8.1 Item 1
Proposal Outline Planning Application (some matters reserved) – erection of up to 138 dwellings with public open space, landscaping, sustainable drainage system (SuDS) and vehicular access point from Poplar Hill (re-submission of refused application DC/18/02380).
Site Location STOWMARKET- Land to the East of, Poplar Hill, Stowmarket, Suffolk, IP14 2EJ
8.2 The Case Officer presented the application to the Committee outlining the proposal, the layout of the site, and the officer recommendation of refusal.
8.3 The Case Officer responded to Members’ questions on issues including: the consultee response from place services regarding the landscaping survey, and that a previous application on the site was currently being appealed by the Applicant to the Planning Inspectorate.
8.4 Members considered the representation from Nick Gowrley of Stowmarket Town Council, who spoke against the application.
8.5 The Town Council representative responded to Members’ questions on issues including: the engagement from the applicant with the Town Council regarding the application.
8.6 Members considered the representation from Tony Bamber of Combs Parish Council, who spoke against the application.
8.7 The Parish Council representative responded to Members’ questions on issues including: engagement with the community.
8.8 Members considered the representation from Desiree Shelley who spoke as an Objector.
8.9 Members considered the representations from the Ward Members, Councillor Keith Scarff and Councillor Gerard Brewster, who spoke against the application.
8.10 The Ward Members responded to Members’ questions on issues including: the impact on the highway network.
8.11 Members debated the application on the issues including: the impact on the landscape.
8.12 Councillor Sarah Mansel proposed that the application be refused as detailed in the officer recommendation. Councillor John Field seconded the motion.
8.13 Members continued to debate the application on the issues including: the harm to the listed building, the weight of the Stowmarket Area Action Plan (SAAP), the proximity to the Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), and the location of the site.
8.14 By a unanimous vote
That authority be delegated to the Acting Chief Planning Officer to refuse outline planning permission for the following reasons:
1. The proposed development is situated on land outside of the settlement boundary of Stowmarket, the proposal fails to accord with the developments permitted within the countryside, contrary to Policies CS1 and CS2 of the Mid Suffolk Core Strategy (2008). The proposal is also contrary to the allocation of the site within policy 6.20 of the Stowmarket Area Action Plan (2013). Furthermore, the development fails to comply with the requirements of paragraphs 8 and 11 of the NPPF (2018) with regards to the presumption in favour of sustainable development as the proposal would have limited benefits outweighed by harm identified to the environmental objective, with particular regards to the natural and historic environment. As such the proposal is not acceptable in principle, being contrary to paragraphs 8, 11, 193 and 196 of the NPPF (2018), Policies CS1, CS2 and CS5 of the Core Strategy (2008), Policy FC1 and FC1.1 of the Core Strategy Focused Review (2012) Policies HB1, HB14, CL8 and CL9 of the Mid Suffolk Local Plan (1998) and the Stowmarket Area Action Plan (2013).
2. The proposal results in the loss of the site as an area of open countryside, forming part of the setting and contributing to the significance of the adjacent Grade I listed Church. The proposal would therefore fail to protect, preserve or enhance the character and appearance of the locality, landscape and therefore the setting and significance of the surrounding heritage assets, which would result in a high level of less than substantial harm to the setting and significance of the Listed Building not outweighed by public benefits. As such the proposal would be contrary to the requirements of the NPPF including with regards to the environmental role of sustainable development and furthermore with particular respect to paragraphs 8, 11, 193 and 196 of the NPPF (2018), Policy CS5 of the Core Strategy (2008) and Policy HB1 of the Mid Suffolk Local Plan (1998).
3. The proposed development results in the imposition of built development into the open countryside in a location where this would result in significant impacts on the character and appearance of the countryside, failing to protect or conserve landscape qualities, considering both the natural and historical dimensions of the landscape in this locality. As such the proposal would fail to comply with the requirements of Policy HB1 of the adopted Mid Suffolk Local Plan (1998), Policy CS5 of the Mid Suffolk Core Strategy (2008), 6.20 and 6.22 of the Stowmarket Area Action Plan (2013) and paragraphs 8, 11 and 170 of the NPPF (2018).
4. The application fails to demonstrate that the development would not risk harm to Combs Wood Site of Special Scientific Interest with regards to the impact of additional visitors to the SSSI, by reason of insufficient information, given that the SSSI is within regular walking distance of the site wherein there is a likely increase in recreational pressure on the wood. The proposal is therefore contrary to paragraphs 8, 11, 170 and 175 of the NPPF (2018), Policy CS5 of the Core Strategy (2008), and Policies CL8 and CL9 of the adopted Mid Suffolk Local Plan (1998).