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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 04/10/2005
WA/2005/1781 - Tanyard Farm, Woodhill Lane, Shamley Green



APPENDIX E
WA/2005/1781Retention of a triple car port at Tanyard Farm, Woodhill Lane, Shamley Green (as amplified by letter dated 15.9.05)
M Harper
24/08/2005
Grid Reference:E: 503380 N: 143933
Parish :Wonersh
Ward :Shamley Green and Cranleigh North
Development Plan :MGB; AONB; AGLV; Locally Listed Building; Conservation Area
Highway Authority :N/A
Drainage Authority: N/A
Parish Council:N/A
Representations:N/A

Relevant History

HM/R 20732Erection of single-storey extension
Permitted
24.10.72
WA83/0704Erection of an extension to form conservatory
Permitted
22.6.83
WA89/1569Erection of entrance gates and brick columns
Permitted
19.10.89
WA94/1475Erection of a detached garage
Permitted
19.12.94
WA/97/0503Retention of boundary wall and entrance gates
Permitted
13.6.97
WA/97/0504Application for Conservation Area Consent for the demolition of boundary wall
Consent Granted
13.6.97
WA/97/0411Alterations to levels and regrading of paddock to the rear
Refused
18.7.97
P43/20/26
Enforcement Notice and Stop Notice
Alterations of the levels and regrading of the land and associated ground preparation works including the compacting of an area of land and associated posts and the execution of associated water supply works together with the erection of a fence
Served
11.7.97
Appeal Dismissed
13.01.98
P43/20/26/A
Enforcement Notice
Erection of a summerhouse and lean-to
Served
19.12.97
Appeal Dismissed
28.08.98
P43/20/30
Enforcement Notice
Change of use from paddock to residential curtilage
Authorised
10.1.01
Served 26.6.01
WA01/0685Erection of a detached outbuilding to provide ancillary accommodation following demolition of existing garage and store
Refused
14.6.01
WA01/2204Application for Conservation Area Consent for demolition of existing garage and store
Consent Granted
10.1.02
WA02/2057Erection of an attached annexe following demolition of existing garage
Refused
28.3.02
Appeal Dismissed
11.9.02
WA02/2244Erection of link detached two-storey outbuilding to provide ancillary accommodation following demolition of existing garage
Permitted
27.2.03
WA03/1107Erection of a link attached two-storey outbuilding to provided self-contained ancillary accommodation following demolition of existing garage
Refused
14.7.03
Appeal Dismissed
12.12.03
WA03/1749Retention of a triple car port
Refused
13.10.03
Appeal Dismissed
20.7.04
EN/2005/3
Enforcement Notice
Erection of a triple car port
Served 03.02.05
Appeal Lodged
(Public Inquiry)
EN/2005/4
Enforcement Notice
Excavation works and the erection of a building
Served 17.3.05
Appeal Lodged
(Public Inquiry)

Introduction

In view of the planning history and the environmental sensitivity of this site, this application has been brought to the planning committee for consideration. In addition, it should be noted that it is not possible for any body other than Development Control Committee to 'decline to determine' an application for planning permission under the council's scheme of delegation.

Description of Site/Location

Tanyard Farm is located on the northern side of Woodhill Lane to the east of Shamley Green Village.

The property comprises an attractive detached Locally Listed house which dates from the 16th Century. It has been extended in the 18th, 19th and 20th Centuries. To the rear is a modern extension and a garden area which is on higher ground. To the east of the property is a Public Footpath (No. 311).

Background

An earlier retrospective planning application (reference WA/03/1749) was submitted in August 2003 for the retention of the car port, but was refused by the Council on 13th October 2003. A subsequent appeal against this decision was dismissed, following a Hearing, on 20th July 2004.

On 3rd February 2005, the Council served an Enforcement Notice (reference EN/2005/3) to seek the removal of the building. The appellant has since lodged an appeal against that Notice. One of the grounds relates to the planning merits of the proposal.

Main Issue

The starting issue to be considered in this case is whether, having regard to the fact that this application is a re-submission of an identical proposal dismissed on appeal in July 2004, the Council is in a position to, and should, exercise its power under Section 70A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to decline to determine the application. Should the Council conclude that this power can and should be exercised, the planning merits of the proposal do not fall for consideration. This most recent Circular relates to new powers in the 2004 Act and to the power to decline to determine applications that has been included in pre-existing legislation.

The use of the powers is 'intended to inhibit the use of repeated applications that are submitted with the intention of, over time, reducing opposition to undesirable developments'. (Circular, 08/2005)

In this case, use of the power will also inhibit repeated attempts to evade enforcement activity of the Council.

The power may be used where applications are the same or substantially the same as an application that has been dismissed by the Secretary of State on appeal. Paragraph 8 of Circular 08/2005 advises that the power should be used "only where (the LPA) believe that the applicant is trying to wear down opposition by submitting repeated applications". If an application has been revised in a genuine attempt to take account of objections to an earlier proposal, the circular advises that the local planning authority should determine it.

The applications must be 'similar' to justify use of the power. If, for example, significant changes have occurred in the development plan, the policy context of earlier considerations of the development may by overturned. Significant changes in other material considerations may also necessitate reconsideration of apparently similar proposals.

It is necessary for Members to consider what may be significant for those purposes by having regard to whether changes may 'alter the weight given to any planning consideration' relevant to determination of the application.

The officers have had regard to the tests set out in Circular 08/2005 dated August 2005 on "Guidance on Changes to the Development Control System".

The officers consider that Section 70A applies to this application for the reasons set out in the report.

The Proposal

The application seeks the retention of an oak-framed car port that currently exists on the site frontage. The building was erected in the late summer of 2003.

Submissions in Support

The applicant’s agent has submitted a letter/statement in support of this application. The letter sets out the current situation; a description of the car port; the case for its retention; planning policy analysis; and conclusions.

The agent has referred to three "new" material considerations and has argued that these warrant a fresh appraisal of the development previously refused and dismissed on appeal in July 2004. The agent has also stated that his client would prefer that the Authority is able to make this appraisal at the local level.

In the supporting statement submitted with this application, the applicant’s agent has made reference to three issues - the refurbishment of a boundary wall, the growth of a willow tree on the frontage, and they have sought to argue that the car port has weathered significantly in the two years since it was erected.

Relevant Policies

Policies LO4, SE4, SE5 and SE8 of the Surrey Structure Plan 2004
Policies C1, C3, RD3, HE3, HE5, D1 and D4 of the Waverley Borough Local Plan 2002
Policies CP2, CP3, CP8, CP10 and CP11 of the Waverley Borough Local Development Framework Draft Core Strategy 2005

Officers Response

The development and the land to which the application relates is considered to be the same or substantially the same as that in the earlier application (reference WA/2003/1749).

There has been no change to the siting, size, scale, form or design of the development which is, in effect, a re-submission of that earlier application. There have not been any revisions to the scheme in a genuine attempt to take account of the objections raised by the Council or the Inspector to that earlier application.

It is not considered that there has been any significant change in the relevant considerations since the appeal decision in July 2004. The officers do not consider any of the "changes" referred to in support of the application to be significant or in any way overcome the fundamental planning policy objections raised to this inappropriate and visually harmful development.

The officers acknowledge, however, that there has been a change in the status of the Development Plan. At the time of the determination of the appeal proposal in July 2004, this proposal was assessed against the adopted Surrey Structure Plan 1994, and the adopted Waverley Borough Local Plan 2002. It was also assessed against the emerging and now adopted Surrey Structure Plan 2004 (at that time known as the Surrey Structure Plan (Deposit Draft) 2002). This plan was adopted in December 2004. Furthermore, the Council is currently preparing its Local Development Framework Core Strategy. The issues and options were published in June 2005 on which consultation has recently taken place and the final draft is to be considered by the Council at the end of October. All current relevant policies are stated at the beginning of this report. There has been no change to the adopted Local Plan 2002 and it is not considered that there has been any material change in the general thrust of relevant planning policies which existed at the time of the earlier appeal and those relevant today.

The officers conclude that, in respect of site circumstances and planning policies, the relevant considerations are sufficiently similar and that there has not been any significant change in this case.

The officers believe that this repeat application is an attempt to undermine the commitment of the Council to prevent a totally inappropriate and visually harmful development. There has been no genuine attempt to meet objections to the proposal.

It is noted that the applicant has, since the dismissal of the appeal, lodged an appeal against an Enforcement Notice which seeks the removal of the unauthorised development.

Legal Implications

The Local Authority decision not to determine the application may be challenged by the applicant by seeking judicial review.

Conclusion

The officers consider that, having regard to the circumstances of the case, the Local Planning Authority can and should exercise its power to decline to determine this application which is the same, or substantially the same, as an application that, within the previous two years, the Secretary of State has dismissed on appeal. Circumstances in which this power can be exercised rarely occur, and it has been reserved to Development Control Committee. The report has come direct to your committee to avoid delay, and allow for a timely decision, which must be within the 8 week decision period.

Officers conclude that this power should be exercised in the face of the failure by the applicant to attempt to meet the objections to the development, as previously expressed by the Inspector in 2004. The applicant will not be deprived of the opportunity to pursue the development proposal because an appeal against the related enforcement notice continues.

Recommendation

That Waverley Borough Council, acting as the Local Planning Authority, hereby give notice to decline to determine this application for the following reason:-

1. Waverley Borough Council acting as the Local Planning Authority for the purposes of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) do hereby give you notice of the exercise of its power under Section 70A of the said Act to decline to determine the application deposited by you with Waverley Borough Council on 24th August 2005 and described in the First Schedule. In the opinion of Waverley Borough Council there has been no significant change, since the dismissal on appeal of a similar application (reference WA/2003/1749) on 20th July 2004, in the Development Plan so far as material to the application or any other material considerations. The development and land to which applications WA/2005/1781 and WA/2003/1749 relate are the same or substantially the same.

Comms/devcon/2005-06/044