.

       Crime and Disorder Act 1998

       This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
       likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
       prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

115 Heaton Terrace

2004     04/00627/OUT         Outline permission for 2 semi-detached dwellings         Permitted
2005     05/00308/FUL         Full permission for 2 semi-detached dwellings            Pending

Views of Consultees



                                                  34
Highway Authority has no objections subject to conditions

Environmental Health Division no objections

Representations

3 letters of representation from 2 neighbours have been received raising the following concerns:

       Unacceptable visual intrusion due to height, exacerbated by the change in ground levels
       Loss of light to adjacent properties.
       Eaves of proposed dwelling would overhang the property boundary, which is illegal.
       Building the proposed dwellings on the boundary would destabilise the retaining wall.
       The proposal would require approval under the Party Wall Act, which the neighbour would refuse.
       Design of dwellings is totally out of character with existing dwellings and would seriously impact upon
        the area and totally ruin a well-established and unspoilt streetscene, including the inclusion of dormer
        windows.
       Only 2 parking spaces per dwelling would be created.
       The site is on the brow of a hill and visibility is restricted.
       Displacement of vehicles currently parking on the site would exacerbate on-street parking.

Applicant/agent’s submission

The agent has submitted comments only with the amended plans requested by the Local Planning Authority:

       The proposed dwellings are set at a junction point between different periods and styles of dwellings.
       Neighbouring „modern‟ type semi-detached dwellings are situated immediately adjacent.
       Semi-detached dwellings opposite the application site of an older type.
       It is apparent that there is no dominant or indeed repeated size, type or style of dwelling in the
        immediate vicinity of 119 Heaton Terrace and no definite lead to influence a proposed style.
       The proposal is reasonable in its setting and removes a disamenity from this location.

Key Issues

The Structure Plan states that sustainable forms of development will be sought that, amongst other
requirements, concentrate as much new built development as possible within the fabric of existing urban
areas. Policy D2 states that development should generally conserve and where possible improve the quality of
life and the environment and should be informed by or sympathetic to the character and qualities of its
surroundings in its location, scale and design. Policy H2 states that District Councils should ensure that
development is consistent with the creation of attractive living environments and be in keeping with its
surroundings.

Policy S4 of the Local Plan states that preference will be given to development of brownfield land rather than
greenfield land and to development schemes that allow the remediation of derelict or potentially contaminated
land.

PPG3 (Housing) reflects the above approach to housing development by requiring Local Planning Authorities
to give priority to re-using previously-developed land within urban areas and to create more sustainable
patterns of development by building in ways which exploit and deliver accessibility by public transport to jobs,
education and health facilities, shopping, leisure and local services. However, PPG3 also states that LPAs
should promote good design in new housing developments in order to create attractive, high-quality living
environments in which people will choose to live.

This is reflected in PPS1 (Delivering Sustainable Development) which states that planning policies should
promote high quality inclusive design in the layout of new developments and individual buildings in terms of
function and impact. Design which fails to take the opportunities available for improving the character and
quality of an area should not be accepted.

Policy S15 of the Local Plan states that the external design and appearance of all new development or
extensions and alterations to existing buildings must be in visual harmony with the character of the
area in which the development is situated. Policy S17 states that in determining applications for development
that involves the erection of new buildings the Council will have regard to the character of the buildings and the
area in which the development is proposed to be situated.



                                                   35
The application proposes the construction of a pair of 2½-storey semi-detached dwellings with front dormer
windows and 2 parking spaces per dwelling provided in front of the dwellings. Each dwelling would have a
private garden to the rear with the access to these gardens being shared between 119 Heaton Terrace and the
two proposed houses. Outline planning permission has already been granted for siting and means of access
for a pair of semi-detached dwellings at 115 Heaton Terrace. The application for full details for these
properties is pending consideration and constitutes a material consideration in the determination of this
application.

Taking this into account along with the above policy guidance, the main issues for consideration in the
determination of this application are as follows:

       whether residential development in this location is acceptable in principle?
       whether the density is acceptable?
       whether the impact of the development upon the form and character of the area is harmful?
       does the development achieve a satisfactory standard of residential amenity?
       would highway safety be compromised by the development?

Principle of development

The site is an unallocated site lying within the urban area of Newcastle so its development for residential
development accords with Local Plan policy H1. The existing uses surrounding the site are predominantly
residential with some commercial uses where the ground floors of terraced properties have been converted.
Both PPG3 (Housing) and policy H3 of the Local Plan give priority to housing development on brownfield sites
- and this is a brownfield site within the urban area. The site by reason of its site area meets one of the
exception criteria identified in the recently approved housing clarification report. The principle of additional
residential development from a policy/numbers perspective is therefore acceptable.

Acceptable density of housing

Planning Policy Guidance Note 3 states that housing development should make the best use of land outlining
that the standards applied to housing sites should be examined critically, particularly with regard to roads,
layouts and car parking, to avoid the profligate use of land. National policy guidance goes on to suggest that
development should be avoided which make inefficient use of land (those of less than 30 dwellings per hectare
net) and encourage housing development which makes more efficient use of land (between 30 and 50
dwellings per hectare net); where development is proposed close to good transport accessibility such as town
centre localities a greater intensity of development may be appropriate.

The proposal indicates 2 dwellings on a site area of 483 square metres; this equates to 46.5 dwellings per
hectare. Therefore, it is considered that the density achieved accords with national planning policy and policy
H16 of the Newcastle Local Plan as well as providing sustainable development in terms of location, and is
appropriate when viewed in its wider context and in terms of policy H2 of the Structure Plan.

Design of the development and visual impact of the proposal upon the form and character of the area

The dwellings in Heaton Terrace fall into 2 broad categories: small terraced properties, some displaying
decorative features, and more modern semi-detached properties. The application site lies in between these
two housing styles. In evaluating the visual character of the streetscene, it is considered that the terraced
properties give the stronger character and therefore the applicant has been encouraged to reflect the design
features of the terraced properties rather than the semi-detached properties in the design of the proposed
dwellings. It is also a material consideration a planning application for a pair of semi-detached dwellings is
under consideration at 115 Heaton, where the same approach to the design of the new dwellings has been
adopted. Your officer has taken the view that by reflecting the characteristics of the older terraced housing, the
two proposals for new development would maintain a level of congruity in the streetscene whilst introducing a
modern development. Although the applicant has amended the design and scale of the proposed dwellings
once, the amended scheme is not considered to go far enough towards taking the opportunity for improving
the appearance of the streetscene.

The proposed dwellings would extend across the width of the application plot – a width of 11.2m in total or
5.6m per dwelling. The terraced dwellings in Heaton Terrace are characteristically 4-4.5m in width. Reducing
the width of the dwelling would allow a private path to be created for each dwelling leading from the front of the
house to the private garden at the rear and would also allow a space for storing a wheelie bin without
impinging on the parking spaces provided. Incorporating these features into the proposal would allow the
shared access adjacent to 119 Heaton Terrace to be omitted from the scheme, raising the levels of amenity
and privacy for the occupants of all three dwellings concerned.


                                                   36
The terraced properties, in particular those in immediate proximity to the site, have a significant amount of
architectural detailing on the exterior. The applicant has been asked to amend the scheme by including
brickwork features and more traditional decorative details rather than the modern bargeboard and fenestration
proposed.

1 neighbour letter raised concerns that the proposed dormer windows were not in-keeping the character of the
street. The dormers have been designed to be subordinate and to reflect the generic design of the dwellings. It
is considered that they would not represent a detrimental affect to the streetscene.

Residential Amenity

The property that stands to be most affected by the proposal in terms of residential amenity is 121 Heaton
Terrace. This property has a kitchen window and a conservatory on the side elevation of the dwelling. It should
be noted that neither of these rooms are classed as „principal rooms‟ under the SPG. However, the proposal
has been checked in terms of the 45-degree line with regards to the kitchen window and the proposal as
amended does not breach this angle – this takes account of the change in ground levels between the sites of
approximately 0.7m. The distances between the proposed dwellings and the properties to the rear in Sparrow
Terrace also comply with the SPG.

The applicant has been requested to amend the application further, as the current proposal does not make
sufficient provision for the amenity of the occupiers of the existing dwelling, 119 Heaton Terrace. The existing
dwelling has a rear extension and single garage. The application provides an additional parking space in front
of the garage at the rear of the property with a vehicular access running up the side of 119, separating it from
the proposed semi-detached dwellings. As a result of this arrangement, no private garden space is made
available for the occupants of the existing dwelling and would constitute a poor quality of life.

The applicant has been asked to amend the parking arrangements by removing the shared vehicular access
from the scheme to allow the occupiers of 119 the opportunity of using the space at the rear of the property for
amenity usage. This would also have the added benefit of improving the levels of amenity for the future
occupiers of the proposed dwellings, as using the shared access as parking space for 119 only would reduce
the number of vehicles accessing the rear of the site and driving past the proposed dwellings in such close
proximity.

Highway Safety

The proposal makes provision for two spaces per dwelling, which is in accordance with the maximum car
parking standards laid out in the Local Plan. It is acknowledged that Heaton Terrace experiences a high level
of on-street parking, however, the Highway Authority is satisfied that the proposal can be implemented without
creating a decrease in highway safety. No reason is known to depart from this advice..

Background Papers
The Planning Files referred to
The Development Plan
Background papers referred to

Date report prepared
11 April 2005




                                                  37
12.   34 HIGH STREET, WOLSTANTON
      MRS D OVERHAND. 05/176/COU

      The Application is for the change of use of the ground floor of premises from use as travel agents to use as
      a “café/ sandwich shop”. The premises lie within a row of 4 shops. Upstairs is a separately accessed one
      bedroom flat. The whole premises are currently vacant.

      It is located in part of Wolstanton which is defined on the Proposals Map of the Newcastle Local Plan 2011 as
      a District Centre.

      At the request of 2 councillors the application has been referred to the Planning Committee for decision. They
      advise that this is because of concerns about there being no parking, the proximity of the development to a
      crossroads and pelican crossing and an over intensification of this kind of use – there being 3 other takeaways
      within 50 yards.

      RECOMMENDATION

      Permit subject to the following conditions:

             Use to be restricted to mixed A3 and A5 use
             Fume extraction
             Air cooling/ air extraction equipment
             Prevention of food and grease debris from entering the drainage system
             Refuse storage
             Either restriction of use of flat at 34A to persons connected with the proposed use or
              provision of acoustic separation
             Hours of use to be as per application (see applicant’s submission section of report)

      Reason for Recommendation

      The Authority has recently accepted the loss of this retail unit. Both highway safety and residential amenity
      concerns arising from the proposal can be addressed by conditions. No specific adverse cumulative effect of a
      further A3 use in this location has been identified and in the circumstances a recommendation of approval is
      given

      Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

      West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

      UR3     Enhancing the role of city, town and district centres
      PA1     Prosperity for all
      QE3     Creating a high quality built environment for all
      T2      Reducing the need to travel

      Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

      D1      Sustainable forms of development
      D2      The design and environmental quality of development
      T1A     Sustainable location
      TC4     Local Shops

      Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

      S1      Sustainable development
      S10     Quality of life and the public interest
      R14     Development in district centres
      R15     Non-retail uses in District centres and other groups of shops
      T1      Sustainable locations
      T14     Development and the Highway Network
      T16     Development - General Parking requirements

      Other Material Considerations include



                                                         38
        National Planning Policy

        PPS1        Delivering sustainable communities
        PPG4        Industrial, commercial and small firms
        PPG6        Town Centres
        PPG13       Transport

        Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

        Hot food Take-Aways (February 1996)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Ensuring the vitality and viability of District Centres and re-use of an existing building.

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History of premises

84/13627/N      -    Alterations to form separate flat over travel agency – approved.
91/20878/N      -    Change of use to hot food takeaway – refused on highway safety grounds alone.
92/532/COU      -    Change of use from retail (travel agent) to A2 financial and professional (insurance
                     services) – approved but not implemented.
04/131/COU      -    change of use of shop to personal fitness training studio – approved July 2004.

Views of Consultees

Staffordshire Police do not envisage any adverse consequences from crime and disorder following the
change of use.

Highway Authority no objections subject to hours of opening being as applied for

Environmental Health Division have given consideration to the proposal as café and hot food takeaway,
noting there is potential for odour and noise from ventilation systems, air conditioning systems and chiller
motors to affect the occupiers of adjoining properties as there is for disturbance associated with deliveries to
and from the site, from customers and their vehicles and from litter created by patrons. They consider the area
to be C1 area in terms of the SPG and that the above concerns can be addressed by appropriate conditions.
They do not object but seek a number of conditions concerning matters such as hours of operation (having no
objection to 2300 hour closing on Mondays to Saturdays), restriction to café and hot food takeaway, a fume
extraction system, air conditioning systems, prevention of food and grease from entering the drainage system,
refuse storage, and either acoustic separation of the flat above or its use by persons connected with the A3
use.

Representations

A petition with 91 signatures has been received concerning:

       Odour and food smells from another take away
       Litter
       Another take away will increase competition and result in the loss of jobs and money
       Increase of cars and inconvenience of people parking outside homes

Applicant’s submission

The applicant has verbally indicated that her intention is to form a small café within the building – for the
provision of breakfasts and lunches, together with a takeaway counter – for both hot and cold food. The
applicant‟s proposed hours of opening are between 0700 and 1600 on Mondays to Fridays, 0700 to 1300 on
Saturdays and no opening on Sundays.

Key Issues

                                                    39
The application as submitted for a Change of Use from A1 retail unit to a café/ sandwich shop (a use falling
with Use Class A3). However under the new Use Class Order that comes into force 21 April 2005, and should
be considered when assessing this application, the change of use is to a mixed use A3 and A5, as the
application is both for a café and a takeaway facility. At this stage there are no external alterations or additions
proposed for the building

The key issues relating to this application are:

       Would the proposal have an adverse impact on the vitality and viability of the District Centre of
        Wolstanton?
       Does the proposal comply with the Council‟s Supplementary Planning Guidance on Hot food
        Takeaways.
       Would the development have an adverse effect on residential amenity?
       Would the development have an adverse effect on highway safety?

An adverse impact on the vitality and viability of the District Centre of Wolstanton?

The site lies within the District Centre of Wolstanton as designated in the Local Plan. The unit is sited in the
centre of a row of four units on the High Street Wolstanton lying between Peel Street and Silverdale Road. The
ground floor units adjacent to the site are a hot food take away and a Laundrette, with the other unit in the row
is another hot food take away. The unit to which this application relates is therefore the only retail unit that
remains within this row.

Local Plan Policy R15 indicates that in determining application for changes of use from retail (Class A1) to non-
retail uses in the District Centre the Council will consider the effect that the proposal will have on the goods and
services offered in the locality. Material considerations will include not only the proposed development itself but
also the cumulative effect of the development and any other non-retail uses that have already taken place.
Policy TC4 of the Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan would not permit changes of use which
would involve the loss of existing retail or related service facilities unless it can be demonstrated that there is no
longer a need for such facilities in that location or that they can be provided in another appropriate and
sustainable manner.

The proposal would result in the “loss” of a further retail unit and would lead to a significant length of non-retail
frontage within the District Centre. However the Planning Authority has twice granted proposals (in 1992 and in
2004) for non-retail uses in this unit. There have been no further applications involving loss of retails since the
2004 decision in this part of the High Street. It is understood that the premises have been vacant for some
considerable period of time and it could be considered that the café element proposed could be considered to
be supportive of the retail function of the remainder of the centre. On balance it is considered that objections
should not be raised to the loss of retail aspect.

Compliance with the SPG on hot food takeaways?

In 1996 the Council adopted as Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) guidance on the consideration of
applications for hot food takeaways. The SPG requires consideration to be given first to the type of area. In this
case given the nature of the uses in the locality are such that the area can be considered to be a C1 or mixed
commercial area where there is a significant concentration of commercial uses but with intermittent residential
uses within 50 metres and within 100 m significant continuity of predominantly residential uses. The guidance
suggests that in such an area opening hours of up to 11pm on Mondays to Saturdays and 10.30pm on
Sundays would be appropriate.

The SPG refers to the need to consider issues such as traffic and parking (considered below) and the effect
on the character of an area and the cumulative effect of the development together with any others.

It is the cumulative effect which is the key issue here – given the number of hot food takeaways in the
immediate vicinity of the site – there being 2 others in the same length of frontage. However for a proposal to
be refused it is always necessary to demonstrate what specific harm would arise from it. Two potential
cumulative consequences might be the effects on residential amenity and on highway safety.

Adverse Effects on residential amenity?

Immediately behind the premises is a residential area comprising 2 storey flats and 2 storey terraced housing.
There is residential accommodation immediately above the property as well as above the adjoining premises at
32A High Street. The Environmental Health Division consider that by imposing a range of conditions residential


                                                     40
      amenity can be sufficiently safeguarded. It is important to bear in mind the nature of the residential environment
      that might be expected in this location.

      Members may no doubt recall the appeal decision relating to the proposal to change No 28/30 High Street to a
      hot food takeaway. One of the objections of the Council considered in that appeal was what provision might be
      made to control cooking smells from the premises in the interests of people living nearby. The Inspector
      dismissed such concerns indicating that the proper interests of neighbours could be adequately protected by
      the imposition of a suitable planning condition and this approach has been followed elsewhere.

      An adverse impact on highway safety?

      The councillors who have “called in” the application have referred to the proximity of the development to both a
      cross roads and to a pedestrian crossing. In the No. 28/30 appeal decision the Inspector in response to
      concerns that the proposal might lead to dangerous kerbside parking noted that use of the High Street roadside
      frontage for parking was ruled out practically in this respect by the pedestrian barrier and on this basis he
      concluded that the proposed development would not result to any significant degree in parking on the High
      Street. The same reasoning would apply to this case – the pavement is separated from the road by a barrier at
      this point, and in any case as submitted the proposal here is for a day time use – it is generally accepted that
      the risk of unlawful kerbside parking is greatest during the night time

      In this connection Members will no doubt recall an appeal decision relating to a proposed change of use to a
      hot food takeaway of 107 High Street – but the frontage there had only double yellow lines down it and was
      directly in front of a right hand turn. The Inspector made the point that the circumstances of the two cases
      differed.

      The Highway Authority, your technical advisers on these matters, does not object to the proposal provided the
      hours of opening are as applied for (which can be the subject of a condition).

      Conclusion

      Both highway safety and residential amenity concerns arising from the proposal can be addressed by
      conditions. No specific adverse cumulative effects arising from a further A3 use in this location have been
      identified and in the circumstances a recommendation of approval is given

      Background Papers
      Planning application file
      Papers referred to in the report

      Date report prepared
      13 April 2005




13.   DISUSED RESERVOIR LAND, BAR HILL ROAD, MADELEY
      K S HOMES LTD. 05/274/FUL

      The Application is for full planning permission to construct an amended house type, which includes a rear
      conservatory, on Plot 1 of this site. Plot 1 is the most westernmost plot. The overall development has planning
      permission for four dwellings.

      The site lies within the open countryside     in an Area of Landscape Enhancement as designated on the
      Proposals Map of the Local Plan.

      RECOMMENDATIONS

      (a)     That subject to the applicant first entering into a Section 106 Agreement, within 3 months,
      securing the same future maintenance and management responsibilities in relation to the adjacent
      Wildlife area as previously secured by Section 106, planning permission be granted subject to the
      following conditions:

          (i)      Prior approval of levels, drainage, roofing and facing materials, landscaping and drainage.
          (ii)     Removal of permitted development rights.
          (iii)    Provision of a lamp post.

                                                         41
      (iv)       Reservoir not to form part of curtilage/garden of dwellings.
      (v)        Prior approval of a scheme of noise attenuation, and implementation prior to occupation.

(b)          That the applicant be advised of the following:

      (i)        It is an offence to damage protected wildlife and their habitat.

(c)    That failing completion of the Obligation within the above period, the Head of Regeneration and
Planning Services be given delegated authority to refuse the application on the grounds that without
such an obligation the maintenance of the reservoir would not be secured to the detriment of the
landscape quality and wildlife interests.

Reason for Recommendation

Planning permission already exists for a dwelling on this site. The proposal does not significantly differ from
the extant planning permission on the site, and accords with those provisions of the development plan that
relate to the issues of design and residential amenity and there are no other material considerations in this
case of such weight as to justify a refusal of planning permission. The Section 106 Agreement is required to
ensure that the adjacent wildlife area is maintained and managed.

Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

Policy QE1         Conserving and enhancing the environment.
Policy QE3         Creating a high quality built environment for all.

Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 2011

Policy D1          Sustainable forms of development.
Policy D2          The design and environmental quality of development.

Newcastle Under Lyme Local Plan 2011

Policy S1          Sustainable development
Policy S15         The design of development
Policy H5          Backland and infill sites
Policy N20         Areas of landscape enhancement

Other Material Considerations

             Relevant National Policy Guidance

             PPS1    Delivering Sustainable Development
             PPG3    Housing
             PPG13 Transport
             Companion document to PPS1 "The Planning System - General Principles" (February 2005)

             Madeley Village Design Statement (adopted 1998)

             Guidance Note 1 – General Considerations.
             Guidance Note 2 – Additions and Alterations.
             Guidance Note 4 – Village Setting.

             Sustainable Development Issues

             The main issue to address is design.

             Crime and Disorder Act 1998

             This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
             likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
             prevent crime and disorder in its area.”


                                                         42
Planning History

Outline planning permission was granted in 1998 (97/718/OUT) for four detached dwellings, and the time limit
for the submission of reserved matters was subsequently varied in 2001 (01/555/OUT). There have been a
number of planning permissions on the site following the initial outline permission as follows;

2001      01/698/REM        detached house and associated works (plot 4)
2002      02/139FUL         detached dwelling (plot 2)
2003      03/136/FUL        dwellinghouse (plot 3)
2003      03/137/FUL        dwellinghouse and garage (plot 1)

There has been an application for a rear conservatory on plot 4 in 2004 (04/898/FUL). In addition Committee
resolved to permit a revised dwelling on plot 3 (05/16/FUL), which included a conservatory, at the meeting of
  th
15 March 2004, subject to the applicant entering into a S106 obligation to secure the future maintenance and
management responsibilities in relation to the adjacent Wildlife area.

Views of Consultees

The views of the Environmental Health Division and Madeley Parish Council have been sought, but had
not been received at the time the Committee report was prepared. Any comments received will be reported.

Representations

None received to date.

Key Issues

As indicated in the planning history section of this report, an extant permission exists on this plot which is
capable of being implemented until September 2008. Given the existence of this permission and the site being
located within an existing development of 4 dwellings (one of which has already been constructed, and another
commenced) it is considered that the main issues to address are whether the amendments to the dwelling
within the plot are acceptable in appearance and their impact on amenity of adjoining residents.

The extant planning permission on this plot is for a detached dwelling similar to that currently proposed. The
approved dwelling like the current proposal (and indeed the dwellings approved/built on plots 2 and 3) has three
floors with the uppermost level largely contained within the roof.

The current proposal differs from the approved scheme in five ways:

    1.       The introduction of a conservatory. This is considered to be appropriate in design and will not
             reduce the level of privacy of any adjoining residents providing an appropriate boundary treatment
             is secured.
    2.       The approved scheme had a two-storey element, on its western side, which had the upper floor
             contained within the roof space, with front and rear dormers. This ridge height of this element has
             been increased and a third floor provided with a further dormer on the rear elevation. This element
             of the dwelling will remain subordinate as its ridge height is below that of the main part of the
             dwelling (0.6m), and the alterations will not result in the loss of privacy to adjoining residents.
    3.       The detached garage, which on the approved scheme is in front of the dwelling, has been
             relocated closer to the front boundary of the plot. The garage will still be 9m at its closest point to
             that dwelling, and planting is indicated on the front boundary, as such the garage will not be unduly
             prominent and detrimental to the appearance of the area.
    4.       A slight reorientation within the plot. This has not resulted in a reduction in the gap between this
             dwelling and that on the adjoining plot, and will not have a significant impact on the overall
             appearance of the site, nor will it result in any reduction in the living conditions of neighbours.
    5.       The existing field access to the west of the site has been included within the application site,
             whereas previously it wasn‟t. Clarification is being sought with regard to the intensions for this
             access. It would appear, from the plans, that it would remain as an access and if that is the case
             then such an amendment to the site boundary would not raise any issues. If it is to form part of the
             garden to plot 1 it is considered that whilst this would result in its garden directly adjoining the
             existing neighbouring property, this would not be detrimental to the amenity of the occupiers. It
             should be noted that any proposal for any buildings within the garden would require planning
             permission, if as recommended the permitted development rights are removed, and therefore
             consideration can be given to the impact of such buildings on the neighbours if they are located
             close to the boundary.


                                                    43
Overall therefore the development is not significantly different in its appearance or its impact on the adjoining
dwellings than the approved scheme and it is therefore acceptable. The scale and external appearance of the
previously approved scheme was considered appropriate at the time the application was determined by
Planning Committee (2003) and there have been no material changes in circumstances to justify a contrary
view now.

Management of the wildlife area to the rear.

A Section 106 Agreement linked to the previous planning permission for a dwelling on this plot secured the
provision and management of a wildlife area and pond to the rear of the application site. The agreed
management scheme involves the owners of plots 1 and 3 as they would have responsibility for the pond. The
Agreement in place, however, relates to application 03/137/FUL (and 03/136/FUL) and a separate Agreement
to secure the same provisions for this development of this particular plot under this planning permission is
therefore required.

Background Papers
Planning Policy documents referred to
Planning files referred to

Date report prepared
11 April 2005




                                                  44
14.   LAND OFF WEST AVENUE, KIDSGROVE
      VODAFONE LIMITED. 05/189/FUL

      The Application is a full application for a 20m high telecommunications monopole with 6 antennas, 2 dishes,
      and associated works. The site is located to the side of an industrial unit on the Nelson Industrial Estate.

      The location is within the Urban Area, as designated in the Proposals Map of the Local Plan.

      RECOMMENDATION

      Permit subject to the following condition:

            (i)       Colour

      Reason for Recommendation

      The development in an industrial location within the urban area of Talke is not considered to have an adverse
      impact on the character or appearance of the area. It is considered that an adequate site selection process
      has been undertaken and that the chosen site represents the most suitable site available. The proposal is
      therefore in accordance with the requirements of Policies T19 and T20 of the Newcastle Local Plan 2011 and
      the aims and objectives of PPG8 Telecommunications.

      Policies and Proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

      West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy

      QE3         Creating a high quality built environment for all
      QE4         Greenery, Urban green space and public space
      T2          Reducing the need to travel

      Staffordshire Structure Plan 1996 – 2011

      D1          Sustainable forms of Development
      D2          The design and environmental quality of development
      T1B         An integrated transport strategy

      Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

      S1          Sustainable development
      S10         Quality of life and the public interest
      S15         The design of the development
      T19         Telecommunications – General Concerns
      T20         Telecommunications development – Required information

      Other Material Considerations include

                  National Planning Policy

                  PPS1     Delivering sustainable communities (February 2005)
                  PPG8     Telecommunications (2001)
                  The Planning System - General Principles" ( February 2005)

                  Sustainable Development Issues

                  Infrastructure provision

                  Crime and Disorder Act 1998

                  This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
                  likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
                  prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

      Relevant Planning History


                                                             45
No previous planning history

Views of Consultees

The Environmental Health Division advise that from calculations of fall off of microwave energy with
distance the energy levels will be minimal at the nearest residential property, and that in the absence of any
proven health effects form mobile phone transmitter stations, government guidelines and W.H.O. information
and the above calculations it is inappropriate to raise objections on health grounds.

Kidsgrove Town Council indicate that it is their policy to object to all telecommunications applications.

Representations

None received

Applicant/agent’s submission

The agent has submitted a supporting statement, and the full version of this is available for inspection at the
Civic Offices.

The site

The site is an unused piece of land to the north of the Central Drinks Company warehouse. The area is
industrial within the Nelson Industrial estate to the north and the south, the Linley Trading Estate to the east
and various industrial buildings/units to the west. The closest residential properties are located approximately
300m to the south of the proposed site, although there are numerous large warehouse buildings which offer
screening of the proposed equipment, as well as vegetation in the area - to screen the impact of the proposal.

Justification

The site is required for in-building 3G coverage within the premises located upon the Nelson Industrial Estate
and the Linley Trading Estate. Both of the estates are under redevelopment therefore not only will this site
provide coverage to the existing premises, but will also provide coverage for the proposed
expansion/redevelopment of the area.

Site Selection

Several sites were explored by the operator that included:

          Rooftop of Celestica building, Westfield house, West Avenue - rejected as site provider is undertaking
           demolition works and therefore is not useable.
          Linwood Plant limited - lane adjacent to the Nelson Industrial Estate, rejected as site provider not
           willing to accommodate proposal
          Rooftop at various sites owned by GEC Alstom - rejected as building owners not willing to
           accommodate telecoms equipment
          Rooftop at Enterprise Pharmaceuticals - rejected as initial indications are that the owner will not
           accommodate equipment
          Existing telecoms Orange mast - rejected as the site would need to be redeveloped including an
           extensive increase in height. The site is also Green Belt and would have more of an environmental
           impact.

Visual Appearance

The height of 20m is required to obtain sufficient coverage due to the height and topography of the existing
structures.

Key Issues

The Structure Plan contains no specific policy relating to Telecommunications development, although there is
an objective to promote information technology and an emphasis on sustainable locations and the reduced
need to travel.




                                                    46
Local Plan policy 2011 contains two policies - T19 and T20 - that relate to telecommunications and PPG8
(Telecommunications) states that “Protection from visual damage and the implications for subsequent network
development will be important considerations.” Mast sharing is also actively encouraged.

Taking into account the guidance in the above policies, the main key issues for consideration in this application
are:

       Has the choice of a non mast sharing option been justified?
       What are the effects on Visual Impact?
       What are the effects on Residential amenity?

Justification for a non-mast sharing option?

Within the supporting statement it is indicated that several sites were considered, and rejected on different
grounds. Within these options was a mast sharing scheme on the site currently occupied by an Orange mast
to the west (which the agent incorrectly identifies as being within the Green Belt). In order to use this site the
applicant's view is that the existing mast would require complete redevelopment and in order to achieve the
required coverage area, this would involve a significant increase in height. It was felt by the applicant that the
use of this site would have more of an environmental impact on the area compared with the chosen site. This
is the site that was referred to by the Planning Committee in its recent decisions on another operator‟s (O2)
applications in this area. In response to enquiries the agents have given more detail about the likely
implications of a mast share at that site. They envisage that they would need to significantly increase it height,
by approximately 25 - 30 metres in order to obtain anything like the coverage achieved from the application
site now being considered - primarily because the other site is at a much lower level. They repeat their
willingness to site share, although they have not yet confirmed whether or not the proposed structure – a
monopole – would be capable of being shared. Most shared structures known to officers are lattice masts.

It is important to note that whilst mast and site sharing is encouraged in national guidance this is not to the
exclusion of consideration of the adverse visual impact which such proposals can have in certain
circumstances.

Effects on Visual impact?

The site lies to the North of an industrial warehouse and is accessed from West Avenue and an existing track.
On a piece of unused land, it is segregated from the warehouse by a 2m high palisade fence, and the
proposed mast will be within a compound with a 2.1m palisade fence surrounding it.

Although the topography of the site is higher than that of West Avenue, it rises again to the east of the site.
The ground has a number of trees and shrub like bushes and this also continues to the east. The site is well
set back from both West Avenue and Linley Road

The area in which the mast is to be located is within a predominantly industrial area, with another factory
located on the same road. Although on lower ground this factory site has existing tall structures and chimneys
which dominates views when entering or leaving this section of West Avenue.

Although the proposed mast would be 20m high, when viewed from West Avenue or Linley Road it will be
seen in the context of extensive landscaping which are also sited on higher ground than the mast and other
existing industrial warehouse buildings. To the foreground of the mast there is also extensive landscaping, so
the proposal would be well screened and not have a detrimental impact on the visual amenity of the area.

Adverse impact on residential area?

Although there are residential properties 300m away from the site in the east and south directions, the existing
vegetation and tall buildings will provide adequate screening to avoid an adverse impact on residential
amenity.

Members will be aware that guidance on health considerations is clear. It is the Government‟s view that if a
proposed mobile phone station meets ICNIRP guidelines for public exposure it should not be necessary for a
local planning authority, in processing an application for prior approval, to consider further the health aspects
and concerns about them. The ICNIRP guidelines are met in this case.

Members can if they             wish    locate   other    existing   telecommunications      sites   by   visiting
www.sitefinder.radio.gov.uk.



                                                   47
      Background Papers
      Planning Policy documents referred to
      Planning files referred to

      Date report prepared
      13 April 2005




15.   CORNER OF MINTON STREET AND HIGH STREET, WOLSTANTON
      O2 UK LTD. 05/225/TDET

      The Application is a telecommunications determination for a 15m high telecommunications „Streetworks‟
      pole, which will replace the existing 15m high mast currently on site.

      A decision on this application must be communicated to the applicants by no later than 29 April 2005
      otherwise the development can proceed as submitted.

      RECOMMENDATION

      Permit.

      Reason for Recommendation

      Prior approval has already been granted for a telecommunications installation at this location in July 2002.
      There has been no material change in the relevant planning policies to be considered since that date. The
      proposed installation does differ in certain respects from the scheme approved in July 2002. The location is a
      prominent one – because of the space formed by the surrounding buildings and the alignment of the highways.
      However the applicant has demonstrated that an appropriate search of alternatives has been undertaken. In
      terms of its visual impact, having regard to the simplicity of the design, the existence of other vertical features
      in the streetscene, and the separation between the site and the Wolstanton Conservation Area the proposal is
      considered to be acceptable and to comply with the relevant policies in the development plan – notably policy
      D2 of the Structure Plan and T19 of the Local Plan. Concerns have been voiced about health considerations
      but the application is accompanied by an ICNIRP certificate of compliance and in accordance with government
      guidance such concerns cannot

      Policies and proposals in the approved development plan relevant to this decision

      West Midlands Spatial Strategy 2004

      QE1       Conserving and enhancing the environment
      QE3       Creating a high quality built environment for all
      QE4       Greenery, Urban Greenspace and public spaces
      T2        Reducing the need to travel

      Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Structure Plan 1996-2011

      D1        Sustainable forms of Development
      D2        The design and environmental quality of development
      T1B       An integrated transport strategy

      Newcastle-under-Lyme Local Plan 2011

      S1        Sustainable development
      S10       Quality of life and the public interest
      S15       The design of the development
      T19       Telecommunications – General Concerns
      T20       Telecommunications Development – Required information

      Other Material Considerations include

                National Planning Policy



                                                          48
        PPS1    Delivering Sustainable Development (February 2005)
        PPG8    Telecommunications (2001)
        Companion document to PPS1 "The Planning System - General Principles" (February 2005)

        Sustainable Development Issues

        Infrastructure provision.

        Crime and Disorder Act 1998

        This places the responsibility on every Local Authority “to exercise its functions with due regard to the
        likely effect of the exercise of those functions on, and the need to do all that it reasonably can, to
        prevent crime and disorder in its area.”

Relevant Planning History

01/681/TDET        15 metre high “streetworks” telecommunications column together with two cabinets.
                   Refused September 2001. Appeal allowed July 2002

04/132/207         Resolution that enforcement action should be taken alleging that the erected pole is
                   unauthorised (August 2004 – Planning Committee). Enforcement notice issued
                   28 September 2004. Notice came into effect 1 November 2004. Planning Committee 12
                   January 2005 resolve not to withdraw the enforcement notice.

Views of Consultees

Highway Authority - no objections
Environmental Health Division - note that the applicant has confirmed that the installation complies with
ICNIRP public exposure guidelines. From calculations of fall off of microwave energy with distance (inverse
square relationship) the energy levels will be minimal at the nearest property. In the absence of any proven
health effects from mobile phone transmitter stations, government guidelines, W.H.O. information and the
above calculation it is in appropriate to raise objection on health grounds alone. Furthermore the planning
history needs to be taken into account

Representations

13 letters have been received objecting to the proposal on the following grounds

       Too close proximity in view of health concerns to 3 schools, 2 nurseries, two after-school clubs, a
        medical centre and a residential area
       Existing installation has caused interference with television reception and other electrical equipment
       A visual eyesore in a particularly prominent location
       The unwillingness of the Company until recently to comply with the terms of the Enforcement Notice,
        and concern that if granted something different will be constructed
       That the developers should not be permitted to erect any installation other than that for which they
        already have permission

Applicant/agent’s submission

The following is part of the Agent‟s submission with this application. The full document is available for
inspection in the Council Offices.

Planning History

Planning permission was granted at appeal on 9 July 2002 for a 15m high streetworks telecommunications
pole and associated equipment, and was designed to accommodate antennas stacked on top of one another
so that the 2G antennas would be located above the 3G ones.

The approved mast was deemed to be insufficient in providing the required signal level or spread of coverage
for O2‟s future 3G network that it was originally predicted to. This problem occurred because the lower set of
antennas contained within the pole would have been a height of 10.5-12.5m, which would result in the signal
being clipped due to the surrounding buildings. This resulted in the requirement to upgrade the approved
installation to allow it to provide a sufficient signal and coverage for O2‟s 3G network.



                                                  49
An amended drawing was submitted to the Council showing details of a „Flexicell 2‟ pole design – a different
design from that which was granted permission on appeal. The letter asked that this revised design be
accepted as a minor working amendment. The officer‟s reply advised that the new design was one that did not
materially differ from the approved plans and that a new application was not required Following its construction
                                                                                            st
an enforcement notice was issued against the development. The notice took effect on 1 November 2004,
unfortunately a delay in forwarding the enforcement notice to the correct department meant that O2 had
missed the deadline in which to appeal the notice, but requested that the Council withdrew the notice as no
breach of planning control had occurred, This request was rejected by the committee on 12 January 2005.

In this regard although O2 UK still considers that there has been no breach of planning control they are willing
to amend the existing pole design to a significantly slimmer pole that is much similar in comparison to the
                                             th
design that was approved at appeal on 9 July 2002. This new slimmer pole is now the subject of the
application.

Site

The site is situated on a section of the High Street which is not overlooked directly by residential properties.
The key primary public viewpoints of the proposal will be from the High Street, and in these views the proposal
will be seen within the context of the lamp standards existing along this section of the High Street.

Description of development

The proposal involves the erection of a 15m high „Streetworks‟ style monopole, designed to resemble
streetlight columns, which are commonplace in the street scene such as the High Street. It is required to be
15m in order to take account of the topography and surroundings in order to achieve the desired coverage.
The proposed pole will replace the existing pole at the site.

The proposed pole is a „Flexicell 2 type E column‟ and this will replace the existing „Flexicell 2 type C column‟
The dimensions of the poles are:

          ‘Flexicell 2 type C column’
           Ground level to 6m                406mm wide
           6m to 11.67m                      273mm wide
           11.67m to 15m                     600mm wide

          „Flexicell 2 type E column’
           Ground level to 11.45m            324 mm wide
           11.45m to 15m                     460mm wide

As can be seen from the above dimensions the proposed replacement pole will be slimmer than the existing
pole.

Justification

O2 are rolling out telecommunications installations for their forthcoming 3G telecommunications network in the
Newcastle area, and this site was selected to provide coverage to the customers in the Wolstanton area. This
selected location is considered to meet O2‟s technical requirements, minimise and planning and community
concerns and has a willing landowner. The existing installation is an essential part of O2‟s network.

Wolstanton is an important area with a high level of demand for their service and the existing installation is an
essential part of this. The proposed replacement pole will allow 02 to maintain coverage for their 2G and 3G
network in the area whilst reducing any visual impact that the existing pole has on the surrounding area.

Alternative Sites Considered

A number of sites were considered within the Wolstanton area, and were considered in terms of visual and
residential amenity and other planning issues as well as the technical suitability of each site to O2. The site
considered most acceptable in these terms was then selected. The following sites were considered:

          Cameron Financial Services - Ground based mast - The landowner was not interested in
           accommodating telecommunications equipment on their land.
          TP Autos – Rooftop - the rooftop building was not high enough to allow O2 to meet their technical
           requirements without a significantly tall structure being installed. It was considered that the existing site
           was more acceptable.


                                                       50
       Wolstanton Working Men‟s Club – Rooftop - Proposals to install equipment on this rooftop were
        discounted, as it was considered that the existing site would be more acceptable given the tall
        structure that would be required on the roof top of this building.
       St. Margaret‟s Church - Rooftop - The location of this building is too far from the intended coverage
        area and as such does not meet O2‟s technical requirements
       Porthill Park Cricket Club - Ground based mast - the landowner was not interested in accommodating
        telecommunications equipment on their land.

Site Sharing

To this end O2 UK Ltd has undertaken a detailed survey of all cell search areas to ensure that opportunities for
site sharing are considered where possible.

In further sections the agent considers the relevant national and local policies, and makes detailed
submissions on the issue of the impact on visual amenity as follows:

       Any impact is minimised by locating the mast within a streetscene that contains a number of poles of a
        similar design
       Whilst the streetworks pole is taller than normal this is to achieve the required coverage and in any
        case its visual impact is considered to be minimal
       All associated equipment that might detract from the appearance of this discreet pole design – such as
        conventional microwave dishes – have been removed
       It is similar in dimension to the 15 m pole granted at appeal
       if the Council wish an alternative colouring then that would be considered.

Subsequent to the submission and following a meeting with officers additional information has been submitted
by the agents as follows

Programme for the removal of the existing mast

This has now been set and is detailed – completion is expected by the 5 May

Landscaping

When the Inspector allowed the appeal he attached a condition requiring details of a scheme of landscaping to
be submitted to and approved by the LPA prior to the development commencing. A scheme of planting of
cherry trees is proposed. The officer‟s view on such proposals is currently awaited

Painting of the equipment cabinets and pole

It is proposed to paint them with anti-graffiti paint that will make it more difficult for this apparatus to be
graffitied whilst also providing a cleanable finish

Interference with a third party TV system

The agents confirm that complaints were received about interference with a CCTV system. Independent tests
subsequently undertaken confirmed that O2‟s equipment was transmitting within their designated spectrum
and therefore its equipment is not at fault (details provided). Any suspected interference from O2 equipment
should be addressed through OFCOM whose job it is to determine if a transmission is causing interference or
in as in this case the receiving equipment has poor RF immunity due either to a fault or poor equipment
design.

Further additional details are also provided on the alternative sites that were considered - All of this information
is available for inspection

Unilateral planning agreement

O2 have agreed to enter into an agreement to ensure hat should the application proposals gain permission
they will not add any further apparatus to the pole under their permitted development rights and that they will
agree to reconsider the design of the pole that is required should their 2G network become redundant.

Key Issues




                                                    51
The application is for a replacement mast on the corner of High Street and Minton Street, Wolstanton. It is to
provide both 3G and 2G coverage to this area. The mast would be 15m high and of a „streetworks‟ monopole
design. Full details of the pole and a comparison with what is currently on site are provided in the agent‟s
submission. For completeness the dimensions of the scheme approved on appeal are as follows:-

Ground level to 15 metres 264 mm

The main issues relating to this application are:

       Is the siting and design considered appropriate for the location?
       Can health concerns be substantiated?
       Are there any other material considerations?

The monopole itself has a diameter of 324 mm and a head frame of 460mm is larger. At 15 metres high it is
markedly taller than the lighting columns here, which stand at approximately 9m, and of a larger diameter.

The siting of the mast is a fairly prominent one. The site located on a busy road that connects May Bank,
Wolstanton and Porthill and forms one of the main roads into Newcastle. At close quarters it is an open
location, but in the wider landscape whilst elevated this is a location where views of the installation from
several directions are either broken by the nearby buildings or the pole is seen against the backcloth formed by
them. The site is some distance away from the boundary of the Wolstanton Conservation Area. In height terms
the pole is taller than a street lamp, and the applicants have explained why this is necessary. The structure is
simple and uncluttered and compared with the existing it is significant that the headframe is of a smaller
diameter – 460mm compared with 600mm. Evidence has been given of alternative sites considered and
rejected by the applicants and no obvious preferable alternatives within the area of search are known to your
officer. At the time of the appeal evidence was submitted that some 15 alternative sites had been considered
by the appellants and the lack of an alternative was a major consideration and remain so.

Can health concerns be substantiated?

Although the development has given rise to health concerns, PPG8 (Telecommunications) clearly states “it is
the Government’s firm view that the Planning system is not the place for determining health safeguards. It
remains Central Government’s responsibility to decide what measures are necessary to protect public health.
In the Government’s view, if a proposed mobile base station meets the ICNIRP guidelines for public exposure
it should not be necessary for a Local Planning Authority, in processing an application for planning permission
or prior approval, to consider further health aspects and concerns about them.”
This has been satisfied via the submission of the relevant certification by the applicant, stating that the
development is designed, according to the full extent of the information available , to be in full compliance with
the requirements of the radio frequency (RF) public exposure guidelines of the ICNIRP “on the limitation of
exposure of the general public to electromagnetic fields”.

Other Material Considerations

The proposal does differ from the scheme that was approved on appeal but not it is considered in a material
way – the column is some 60mm or less than two and a half inches wider whilst the headframe (the top 3
metres) is some 196mm or less than eight inches wider. It is accepted that it is the circumference of the
installation which is perceived but the principal difference in that regard is at the top of the pole. Whilst that is
elevated, and thus more open to view, it is some distance away from the viewer. Furthermore detailed
evidence has been advanced to justify such changes. It should be remembered that under their permitted
development rights a larger headframe than was approved on appeal could subsequently have been added by
O2 without the Local Planning Authority‟s approval having to be sought.

Members will note that O2 being mindful of the concerns about the visual impact that have been expressed,
have indicated that they are prepared to forgo the normal permitted development rights and to commit to
review the design of the pole when their 2G network eventually becomes redundant. This can give members
comfort as to what they are being asked to approve and formalise a commitment by O2 to review the design of
the pole should it become redundant. O2 have also addressed concerns that have been raised about
interference and graffiti being applied to the pole.

The potential for securing additional landscaping is being pursued and will be reported.

Members can if they             wish     locate     other   existing   telecommunications      sites   by    visiting
www.sitefinder.radio.gov.uk.



                                                     52
Background Papers
Planning policy documents referred to
The planning file

Date report prepared
18 March 2005




                                        53
                                      PART II – MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS


1.   APPEAL BY MR C KEMPSON AGAINST THE DECISION OF THE COUNCIL TO REFUSE OUTLINE
     PLANNING PERMISSION FOR THE DEMOLITION OF FACTORY AND ERECTION OF 3 HOUSES ON SITE
     AT ALSAGER KITCHENS AND BEDROOM FACTORY, REAR OF 235 HIGH STREET, ALSAGERS BANK

     Application number:              04/00345/OUT
     Recommendation:                  Refusal
     Decision:                        Refusal by Planning Committee 29 June 2004
     Appeal decision:                 Appeal dismissed
     Date of appeal decision:         11 March 2005

     The Inspector considered the main issues in this case to be:

            Whether the proposal amounts to inappropriate development in the Green Belt
            Whether the appeal site is suitable for residential development, having regard to the objectives of local
             and national policies for housing.
            The effect of the proposed access arrangements on highway safety.
            The effect of the proposed development on the character and appearance of the surrounding rural
             area
            Whether the benefits of the scheme would clearly outweigh any harm resulting from the above issues
             and justify the development on the basis of very special circumstances

     With respect to the issue of whether the proposal amounts to inappropriate development in the Green Belt
     the Inspector concluded that the proposed development was inappropriate and by definition harmful to the
     Green Belt. In coming to this decision she concluded: -

            The proposed development would represent the construction of new buildings, but not for any of the
             purposes that might be acceptable in the Green Belt. The proposed dwellings could not be defined as
             replacement dwellings. Also, the appeal site lies outside the village envelope, so the proposed
             development could not be described as infilling.

     With respect to the issue of the suitability of the appeal site for residential development, the Inspector
     concluded that the appeal site would be unsuitable, contrary to Structure Plan Policies D1, D4, H11, T1A and
     NC1, and Local Plan Policies S1 and H1. In coming to this decision she concluded:

            That most of the site is outside of the settlement and in the countryside for planning purposes. Whilst
             the site adjoins the settlement boundary, this is likely to be the case for many plots of land in rural
             areas and would not be a good reason to allow the proposal. It would lead to the incremental spread
             of the village into the countryside.
            The site is far from main service centres and prospective occupiers would be likely to engage in
             unsustainable travel.
            Whilst the site constitutes previously developed land, Structure Plan Policy is clear that rural
             brownfield sites are a low priority for development.
            There is an over-supply of housing in the borough, and allowing the development would undermine the
             Council‟s ability to manage the supply of housing and direct it towards urban areas.

     With respect to the issue of highway safety, the Inspector concluded that the proposed development would
     cause an unacceptable loss of highway safety. In coming to this decision she concluded: -

            The existing access to the appeal site forms a public right of way from High Street to the playing fields.
             The proposed development would necessitate the re-routing of the right of way. There would be no
             turning areas on the site. Drivers manoeuvring in the parking area would have restricted views of
             pedestrians approaching from the north, and vice versa. The layout of the proposed access would
             cause an unacceptable risk of conflict between different highway users.
            That without evidence to the contrary, the Inspector accepted the Highways Authority estimate that the
             proposed development would be liable to cause an overall increase in traffic movements from the site.

     With respect to the issue of the character and appearance of the surrounding rural area, the Inspector
     concluded that subject to the approval of reserved matters, the proposed development would cause no
     unacceptable harm to the character and appearance of the surrounding rural area. In coming to this decision,
     she concluded: -


                                                        1
           The proposed houses would occupy a smaller footprint than the existing building, would be less bulky
            and utilitarian in design, and would be no higher.
           The provision of private gardens would require a larger plot of land to be enclosed. However, the
            proposed domestic gardens would not alter the appearance of this previously developed site so as to
            cause an unacceptable erosion of the character or quality of the landscape.

     With respect to the issue of the presence of very special circumstances that might outweigh the harm
     caused by the proposed development with regard to the Green Belt, the Inspector concluded that there are no
     very special circumstance which would justify the proposed development. In coming to this decision, she
     concluded: -

           That she was not convinced that the proposed development would either restore the landscape or
            create such an increase in openness as to provide clear benefits that could justify the scheme. Her
            finding on the issue of character and appearance of the area does not outweigh the harm the
            proposed development would cause to the Green Belt or in respect of the other issues.
           The appellant need to relocate is not an unusual feature. Although the applicant claims that the
            building is not attractive to commercial buyers few details of how the site was marketed or if other
            redevelopment options had been explored had been submitted. Whilst sympathetic to the appellant‟s
            situation, the Inspector is not convinced that the situation is so unusual as to constitute a very special
            circumstance or that a residential planning permission is essential for the site to be sold.
           The appellant and a local resident have argued that the continued industrial use of the site is
            detrimental to adjoining residential uses. However, the existing building is sufficiently far from
            adjoining properties to reduce the potential for unacceptable noise, dust, odour or other disturbance.
            The access is wide and does not abut domestic windows or doors.
           The appellant argues that there is a problem of anti-social behaviour that would be reduced by
            residential development. If this is the case, although the Inspector saw little evidence of litter or
            vandalism, there is no reason why this could not be tackled by means other than the proposed
            development.
           A local resident has expressed concern that, without redevelopment, the appeal building would be
            liable to decay. However, the building seems to be of solid construction and there seems to be no
            immediate threat of dereliction.
           Whilst planning permission was granted in 1989 for the erection of 4 bungalows on the site, planning
            policy has changed since it was granted.

     For the reasons given above the Inspector dismissed the appeal.




2.   APPEAL BY MISS S PHILLIMORE AND MR T STURGE AGAINST THE DECISION OF THE COUNCIL TO
     REFUSE FULL PLANNING PERMISSION FOR THE ERECTION OF A SINGLE STOREY „GRANNY
     ANNEXE‟ TO AGRICON HOUSE, NEWCASTLE ROAD, LITTLE MADELEY

     Application number:             04/00504/FUL
     Decision:                       Refusal by HRPS under delegated powers on 11 August 2004
     Appeal decision:                Appeal dismissed
     Date of appeal decision:        10 March 2005

     The Inspector considered the main issue in this case to be whether the proposal amounts to an inappropriate
     form of development in the Green Belt and whether there were any very special circumstances to outweigh the
     presumption against such development.

     With respect to the issue of inappropriate development in the Green Belt the Inspector concluded that the
     proposed annexe would be inappropriate development and, by definition, that it would harm the openness of
     the Green Belt. In coming to this decision she concluded:
          The appeal site is set back from the Newcastle Road frontage within a group of four properties, and
             there are few other buildings in the immediate area. The trees and agricultural land surrounding the
             site add to the openness of the area.
          Taking all the previous extensions (a garage and conservatory) into account, she estimated that the
             proposed annexe would result in a cumulative increase in the floorspace of the original building of
             approximately 76%. Therefore, the proposed development would be a disproportionate addition over
             and above the size of the original building.


                                                       2
      The proposed annexe would substantially and visibly increase the footprint of the appeal house. It
       would encroach onto garden space at the side of the house and thereby reduce the openness of the
       Green Belt.

With respect to the issue of the presence of any very special circumstances the Inspector concluded that
there were no very special circumstances that would outweigh the harm the proposed extension would cause
to the Green Belt. In coming to this decision she concluded:

      The proposed development would be permanent and remain long after the appellants‟ personal
       circumstances cease to apply.
      Since the appeal was lodged, planning permission has been granted to convert the existing
       garage/conservatory on the site to a granny annexe. This annexe would meet the appellants‟ needs
       while minimising harm to the Green Belt. Whilst the appellants state that they would prefer to retain
       the garage, works to convert it have commenced.
      The appellants have suggested that converting the garage/conservatory would create a need for
       replacement facilities. The Inspector argued that the appeal site includes ample outside parking
       space and a garage and conservatory are not so necessary as to justify the proposal as an alternative
       to the approved scheme.
      That the appellants‟ argument that the proposed extension would be in keeping with the appeal house
       and the character of the area does not amount to a very special circumstance, this being a common
       feature of development

For the reasons given above the Inspector dismissed the appeal.




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