DNP Working Group minutes 9th July 2019
7.30 pm Desford Library
In Attendance: Bernard Grimshaw, Colin Crane, David Crocker, Gary Kirk, Jim Houghton Judy Sharpe, Martyn Randle, Pat Crane, Scott Wakefield
Apologies: Andrew Norton
- Discussion of Local Heritage Listing
This took place at the start of the meeting to enable any interested parties to arrive after this item. The discussion was regarded as sensitive information.
Martyn welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked for apologies to be listed.
- Minutes of last meeting / matters arising:
The full minutes were approved as a true record and signed by Martyn.
- Awards for All grant status? Bernard stated that the end of grant report was now ready to send off
- Letter about 2026 housing target. This had been sent by Bernard to Colin
- Robin Webber-Jones (ward councillor) did attend meeting of DNPWG and HBBC
- HHBC Employment Land & Premises Bernard had sent a form of words to Pat and this had been submitted to HBBC.
- Minutes from the 31.5.19 had been amended by Judy and approved by Gary for publication on the website.
- Judy and Jim to liaise about the publication of the minutes on to the website- Action pending Jim and Judy
- Judy to liaise with Kaye about the publication of the minutes on Facebook- Action pending Judy
- Declaration of Interest:
Bernard declared an interest as his property was on the Local Heritage List.
- Chairman’s Report:
Martyn stated that there was no chairman’s report for this meeting as the DNPWG were currently in limbo.
- Resignation of Committee member
Martyn checked that everyone was aware of the reason for Ewan’s resignation from the DNPWG on a matter of principle.
Martyn and Colin both said that they had spoken to Ewan after the previous meeting.
It was agreed that a letter should be sent to Ewan thanking him for all his work to date and stating that he would be welcome to return to the DNPWG at any point. Action- Martyn
- Treasurer’s Report
Bernard stated that Invoice 13 had been received on the 9.7.2019 from Your Locale. This is for £2,000 to cover 4 days of SSA work and the redrafting of the housing section of the plan. This payment will come out of the £5000 in the DPC reserve funds for the DNPWG. He said that he had written to the PC clerk asking that this could be put on the agenda for the Resources committee for approval.
Colin asked Gary how much more Your Locale will need to finalise the DNP.
Gary said that he did not expect it to exceed the original PC allowance. He agreed to email Colin an optimistic and pessimistic prediction of the funding still needed; so that he can inform the Resources committee. Action- Gary
Gary was asked how long a NP could take to complete. He stated that it was impossible to say and that one plan was currently 7 years from commencement and was not yet finished.
- Communication Officer’s Report
Bernard said that the meeting of the DNPWG with HBBC on Monday 17.6.2019 had taken place. Gary, Colin, David and Bernard had attended this with Robin Webber-Jones (ward councillor) and a good discussion had occurred.
Bernard noted that by the end of the meeting he was under the impression that the council planners would recommend approval of the planning applications for Barns Way and Peckleton Lane (CERDA) sites, due to the 5 year land supply issue.
Colin commented that Davidsons now want to be one site, rather than two.
Colin reported that at the HBBC Planning Committee meeting on the 25.6.2019 Terry Robinson (parishioner) had spoken very well against approval of the Peckleton Lane development (CERDA). Colin stated that the Peckleton Lane planning application had been a unanimous refusal and at the Barns Way application the Conservative councillors had voted against and the Liberal Democrats had abstained. He was not aware how the Labour councillor had voted. The applications were noted as being Mandatory refused. This was despite the fact that the HBBC planners had recommended approval for both sites.
Colin noted that he had asked what a ‘mandatory refusal’ meant. He had been told that this means that the developers can go back to HBBC and discuss how they could get the council members to agree to their applications.
Scott stated that he had been led to believe that as long as the current makeup of the HBBC council remains the same, there will be no change in their position regarding these sites. However if the DNP approves the Barns Way site they will agree to this.
Gary stated that he had spoken to Andy Furlong and he was very interested in this.
Gary asked if a new head of planning had been appointed at HBBC. Colin said that yes one had, in the level above. He would be a corporate manager with planning as one part of his remit.
Bernard noted that the information about the 5 year land supply had been released by HBBC, via the RCC, after hours on a Friday. He felt that this was quite wrong and is thinking about making an individual complaint for maladministration, as it did not allow any opportunity for the public or parish council to make any representations about the changed circumstances.
Colin stated that he could take this to the PC and ask them to raise the matter.
Gary said that the PC would carry more weight than an individual, and that other NP groups are considering making a formal complaint. It was debated as to whether this could be a joint objection with other NPWGs.
Colin said that there could be a problem with timing as not all PCs meet in August. He suggested that he should talk to the ward councillors about this.
Bernard stated that if he did make the complaint as an individual, and that the situation was not resolved, he would write to the ombudsman.
After further discussion it was agreed that Bernard, as an individual, would have the backing of the DNPWG to write to Stuart Bray, leader of HBBC council about this issue. Proposed Scott, seconded Colin. All others were in favour. It was agreed that any further action on behalf of the DNPWG/PC would depend upon the response Bernard received. Action –Bernard
- Update on SEA and any policy amendments needed
Bernard said that he had circulated an email from Ian McClusky stating that he hoped the SEA would be completed by the end of July. There is no indication of the content yet.
Gary commented that if significant changes are required, the impact on the consultation process will need to be considered; particularly the avoidance of a repetition of the Regulation 14 consultation. A tightening of wording would be OK.
Bernard commented that some redrafting may be required in the environment section.
Colin stated that the HBBC planning officers did not seem to understand the scoping report of the SEA.
Gary mentioned that the SEA should be sent to the DNPWG first and then to HBBC.
- Update on HBBC’s response to the latest consultation
Gary stated that at the meeting of DNPWG and HBBC on the 17.6.2019 HBBC had not agreed to consult with groups first. This does not conform to the SLA agreement with the DNPWG. No apology or acknowledgement was given by HBBC. It was also noted that no formal notes had been taken of the meeting.
Gary said that it was now a year since Newbold Verdon’s SEA had been put in place by HBBC, and that this was still not finalised.
Gary offered to look at the HBBC reponses section of the consultation and will try to soften the wording. Action-Gary
Bernard said that further sites had come in through the Regulation 14 consultation. Gary said that it should not be necessary to redo the Regulation 14 consultation but that it was reasonable to send out the assessments to all developers and land owners. Colin asked about the Jelson site, as it had only come to light during the second consultation. It was confirmed that this had been assessed by Derek. Gary suggested that it should be put on the website and that all other developers and land owners should be informed of this.
Colin questioned whether Davidsons was one or two sites. Gary stated that HBBC said it should be one site. He asked Bernard to check with Ian McClusky that these will be regarded as minor changes. Action- Bernard
David commented that the land owners ought to receive their assessments before they were published on the website.Bernard said that this had been done in all cases, except for Jelson.
Colin said that there was a need to ask HBBC to supply a map of these locations. Gary agreed that Your Locale would do this. Action- Gary
Gary stated that it was important to amend the DNP to show the process that has taken place, so that the examiner can see this.
David asked what disappointed developers can do. Gary said that they can submit further planning applications and make submissions. A robust response could be expected from them. Colin said that the developers can appeal but hopefully the DNP will have a greater weight.
Jim asked if Pat would let him know what needed to go on the website. This was agreed. Action Pat and Jim
David sated that it was important that there was a record of these discussions.
Colin stated that the next full planning meeting of HBBC will be on 23.7.2019.
- Discussion of HBBC 5 year land supply
Gary reminded the group that once the DNP is in place, and as long as HBBC have got a 3 year land supply, the DNP will have greater weight than the Local Plan. The DNP Housing Section will however continue to need updating to refer to HBBC. It was important to remember that land supply can change if large sites fail as had happened at Barwell.
- Implications of latest planning refusals
This had also been discussed earlier.
Scott stated it was interesting to see the comments aimed at the LCC Highways Department at the HBBC planning meeting on 25.6.2019. Gary said that Highways Departments always err on the side of caution. It had been noted that they had also stated that reactive traffic lights at the junction of Dan’s Lane and the A47 were not needed.
- Actions needed to finalise DNP
Gary stated that it had been agreed that there would not be a reserve site in the DNP. The allocated site and windfall sites should meet the required number of dwellings for the regulations.
Bernard asked about windfall sites. He said that the current draft of the DNP says there are 5 per annum, but questioned whether it may be better not to state an actual number. For example in the last 6 months there had been 17. Gary asked whether this information could be put in a table and that he would then try to quantify this. Scott suggested that it could state that over the last x years there had been y amount. Bernard asked whether it was necessary to accept more windfall sites to justify plan resilience. Gary said that it was important to err on the side of caution.
Gary said that once the amendments had been completed, the SSA put in to an appendix and the SEA finalised the DNP could be signed off by the PC. Ideally this would take place at the September DPC meeting.
Bernard queried as to whether there should be a settlement boundary included for Botcheston, as he thought that there had been one in the past. Gary stated this was probably unhelpful as Botcheston does not have a housing target, and is classed as countryside. Bernard said that the old fish farm property in Botcheston was currently being used for storage and that the village hoped this would be cleared and used for housing. It had been given a green 5 in the SSA and could provide 9 dwellings. David said that it was reasonable to include this due to the SSA score. Gary said that the settlement boundary could be adjusted to include the site, if it is deemed necessary. Bernard said that if Botcheston does not have a settlement boundary he did not feel one should be done.
Gary reminded the DNPWG that now was the opportunity to look through the DNP and check that items, such as the facilities section information, were up to date.
Jim commented that the sports courts at SiD had been launched on the 6.7.2019, so this would need to be amended. He also mentioned that another party had raised the idea that the 5 acre field between the proposed CERDA site and SiD should be kept as a potential local green space, for potential use in the future. Gary stated this would not currently meet the criteria for a local green space.
Gary asked for any comments / changes to be sent to him and that he would update the DNP as appropriate.
- Web page/ Twitter/ Spotted Desford There were no further developments. Jim stated that he had posted the latest planning application information on the website and a line to state that these had been rejected.
- Date of next meeting:
The next meeting of the DNPWG will take place on Friday 16th August 2019 at 2.30pm in the library.
Meeting closed 9.15pm.
I confirm this is a true record of the meeting: