Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall, High Street, Maidstone

Contact: Ezzie Tunnicliff  01622 602272

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies were received from Councillor Wilby.


Apologies for lateness were received from Councillor de Wiggondene Sheppard.



Notification of Substitute Members


Councillor Mrs Wilson was present as a substitute for Councillor Wilby.



Urgent Items


The Chairman informed the Committee that he had accepted an Urgent Update to Item 13. Off Street Parking Places Order Variation. The reason for urgency was that it updated the Committee on negotiations with a lessee at one of the Council’s Car Parks, and this meant that the recommendations had been updated.



Notification of Visiting Members


Councillor Spooner was present as a visiting member but did not register his intention to speak on any items on the agenda.



Disclosures by Members and Officers


There were no disclosures by Members and Officers.



Disclosures of Lobbying


There were no disclosures of lobbying.



Exempt Items


RESOLVED: That all items on the agenda be considered in public as proposed.



Minutes of the meeting held on 13 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 64 KB


RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting held on 13 March 2018 be approved as a correct record and signed.



Presentation of Petitions (if any)


There were no petitions.



Question and answer session for members of the public


There were no questions from members of the public.



Outside Bodies - Verbal Updates from Members


Councillor Willis updated the Committee on a recent meeting of the Quality Bus Partnership.



Self-Build and Custom Housebuilding Update pdf icon PDF 118 KB


Mr Stuart Watson, Planning Officer (Strategic Planning), presented an update on self-build and custom housebuilding.


Mr Watson informed the Committee that:


·  The Council was required to make a provision for those who wished to build their own homes through the Local Plan.

·  Legislation, however, did not distinguish between self-build projects and custom housebuilding.

·  The Council had a responsibility to maintain a self-build and custom housebuilding register to understand demand in its local area.

·  This register was used to calculate demand and ensure there was adequate supply of serviced plots to meet this demand.

·  According to the borough’s register, which was hosted externally from the Council’s website, of the 127 individuals on the register between October 2016-October 2017 114 had showed an interest in more than one authority.

·  The Council did not charge a fee to be on the register. However in order to recover costs when complying with the Council’s duty to grant planning permission to self-build properties the Council was able to charge a fee for entry onto the register as well as for ongoing membership.


The Committee considered the update and raised concerns that the figure for need may not be a truly accurate figure due to the applicants showing interest in more than one area, and that it was free for applicants to join the register. The Committee suggested that if there was a fee to join the register it would deter speculative registrations.


In response to a question from the Committee, Mr Watson confirmed that as there was no distinction between self and custom build within the relevant planning legislation housebuilders were able to seek permission for large, serviced, custom build plots and then sell the plots on to those wishing to custom build. The Committee noted that this could lead to a large estate with a variety of different types, styles and shapes of dwellings and this may be visually unappealing, and requested that design guidelines for larger custom build sites be included in the review of the Local Plan.


Members requested that the style of the report be amended for the next update to make it more visually appealing.




1.  That the statutory requirement for the Council to keep a self-build and custom housebuilding register and the duties required for increasing the availability of land for self-build and custom housebuilding be noted.


2.  That an update be brought back to this Committee in 12 months time, including a review of fees and charges for maintaining the register.


Voting: Unanimous



Off-Street Parking Places Order Variation pdf icon PDF 68 KB

Additional documents:


Mr Jeff Kitson, Parking Services Manager, outlined the key changes to the parking places order that had been recommended following consultation:


·  The proposals advertised for Park and Ride were in relation to moving to a pay to park model. Five objections had been received but compared to the number of those using the service and the strategic reasons for making changes to the Park and Ride Service there were no compelling reasons to revise the advertised proposals.

·  The advertised proposals relating to Pay and Display Car Parks proposed changing the tariffs in the Borough’s long and short stay car parks. Objections were received but the Committee was recommended to progress the proposals as advertised.

·  The advertised proposals relating to Resident Parking Permit concessions proposed allowing residents living near the Brunswick and Union Street developments to park in those Car Parks after 5.00 p.m. instead of 6.30 p.m and to exclude residents of these developments from the relevant residents’ parking zone. No objections were received to the consultation therefore the committee was recommended to amend the order as advertised.

·  The consultation on the amendment to the Parking Places Order included an amendment to reduce the Limited Waiting Period at Tovil Car Park from two hours to one hour, which was requested by Tovil Parish Council. A number of objections and petitions were received against this proposal therefore the Committee was not recommended to progress this part of the amended traffic regulation order.


Mr Kitson informed the Committee that there was an urgent update to the report, as the head lessee of the Lockmeadow complex was required to agree any changes in Pay and Display tariff at the Lockmeadow Car Park. It was noted that the head lessee had agreed to changes to the long stay tariff but the short stay tariff was still under negotiation.


Councillor John Horne, of Thurnham Parish Council, addressed the Committee on this item.


In response to a question from the Committee, Mr Kitson confirmed that the required Equalities Impact Assessments had been undertaken for the changes in Park and Ride. These had been presented to the Committee alongside the revised proposals when it made its decision on Park and Ride at its last meeting.


Councillor de Wiggondene-Sheppard arrived during consideration of this item.




1.  That the Borough of Maidstone (Off-Street Parking Places) (Variation No10) Order 2018in relation to Park and Ride charges is agreed.


Voting:  For - 5  Against - 0  Abstentions – 4


2.  That the Borough of Maidstone (Off-Street Parking Places) (Variation No10) Order 2018in relation to Pay and Display charges is agreed, except in relation to Lockmeadow where only the long stay charge will be amended.


Voting:  For - 5  Against - 2  Abstentions - 2


3.  That the short stay tariff at the Lockmeadow Car Park remains as is, subject to further negotiations with the head lessee and the Director of Regeneration and Place is given delegated authority to conclude negotiations and amend and seal the Order  ...  view the full minutes text for item 194.


Objections to Off-Street Parking Places Order - Sutton Valence pdf icon PDF 66 KB

Additional documents:


Mr Charlie Reynolds, Operations Engineer Parking Services, presented a report outlining objections to the proposed Off Street Parking Places Order for Sutton Valence village car park.


The Order was requested by Sutton Valence Parish Council in order to manage demand at this car park which was owned by the Parish Council. The car park was in high demand as residents of nearby properties did not have off street parking provision and were using the car park to park their cars. As a result Parking Services had proposed a closed period between 07.15-08.15 and a resident permit holders only section.


Mr Reynolds explained to the Committee that as a result of consultation responses, the Parish Council had agreed to reduce the resident permit fee from £120 to £96 and to amend the closed period to 06.15 - 07.15.


Councillor Eve Poulter from Sutton Valence Parish Council addressed the Committee on this item.




1.  That the Borough of Maidstone (Off-Street Parking Places) (Variation No9) Order 2017 is agreed and the Order is made under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984.


2.  That the objectors are informed of the outcome as identified in the report and that the Order is sealed.


Voting: Unanimous



Revised National Planning Policy Framework: consultation; Supporting housing delivery through developer contributions: consultation pdf icon PDF 149 KB


Mrs Sarah Lee, Principal Planning Officer (Strategic Planning), presented a report to the Committee which outlined the Council’s proposed response to the government’s consultations on proposed revisions to the National Planning Policy Framework and Supporting Housing Delivery through Developer Contributions.


Mrs Lee outlined the Council’s proposed response to the proposed revisions to the National Planning Policy Framework. The Committee made the following comments about the proposals and the Council’s proposed response:


·  The requirement to plan for unmet housing need in other areas and the requirement to factor in affordability uplift could result in Maidstone needing to accommodate both due to its location and affordability issues.

·  Therefore the consultation response should state that those authorities who are subject to factoring in a 40% affordability uplift must not also be subject to unmet need from other areas. A combination of affordability uplift and unmet need should not exceed 40% of the authority’s proposed housing figure, and any subsequent or excess unmet need over this figure should be transferred to a neighbouring authority.

·  Statements of Common Ground would be difficult to agree if neighbouring authorities had different objectives in their local plans.

·  The Housing Delivery Test was seen as unfair as it relied on developers building out permissions, something that Local Authorities had little control over.

·  The provision of a housing requirement figure for neighbourhood plan areas derived from the authority’s housing need figure was welcomed.


Mrs Lee explained the Council’s proposed response to the consultation on Supporting Housing Delivery through Developer Contributions. The Committee noted the contents of the proposed response and requested that an emphasis be placed on ensuring that the Community Infrastructure Levy and Section 106 Contributions could be used more flexibly when major infrastructure was required to support large housing sites.


In summary, the Committee supported the suggested response by Officers but requested that the areas of objection to the proposals in the consultation were worded more robustly.




1.  That the responses set out in paragraphs 1.5 to 1.37 be agreed as a basis for the Council’s consultation response to the revised National Planning Policy Framework, subject to the inclusion of the comments of the Committee contained in the minutes.


2.  That the responses set out in paragraphs 1.40 to 1.53 be agreed as a basis for the Council’s consultation response to ‘Supporting housing delivery through developer contributions’, subject to the inclusion of the comments of the Committee contained in the minutes.


Voting:  For - 8  Against - 1  Abstentions - 0



Alternative Sustainable Transport Measures Scope pdf icon PDF 98 KB


Mrs Tay Arnold, the Planning Projects Delivery Manager, gave a presentation outlining the scope and timescales for a report outlining alternative sustainable transport measures which was requested by the Committee at its meeting of 22 January 2018.


Mrs Arnold conveyed to the Committee that:


·  The report would consider a range of deliverable, short term, sustainable transport alternatives to the current Park and Ride service and would be presented to the Committee at the same time as the review of the changes to the Park and Ride service.

·  In terms of the timing of the report, it was recommended that the report be brought back to the Committee in December rather than October as agreed at the meeting of 22 January 2018. The reason for this amendment in the timetable was to ensure accurate data was captured on Park and Ride users following the change to pay to park which was due to be introduced on 1 June 2018.

·  At the same time, the report would assess whether the proposed alternative measures would be attractive to peak time commuters who did not use Park and Ride.


The Committee debated the proposals within the report and considered the issue of timing of the report. Concerns were raised that bringing a report to the Committee in December would cause problems for the Council’s budget setting process, and that a compromise date of November would allow further time for data gathering without impacting on budget setting.


In response to a question from a Member of the Committee, Mrs Arnold confirmed that whilst the Borough Council had an Integrated Transport Strategy as part of its adopted Local Plan, delivery of some of the major elements of this Strategy was the responsibility of third parties.




1.  That the scope for the work be agreed and Officers be instructed to commence work.

2.  That a report is brought to this Committee outlining progress against the Integrated Transport Strategy.

3.  That a report of the Outcomes be brought to Committee in November alongside the measures of the success or otherwise of Park and Ride.


Voting: Unanimous



Duration of Meeting


6.30 p.m. to 9.06 p.m.