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Apologies for Absence and Substitutions
The Committee is asked to note any apologies for absence and substitutions received from Members.
Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Chapman (with Councillor Steady substituting), G V Guglielmi (with no substitute), I J Henderson (with Councillor Davidson substituting) and Nash (with no substitute).
In addition, the Committee was informed that Councillor Nash had recently replaced Councillor S A Honeywood as a serving member of the Committee.
Chairman's Opening, Introductory & Closing Remarks
The Chairman of the Committee (Councillor Turner) made the following opening remarks:-
“Good Evening Fellow Councillors and Officers. I have once again invited the Planning Committee to join us and in line with previous meets I will invite Councillor White to bring to our attention any comments that he and his colleagues might like to make prior to us going to the vote.”
At the appropriate juncture in the meeting, the Chairman made the following introductory remarks in relation to report item A.1:-
“We do have good news here to impart. We have improved our 5 Year Land Supply from 6.5 years to 6.66 years. We err on the side of caution with these figures, but it seems everyone likes building in Tendring!
We are still lagging behind our target by 116 houses. That means that in 2021/22 we have to build 666, an interesting number, houses and thereafter only need to hit our target of 550 dpa.”
At the appropriate juncture in the meeting, the Chairman made the following introductory remarks in relation to report item A.2:-
“You will be pleased to have read that we do have 20 Conservation Areas (CAs) in our District. Tonight we have the first 5, which have been ‘flagged up’ by Historic England as being ‘at risk’. We will review 5 CAs every three months.
In 15 months’ time we will have a report that shows a way forward to repair, maintain and enhance our 20 CAs in line with the recommendations in those reports, the comments made by Cabinet and the results of the various public consultations.
One of the first steps to achieving a thorough and workable document / policy is to prepare a Local Heritage List. This is where Councillors whose wards have a Conservation Area will be able through their local knowledge to be of great value to this Committee.”
At the appropriate juncture in the meeting, the Chairman made the following introductory remarks in relation to item 8 on the Agenda:-
“We are well on our way to receiving the final letter from the Inspector telling us finally how to make the second part of our Local Plan sound. Again, the Planning Inspectorate have delayed. I was hoping to have it before us for this meeting.
We are also making good progress on the TCBGC and have had several meets both online and face-to-face with our confreres both Officers and Members from Colchester Borough Council and Essex County Council. We had a good introductory meet with Mersea Homes, Clarion and their development arm Latimer Homes but I will not steal Mr Guiver’s thunder any further.”
At the end of the meeting the Chairman of the Committee made the following closing remarks:-
“As always my thanks go to Mr Guiver and his team and you, the committee, for your considerations, work, insights and interest. Stay safe. I close the meeting at 7.26 p.m.”
To confirm and sign as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee, held on Tuesday 29 June 2021.
It was moved RESOLVED that the Minutes of the last meeting of the Committee held on 29 June 2021 be approved as a correct record and be signed by the Chairman.
Declarations of Interest
Councillors are invited to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Personal Interest, and the nature of it, in relation to any item on the agenda.
There were no Declarations of Interest made on this occasion.
Questions on Notice pursuant to Council Procedure Rule 38
Subject to providing two working days’ notice, a Member of the Committee may ask the Chairman of the Committee a question on any matter in relation to which the Council has powers or duties which affect the Tendring District and which falls within the terms of reference of the Committee.
On this occasion no Councillor had submitted notice of a question pursuant to Council Procedure Rule 38.
The Council’s Public Speaking Scheme for the Planning Policy & Local Plan Committee gives the opportunity for members of the public and other interested parties/stakeholders to speak to the Council’s elected members on the Planning Policy & Local Plan Committee on any specific agenda item to be considered at that public meeting.
Pursuant to the provisions of the Council’s public speaking scheme for the Planning Policy & Local Plan Committee, no member of the public had registered to ask at this meeting a question or to make a statement regarding the items contained in the report of the Acting Director (Planning).
To report to the Planning Policy and Local Plan Committee:-
· the number of new homes built in the District of Tendring during the 2020/21 financial year and the up-dated year-by-year ‘trajectory’ for future housebuilding; and
· the current housing land supply position (the ‘five-year’ supply).
The Committee had before it a detailed report of the Acting Director (Planning) (A.1) which reported to it:-
(a) the number of new homes built in Tendring during the 2020/21 financial year and the up-dated year-by-year ‘trajectory’ for future housebuilding; and
(b) the current housing land supply position (the ‘five-year’ supply).
Members were aware that, following successful examination, Section 1 of the Local Plan had been adopted by the full Council on 26 January 2021. Section 1 set out the ‘objectively assessed housing need’ (OAN) for the District of Tendring of 550 homes a year, and the housing requirement for the period of the Local Plan (i.e. 2013-2033) was therefore 11,000 homes.
It was reported that, with approximately 4,300 homes already built between 2013 and 2021, the remaining requirement between now and 2033 stood at approximately 6,700.
Housing Completions and Future Trajectory
The Committee was informed that in the period 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021, a net total of 646 new homes had been completed in the Tendring District. This meant that the housebuilding target of 550 homes a year had now been achieved for a fifth year in succession. Subsequently, COVID-19 and the associated lockdowns (particularly at the start of the pandemic) had had an impact on housing delivery as many building sites had been forced to shut down operations. However, the impact had not been as severe as expected, and housing delivery last year had been stronger than the Council’s estimates in the 2020 ‘Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment’ (SHLAA). In fact, many developers were expecting to see strong delivery this year and build out rates on some of the larger sites in the District appeared to be strong.
Members were made aware that Officers had updated the Council’s SHLAA, which contained a trajectory of predictions for the coming years for future housing building, based on information from developers as well as Officers’ own monitoring of building sites.
Five Year Housing Supply and Decision Making
The Committee was reminded that the Government required Councils to demonstrate an ongoing ‘five year supply’ of deliverable housing sites in order to ensure that they were well placed to meet their future housing needs. Following the adoption of Section 1 of the Local Plan in January 2021, the Council’s local housing need had been confirmed as 550 homes per year.
It was reported that, taking into account the future trajectory set out in the SHLAA, the Council could demonstrate a 6.66 year supply of deliverable housing sites. Around 4,000 homes were expected to be built within the next five years (i.e. 2021/22 to 2025/26), against a five year requirement of about 3,000 homes.
Having duly considered and discussed the contents of the report:-
It was moved by Councillor Scott, seconded by Councillor Fairley and:-
RESOLVED unanimously that the Planning Policy and Local Plan Committee endorses the contents of the report and the new Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) in order to demonstrate an up-to-date housing land supply ... view the full minutes text for item 15.
To report to Planning Policy and Local Plan Committee the first five in a series of ‘Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plans’ prepared for the Council by Essex Place Services, as well as the proposed criteria for the inclusion of buildings and structures on a ‘Local Heritage List’; and for the Committee to agree a recommendation to Cabinet that they be published for consultation and that proposals for a Local List of non-designated heritage assets be invited.
The Committee had before it a comprehensive report (and appendices) of the Acting Director (Planning) (A.2) which reported to it the first five in a series of ‘Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plans’ that had been prepared for the Council by Essex Place Services, as well as the proposed criteria for the inclusion of buildings and structures on a ‘Local Heritage List’. The report also sought the Committee’s recommendation to Cabinet that they be published for public consultation purposes and that proposals for a Local List of non-designated heritage assets be invited.
Members were aware that the District of Tendring contained a wealth of ‘heritage assets’ which included over 900 listed buildings, 20 Conversation Areas, four Registered Parks and Gardens and a variety of scheduled monuments for which the Council had a duty to preserve, or enhance, through its decision making as the Local Planning Authority.
Members recalled that, following its recommendation by this Committee, the Cabinet had agreed to formally adopt the Council’s ‘Heritage Strategy’ in March 2020. That Strategy contained a number of recommended actions for the Council and its partners which included reviewing and updating Conservation Area Appraisals and preparing a ‘Local List’ of non-designated heritage assets within the District.
It was reported that Officers had worked with Essex Place Services to review and update the Conservation Area Appraisals and Management Plans for all 20 of the District’s Conservation Areas and it was now proposed that these were published for consultation before being finalised and formally adopted by the Council.
The Committee was informed that the first five of the new Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plans proposed for publication related to the:-
• Clacton Seafront Conservation Area;
• Dovercourt Conservation Area;
• St Osyth Conservation Area;
• Thorpe-le-Soken Conservation Area; and
• Thorpe Station and Maltings Conservation Area.
Members were informed that those Conservation Areas had been put forward for consideration and publication first because they had been identified on Historic England’s Register of Conservation Areas at Risk. It was proposed that the appraisals undertaken for the remainder of the District’s Conservation Areas would be presented to the Committee and, subject to Cabinet approval, published for consultation in batches over the course of the next 12 months.
The Committee was reminded that, throughout the District, there were also many historically important buildings which were not ‘Listed’ i.e. protected through their formal identification on Historic England’s National List’. However, Local Planning Authorities had the power to prepare their own ‘Local Heritage List’ of ‘non-designated’ heritage assets which would give them a level of protection through the planning system when they were the subject of, or affected by, development proposals.
It was reported that the first stage of preparing a Local List was to agree a set of Criteria against which all proposed Locally Listed buildings and structures would be assessed against. It was proposed that those criteria were also published for consultation before the Council began compiling the Local List, for which suggestions from the community would ... view the full minutes text for item 16.
Updates from the Acting Director (Planning)
The Committee will receive an oral update from the Acting Director (Planning) on the progress of the Local Plan and the work on the Colchester / Tendring Border Garden Community.
The Acting Director (Planning) (Gary Guiver) gave an oral update to Members on the Local Plan and the ongoing work being carried out in relation to the Colchester / Tendring Border Garden Community project as follows:-
Section 2 – Local Plan
The Acting Director (Planning) reported in some disappointment that his latest communication with the Programme Officer for the Local Plan Inquiry Inspector had indicated that the Inspector’s final letter to this Council was not quite yet ready for issuing. This meant that it would not be possible to submit the final report on Section 2 of the Local Plan to the next meeting of this Committee due to be held on 11 November 2021. This also meant that Section 2 of the Local Plan would now not be able to be submitted for formal adoption to the meeting of the Full Council due to be held on 30 November 2021.
Colchester / Tendring Border Garden Community project
The Acting Director (Planning) informed the Committee that the next reports for this project would be submitted to the forthcoming meeting of the Committee on 11 November 2021. He also reported that work was underway on the Draft Development Plan Document which it was expected would be ready for consultation purposes early in 2022.
At the request of Councillor Scott, the Acting Director (Planning) gave an update on the proposed new A120/A133 Link Road and informed Members that the planning application was due to be considered by Essex County Council’s Development and Regulatory Committee on 1 November 2021.
The Committee noted the foregoing.