An Extraordinary Planning Meeting of the Council was held virtually on Thursday 18th June 2020 at 7.00pm. Members of the public joined the Council during a Public participation period.
Planning Application. 6/2019/0604, Old Malthouse (Purbeck) Limited, The Old Malthouse, High Street, Langton Matravers BH19 3HB. Redevelopment of site including demolition of several school buildings, conversion & construction of new buildings to provide 20 dwellings with vehicular access, off street parking, gardens & landscaping. [revisions May 2020]
The Council passed the following resolution:
‘While welcoming the many improvements in the revised planning application, these changes in themselves are not sufficient to address many of the Council’s previously recorded concerns. The Council therefore resolved to object to the application on the following grounds:
- Local, strategic and national planning policies and policies in the Development Plan.
a) The ‘Vacant Building Credit’ policy used by the developers to avoid offering any affordable housing does not apply because the buildings are abandoned rather than vacant (see Court of Appeal ruling Hughes v Secretary of State for the Environment  for definition of abandoned buildings as applied to vacant building credit) ).
b) Part of the development (the parking area to the North on Old Malthouse Lane) is outside the settlement boundary, triggering a requirement for affordable housing under the Purbeck Local Plan (2012).
c) Paragraphs 7, 8, and 9 of the National Planning Policy Framework (2019) make clear that sustainability for communities is important: the aim should be ‘to support strong, vibrant and healthy communities, by ensuring that a sufficient number and range of homes can be provided to meet the needs of present and future generations’. Para 77 says ‘In rural areas, planning policies and decisions should be responsive to local circumstances and support housing developments that reflect local needs’. This development does not do either, as the main need is for affordable homes.
2. Emerging new Purbeck Local Plan. All dwellings should all be subject to the Second Homes policy proposed in the new Purbeck Local Plan; the development plans do not reflect this at present.
- Highway issues .(para refs are to the Transport statement included as part of the application)
a) Transport generation. The transport statement in the plans incorrectly states the volume of traffic. The statement is based on 20 dwellings whereas parking is also being provided within the development for the 3 additional cottages fronting on to the High Street, plus the plans should take into account the 2 dwellings which will also use the lane as part of the redeveloped Science block. As such total traffic movements should be based on 25 and not 20 dwellings.
b) Vehicular access/ Highway safety on the B3069. The access and visibility splay to the B3069 is clearly inadequate; furthermore the last time that data for traffic speeds on the B3069 was collected (para 1.4) was 2008; it should not be assumed that speeds will have remained constant. Furthermore, the development is likely to result in overspill parking on the B3069 in the immediate neighbourhood of the OMH lane junction, close to the village school and on an already narrow part of the High Street which is effectively single-lane through much of its length. In the event of approval being given, a condition should be placed on the developer to make changes to the junction as defined in the paper previously submitted to the planning officer by Mr. Steve Tooley; PDF attached.
c) Vehicular and pedestrian movement and safety on Old Malthouse Lane. Whilst the revised design has provided some limited mitigation to the challenges of both pedestrian and vehicular movement, severe problems remain. There are two major strangle points, in part caused by the requirement to make spatial allowance for the established parking and access to parking of residents on the west side of Old Malthouse Lane. The first is the northwest protruding corner of the lounge/kitchen area of unit 9 together with its faux porch fronting on to Old Malthouse Lane. This problem would be solved if block 5-11 in its entirety was moved 0.5 meters to the east and the faux porch removed. The second is caused by the steps in Old Malthouse Lane leading down to the pedestrian walk through. This not only constricts the passage of both pedestrians and vehicles but poses a major trip and fall risk for pedestrians. Again this problem will be solved by moving the steps 0.5 meters to the east. There is insufficient space for a turning area to the north of the development. The application requires more robust Vehicle Impact Assessment and Traffic Management plans, both for the development once built and during the construction phase.
4,Bin Store: Access, smells and fumes. The proposed bin store adjoins Old Malthouse Lane and will create unpleasant smells and potential blocking of other vehicles during use of the store and during bin collections for those already living in the lane. The bin store needs to be redesigned to ensure appropriate through ventilation for the removal of noxious fumes and smells. The door needs to be relocated so that access is no longer directly from Old Malthouse lane but from within the development
5.Adverse Impact on Nature Conservation interests and Biodiversity. The proposed demolition of some buildings which are presently bat, swift and house martin roosts and have been for 40+ years is likely to be detrimental to these populations. There are 8 known species of bats there, and a special licence is needed to do any building work which might affect them. Though the developers say that no work will be undertaken between the end of March and beginning of September, this is an unrealistic promise with such a large development.
- Effect on Conservation Area/density/visual appearance/design.The proposed development will have an adverse effect on the Langton Matravers Conservation Area, insofar as the density is much too high.
Related Matters. It was further agreed:
Construction Management Statement. Langton Matravers Parish Council asks that before any development goes ahead, the developers provide a full and robust Construction Management Statement indicating how noise, pollution, vehicle movements and other matters will be managed and mitigated during the construction phase and addresses how vehicle movements will be co-ordinated with cotemporaneous developments, with reference to LMPC’s Construction Traffic Management Requirements document (February 2020). The Construction Management Statement should include a timetable of proposed activities and agreement to minimise effect on neighbours and traffic in the village.
Environmentally Friendly Development.
The Council asks that, in line with Dorset Council’s climate emergency statement the plans are altered to include solar panels, ground/air source heat pumps or other types of carbon neutral design throughout.’ [end]
LMPC, 19th June 2020.
Dr Mary Sparks, Clerk to the Council