Planning Meeting 6 June, 2011



Draft Minutes subject to formal ratification at the next Planning Meeting.

Minutes of a Planning Committee Meeting held on Monday, 6th June 2011 at the Parish Office, Melbourn Village College, The Moor at 7.15pm.
Present: Cllrs. R. Gatward, J. Hales, M. Linnette, D. Mowatt, M. Sherwen (7.45p.m.), R. Wakerley, P.Simmonett, A. Mulcock
In Attendance: The Clerk, The Deputy Clerk and one member of the public
In the absence of the Chairman at the beginning of the meeting, the Vice Chairman took the Chair.
62/11 Apologies for Absence: None
63/11 Declaration of Interests: Cllr. Hales declared a Personal and Prejudicial interest in Item 68/11.
64/11  Minutes of the meeting held on 31st May, 2011:
(a) 35/11: Insert ‘Vice’ next to ‘Chairman’ with respect to Cllr. Simmonett.
It was proposed by Cllr. Hales, seconded by Cllr. Linnette and agreed that the minutes should be signed as a true record.
65/11 Matters Arising:
(a)          40/11: The Clerk was asked to write to Mr Bevan to explore the reappraisal of the conservation area and this was done on 31st May. There has been no reply so far.
(b)         40/11: Cllr Hales asked for copies of the original appraisal and the Clerk was asked to produce 24 copies.
(c)          39/11: A reply has been received for Huck Partnership
(d)         39/11: No reply concerning the Bus Shelter roof
(e)          45/11: A query was raised about the numbering of the houses on the application (e) regarding the ‘Application to carry out Tree Works’ – 80 High Street To remove an Evergreen tree on the left hand side of drive No 80, about 10 meters from entrance.  Close to brick wall and far edge boundary of number 82. Cllr. Gatward asked that the plans be checked to see if there was a mention of No 84. The plans were checked and no mention was made of No 84.
66/11 Village Car Park
Documentation was received today from Huck Partnership containing plans for the Village Car Park: There are two options:-
Option 1: A proposal for 48 spaces, including 2 disabled spaces. The addition of fence breaks to improve pedestrian circulation. Garage backing reduced to 6 metres (subject to any approvals required). Addition of pedestrian barriers as required. Overall, this layout makes efficient use of the available space, is enhanced and softened by planting, reduces opportunities for antisocial behaviour and provides defined pedestrian routes to the school. The layout does not have a circular route which could cause reversing issues.
Option 2: This allows for vehicle circulation throughout the car park. An additional area of planting to the south west further softens the car park and deters antisocial behaviour. To achieve the circulation and disabled spaces the total number is down to 46.
Both options need to be discussed with SCDC.
A discussion then followed about the relative merits of both options. Concerns were raised about the drainage and the lighting,  consideration of which are not included in the Huck Partnership submissions. Several suggestions were explored in relation to locating and keeping the water supply, the positioning of trees and general landscaping, and the position and nature of the lighting.
It was proposed by Cllr Hales THAT THE COUNCIL SHOULD GO WITH OPTION TWO AND IT SHOULD GO OUT TO TENDER WITH PROVISION BEING MADE FOR DRAINAGE AND LIGHTING. Seconded by Cllr Wakerley. The proposal was CARRIED. Cllr Mulcock voted against and asked that his vote be recorded.
The Clerk was asked to write to Huck Partnership to arrange a meeting asap.
Cllr Hales to liaise with SCDC in respect of the lighting and to explore the possibility of seeking financial assistance through the New Community Capital Grants Programme.
67/11 Police Site:
Cllr Hales presented the Joint Working Party recommendations:-
1. Housing density and style of housing: the Joint Working Party recommended that the housing density should be no greater than between 6-8 properties. This was generally supported by the committee although there was a recognition that this might increase given the latest plan for 14 and that the density may rise if there is no community building on the site. The Working Party would like to have a maximum of 10.
2. Boundaries: the Joint Working Party recommended that all the boundary hedging and trees be kept whilst recognising the case for cutting back and pruning. The importance of the street scene being kept intact was emphasised which could be achieved by ensuring that as much of the existing grass verges/ banks should remain untouched. The committee supported these recommendations. There was a recognition that the maintenance of the street scene was a little more problematic without the community building which might lead to the construction of 16 – 17 properties which might encroach on to the existing frontage. Cllr Sherwen, supported by others, emphasised the need to ensure that the design and operation of any community building should be fully thought through and got right.
3. Existing residents of the site: The Joint Working Party emphasised the need to ensure that any current tenants would be offered homes on the site and that their living requirements be taken into consideration in the planning stage. This view was endorsed by the committee.
4. Surface Water Concerns: The Joint Working Party raised the concerns about the added surface water from the site would exacerbate the danger of localised flooding on the High Street. The recommendation is that all surface water from the site be fed into on-site soakaways and that the new roadway be of paviour construction. Cllr Mulcock pointed out that porous tarmac should be considered.
5. Community Building: The Joint Working Party considered that the best option for the site and the village would be to have a community building as part of the overall development. Whilst this was largely welcomed by the committee and by Mr Ellis, there was a recognition that all facets of the proposed building needed to be carefully designed, managed, funded, and a full Cost Benefit Analysis produced. Cllr Mulcock expressed his concern that there was little evidence in the Draft Village Plan of the need for a community building.
Cllr Hales argued that the Working Party was not the right vehicle to handle negotiations with 100 Houses as it was a Parish Council responsibility. However, he called for experienced councillors to take part as members of the Working Party and to have representatives from the key committees who may then divide up the work between them so that all aspects of this development could be carried forward. ICENI are not now due to begin work until 2012 and so there is time to get all aspects right.
[At this point Cllr Linnette and Mr Ellis left the meeting].
68/11 Heydon Grange Wind Farm:
At the present time there was nothing new to report.
69/11 Village Green registrations:
At the present time there was nothing new to report.
70/11 Discussion of SCDC proposal to use IT forum at Parish Council level:
Cllr Mulcock presented his report:
(a) The bugs on SCDC planning web site being resolved. Any new problems should be reported to a ‘problems’ section which is to be added to the web site.
(b) SCDC planning web site will be tested and proved on IE9, Firefox 4, Chrome and Safari. There are compatibility issues in anything apart from IE
(c) Quality of PDF/scans of paper documents by SCDC contractors are not good: examples of bad contrast, parts of documents missed are mainly due to ‘human error’ and need to be flagged up as found.
(d) The mapping feature is excellent and is available to councils e.g. street lights, drains, gas pipes, electricity cables etc. We need to provide feedback as to what we, as a Parish Council, would like to see on the layers was requested.
(e) These features highlighted the need for good internet connection as well as good screens to view on line maps.
(f) Cllr Mulcock suggested that the Clerk remove this item from the on-going agenda of planning as the next meeting of the forum is not until September.
71/11 Notifications or Planning Consultation documents:
There were no plans
72/11 Planning Applications:
There were no Planning Applications
73/11 Correspondence:
An e-mail was received from Stephen Larcombe with regard to the lease on the Cadet Hut. He informed the council that he has heard nothing from the Cadets’ lawyers regarding the lease since February.
Cllr Mowatt suggested that the issue be left for a few weeks and, in the meantime, he will approach Alan Brett for advice on this matter.
The issue to be put on the next agenda of the Finance and General Purposes Committee.
There was no further correspondence received.
74/11  Urgent Matters:

(a) Cllr Hales asked the Deputy Clerk to contact BT as our provider of Broadband, regarding the speed we are seeing. We have a business “up to” 20Mb/s download link which would expect to be in the region of 8 to 109 Mb/s whereas we currently achieve “up to” 1.2 Mb/s . Considering our closeness to the exchange, could they look at the line quality

(b) The Clerk brought to the attention of the committee concerns about the allocation of an allotment which has caused confusion and some distress. The Deputy Clerk was asked to contact the parties concerned to resolve the issue.
There being no other business the Chairman closed the meeting at 10.25p.m.

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