Venue: Siambr Dafydd Orwig, Council Offices, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, LL55 1SH. View directions
Contact: Bethan Adams 01286 679020
Webcast: View the webcast
To accept any apologies for absence.
DECLARATION OF PERSONAL INTEREST AND PROTOCOL MATTERS
To receive any declaration of personal interest and to note protocol matters.
(a) Councillor Gareth A Roberts declared a personal interest in Item 6.6 on the agenda (planning application number C19/0224/11/LL), as the applicant was his mother.
The Member was of the opinion that it was a prejudicial interest and he withdrew from the Chamber during the discussion on the application.
(b) The Senior Solicitor declared a personal interest in item 6.3 on the agenda (planning application number C19/0014/19/LL), as a close relative of his lived opposite the site.
The officer was of the opinion that it was a prejudicial interest and he left the Chamber during the discussion on the application.
(c) The following members declared that they were local members in relation to the items noted:
· Councillor Peter Garlick (not a member of this Planning Committee), for items 6.1, 6.3 a 6.5 on the agenda (planning applications number C16/1412/19/LL, C19/0014/19/LL a C19/0169/19/AM);
· Councillor Edgar Wyn Owen (a member of this Planning Committee), in relation to item 6.2 on the agenda, (planning application number C18/0993/26/LL);
· Councillor Elin Walker Jones (a member of this Planning Committee), in relation to item 6.2 on the agenda (planning application number C19/0224/11/LL).
The Members withdrew to the other side of the Chamber during the discussion on the applications in question and did not vote on these matters.
To note any items that are a matter of urgency in the view of the Chairman for consideration.
The Chairman shall propose that the minutes of the previous meeting of this committee, held on, 1 April 2019, be signed as a true record.
The Chair signed the minutes of the previous meeting of this Committee, held on 1 April 2019, as a true record, subject to the addition of a bullet point under part (c) ‘Application Number C18/1198/45/AM - Former Hockey Pitch, Allt Salem, Pwllheli,’ on page 8 of the agenda stating:
· That there had been an accident on the road.
In response to a comment by a member that the local member for Application Number C18/1198/45/AM - Former Hockey Pitch, Allt Salem, Pwllheli, had drawn his attention to the fact that many residents had stated that they had not been informed about the application. The Senior Solicitor noted that this was irrelevant to the minutes but was a matter that the Planning Service could look into.
To submit the report of the Head of Environment Department.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Louise Hughes
Submitted - the Head of the Environment Department's report stemming from an application to register on the Public Rights of Way Definitive Map a public footpath in the Community of Arthog.
The background to the application was explained, and it was noted that the Committee at its meeting on 25 June 2018 had resolved to:
"Approve the application to add the public footpath to the Council's Definitive Map and Statement as shown by A-B on the plan provided in Appendix 1 of the report on the following grounds:
· That the path had been used by walkers over a period of twenty years between 1942 up to 1962; and
· That the signs for that period, from the evidence submitted, were not sufficiently (legally) effective to prevent the assumption that the highway had been dedicated under section 31 (1) Highways Act 1980, and
· Specifically that the sign 'Private Road' seen on the photographs in the report referred to vehicles only and not walkers, and it was not intended to prevent walkers from using the plot."
It was explained that the entire path was shown on the plan in Appendix 1 of the report as A-B-C, the Committee's decision on 25 June 2018 authorised use of an order to register part A-B. The Committee was asked whether the path shown between B and C on the plan should be registered. It was noted that if the Committee would approve the application to register part B-C, then in accordance with the Committee's previous decision, an order would be created to register the path shown as A-B-C on the plan in Appendix 1.
It was noted that evidence of use of the path between B and C had been included in the report and members were reminded that evidence of use over a period of twenty years was needed. It was highlighted that the Committee, at its meeting on 25 June 2018, had resolved that the period relevant to part A-B was 1942 to 1962.
It was explained that the part between B and C followed the path of the old tramway from Barmouth to Mawddach Crescent and that it was worth noting that there had been some change in the condition of this stretch, and the ability to walk on part of it depended on the tide. It was added that there was a strong evidence base that people had used the path on part B to C over a period of time.
The Senior Solicitor gave guidance, noting that the Committee had approved the application to register the path between A and B as a public footpath based on evidence of use. He reminded the members that in contrast to the path between A and B there were no signs on the path between B and C. He noted that the same type of evidence of use existed on the path between B and C as on the path between A and B.
The Local Member noted that it had been a ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
To submit the report of the Head of Environment Department.
The Committee considered the following applications for development.
Details of the applications were expanded upon and questions were answered in relation to the plans and policy aspects.
Demolition of existing dwelling and erection of 12 bedroom hotel (3 storeys) with parking area, sewerage treatment plant and alterations to the existing access, the existing summer house and gatehouse would be used as ancillary buildings to the proposed hotel.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Peter Garlick
Demolition of existing dwelling and erection of 12 bedroom hotel (three storeys) with parking spaces, sewage treatment tank and alterations to existing access, the existing Summer House and Gatehouse to be used as ancillary buildings to the proposed hotel.
(a) The Planning Manager elaborated on the background to the application and noted that the application had been deferred at the Committee meeting held on 11 February 2019 in order to receive further information concerning flooding and accessibility to the site, together with matters relating to:
· Shoreline Management Plan.
· Ownership of the wall between the coast and the class III public highway (Ffordd yr Aber).
· The response of the Fire Service to the observations of Natural Resources Wales regarding flood risk along the road serving the site.
· Similarity between this application and an application to construct new housing in Felinheli.
· Carbon footprint implications of the development.
Attention was drawn to the additional observations that had been received.
It was noted that the proposal was acceptable in principle as the application complied with current policies and planning guidance that supported the principle of situating new, high quality holiday accommodation in the countryside by using a suitable previously developed site, which was accessible to different types of transport.
Reference was made to members' concern at the previous meeting that related to flooding matters. It was confirmed that the site was not within any flood zones and that the principle of developing the site for use as a hotel was acceptable. In terms of access matters, it was noted that the site of the application and the road in front of the site were clear of any C2 flooding concerns. It was confirmed, as requested, that emergency services were consulted and in response to the Committee's concerns, a detailed e-mail had been sent to the emergency services (rather than a standard enquiry) to explain and express the Committee's concerns. It was reported that a response had been received from the Fire Service stating that it was satisfied with the situation.
It was noted that the Flooding Unit had confirmed that when parts of the road serving the application site was subject to tidal floods, that the water tended to be very shallow and that the road was accessible on foot and by car if care was taken. It was explained that the road was occasionally closed to ensure safety and also to clear seaweed, gravel etc. from the road, and for a short time the road would be closed if necessary. It was noted that, should an exceptional incident occur when the road flooded, the hotel and the people inside would be safe and that there would be no risk to the site or the building and that the only thing that could be prevented was access along the road. It was elaborated that flooding of this type was quite easily predicted and timed, and therefore, it was possible to forewarn staff and guests. It was considered that the situation could be ... view the full minutes text for item 6.1
Vary condition 1 on planning permission C09A/0412/26/LL so as to extend the time granted to commence work for another 5 years.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Edgar Wyn Owen
Application to change condition 1 of planning permission C09A/0412/26/LL in order to extend the time granted to commence work for a further five years
(a) It was reported that late observations had been received from the Language Unit, the Committee was asked to defer the application until the meeting of 20 May 2019 in order to give planning officers time to consider the observations and deal with them.
RESOLVED to defer the application.
Full application for the provision of 29 residential units with associated landscaping, parking, the creation of a new entrance and an area of public open space.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Peter Garlick
Full application to erect 29 residential units together with landscaping, car parking, create a new access and open public area.
(a) The Planning Manager elaborated on the background to the application and noted that the site was located within the Bontnewydd development boundary and had been specifically designated for housing. Some members had visited the site before the meeting in order to see the site and its surroundings.
It was explained that there was extant planning for 26 houses on the site. Attention was drawn to the fact that the report had been prepared before the Supplementary Planning Guidance relating to Affordable Housing had been adopted on 15 April 2019. It was noted that the development was acceptable in principle as the site had been designated specifically for residential development in the Local Development Plan. It was noted that the most marked change from what had previously been approved, was that the entrance had been relocated from the narrow road that ran up the side of the site; consequently the setting of the houses had been changed within the site. Nevertheless, similarities between the two plans remained.
It was recognised that there had been a change to what had previously been approved but that it was necessary to consider how great the detrimental impact on local and adjacent properties would be. Reference was made to plots 14 to 17 located on the uppermost part of the site. It was noted that full assessments of plots 15 to 17 had concluded that they could be acceptable based on the impact on nearby property, specifically in relation to location and distance from the boundary with the existing nearby property. It was noted that a specific assessment had been made as to whether unacceptable overlooking was likely to result from locating the four houses on this part of the site. It was explained that focus was placed on plot 14 because of the concern of looking into a private area of the adjacent house. It was noted that the developer had changed the original location of the house in question and had moved it forward so that it was 12.5 metres away from the boundary, and had also installed an unconventionally shaped window in order to avoid overlooking, and had moved other windows.
Attention was drawn to additional comments received that included the response of the owner of the adjacent property (Tywyn) to the amendments.
It was noted that the officers believed the amendments made the situation acceptable and that there would not be any unacceptable overlooking, and any overlooking would be across the lower part of the garden and, therefore, not over any private areas.
It was highlighted that the nearby property-owner had expressed concern about the two houses in the centre and the first floor windows of the houses and the impact along the side of his house where the study window and side window of the living room were. They were not considered to be main rooms and ... view the full minutes text for item 6.3
Change of use of existing building from a night club into 3 retail units together with 8 self-contained flats and installation of new openings (amended application to that approved reference number C18/0116/11/LL).
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Steve Collings
Change of use of the current building from a nightclub into 3 retail units, along with 8 self-contained flats and installation of new openings (amended application to that approved under ref. C18/0116/11/LL).
The Senior Development Control Officer
elaborated on the background of the application, and noted that this was an
application to change the use of the current building from a nightclub to three
retail units on the ground floor, along with three self-contained units to the
rear, four self-contained units on the first floor and one self-contained unit
on the second floor.
It was noted that the site was within the development boundary of Bangor sub-regional centre. It was explained that Policy TAI 9 in the Local Development Plan permitted the sub-division of existing properties to self-contained flats provided they conformed to the relevant criteria, and it was confirmed that it was in accordance with the criteria.
Attention was drawn to Policy PCYFF2 of the Local Development Plan which stated that proposals should be refused if they have a significant detrimental impact on the health, safety or amenities of the occupants of local property, land uses or other property due to an increase in activities, disturbance, noise etc. In relation to noise disturbance, it was considered that a residential and commercial use (shops) would have a lesser impact on the residential and general amenities of nearby residents than the property's legal use as a night club.
It was noted that Policy TAI15 of the LDP seeks to ensure an appropriate provision of affordable housing in the Plan area and the threshold for affordable housing in Bangor was 20%. It was reported that the Housing Strategic Unit had responded to the additional information received from the applicant in relation to the rental prices and sale prices of the proposed flats, which stated that despite the fact that the rental levels for the flats was slightly higher than the lowest rate, this did not cause concern as the flats would continue to be within the reach of a vast majority of the local population.
In relation to the sale of the units, and when comparing prices for similar flats in Bangor that had been sold recently, the prices presented by the applicant were much lower and it was assumed that these low prices were likely to reflect the potential size, location, quality and ownership features of the flats themselves. Consequently, it was noted that there was no justification to restrict two of the flats as affordable housing through a 106 agreement or to request a financial contribution as part of this application.
The development was acceptable in terms of relevant local and national policies for the reasons noted in the report.
(b) It was proposed and seconded to approve the application.
During the ensuing discussion, the following main observations were noted by members:
· It appeared that applicants stated that units would be affordable in any case, in ... view the full minutes text for item 6.4
Outline application for the erection of a rural enterprise dwelling.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Peter Garlick
Outline application for the erection of a rural enterprise dwelling.
(a) The Senior Development Control Officer elaborated on the background of the application and noted that the Gypsy Wood site operated as a family park attraction. It was explained that the Gypsy Wood site was located approximately 250m from the development boundary of the village of Bontnewydd and that in terms of the Local Development Plan, it was located in open countryside. As a result of the need to maintain and protect the countryside, special justification was needed to approve the construction of new houses in the countryside. It was noted that Policy PS17 of the LDP stated that only housing developments that complied with Planning Policy Wales and Technical Advice Note (TAN) 6: Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities, would be approved in open countryside.
Attention was drawn to paragraph 4.3.1 TAN6 which noted that one of the few circumstances in which new isolated residential development in the open countryside may be justified was when accommodation was required to enable rural enterprise workers to live at, or close to, their place of work. It was further explained that this essential need for accommodation would depend on the needs of the rural enterprise concerned and not on the personal preference or circumstances of the applicant. It was added that applications for planning permission for new rural enterprise dwellings should be carefully assessed to ensure that a departure from the usual policy of restricting development in the open countryside could be fully justified.
It was explained, from the information submitted with the application, that the applicant had undertaken a 50% partnership with Mr and Mrs Evans, the landowners. It was noted that as Mr and Mrs Evans still owned 50% of the business; owned the land where the business was located and lived on the site; it was considered that any functional need, namely the need for a full-time worker to exist on the site at all times to deal with unexpected situations, had been met with the current property on the site. Attention was drawn to the fact that the TAN did not permit a second home on a rural enterprise site and therefore it was considered that the functional requirements of the rural enterprise had been met in full with the current provision.
It was recommended that the Committee should refuse the application as the application site was located in open countryside from a planning policy perspective, and that any functional need that existed with the business on the site was already met, and that constructing an additional dwelling on this site would therefore be contrary to the requirements of policies PCYFF 1 and PS17 of the Local Development Plan.
It was reported that a last-minute letter had been received from the landowner's solicitor, noting that the landowners intended to agree a lease for the whole site with the applicant. It was noted that it was not considered that there was any point in deferring the application, as such an ... view the full minutes text for item 6.5
Retrospective application for the demolition of sub-standard kitchen and conservatory at the rear of the property and construction of a single storey rear extension.
LOCAL MEMBER: Councillor Elin Walker Jones
Retrospective application for the demolition of substandard kitchen and conservatory at the rear of the property and construction of a single storey rear extension
(a) The Planning Manager elaborated on the background of the application, and noted that the application had been submitted following action from the Enforcement Unit as a result of a complaint about the development. It was explained that the application had been submitted to Committee as the applicant was related to a Local Member.
It was noted that it was considered that the size and location of the extension were acceptable in principle. It was reported that the residents of No. 25 had objected to the application due to concerns in relation to loss of light and overlooking affecting their property due to the extension's side window.
It was explained that the concerns about the side window had been discussed with the applicant prior to the submission of the application, and subsequently. It was noted that although the applicant had proposed a solution, namely to install opaque glass and a permanent blind, officials were of the view that it would not be a satisfactory solution as the perception of overlooking would remain. It was not considered that it would be appropriate to impose a planning condition to insist that the window was covered by opaque glass and a blind, as it was unlikely to be enforceable.
It was reported that the applicant had been requested on a number of occasions to block the window permanently, but was unwilling to do this and therefore it would be inappropriate to impose a condition to this end. It was recommended that the only way to resolve the situation was to refuse the application due to the detrimental impact of the window on the privacy of the adjacent house.
(b) Taking advantage of the right to speak, the applicant’s representative noted the following main points:-
· The objector did not live in the property and rented out the house;
· The extension enabled his mother, who was disabled, to live at home;
· His mother had received advice from a builder that there was no need for planning permission and that the window on the side of the extension was acceptable;
· His mother had received a letter from the Enforcement Unit noting that the window must be removed, and that planning permission was required. His mother was worried about the situation and that it was affecting her health;
· The applicant was willing to install opaque glass and a permanent blind on the window, and to re-install the original fence;
· It was hoped that the matter could be concluded as soon as possible.
(c) The local member (a member of this Planning Committee) made the following main points:-
· It would be a pity to refuse the application because of the applicant's situation;
· The officers' concerns were understandable, and it would not be possible for the adjacent property to construct an extension because of the location of the window;
· The applicant should be required to ... view the full minutes text for item 6.6