Agenda and draft minutes

Development Control Board - Thursday 13 October 2022 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, Home Gardens, Dartford DA1 1DR

Contact: Email: memberservices@dartford.gov.uk 

Items
Note No. Item

27.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Brown, Butterfill, Oakley-Dow, Oliver and Sandhu.

28.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the terms(s) of the Grant of Dispensation (if any) by the Audit Board or the Chief Officer & Director of Corporate Services.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest from Members.

 

The Chairman informed Members that the Development Control Manager, Mrs Emma Eisinger, would be leaving the meeting during consideration of agenda item 6, application 20/00857/FUL Serena Memorial Hall, 396 Princes Road as she had a personal interest in that item and would take no part in the debate or decision making.

29.

Confirmation of the Minutes of the meeting held on 14 July 2022 and 8 September 2022 pdf icon PDF 265 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members considered the minutes of the meetings of the Development Control Board which took place on 14 July 2022 and 8 September 2022.

 

          RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the meetings of the Development Control Board held on 14 July 2022 and 8 September 2022 be confirmed as accurate records.

30.

References from other committees

Minutes:

There were no references from other committees.

31.

Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.

32.

20/00857/FUL
Serena Memorial Hall, 396 Princes Road, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1LA pdf icon PDF 442 KB

Proposal:

 

Change of use to Children’s Day Nursery (Class D1) with proposed two storey rear extension and detached building to rear, alterations to access and provision of parking to the front of the building.

 

Recommendation:

 

Refusal

Minutes:

Having declared a personal interest in this item the Development Control Manager, Mrs Emma Eisinger, left the meeting during consideration of the item and took no part in the discussion or decision making.

 

The Board considered an application for a change of use of the Serena Memorial Hall to a Childrens Day Nursery (Class D1) with a proposed two storey rear extension and detached building to rear, alterations to access and provision of parking at the front of the building. The report described the history of previous use of the site and the proposal to use the converted property to provide early years education to up to 96 children at any one time aged between 3 months and 4 years, and children with special disabilities. 

 

Following careful consideration of the application, and comments from consultee organisations, Officers recommended that the application be refused due to concerns about highway safety, harm to amenity and likely harm to the health of a tree that was subject to a Tree Preservation Order.

 

The Chairman introduced Mr Mark Bassett, the Agent, who spoke against the recommendation (and in favour of the planning application) and Mr Clive Archer, who spoke in support of the recommendation (and against the planning application.

 

Members discussed the merits of the application. Whilst recognising the need for more nursery provision in the borough Members had strong concerns about the lack of parking on site and about highways safety, noting in particular the concerns of the Highways Authority, and the safety of the children using the nursery. There was also concern about inadequate provision for bin storage on site.  

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the application be refused for the reasons stated in the report and with the following additional condition (number 03):

 

“The proposed development fails to provide adequate and convenient arrangements for the storage of refuse and recycling for future occupiers/users of the building, contrary to the requirements of Policy DP2 of the adopted Development Plan and Policy M3 of the emerging Draft Local Plan.”

 

33.

22/00424/FUL
6 The Brent, Dartford, Kent DA1 1YG pdf icon PDF 432 KB

Proposal:

 

Demolish the existing two storey rear nib, rear extensions and outbuildings and the erection of a two storey rear extension. As well as the subdivision of the existing property, to provide 2 No.2 bed flat and 4 No. 1 bed flats (6 flats in total). Plus associated parking and amenity space provision (part retrospective).

 

Recommendation:

 

Approval

Minutes:

The Board considered an application for the demolition of an existing two storey rear nib, rear extensions and outbuildings, the erection of a new two storey rear extension and the sub-division of the existing property, to provide two 2 bed flats and four 1 bed flats (6 flats in total), plus associated parking and amenity space provision. The application had been partly implemented already in so far that the existing building had already been converted to contain 4 studio flats and that this part of the application was retrospective.

 

The Democratic Services Manager read out a written submission from Rachel Xavier, who was unable to attend, against the application.

 

Members discussed the merits of the application.

 

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the application be granted, for the reasons outlined in the report, subject to conditions and informatives contained in the report. 

 

34.

21/00137/COU
Land Adjacent Kentwood House, Darenth Road, Darenth, Kent, DA2 7QT pdf icon PDF 496 KB

Proposal:

 

Change of use of former agricultural land to mixed use as a hobby farm and for keeping of horses. Removal of some of the existing buildings. Erection of an agricultural barn and stable blocks (B1 and B7). (Part retrospective regarding the change of use and erection of a stable block (B1))

 

Recommendation:

 

Approval

 

Minutes:

The Board considered an application for the change of use of former agricultural land to mixed use as a hobby farm and for the keeping of horses. This would involve the removal of some of the existing buildings and the erection of an agricultural barn and stable blocks (B1 and B7). The application was part retrospective regarding the change of use and erection of a stable block (B1) and the application sought to regularise the use of the site.

 

A Member sought, and received, clarification from Officers over arrangements for monitoring compliance with the proposed conditions.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That planning permission be granted for the reasons set out in the report and subject to the conditions and informatives contained in the report.

35.

Stone Neighbourhood Plan pdf icon PDF 95 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Following public consultation by Stone Parish Council, examination by an independent examiner and a successful referendum of electors in the Stone Neighbourhood Area, the Cabinet agreed to make the Stone Neighbourhood Plan on 21 July 2022. As a consequence the Borough Council would in future have to determine planning applications in the Stone Neighbourhood Area in accordance with the Stone Neighbourhood Plan as well as other parts of the Development Plan, unless material considerations indicated otherwise.  The Neighbourhood Plan would sit alongside the Local Plan and would carry equal weight in planning terms. The Board received the papers submitted to the Cabinet which it was asked to note for information.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

1. That members note the decision of the Cabinet in respect of making the Stone Neighbourhood Plan; and

2. That members note that planning applications in the Stone Neighbourhood Area need to be determined in accordance with the Stone Neighbourhood Plan and other parts of the Development Plan, unless material considerations indicate otherwise.

36.

Assessment against Government Targets for Speed and Quality of Decision Making pdf icon PDF 109 KB

Minutes:

The Board received a report which assessed the Council’s performance against Government targets for the speed and quality of planning decision making. Local Planning Authorities that were deemed to be underperforming could be placed in special measures.

 

The statistics for the 2022 designation period had recently been published and the Council’s performance, outlined below, easily exceeded the Government targets.

 

For speed of decisions:

  • For applications for major development:

Government Target : 60% decisions made between April 2020 and March 2022 (2 year period) to be made within the statutory determination period or have an agreed extended period for decision.

 

DBC performance: 77% decisions were made within the statutory determination period or had an agreed extended period for decision

 

  • For applications for non-major development:

Target: 70% made between April 2020 and March 2022 to be made with the statutory determination period or have an agreed extended period for decision.

DBC: 77% decisions were made within the statutory determination period or had an agreed extended period for decision

 

For quality of decisions:

 

  • Appeal decisions for both major and non-major development are monitored for a 2 year period.  If more than 10% of an authority’s total decisions are overturned at appeal then the authority will be designated for special measures.

 

The government’s tables show the 24 month period April 2019 to March 2021 (which allows the period for the appeals to be determined following decisions):

 

DBC 0% major decisions were over-turned on appeal (i.e. allowed)

This breaks down to just 1 major development which went to appeal out of 62 major decisions made.

 

DBC 1.2% minor and other decisions were over-turned on appeal (i.e.allowed)

 

This is made up of 39 appeal decisions of which 13 were overturned.

 

Although the Council’s performance was currently well within the targets set by the Government, attention was drawn to a fall-off in performance in relation to minor applications recently  partly due to the surge in applications in 2021 post-Covid exacerbated by staff turnover and recruitment difficulties. However Officers were working hard to address these issues as well as maintaining good working relationships with developers.

 

Members congratulated Officers for maintaining strong performance, despite staffing pressures, and noted the Council’s good record on appeals.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the report be noted.

 

 

RD

37.

Decisions Taken Under Delegated Powers pdf icon PDF 490 KB

To consider delegated decisions taken during the period:

 

(a)  29/06/22 – 24/08/22

(b)  25/08/22 – 28/09/22

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members received, for information, a report on the decisions taken under delegated powers for the period 29 June 2022 to 24 August 2022 and 25 August 2022 to 28 September 2022.

 

The Chairman noted that there were 330 decisions made under delegation during the 2 month period despite staffing pressures and congratulated staff for their work.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the report be noted.