Agenda item

Planning Application CR/2016/0955/FUL - 27 Forge Road, Three Bridges, Crawley

To consider report PES/241(a)of the Head of Economic and Environmental Services





The Committee considered report PES/241 (a) of the Head of Economic and Environmental Services which proposed as follows:


Change of use of amenity land to private garden and the erection of single storey side and rear extensions. (Amended description).


Councillors B J Burgess, Jaggard, P C Smith, Stone, Tarrant and Thomas declared they had visited the site.


The Planning Officer provided a verbal summation of the application and provided the following update:-


·         Additional representations had been received from the Applicant, objecting to the suggested conditions. In addition an objection had been received relating to the potential impact the development could have on the nearby trees.  To this end, to  ensure the protection of the roots of those trees Condition 6 had been updated, as set below:


6.         Within 3 months of the date of this permission and prior to works to implement the hardstanding, the area of land immediately to the east of the extension in the ownership of the applicant, shall have all loose rubble removed from the excavated area and this shall be replaced with topsoil.  Prior to re-filling the excavated area with topsoil the applicant shall have contacted the Local Planning Authority and shall have arranged for an officer to attend the site to confirm the works are acceptable and all rubble has been adequately removed.

REASON: To ensure the works are undertaken to an acceptable standard to protect the roots of the adjacent trees in accordance with policy CH3 of the Crawley Borough Local Plan.


Mr John Cooban, on behalf of the Three Bridges Forum, and Councillor B J Burgess, who spoke from the public gallery as Ward Member, addressed the Committee in objection to the application, whilst Mr Mohamid Amir, the brother of the Applicant, spoke in support.  Many of the concerns raised reflected those detailed in the report, including, in particular those on the grounds referred to earlier: that the development would have a harmful impact on the nearby trees.  Concerns had also been raised relating to the strip of land which had been bought by the Applicant and which formed part of this application for its change of use.


The Committee then considered the application.  The Committee discussed the issues arising, including the comments made by the speakers and the concerns raised by objectors.


In response to issues and concerns raised, the Planning Officer:


·         Confirmed that the conditions imposed on the previous change of use (as part of CR/2016/0225/FUL) were not complied with prior to the commencement of development and that therefore the application now before the Committee was in part retrospective and sought to regularise the existing works whilst proposing amendments to the existing approval.

·         Emphasised that whilst comments had been received objecting to the sale of the Council land to the Applicant, this was not a material planning consideration and did not form part of the consideration of this application. 

·         Explained that the tiles on the main roof of the dwelling had recently been cleaned and were therefore different to tiles on the as built extension but extensions are normally required to have matching materials. 

·         Confirmed that the application does not propose any boundary fence as it is understood this is to be agreed with the applicant and the Council as adjoining land owner. 

·         Explained that Condition 6, as amended, was intended to ensure that any loose rubble was to be removed from the excavated area adjacent to the side extension and that this was to be replaced with topsoil (as this area is within the tree root protection area) and block paving to the remainder of the area. 

·         Confirmed that the current application was proposing to surface the hardstanding parking area with permeable paving which would allow the tree roots to recover. 

·         Indicated that the Council’s Tree Officer considered that given the materials proposed and the size of the area, the proposal would not have a harmful impact upon the trees on the adjoining land.

·         Advised that having regard to the works already carried out in breach of a previous planning condition, it was considered reasonable to impose a condition for an officer to attend the site to confirm the works had been carried out in accordance with the condition.


Whilst being assured that the proposals would not have a harmful impact upon the nearby trees, Members generally felt that the proposed change of use would not result in an unacceptable loss of visual public amenity and would not be detrimental to the character of the area. 




Permit, subject to the conditions set out in report PES/241 (a) and the updated Condition 6 above.



Supporting documents: