Full Planning Permission
Proposed siting of 4no. Static Holiday Caravans
The Chestnuts, Green Lane, Algarkirk, Boston PE20 2AD
Proposed siting of 4no. static holiday caravans
The Chestnuts, Green Lane, Algarkirk, Boston PE20 2AD
Mr Tim Woodcock, Barn Dried Logs
The Deputy Development Manager presented the report confirming that the item had been called in for consideration by the Planning Committee by Councillor Aaron Spencer on the basis that the proposal would promote rural tourism and therefore should not be refused.
The application site measured approximately 0.38 hectares, and was located between Red Barn Lane and the A16. It contained a mixed-species copse of semi-mature trees, the external boundaries of which were defined by earth-bunds of between approximately 1.2m and 3m-height and topped (in places) with newly-planted hedgerow plants. At the time of the site visit, the copse also contained pallets of firewood, piles of sawdust, and piles of sheet and other materials.
The site was located within the open countryside, and was accessed by narrow, rural roads. The majority of surrounding land is in agricultural use, but the site’s immediate surroundings also contain dwellings, farm buildings and a business processing and selling firewood.
Full planning permission was sought for the siting within the copse of four static caravans to be used as holiday accommodation. The caravans will measure approximately 12m x 4.25m in plan, and the Supporting Statement which accompanies the application includes a photograph showing an “example of the type of caravan proposed”. The caravans will be placed on stone or gravel bases, and will be located at least 10m apart. Vehicular access to the site will be provided from the unclassified track which follows the site’s northern boundary. The access will lead to a gravel or stone-surfaced parking area within the site (providing at least 4 spaces) from which pedestrian accesses to the caravans will be provided. A 3m-high acoustic timber fence will be provided within the bund on the site’s eastern boundary (onto the A16).
Mr. Crust addressed the meeting as the agent for applicant, and in the first instance clarified that whilst he had submitted additional information in respect of comparable sites, the information had not been circulated. Members were advised he was asking for parity of decision making using the same Council policies. The application site had had two successful applications both for industrial purposes with no conditions attached for transport assessment, however the application site had to have a traffic assessment but there are been no objections. The site could be used for parking HGVs’ or could be cleared felled and the current application was betterment of the site. Four similar applications had all been recently approved in the same area. The site was close to Frampton Marsh and accessible by cycling without using any major roads. Local business were nearby including the Farm Shop and Thatched Cottage at Sutterton both within easy reach of the site. Noting the concerns of the Parish Council, Mr. Crust stated that competition should not be a consideration in planning determination.
With concern noted by a member at the supplementary information not being provided, the Chairman the invited Mr. Crust to address the committee further to elaborate on the information submitted.
Mr. Crust referenced the four applications which were noted within the supplementary information, citing one at Kirton, an application at Timberholme North Forty Foot, one at Wyberton House and the application for Lewis Farm, all of which had been approved under delegated powers and all similar to the application under consideration and he repeated that it was the consistency of decision making that he was seeking.
Committee deliberation followed which included the following:
Members in support of the application noted the urgent need for tourism accommodation and the benefits it would bring to local businesses within a rural area. Reference was made to the network of footpaths adjoining the site leading to visitor attraction including Dennis Woodland Farm, Kirton Marsh and Fosdyke and the amenities at Kirton Garden Centre and Fosdyke. Noting a similar application at Freiston, which had been granted at the second submission of the application a member confirmed it had proved successful.
Members objecting to the application voiced concern at the lack of compliance with Policies 1 and 9 of the Adopted Plan along with the lack of substantial information relating to flood risk. Furthermore they noted their support of the objections raised by the Parish Council in respect of the lack of street lighting and the poor condition of some of the pavements, and the potential levels of noise and pollution from the A16.
Addressing some of the comments during debate the Assistant Director – Planning and Strategic Infrastructure advised that whilst recognising that the agent’s supplementary documentation had not been tabled, the content of it with comparative applications had been addressed in part within the report at 7.10 on page 19 and as such it should not preclude the committee from making a decision. He further drew members’ attention to the two reasons for refusal – the fundamental one being the application was contrary to both Policies 1 and 9 and secondly, the issue of flood risk and the lack of information presented to pass the sequential test. Noting the reference to the application granted at its second submission at Freiston early in the deliberations, members were advised that should a re-submission of the application with a comprehensive and robust flood risk plan be submitted, the a different recommendation may be reached.
It was moved by Councillor Peter Bedford and seconded by Councillor Claire Rylott that the application be granted contrary to officer recommendation due to the benefit of the application on the tourism market and the close proximity of facilities to support rural businesses. A further condition to be added to include that a register of occupants to be held at the site for inspection by Algarkirk Parish Council and Boston Borough Council and that a delegation be agreed to officers to enable them to compile the final suite of conditions.
In Favour: 5 Against: 7 Abstentions: 0
The motion fell
It was moved by Councillor Anne Dorrian and seconded by Councillor Barrie Pierpoint that the application be refused in line with officer recommendation for the reasons specified.
in Favour: 7 Against: 5 Abstentions: 0
That the application be refused for the following reasons:
1. The proposal will not constitute a ‘sustainable’ rural tourism
development, given that:
§ it has failed to demonstrate a functional link with any existing
rural attraction or an existing farm enterprise; and
§ the application site is remote from any settlement, and the
majority of linking roads have no footways or streetlights, and
future occupiers of this proposed dwelling would therefore be
highly reliant on the use of a motor vehicle to access even
basic services or facilities.
As a result the proposal is contrary to the provisions of Policy 9 of the South East Lincolnshire Local Plan 2019 and the aims of sustainable development in the National Planning Policy Framework 2021.
2. The application site is located within Flood Zone 3 of the Environment Agency Maps and the proposal is within the ‘more vulnerable’ flood risk vulnerability category. The application is not accompanied by a successfully completed Sequential Test, and therefore fails to demonstrate that sites at lower risk of flooding are unavailable or that the development is necessary to its location. As such the proposal is contrary to Policy 4 of the South East Lincolnshire Local Plan 2019 and Section 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework 2021.