The erection of 5 holiday pods, maintenance building, manager’s flat and associated landscaping and parking (as amended to realign maintenance building).
Councillor Elizabeth Gillespie arrived whilst this application was in progress.
The committee considered application P21/S0047/FUL for the erection of 5 holiday pods, maintenance building, manager’s flat and associated landscaping and parking (as amended to realign maintenance building) at Grove Farm, Patemore Lane, Pishill.
Consultations, representations, policy and guidance, and the site’s planning history were detailed in the officer’s report, which formed part of the agenda pack for the meeting.
The planning officer explained that several buildings on the site were currently in a state of disrepair. The proposal would remove all the existing buildings that were on the site, and replace them with five holiday pods, a maintenance building, and manager’s flat. The new buildings would extend further westwards than the existing farm buildings. Additional hedge rows, trees, and wildflowers would be added to the site. The planning officer concluded that there were no technical objections to the application, but that many objections had been received due to this being proposed development on the Chilterns AONB. Officers considered the impact acceptable and which they viewed would weigh positively to the overall planning balance.
Finally, the planning officer provided an update to the committee that a new application had been submitted to convert the main agricultural buildings to storage use under permitted development rights. The planning officer however told the committee that this application should have no bearing on the application currently before the committee.
Councillor Andrew McAuley, a representative of Watlington Parish Council, spoke objecting to the application.
Councillor Stephen Haq, a representative of Pishill with Stonor Parish Council, spoke objecting to the application.
Ms. Gill Bindoff, a local resident, spoke objecting to the application.
Mr. Simon Firkins, the agent, spoke in support of the application.
The committee asked what environmental benefits the speaker thought the application would bring. The response to this question was that he considered there to be an enhancement of the AONB, which would be generated from the reduction of the built form across the site and the increased planting that would be provided. A further question was asked by committee members asking if the manager’s accommodation was for a permanent employment role, to which the speaker confirmed that they would be hiring someone to specifically maintain the site. The committee also questioned the proportions of the car ports and what they considered to be an excess in its size. The speaker responded to this by explaining that due to the nature of the accommodation, they felt it important to provide a safe location which would not be impacted by weather, but accepted that if this was an issue for the committee; he felt that the applicant would be willing to adjust this aspect of the application.
Councillor Anna Badcock, the ward councillor, spoke objecting to the application.
The committee asked the planning officer whether it was possible for any existing building, with specific reference to the main building, to be brought back into use. The planning officer explained that the application the committee was referring to had only come in on the previous day, and the conversion of the farm buildings could be flexible. The officer reminded the committee that the new application was not relevant to the current application and could not have any contribution to the committee’s consideration for the application before them. A second question was then raised on whether the evergreen hedges were under a protected condition to ensure they were kept permanently. The planning officer responded that there were conditions on landscaping and tree protection, which would be sufficient to keep the hedging.
A motion moved and seconded, to refuse planning permission was declared carried on being put to the vote.
RESOLVED: to refuse planning permission for application P21/S0047/FUL due to:
a. The harm to the character of the site and area
b. The failure to conserve or enhance the particular area of the Chilterns AONB