Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee - Monday, 20th July, 2020 7.30 pm

Venue: virtually - Microsoft Teams Live. View directions

Contact: Email: Democratic.Services@crawley.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

1.

Disclosure of Interests

In accordance with the Council's Code of Conduct, Councillors of the Council are reminded that it is a requirement to declare interests where appropriate.

 

Minutes:

The following disclosure of interest was made:

 

Councillor

Item and Minute

Type and Nature of Interest

 

Councillor

A Belben

6 – Planning Application CR/2020/0210/TPO – St Nicholas Church, Church Road, Pound Hill, Crawley (Minute 5)

Personal Interest – member of the Worth Conservation Area Advisory Committee

 

2.

Lobbying Declarations

The Planning Code of Conduct requires that Councillors who have been lobbied, received correspondence or been approached by an interested party regarding any planning matter should declare this at the meeting which discusses the matter. Councillors should declare if they have been lobbied at this point in the meeting.

 

Minutes:

The following lobbying declarations were made by Councillors:

 

Councillors Ascough, A Belben, Irvine, Jaggard, Mwagale, Purdy, Rana, Sharma and P Smith had been lobbied regarding application CR/2019/0322/FUL - The Gables Nursing Home, Ifield Green, Ifield, Crawley.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 219 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Planning Committee held on 29 June 2020.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee held on 29 June 2020 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

4.

Planning Application CR/2019/0322/FUL - The Gables Nursing Home, Ifield Green, Ifield, Crawley pdf icon PDF 462 KB

To consider report PES/353a of the Head of Economy and Planning.

 

RECOMMENDATION to PERMIT.

Minutes:

The Committee considered report PES/353(a) of the Head of Economy and Planning which proposed:

 

Demolition of existing buildings and structures and comprehensive redevelopment to provide a new care home with associated landscaping and access works (amended plans, noise assessment and flood risk assessment received).

 

Councillors Jaggard and Purdy declared they had visited the site.  Although he had not visited the site recently, Councillor P Smith stated that he knew the site well.

 

The Principal Planning Officer provided a verbal summation of the application and informed the Committee that the hedge referred to in paragraph 5.12 of report PES/353(a), was not evergreen and that, although it retained its greenery throughout the spring, summer and autumn months, the level of screening it provided was reduced during the winter.  The Committee noted that the application as a whole had been recommended for permission on the basis that the hedge would not always be there.

 

In line with the Council’s Virtual Committee Procedure Rules, two statements submitted by members of the public were read to the Committee.

 

The first statement (submitted by objectors Mr and Mrs Salsano) highlighted matters including:

·       The potential for major flooding as the application site was in a flood plain.

·       A loss of privacy due to windows of the proposed development overlooking their property.

·       The assertion that the proposed viewing balcony would provide an unrestricted view of their daily life as it overlooked the lounge, kitchen and sunroom of their property.

·       The hedge did not provide adequate all year round screening.

·       Inadequate provision for parking allocated within the proposal.

·       Concerns regarding noise levels generated by the redevelopment.

 

The second statement (submitted by Avison Young as the Agents acting on behalf of the Applicant - Country Court Care) highlighted matters including:

·       In addition to seeking pre-application advice in relation to the proposal, the application had been further refined post-submission to address the issues raised.

·       The proposal would provide modern accommodation, bringing the application site back into its former use as a care home.

·       The proposal addressed the increased need to plan for growth in the elderly population, including those with specific care needs.

·       The design of the proposed development addressed the historic flooding issues associated with the application site.

·       The design of the proposal met Care Quality Commission standards and the design’s sustainability credentials had achieved BREEAM excellence.

·       The proposed windows facing the neighbouring property had been angled away from the property.

·       The existing hedge along the boundary would further obscure the proposal from the neighbouring dwelling.

 

The Committee then considered the application in detail and raised concerns including potential overlooking of the neighbouring property (especially with regard to the proposed balcony on the north elevation of the proposed development), the implications of the proposed flood mitigation measures and the layout of the (courtyard) amenity space.  In response to the various planning issues and concerns raised by the Committee, the Principal Planning Officer:

·       Informed the Committee that the proposed balcony was small as its purpose was to provide residents with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Tree Preservation Order Application CR/2020/0210/TPO - St Nicholas Church, Church Road, Pound Hill, Crawley pdf icon PDF 307 KB

To consider report PES/353bof the Head of Economy and Planning.

 

RECOMMENDATION to CONSENT.

Minutes:

The Committee considered report PES/353(b) of the Head of Economy and Planning which proposed:

 

T6 – Turkey Oak – fell, and T7 – Common Lime – fell.

 

Councillors Jaggard and Purdy declared they had visited the site.  Although he had not visited the site recently, Councillor P Smith stated that he knew the site well.

 

The Group Manager (Development Management) provided a verbal summation of the application.

 

In line with the Council’s Virtual Committee Procedure Rules, two statements submitted by members of the public were read to the Committee.

 

The first statement (submitted by objector Mr John Cooban) highlighted matters including:

·       The application to fell the trees did not solve the access problem to the church.

·       The trees in question could provide 20-40 years more years of beneficial life if they were managed appropriately.

·       Felling the trees could damage the roots (and health) of the remaining adjacent trees.

·       Alternative access routes had not been properly considered.

 

The second statement (submitted by Mr Hal Appleyard as the Agent for the Applicant) highlighted matters including:

·       The removal and replacement of the trees would have a negligible visual impact on the landscape and conservation area.

·       The tree roots currently impeded access along the path to the church, causing a ‘trip hazard’, especially to those who were elderly or infirm.

·       Pruning the tree roots would cause unsustainable harm to the trees.

·       Relocating the path was not feasible given the position of existing graves.

·       It was prudent to remove and replace the trees in question.

 

The Committee then considered the application in detail raising concern in particular about the loss of mature trees.  Several Committee Members questioned whether an alternative option was possible which would enable retention of the trees.  In response to the various concerns and queries raised by the Committee, the Group Manager (Development Management) advised the Committee that:

·       Re-routing the pathway had been explored in the past and evidence had suggested that it was not a practical option.  Given the age of the church the grave map was incomplete and did not include the early graves.

·       The roots of trees T6 and T7, if felled, would not be dug out and would instead be left to decay so that the roots of the neighbouring trees would not be disturbed or damaged.

·       The replacement trees would be planted close to the current trees but further from the path so they would remain part of the avenue once they matured, thus retaining the 12 Apostle principle.

·       All twelve trees along the path to the church were subject to Tree Preservation Orders and, therefore, any tree works required submission of an application to the Council as the Local Planning Authority.

 

A recorded vote was taken on the recommendation in accordance with the Council’s Virtual Committee Procedure Rules.  The names of the Councillors voting for and against the recommendation, along with any abstentions, were recorded as follows:

 

For the recommendation to consent:

Councillors Irvine, Purdy, Sharma and P Smith (4).

 

Against the recommendation to consent:  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.