Minutes Extra Ordinary Meeting 2nd February 2017

Minutes of the Extra Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council held on Thursday 2nd February 2017 at 12 noon in the New Bridge Community Centre, Bridge Sollars Herefordshire.

PRESENT: Cllr J Macklin (Chairman) Cllr S Hubbard (Vice Chairman) Cllr Cathie Draper and Cllr Sarah Keefe.

Parish Clerk: Lesley Hay
Public: Clair Hancock Church Warden representing PCC.


1. To receive apologies for absence – Cllr Sharon Knights; Cllr Serena Crump; Cllr Rosemary Morgan; Cllr Penny Redshaw and Ward Cllr Steve Williams

2. No declarations of interest or written requests for dispensations were received

3. Planning – Witchwater Cottage, Bridge Sollars Herefordshire HR4 7JH

(3.1) To discuss the Amended Planning Application:

Application No: 161416 Witchwater Cottage
Description: Erection of replacement building.
Applicants: Dr and Mrs P & S Harris
Application Type: Planning Permission

There was a long and detailed discussion with regard to the amended planning application. It was noted that the application is now subject to a redirection order and, if the application is considered eligible, will go before the full Planning Committee prior to any final decision being made.

Cllr Hubbard drafted a response to the amended application and after discussion it was unanimously agreed to respond as outlined below:
At a meeting held on February 2nd Bishopstone Group Parish Council considered the amended plans for the above application. Councillors agreed unanimously to continue to oppose the proposal as the changes to the plans appear purely cosmetic and do nothing to answer the concerns set out in our previous representation. These concerns can be summarised as follows:

1 The application conflicts with the Herefordshire Local Plan Adopted Core Strategy Policy RA3 which covers Bridge Sollars and also appears as Policy H3 in the Bishopstone Group Draft Neighbourhood Development Plan which has just completed Regulation 14 Consultation. It also conflicts with Core Strategy Policies LD1, LD4 and SS6.
2 The proposed replacement dwelling is not of comparable size to the building which it is to replace. The scale, height, proportions and massing are too large for the site and will have an adverse impact on the local area. We do not consider that this development is a replacement build in any form. It is essentially a substantial enlargement of an existing building.
3 The proposed building is too large and overbearing in its proportion and proximity to the historic Grade I listed church. It does not enhance the visual environment or make a positive contribution to the rural landscape and it will impact adversely on the view from the church towards the Wye valley and the view from the river crossing up to the church as well as from dwellings on the other side of the river and public viewpoints in neighbouring parishes. Size, setting and relation to the church played a major part in refusal of an earlier planning application in 2001 when the original submitted plans had to be modified and reduced on the grounds that the planned building would significantly detract from the setting of the Grade 1 Listed church.
4 We are particularly concerned about the further increase to massing on the site from the addition of the recently extended garage which, when added to the size of the building proposed in the current application, in our view constitutes an over development within the curtilage.
For these reasons the opinion of the Parish Council remains as previously stated. This development should not be allowed because of its detrimental effect on the local historic landscape environment and the very strong opposition of local residents and members of St Andrew’s Parochial Church Council. The strength of local opinion must be taken into account and given substantial weight in this determination.

(3.2) To discuss proposed enforcement action due to a lack of a retrospective planning application with regard to an extension to garage on site.

Please see copy of recent email received by the Parish Council:

Whilst the possibility of formal enforcement action has now been considered, as per discussion with my boss, in this case it is not considered expedient to take any further action reading the matter as the unauthorised extension is acceptable in planning terms and there is no obvious harm being caused by the development.

In view of the above I have therefore now closed the enforcement case.

Scott Low – Planning Enforcement Officer

Those present discussed this email and unanimously agreed to respond as outlined below:

We note that you are not going to take any further action on the unauthorised build that has taken place and which contravenes a condition of the original development of the house

We trust this will not set a precedent t for any future development on this site.

Chairman closed the meeting at 12.30p.m.