Agenda item

Planning Application CR/2018/0549/FUL - Goffs Park, Horsham Road, Southgate, Crawley

To consider report PES/286 (a)of the Head of Economy and Planning.




The Committee considered report PES/286 (a) of the Head of Economy and Planning which proposed as follows:


Erection of a temporary ice rink and related temporary structures (to house cafe and reception) and equipment to operate for 72 days between 10 November 2018 to 20 January 2019 and for the same length of time annually in the period November – January until January 2023 (total period of five years) (amended description).


Councillors A Belben, Boxall, Jaggard, P Smith, Stone, Tarrant and Thomas declared they had visited the site.


The Principal Planning Officer provided a verbal summation of the application. In so doing she explained that a key issue was parking. WSCC Highways had confirmed that there were no road capacity or safety issues, but the key concern was over parking and this had been the subject of discussions with officers, WSCC and the applicant.  An Events Plan had been submitted which gave details about the operation of the use, including the parking situation.  Given the concerns particularly over parking and the objections received, a one-year permission approach had since been discussed and agreed with WSCC Highways in order to test the situation.   The Highways Authority acknowledged the difficulty in resisting the overall proposal on parking grounds based on the Applicant’s submitted evidence and the Events Plan.  Whilst overall the proposal would provide a seasonal leisure facility and attract increased visitors to the park and town (in accordance with the relevant economic policies), this needed to be balanced against the potential impact on parking and highway safety. Thus given the submitted evidence which had been provided by the Applicant, the temporary nature of the use and the agreement of the Highways Authority, officers recommended a planning permission to be granted for one year to test the location’s feasibility in terms of parking arrangements and assess the impact.


The Principal Planning Officer also advised the Committee that since the publication of the report the Council’s Archaeological Officer had commented that whilst the application site was in an archaeological notification area, the proposed works were limited in nature and would pose negligible risk to below ground deposits.


Mr Richard Bradley (the Applicant) and Mrs J Roskilly (speaking on behalf of the Friends of Goffs Park Group) addressed the meeting in support of the application. 


The Committee then considered the application. In response to concerns and issues raised, the Principal Planning Officer:


·         Confirmed that whilst other locations within Crawley might have been available, the application received was for the site in Goffs Park, and as such the application had to be determined on the basis of that site. 

·         Emphasised that in terms of the reinstatement of the site on the expiry of the application event, this was covered by the requirements in Condition 1

·         Clarified that the application was received and validated at the end of August and was dealt with as quickly as it could have been.

  • Explained that in terms of the Goffs Park car park (which was free of charge), the Applicant had stated that the Borough Council had offered to give them a key to open the barrier to this car park at the start of each day and lock again at night. At present this car park was full by 8am with commuters, but with the barrier to the car park intended to be opened at 9am, this would give ice rink users an opportunity to park there.

·         Commented that she was not aware of any site work associated with the application having already been started, but emphasised that whether it had or not, the application would be determined at this meeting.

·         Reiterated that given the submitted evidence and the temporary nature of the use, a permission granted for one year would allow the matters of parking demand, traffic movements, highway safety and other issues (such as signage) to be assessed, and for more evidence to be gathered to understand the significance of these impacts and whether such a use would be acceptable in future years.


The Committee continued to consider carefully the application information.


At the request of Councillor Boxall, and in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 18.5, the names of the Members voting for and against the motion (to permit) and abstentions were recorded as set out below:


For the Proposal (to permit):

Councillors Fiveash, Irvine, Malik, Skudder, P C Smith and Thomas (6).


Against the Proposal (to permit):

Councillors A Belben, Boxall, B J Burgess, Jaggard, Stone and Vitler (6).





With the vote being 6 for the proposal and 6 against the proposal, the Chair used his casting vote, which was for the proposal.


The proposal (to permit) was therefore CARRIED, and it was




Permit, subject to the conditions set out in report PES/286 (a).

Supporting documents: