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Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Debbie Snook  01622 602030

Items
No. Item

276.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

It was noted that apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Brindle.

 

277.

Notification of Substitute Members

Minutes:

It was noted that Councillor Young was substituting for Councillor Brindle.

 

278.

Notification of Visiting Members

Minutes:

Councillors Harper, McKay, Newton and Springett had given notice of their wish to speak on the report of the Head of Planning and Development relating to applications 19/501600/OUT and 19/506182/FULL – Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent and were present at the meeting.

 

Councillor Springett had also given notice of her wish to speak on the report of the Head of Planning and Development relating to application 19/504734/FULL – 127 Hockers Lane, Thurnham, Maidstone, Kent.

 

Councillor de Wiggondene-Sheppard had given notice of his wish to speak on the report of the Head of Planning and Development relating to application 19/504734/FULL – 127 Hockers Lane, Thurnham, Maidstone, Kent and was present at the meeting.

 

279.

Items withdrawn from the Agenda

Minutes:

There were none.

 

280.

Urgent Items

Minutes:

The Chairman said that, in his opinion, the update reports of the Head of Planning and Development and any updates to be included in the Officer presentations should be taken as urgent items as they contained further information relating to the applications to be considered at the meeting.

 

281.

Disclosures by Members and Officers

Minutes:

With regard to the report of the Head of Planning and Development relating to applications 19/501600/OUT and 19/506182/FULL (Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent), Councillor Spooner said that he was a Member of Bearsted Parish Council.  However, he had not participated in the Parish Council’s discussions on the applications and intended to speak and vote when they were considered.

 

282.

Disclosures of lobbying

Minutes:

The following disclosures of lobbying were noted:

 

Item

12.

19/501600/OUT & 19/506182/FULL - Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent

Councillors Adkinson, Chapell-Tay, English, Eves, Harwood, Kimmance, Munford, Parfitt-Reid, Perry, Spooner, Vizzard, Wilby and Young

Item

13.

19/504734/FULL - 127 Hockers Lane, Thurnham, Maidstone, Kent

Councillors Adkinson, Chappell-Tay, Eves, Harwood, Munford, Parfitt-Reid, Perry, Spooner, Wilby and Young

Item

14.

19/503584/FULL - Kingsbrooke, Cranbrook Road, Staplehurst, Tonbridge, Kent

Councillor Wilby

Item

15.

20/501604/FULL - Maidstone Cemetery, Sutton Road, Maidstone, Kent

Councillor Wilby

Item

16.

20/500780/FULL - The Mellows, Marley Road, Harrietsham, Maidstone, Kent

Councillors Adkinson, Chappell-Tay, English, Eves, Kimmance, Munford, Parfitt-Reid, Perry, Vizzard, Wilby and Young

Item

17.

20/501035/HEDGE - Land South of Marden Rd - Staplehurst, Marden Road, Staplehurst, Kent

Councillors Perry and Wilby

Item

18.

19/500765/OUT & 19/501988/ADJ - Gibraltar Farm, Ham Lane, Hempstead, Gillingham, Kent

Councillors English, Kimmance, Perry, Spooner, Vizzard and Wilby

Item

19.

20/501029/FULL & 20/501030/LBC - Len House, Mill Street, Maidstone, Kent

Councillors Munford and Wilby

Item

20.

20/500442/FULL - Little Spitzbrook Farm, Haviker Street, Collier Street, Kent

Councillor Wilby

Item 21.

20/502043/FULL - Maidstone Lawn Tennis Club, Poplar Grove, Maidstone, Kent

Councillor Wilby

Item

23.

Exempt Appendix - 19/501600/OUT & 19/506182/FULL - Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent

Councillors Adkinson, English, Kimmance, Munford, Parfitt-Reid, Vizzard and Wilby

Item

24.

Exempt Appendix - 20/500780/FULL - The Mellows, Marley Road, Harrietsham, Maidstone, Kent

Councillors Adkinson and Wilby

 

283.

Exempt Items

Minutes:

RESOLVED:  That the public be excluded from the meeting in the event of Members wishing to discuss the information contained in the exempt Appendices to the reports of the Head of Planning and Development relating to applications 19/501600/OUT and 19/506182/FULL (Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent) and 20/500780/FULL (The Mellows, Marley Road, Harrietsham, Maidstone, Kent) because of the likely disclosure of exempt information pursuant to paragraphs 5 and 1 respectively of Part I of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, having applied the public interest test.

 

284.

Minutes of the meeting held on 28 May 2020 pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED:  That the Minutes of the meeting held on 28 May 2020 be approved as a correct record and signed.

 

285.

Presentation of Petitions

Minutes:

It was noted that petitions might be referred to in relation to agenda item 12 – 19/501600/OUT and 19/506182/FULL (Land West of Church Road, Otham, Kent).

 

286.

19/501600/OUT & 19/506182/FULL - LAND WEST OF CHURCH ROAD, OTHAM, KENT pdf icon PDF 410 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

19/501600/OUT - OUTLINE APPLICATION FOR UP TO 440 RESIDENTIAL DWELLINGS, WITH ASSOCIATED ACCESS, INFRASTRUCTURE, DRAINAGE, LANDSCAPING AND OPEN SPACE (ACCESS BEING SOUGHT WITH ALL OTHER MATTERS RESERVED FOR FUTURE CONSIDERATION) - LAND WEST OF CHURCH ROAD, OTHAM, KENT

 

19/506182/FULL – RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT FOR 421 DWELLINGS WITH ASSOCIATED ACCESS, INFRASTRUCTURE, DRAINAGE, OPEN SPACE AND LANDSCAPING - LAND WEST OF CHURCH ROAD, OTHAM, KENT

 

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Planning and Development providing further advice (including Counsel’s Opinion) on the prospects of successfully defending its reasons for refusing applications 19/501600/OUT and 19/506182/FULL for 440 or 421 dwellings respectively on land west of Church Road, Otham and the likely risks of costs being awarded against the Council at appeal.

 

It was noted that:

 

·  Both applications were considered by the Committee on 28 May 2020.  Contrary to the recommendations of the Head of Planning and Development, the Committee voted to refuse the applications for the following reasons:

 

Outline Application

 

1.  The proposal will result in severe traffic congestion on local road networks (Deringwood Drive, Spot Lane, Mallards Way and Madginford Road) and the increase in traffic will adversely affect residents to the point that air pollution is beyond what is reasonable for the Council to accept contrary to Policies H1(8) criteria 9, DM1 and DM6 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017. 

 

2.  The proposal will result in worsening safety issues on Church Road to the south of the site which has not been addressed and due to the constraints of the road likely will never be able to be addressed contrary to Policy DM1 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017.

 

3.  The proposal will adversely affect the settings of the Grade I listed Church and other listed buildings contrary to Policies SP18 and DM4 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017 where the development will not be protecting or enhancing the characteristics, distinctiveness, diversity and quality of the heritage assets.

 

Full Application

 

1.  The proposal will result in severe traffic congestion on local road networks (Deringwood Drive, Spot Lane, Mallards Way and Madginford Road) and the increase in traffic will adversely affect residents to the point that air pollution is beyond what is reasonable for the Council to accept contrary to Policies H1(8) criteria 9, DM1 and DM6 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017.

 

2.  The proposal will result in worsening safety issues on Church Road to the south of the site which has not been addressed and due to the constraints of the road likely will never be able to be addressed contrary to Policy DM1 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017.

 

3.  The proposal will adversely affect the settings of the Grade I listed Church and Grade II listed Church House contrary to Policies SP18 and DM4 of the Maidstone Borough Local Plan 2017 due to the visual effect of the whole development in both long and short term views and the development will not be protecting or enhancing the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 286.

287.

20/501035/HEDGE - HEDGEROW REMOVAL NOTICE - TO ESTABLISH ACCESS AND WORKING AREA FOR SOUTHERN WATER SEWER CONNECTION FOR A DEVELOPMENT - LAND SOUTH OF MARDEN ROAD - STAPLEHURST, MARDEN ROAD, STAPLEHURST, KENT pdf icon PDF 209 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Planning and Development.  In presenting the application, the Landscape Officer advised the Committee that since the publication of the agenda, the applicant had provided further information in response to some of the objections and comments set out in the report, summarised as follows:

 

·  The applicant had confirmed that the Southern Water scheme was a foul sewer connection to serve the Hen and Duckhurst development.  This solution was the only one progressed as a result of the optioneering process on the outline proposal that showed the sewage for the site going north was discounted.  The solution had been designed to ensure no detriment downstream and another scheme was under development to address existing issues.

 

·  Access to the site would be taken from the proposed eastern gap in the hedgerow.  A preliminary ecological appraisal and hedgerow assessment would be undertaken to identify and mitigate for all potential ecological impacts.

 

·  Southern Water policy was to work towards a net gain in biodiversity.  The hedgerow would be fully reinstated upon completion of the work.  An ecological site visit had been undertaken and the relevant reports were under development.

 

·  Southern Water Property would handle all land access requirements.  The location of the connection into the existing network necessitated removal of the sections of the hedgerow.  The connection was beneath the hedgerow and a working area was required to facilitate the proposed works which would be carried out under Southern Water’s permitted development rights.  The box culvert storage tank would be located below ground.

 

The Chairman read out a statement which had been submitted by Mr Buller (an objector) and the representative of the Head of Legal Partnership read out a statement which had been submitted by Councillor Sharp of Staplehurst Parish Council.

 

Contrary to the recommendation of the Head of Planning and Development, which was to raise no objection to the proposed removal of the hedgerow, the Committee agreed that a Hedgerow Retention Notice should be issued.  In making this decision, the Committee considered that, taking into account its entire length, there are more than seven woody species within the hedgerow so it would appear to qualify as “important”.  The Committee considered that by designating the hedge as important, a less damaging approach to achieving the sewer connection can be progressed.

 

RESOLVED:  That a Hedgerow Retention Notice be issued as, taking into account its entire length, there are more than seven woody species within the hedgerow so it would appear to qualify as “important”.  Also, by designating the hedge as important, a less damaging approach to achieving the sewer connection can be progressed.

 

Voting:  13 – For  0 – Against  0 – Abstentions

 

288.

19/504734/FULL - ERECTION OF 5 NO. DETACHED DWELLINGS WITH NEW ACCESS ROAD AND ASSOCIATED PARKING - 127 HOCKERS LANE, THURNHAM, MAIDSTONE, KENT pdf icon PDF 271 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report and the urgent update report of the Head of Planning and Development.

 

In presenting the application, the Principal Planning Officer advised the Committee that following publication of the agenda further email comments had been received from an adjacent resident setting out that the site is mainly flat grassland which is regularly mown.  This appearance had not changed from when the site was agricultural land and the site contributes to the local landscape in that way.  The resident considered that the site was probably closer in description to a meadow than a garden.

 

The Chairman read out a statement which had been submitted by Mr Pollitt (an objector).  Mr Street (agent for the applicant) addressed the meeting by video link.

 

Councillors Springett and de Wiggondene-Sheppard (Visiting Members) addressed the meeting.

 

Contrary to the recommendation of the Head of Planning and Development, the Committee agreed to refuse permission.  In making this decision, the Committee considered that the proposed development would be contrary to policy for the following summarised reasons:

 

(1)  Harm to the setting of the Kent Downs AONB;

(2)  Harmful backland development encroaching into open countryside which is intrusive and urbanising;

(3)  Introduction of domestic paraphernalia, artificial lighting, tarmac etc. which is harmful to the landscape character; and

(4)  Views across the site from Hockers Lane towards open countryside would be lost.

 

The Development Manager requested that delegated powers be given to the Head of Planning and Development to finalise the reasons for refusal which would include those key issues cited above and those matters raised by the Inspector’s decision letter.

 

RESOLVED:  That permission be refused and that the Head of Planning and Development be given delegated powers to finalise the reasons for refusal to include those key issues cited above and those matters raised by the Inspector’s decision letter. 

 

Voting:  13 – For  0 – Against  0 – Abstentions

 

Note:  Councillor Harwood left the meeting after consideration of this application (9.11 p.m.).

 

289.

19/503584/FULL - CREATION OF ALTERNATIVE ACCESS ACROSS EXISTING DRAINAGE DITCH WITH IMPROVED DRAINAGE - KINGSBROOKE, CRANBROOK ROAD, STAPLEHURST, TONBRIDGE, KENT pdf icon PDF 129 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Planning and Development.

 

The Chairman read out a statement which had been submitted by Councillor Sharp of Staplehurst Parish Council.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.  That permission be granted subject to the conditions set out in the report with (a) the amendment of condition 5 (Landscaping) to clarify that the landscape scheme shall comprise native species and (b) the amendment of the words in brackets in lines 2 and 3 of condition 6 (Arboricultural Amenity and Method Statement) to read:

 

  (e.g. through the use of no-dig construction if necessary)

 

2.  That the Head of Planning and Development be given delegated powers to finalise the wording of the amended conditions and to amend any other conditions as a consequence.

 

Voting:  12 – For  0 – Against  0 – Abstentions

 

290.

20/500780/FULL - RETENTION OF DWELLING WITH ALTERATIONS (PART RETROSPECTIVE) - THE MELLOWS, MARLEY ROAD, HARRIETSHAM, MAIDSTONE, KENT pdf icon PDF 182 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report and the urgent update report of the Head of Planning and Development.

 

In presenting the report, the Development Manager advised the Committee that:

 

·  Having reviewed the application, he wished to reduce the red line boundary to more concisely reflect the planning unit and to exclude the southern and western parts of the site.  In his view it would not be necessary to re-advertise because it was a smaller red line boundary than previously.  However, if Members considered that it was necessary to consult on the amended red-line boundary, then he was seeking delegated powers to grant permission subject to no new material planning issues being raised as a result of the consultation exercise.

 

·  Condition 7 specified that the building shall only be occupied by the applicant and her son. He wished to amend this to include the names of these individuals.

 

Members accepted the amended red line boundary without the need to re-advertise.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.  That permission be granted with the amended red line boundary plan subject to the conditions and informative set out in the report with the amendment of condition 2 to reflect the amended red line boundary and condition 7 to include the names of the applicant and her son.

 

2.  That the Head of Planning and Development be given delegated powers to finalise the wording of the amended conditions and to amend any other conditions as a consequence.

 

Voting:  12 – For  0 – Against  0 – Abstentions

 

291.

20/501604/FULL - ERECTION OF A STAFF MESS HUT BUILDING - MAIDSTONE CEMETERY, SUTTON ROAD, MAIDSTONE, KENT pdf icon PDF 469 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Planning and Development.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.  That permission be granted subject to the conditions set out in the report with delegated powers being given to the Head of Planning and Development to negotiate/include the following:

 

The incorporation of a ragstone plinth within the building to reflect the use of ragstone within the rest of the cemetery;

  The installation of solar PV panels on the roof of the building;

  The amendment of condition 4 (Ecological Enhancement Measures) to require the incorporation of bee bricks within the fabric of the building; and

  An informative advising the applicant that the demolished brick pillar at the entrance to the site should be rebuilt and the large pot hole infilled.

 

2.  That the Head of Planning and Development be given delegated powers to finalise the wording of the amended/additional conditions and the informative.

 

Voting:  12 – For  0 – Against  0 – Abstentions

 

292.

Adjournment of Meeting

Minutes:

Following consideration of the report of the Head of Planning and Development relating to application 20/501604/FULL (Maidstone Cemetery, Sutton Road, Maidstone, Kent), the Committee:

 

RESOLVED:  That the meeting be adjourned until 6.00 p.m. on Thursday 2 July 2020 when the remaining items on the agenda will be discussed.

 

293.

Duration of Meeting

Minutes:

6.00 p.m. to 9.40 p.m.