Agenda and draft minutes

Planning Committee - Wednesday, 11 January 2023 6.00 pm

Venue: Meeting Room 1, Abbey House, Abbey Close, Abingdon, OX14 3JE

Contact: Darius Zarazel, Democratic Services Officer  07917 088376

Items
No. Item

112.

Chair's announcements

To receive any announcements from the chair and general housekeeping matters.

Minutes:

The chair welcomed everyone to the meeting, outlined the procedure to be followed and advised on emergency evacuation arrangements.

 

113.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Ken Arlett, who was substituted by Councillor Stefan Gawrysiak, Councillor Tim Bearder, and Councillor Ian Snowdon.

114.

Declarations of interest

To receive declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests, other registrable interests and non-registrable interests or any conflicts of interest in respect of items on the agenda for this meeting.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

115.

Urgent business

To receive notification of any matters which the chair determines should be considered as urgent business and the special circumstances which have made the matters urgent and to receive any notification of any applications deferred or withdrawn.

Minutes:

There was no urgent business.

116.

Proposals for site visits

Minutes:

There were no proposals for site visits.

117.

Public participation

To receive any statements from members of the public that have registered to speak on planning applications which are being presented to this committee meeting. 

Minutes:

The list showing members of the public who had registered to speak was tabled at the meeting.

118.

P19/S4319/FUL - Gillotts School, Gillotts Lane, Henley-on-Thames, RG9 1PS pdf icon PDF 433 KB

Boundary fence to enclose school together with vehicular and pedestrian accesses (as amended and amplified by information received 27 June 2022).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The committee considered planning application P19/S4319/FUL for the boundary fence to enclose school together with vehicular and pedestrian accesses (as amended and amplified by information received 27 June 2022), on land at Gillotts School, Gillotts Lane, Henley-on-Thames.  

 

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 introduced the report and highlighted that the application was brought to the committee due to the objection of the town council. The planning officer then informed members that the application sought to erect a 2.4 metre mesh green fence along the full boundary of the school site for the purpose of security.

 

The site itself was bounded by open countryside to the southeast and west, which bordered the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and by Henley-on-Thames public footpath 21 and Henley-on-Thames Bridleway 20 to the north. The planning officer also noted that two woodland spaces on the site were designated as local green spaces in the Joint Henley and Harpsden Neighbourhood Plan and would be inside the permitter fence.

 

The proposed fence line would be highly visible from Gillotts Lane, but the planning officer believed that the majority of the fence in that section would be considered in relation to the existing built form of the buildings. Fences to south and west of the site, where the fences met open countryside, were also considered acceptable as officers were satisfied that the mesh material and colour of the proposed fences would not obstruct important views into or out of the site.

 

However, the northern boundary of the site was bordered a public footpath in which the north side of the footpath was already lined with varying sections of close board fencing. The planning officer did consider that the addition of the proposed fence to the south side of the bridleway would be highly visible.

 

The planning officer also noted that the school retained permitted development rights for the erection of a 2-metre fence, without the need for planning permission. Officers were satisfied that the additional height would not significantly alter the character of the area from the permitted development option and that the application allowed for the council to secure some amendments to the fence line along the side facing the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and other details were secured as part of the application. Overall, the planning officer believed that the proposal was acceptable with conditions, and recommended it be approved.

 

 

Councillor Ken Arlett spoke on behalf of Henley-on-Thames Town Council,objecting to the application. 

 

Catherine Darnton, the headteacher at Gillotts School, the applicant, spoke in support of the application. 

 

Councillor Stefan Gawrysiak, a local ward councillor, spoke objecting to the application. 

 

 

The committee had conducted a site visit prior to the discussion of the application. Members asked the planning officer if the school used the north woodland for activities and noted that the officer did not believe that this was the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 118.

119.

P22/S1410/FUL - Land in the North East Corner of Culham Science Centre near Clifton Hampden, OX14 3DB pdf icon PDF 889 KB

Erection of a Fusion Demonstration Plant with ancillary office space, parking, landscaping and associated infrastructure, including plant and machinery.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The committee considered planning application P22/S1410/FUL for the erection of a Fusion Demonstration Plant with ancillary office space, parking, landscaping and associated infrastructure, including plant and machinery, on land at Land in the North East Corner of Culham Science Centre near Clifton Hampden.  

 

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 introduced the report and highlighted that, since the report was published, two further neighbour consultation letters had been received taking the total to eight, and the Environment Agency had checked the environmental constraints and stated that the only environmental risks pertained to ground water contamination. The planning officer confirmed that the contaminated land officer had reviewed the submitted contained risk and remediation strategy and was satisfied that this addressed the phase 2 risk assessment and phase 3 remediation strategy. Therefore, the planning officer confirmed that condition 19 of the officer’s report was no longer required and condition 20 should refer only to a validation report.

 

The planning officer informed members that the application was brought to committee due to its scale and potential national and international importance and that the site was used by the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Agency to development nuclear technology. The site itself was 3.8 hectares, located in the north-eastern side of the science centre, and was scheduled to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The majority of the science centre was built upon, but the proposed building would be a new development.

 

The planning officer also confirmed that the building was for a fusion demonstration plant to test the technology with a view to improve and refine the technology prior to commercialisation and was not for commercial use. The building would be just over 10,000 square metres in area, 7,000 square metres for process spaces and 3,000 square metres for offices and support. The demonstration hall was 38 metres in height with a diameter of 50 metres and clad in a translucent plastic material, whereas the support offices were clad in metal. The site would also have 47 car parking spaces, and a covered space for 30 cycles.

 

Members noted that there were no objections raised from technical specialists apart from the landscaping and conservation officers due to the landscape impact, particularly for long distance views, and its impact on the registered park and garden. However, the planning officer informed members that as the harm was considered to be indirect and exclusively to the setting, the impact was considered less than substantial in the National Planning Policy Framework and the Local Plan. A further point was made that the existing Joint European Torus (JET) building was wider and would likely have more of an impact that the proposed development in the application.

 

The planning officer then clarified the point about lighting and confirmed that only the bottom of the demonstration hall would be lit, although a curfew could be agreed  ...  view the full minutes text for item 119.

120.

P21/S5308/FUL - 32 Kennylands Road, Sonning Common, RG4 9JT pdf icon PDF 861 KB

Demolition of the existing bungalow & the construction of 1 pair of semi-detached houses with associated landscaping & parking. (As amended by plans 2022-03-24 to reduce height of dwellings by 0.5m; reduce depth of dwellings by two metres; moving dwellings further back from the road by 0.5m; loss of one bedroom in each dwelling) (Amended by plans 2022-07-11 to demonstrate three parking spaces for each dwelling) (As amended by plans 2022-08-08 to more accurately represent neighbouring no.30). (As amplified by additional bat information received 20 September 2022).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The committee considered planning application P21/S5308/FUL for the demolition of the existing bungalow and the construction of one pair of semi-detached houses with associated landscaping & parking. (As amended by plans 2022-03-24 to reduce height of dwellings by 0.5m; reduce depth of dwellings by two metres; moving dwellings further back from the road by 0.5m; loss of one bedroom in each dwelling) (Amended by plans 2022-07-11 to demonstrate three parking spaces for each dwelling) (As amended by plans 2022-08-08 to more accurately represent neighbouring no.30). (As amplified by additional bat information received 20 September 2022), on land at 32 Kennylands Road, Sonning Common.  

 

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 introduced the report and highlighted that the application was brought to the committee due to the objection of the parish council. The application itself was for the demolition of a bungalow and the erection of a pair of semi-detached four-bedroom dwellings in its place.

 

The planning officer noted that the existing bungalow was one of pair of bungalows of no distinct architectural style or character. The proposed two storey dwellings measured a height of 7.8 metres and would measure a combined width of 13 metres on the plot. Each property also had a two-storey projection set in from the boundary of their neighbours.

 

The planning officer also informed members that the application incorporated details responding to the surrounding area, that it would not be incongruous to the wider surrounding street scene, and would not be overbearing or intrusive to the amenity of neighbours. Overall, the planning officer recommended that permission be granted subject to conditions.

 

 

Martin Smith and Stan Rust spoke objecting to the application. 

 

 

The committee asked the planning officer about the gap between the proposed semi-detached buildings and the boundary. This was confirmed to be over a metre on the south boundary and two metres for the north property. Members expressed concern about the size of that gap and also that the erection of two semi-detached houses in the plot was out of character with the surrounding street scene.

 

Overall, as the committee believed that the scale, design, and spacing of the units did not meet the established appearance and character on that part of the road, they agreed that the application should be refused.

 

 

A motion, moved and seconded, to refuse the application was carried on being put to the vote. 

 

RESOLVED: to refuse planning application P21/S5308/FUL, for the following reasons:

 

Having regard its scale, massing and density the development it would appear cramped and at odds with the established character and appearance of this part of Kennylands Road. The proposed development would therefore be contrary to Policies DES1 and DES2 of the adopted South Oxfordshire Local Plan 2035, the Joint Design Guide and Policy H3 and D1 of the adopted Sonning Common Neighbourhood Plan 2027 and Policies RD1, RD3, RD4 and RH3 of the emerging  ...  view the full minutes text for item 120.

121.

P22/S4152/FUL - 5 Lydalls Close, Didcot, OX11 7LD pdf icon PDF 551 KB

Erection of chalet-style dwelling. (As clarified by SAP calculations received 8 December 2022).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

During this agenda item, the meeting length had reached almost two and a half hours. In accordance with the council’s Constitution, the committee agreed to extend the meeting in order to finish this item.

 

The committee considered planning application P22/S4152/FUL for the erection of chalet-style dwelling (as clarified by SAP calculations received 8 December 2022), on land at 5 Lydalls Close, Didcot.  

 

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 introduced the report and highlighted that the application was brought to the committee as the applicant was a close relation to a member of the council, Councillor Jane Murphy. The planning officer highlighted a correction to the officers report as references to Rymans Close in paragraphs 6.4i and 6.4iv should read Rymans Court. The planning officer then informed members that the application was for a five-bedroom detached dwelling. Planning permission was previously granted for a four-bedroom bungalow on the site in June 2022. The siting of the current application was the same as the approved application, with the main changes between the applications being over the elevation. As the principle of development was considered acceptable and as there were no technical objections, the planning officer recommended the application be approved, subject to recommendations.

 

Overall, the committee were satisfied with the officer’s report and agreed that the application be approved, subject to conditions.

 

 

A motion, moved and seconded, to approve the application was carried on being put to the vote. 

 

RESOLVED: to approve planning application P22/S4152/FUL, subject to the following conditions:

 

1. Commencement 3 years - Full Planning Permission

2. Approved plans

 

Pre-commencement conditions:

3. Surface Water Drainage

4. Tree Protection

 

Compliance conditions:

5. Energy statement verification

6. Electric Vehicle Charging Point

7. Provide bird box.

8. Retain hedges (biodiversity)

9. Provide parking as per plan