Minutes of the Council Planning Meeting Held on the 4th October
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Minutes of the Council Planning Meeting Held on the 4th October

Birdham Parish Council

Minutes of the Planning Meeting

held on Monday 4th October 2010

at 7pm in Birdham Village Hall

Present:                    Cllr Meynell (Chairman), Cllr Mrs Parks (Vice-Chairman), Cllr Way

Cllr Tilbury, Cllr Mrs Barker, Cllr Mrs Leach, Cllr Mrs Cobbold, Cllr Churchill

Apologies:                Cllr Ms Huskisson

In attendance:         The Clerk, Cllr P Jones & Cllr P Montyn (WSCC & CDC), and twenty eight members of the public.

1-10 Declarations of Interests

There were none.

2-10                Urgent/Additional items notified to the Chairman or the Clerk prior to the meeting.

There were none.

3-10                Planning matters including CDC decisions:


BI/10/03940/FUL George Haines (Itchenor) Ltd

The Triangle Land South Of Holt Cottages Shipton Green Lane Itchenor

Boat storage building.

As considerable interest was shown in this application with members of the public wishing to speak the Chairman outlined the format that the Council wished the meeting to take. This was to be three speakers for the application, three speakers opposed to the application and one speaker for the applicant/developer. In each case speakers would give their name and address and be given three minutes only in which to present their case. Councillors would be given the opportunity to question speakers on matters of clarity only. WSCC & CDC Councillors would be asked if they wished to make comments. In the first instance the Chairman asked Cllr Tilbury to introduce the application and give a resume of the arguments both for and against the application outlining as he did so the various planning policies that relate to the application.

Mr Wayne Hemingway spoke against the application stating alternatives are available and suggesting that a working group be set-up to work through and resolve the problem.

Mr Richard Dyer spoke against the application. He felt that insufficient consultation had taken place. He also felt that although the applicants had said that work would not be carried out on the proposed site, it certainly was on the Lipperings site.

Mr Mike O’Reilly spoke against the application. No one had spoken to them or consulted with them about the application.

Mr Ted Rouse spoke for the application. As a West Itchenor Parish Councillor serving on the Planning Committee he had not been allowed to speak at West Itchenor’s debate. He felt that a good degree of nimbyism was at stake and that two previous applications on the car park had been withdrawn due to public protest. He felt that West Itchenor was a working harbour village and that the loss of Haines Boatyard should not be allowed to happen. He said that the Harbour Conservancy had supported the application even though the application was in an AONB.

Cllr Cobbold on a point of clarity asked if land was available to replace the lost car park space. The answer was yes but it would be at the expense of agricultural land.

Mr John Holmes spoke for the application. He stated that neighbour’s did receive letters that included dates and times of consultation meetings. (This was at odds with the neighbours comments). He stated that various sites around the area had been visited but were found to be unsuitable. The Harbour Conservancy had given their consent because the objections that they had initially raised had been satisfied.

Ms Maureen Wood, a supporter of the application, asked if it was possible to hold a ten month consultation period. This was not answered.

Mr Andrew McParland, (Haines company director) stated that two previous applications had been made during which approximately one hundred people had attended consultation meetings at which a number of comments had been raised and addressed. (The two applications referred to had been withdrawn). Traffic levels will be reduced not raised as there would be no need to use the main road. Blue Gates had been taken back into Haines ownership and was in the process of refurbishment. He also stated that The Harbour Conservancy and the Chichester District Council Economic Officer supported the application.

Cllr Tilbury asked Mr McParland if he had given a fair overview of the situation both for and against the application in his introduction. Mr McParland agreed that he had.

Cllr Way asked why the Car Park application had been withdrawn. The answer was because the replacement would have been agricultural land and that both applications had been withdrawn because of local opposition.

Cllr Cobbold asked which of the two withdrawn applications would have been the better option and thought that the West Itchenor site would have been better than the Shipton Green site.

Cllr Leach said that North Shore vehicles also use the road that the car park is situated upon.

Cllr Churchill felt that Policy R2 met some of the objectives but felt some objectors may have looked at the site from a point of view of what may happen rather than what is.

Cllr Way felt the applicants needed to satisfy the Council that no other site was available especially as the Car Park site had not been tested at application and that it was outside the SPA.

Cllr Parks asked if the boats to be stored were in fact only ‘Classic Boats’

Cllr Cobbold said that she was uncomfortable being asked to make a decision on an application that was rather more relevant to West Itchenor rather than Birdham. She also felt concerned that the previous applications had not been tested.

Cllr Tilbury felt that further negotiation was likely to be unproductive and that the matter should now be tested by the District Council’s Development Committee. He proposed and was seconded by Cllr Cobbold and:

Birdham Parish Council resolved to OBJECT on the terms stated. It believes that The Triangle site is an unnecessary intrusion into the landscape of the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It contravenes key principle iv, section 21 and section 22 of PPS7 and the economic arguments do not outweigh the environmental harm. It also contravenes the following policies of the Chichester District Council Local Plan 1999 First Review: RE4, RE12, RE15 (last sentence), TR6 and B5 insofar as this policy refers to new building.


Maple House, Longmeadow Gardens, Birdham

The trees referred to in this application stand in what was until 2001 the large garden of Longmeadow House. In 2001 a portion of land was sold and two houses erected on the site. Four of the trees are Cupressocyparis leylandii, the fastest growing conifer in Britain and the subject of legislation in the last few years to restrict its planting. Specimens can grow after sixty years to 35 metres tall by 10 metres wide. Two of the trees are Cupressus macrocarpa , another tree whose vigorous growth make it too large for most gardens. It can grow to 50 metres tall. It is unlikely that either of these types of tree would be considered for a Tree Preservation Order these days. They are certainly out of context with the development on the site and are the subject of safety complaints from neighbours. We have been assured by the owners of the land that their intention is to replace these trees with indigenous species more commensurate with the site. The Birdham Parish Council resolves to raise NO OBJECTION to the removal of these trees.

Proposed by Cllr Churchill and seconded by Cllr Tilbury


108 Crooked Lane, Birdham

The site is a terraced, rectangular dwelling with a single storey, tiled outhouse to the rear, of a  similar pattern to the other houses in this part of Crooked Lane. The proposal is to build a single storey extension to the side and the rear of the house to wrap around the outhouse. We note that there are also a wooden shed with a pitched roof to the rear of the proposal and a single storey, wooden chalet with a part-concreted patio across the end of the garden, not shown on the site plan. The rear of the proposed extension is roughly in alignment with the rear of the house to the south (Mayfield) and with the conservatory on the house to the north. One of our concerns must whether this proposal, taken with the chalet, which seems a permanent structure, constitute overdevelopment of this site. Implied comparisons with Mayfield may be invalid in that that house stands in a much larger plot.

The proposed extension measures 46.1 square meters. We calculate that the existing floor area of the house (ground floor and first floor plus the outhouse) is 80.6square metres. The proposed  extension will therefore constitute a 57% increase in the floor area of the house.  Council Policies BE12 and BE13 (1) seem to apply here. Policy H12, which limits extensions to 50% of the floor area in rural areas, might be a guide here, although the property does lie within the Birdham SPA - but also within the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

This proposal pushes the limits of planning policy in a number of respects and the Birdham Parish Council resolved to OBJECT to this application because of the resulting size of the property in relation to its grounds, especially when taken in conjunction with the other structures not shown on the plans.

Proposed by Cllr Tilbury and seconded by Cllr Meynell


Wophams Lane Nursery (Blue Ribbon Plants) Birdham Road, Birdham

This is an application for a change of use at Wophams Lane Nursery. The economic problems of the nursery are clearly set out papers attached to the application and the case is made that the future of the nursery will be at risk if it does not follow others in the area and diversify the range of items it can sell and improve the layout of its retail space.  This would involve additional display and sales areas within the present buildings. Although competition is not a planning matter, the sustainable economic activity of Birdham, particularly for the benefit of its residents, is a matter of concern to the Council. It should be achieved without compromising existing businesses in the immediate area or detracting from the rural environment. The Nursery lies on the A286 and clearly could do more to attract the passing trade.

The Nursery lies outside the Birdham SPA. The Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty lies on the other side of the road from the Nursery and the last paragraph of Policy RE4 (which relates to developments which might detract from views in or out of the area) applies here, since increased retail activity implies increased signage and advertising, both of which should be the subject of clear conditions.

Much play is made in the application with policies in favour of the re-use of buildings in the countryside for economic development. In recent years this has largely meant the conversion of barns to residential accommodation. This proposal seems more in sympathy with the intentions of  Planning Policy Statement 4. Chichester District Council Policy RE14 says that permission will be granted for the conversion and change of use of buildings in the rural area provided that certain conditions are met; these buildings are sound, are not to be extended, do not imply changes to the cartilage, do not conflict with Policy B8 (an adequate supply of floorspace), would make little difference to the rural road network, would not affect the amenities of local residents and have generous parking facilities.

Birdham Parish Council has resolved to raise NO OBJECTION to this application.

Proposed Cllr Tilbury and seconded by Cllr Churchill

There being no further business to discuss the meeting closed at 8.30pm.

Signed ___________________________   Dated ____________________