Minutes of a virtual Extraordinary Council Meeting held on ‘Zoom’ on Thursday 25th February 2021 at 7 pm.
Present: Cllr W Knight in the Chair, Cllrs P Christie, A Bell, P White, D Pearson, I Vaughan-Arbuckle, M Kirby, N Harding, P Loudoun.
12 members of the public were also ‘present’.
The meeting was recorded.
- Apologies for absence: Dorset Cllr Brooks
- Declarations of interest / Grants of Dispensation: None.
- Aster Press Release. After discussion it was agreed to send a brief comment saying that, while the Council initially had reservations about development at Spyway Orchard, they are pleased to see more affordable housing in Langton which will support the community and hopefully the school and pre-school. ACTION: Clerk given delegated powers to draft sentence and pass to Cllrs for
- comment before sending to Aster.
- Public Participation. (Planning) The meeting was adjourned for this item.
Four members of the public spoke; one in favour and three against the application (below). Those against cited concerns about the narrow access lane, AONB, light pollution, surface water drainage, the lack of need for more houses in Langton and challenges to already-overstretched infrastructure.
The meeting was reconvened.
Planning: 6/2020/0560 Mr R Turner, Spyway Orchard Barn, Durnford Drove, Langton Matravers, BH19 3HG. Convert and extend existing barn into 4×2 bedroom residential units with parking re use existing access Use class C3.
Langton Matravers Parish Council OBJECTS to this proposal on the following grounds:
- Policy CO (Countryside) does not apply in this case, The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF paras 79,172,173) is explicit that the policy affecting the conversion of existing farm buildings does not apply in AONBs, SSSIs and Heritage sites (eg the Jurassic Coast), in this case all of the above apply (see identified constraints in PAP 2020/0007). Any grant of planning permission on this basis would be invalid and could result in judicial review.
In the alternative, policy CO requires that any development in the countryside should make a positive contribution to landscape character and enhance biodiversity. This development neither makes the positive contributions nor the enhancements required. Indeed it detracts from both.(see further objections below). The NPPF does not permit development in the countryside “if the development would result in the external dimensions […. }extending beyond dimensions of the existing building”. As the dimension of the proposed building do exceed the existing building then again the development is is not permitted under the NPPF.
- Rural Exception Site, As CO does not apply and it is a development outside the settlement boundary then RES does apply. This application fails to provide affordable housing as required the RES policy.
- Adverse Impact on nature conservation and biodiversity (including the effect on trees). The current site has a rich and diverse ecology. The biodiversity appraisal, which appears to have been undertaken by someone other than a qualified ecologist, only and inadequately addresses matters relating to bats. Such an appraisal needs to be undertaken by a suitably qualified person who should address all aspects of biodiversity so as to ensure there is no negative impact.
- Layout and visual appearance. This development alongside the already approved Spyway Orchard development is an over-development having a negative impact on the surrounding countryside/AONB. The proposed deign is not in keeping with the existing Langton Matravers vernacular style nor is it in keeping with the neighbouring Spyway Orchard development.
- Emerging policies (environmental and climate change). The proposed design is not in line with Dorset’s emerging policies on the environment and the climate change emergency.
Concerns raised about the application relating to flooding and the access lane did not receive sufficient support from Cllrs to be included in the final resolution.
- Public Participation. (Local Plan Consultation) The meeting was adjourned.
Two members of the public made contributions. One expressed concerns about the status of the AONB, stating that it must be properly supported to preserve what is special about Dorset. The second stated that the document is based on projections of unsustainable economic growth, and ignores potential environmental damage. She supports provision of a Principle Residence Policy, and stated that 80% of market rate for ‘affordable’ rents is not affordable for those on local wages.
The meeting was reconvened.
- LMPC Formal response to Dorset Local Plan Consultation.
After general comments on the document from Cllrs, the policies were addressed one by one.
ACTION: Clerk to prepare a draft version of Council responses for circulation and further consideration: a formal decision to approve LMPC’s responses will be made at the meeting on 11th March after DAPTC and other meetings on the topic have been held.
Closed 9.50 pm.
The responses were formally adopted at the Council’s meeting on 11th March 2021.