Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Guildhall, Chard

Contact: Jo Morris, Case Services Officer (Support Services) - 01935 462055  Email:

No. Item


To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the Previous Meeting held on 6th December 2017


The minutes of the meeting held on 6th December 2017, copies of which had been circulated, were taken as read, and having been approved were signed as a correct record of the meeting.



Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Marcus Barrett, Mike Best, Carol Goodall and Jenny Kenton.


Declarations of Interest

In accordance with the Council's current Code of Conduct (as amended 26 February 2015), which includes all the provisions relating to Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI), personal and prejudicial interests, Members are asked to declare any DPI and also any personal interests (and whether or not such personal interests are also "prejudicial") in relation to any matter on the agenda for this meeting.

Members are reminded that they need to declare the fact that they are also a member of a County, Town or Parish Council as a Personal Interest.  Where you are also a member of Somerset County Council and/or a Town or Parish Council within South Somerset you must declare a prejudicial interest in any business on the agenda where there is a financial benefit or gain or advantage to Somerset County Council and/or a Town or Parish Council which would be at the cost or to the financial disadvantage of South Somerset District Council. 

Planning Applications Referred to the Regulation Committee

The following members of this Committee are also members of the Council's Regulation Committee:

Councillors Mike Best, Angie Singleton and Martin Wale.

Where planning applications are referred by this Committee to the Regulation Committee for determination, Members of the Regulation Committee can participate and vote on these items at the Area Committee and at Regulation Committee.  In these cases the Council's decision-making process is not complete until the application is determined by the Regulation Committee.  Members of the Regulation Committee retain an open mind and will not finalise their position until the Regulation Committee.  They will also consider the matter at Regulation Committee as Members of that Committee and not as representatives of the Area Committee.


Councillor Angie Singleton declared a personal and prejudicial interest in Planning Application No. 17/03271/FUL, as one of the neighbouring objectors had been a friend for many years and the applicant was also known to her.  She indicated that she would make a statement prior to leaving the room.


Prior to consideration of the planning applications, Councillor Sue Osborne declared a personal interest in Planning Application No. 17/03908/OUT, as the ward member.  She also declared a personal interest in Planning Application No. 17/03271/FUL, as the applicants were known to her.   


Date and Venue for Next Meeting

Councillors are requested to note that the next Area West Committee meeting is scheduled to be held on Wednesday 21st February 2018 at 5.30pm at The Guildhall, Chard.


Members noted that the next meeting of the Area West Committee would be held on Wednesday 21st February 2018 at 5.30pm at The Guildhall, Chard.



Public Question Time

This is a chance to ask questions, make comments and raise matters of concern.

Parish/Town Councils may also wish to use this opportunity to ask for the District Council’s support on any matter of particular concern to their Parish/Town.

Anyone wishing to raise matters in relation to items on the agenda may do so at the time the item is considered.


Mr S Smith questioned what progress had been made on the Chard Regeneration Scheme over the last year?


The Chief Executive provided a brief history of the Chard Regeneration Scheme and explained that SSDC was currently working with partners to put together a comprehensive regeneration plan for Chard.  It was hoped that a report would be submitted to the Area West Committee in the spring outlining a way forward.


Ms R Hall advised that she had moved to the area 18 months ago and was disappointed at the level of recycling.  She asked if the Council was doing anything to help stop the use of products or increase the collection of plastics?


In response, the Leader of the Council, Cllr. Ric Pallister provided a comprehensive response about the constraints and difficulties of recycling various plastic containers.


Mr D Laughton addressed the Committee with the following question:


Would the committee like to discuss ways to attract more members of the public to these meetings?  Could they be more welcoming and inclusive?


The Chairman advised that this topic would be considered through a cross Area Members Working Group as part of the Transformation process that is underway to revamp the way the Council works.



Chairman's Announcements


The Chairman made no announcements.


Promoting Community Safety in Area West - Police Performance and Neighbourhood Policing pdf icon PDF 22 KB


Sgt. Rob Jameson and Insp. Tim Coombe from Avon and Somerset Constabulary were welcomed to the meeting.  They gave a short presentation on local issues, crime trends and initiatives.  Particular reference was made to the following:


·         There was no intention to reduce the number of Beat Managers.  The PCC had given commitment to neighbourhood policing;

·         Insp. Sharon Bennett had recently been appointed as the new Temporary Chief Inspector;

·         There were no criminal outcomes as a result of the tragic accident at Chard Carnival.  A number of recommendations would be made to the Carnival Committees;

·         The overall crime trend in Area West had increased over the last 12 months;

·         The One Team continued to work positively with vulnerable individuals.


In response to questions from members, Sgt. Rob Jameson and Insp. Tim Coombe informed members about the following: 

·         The County Lines process for drug dealing;

·         The rising levels of burglaries was an area that had been recognised to be tackled by the Chief Constable;

·         The PCC have funded a One Team Co-ordinator post and part of their remit was to look at data sharing arrangements.


The Chairman thanked Sgt. Jameson and Insp. Tim Coombe for attending the meeting and providing an informative update. 



Report to Area West Committee - Police and Crime Commissioners Panel pdf icon PDF 177 KB


Councillor Martin Wale introduced his report updating members on the Police and Crime Commissioners Panel.



That the report be noted.




Area West - Reports from Members on Outside Bodies pdf icon PDF 81 KB

Additional documents:


Members noted the update report on Chard & District Museum submitted by Councillor Amanda Broom.


Area West Committee - Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 146 KB


The Communities Lead advised that members would receive a grant application from Ilminster Warehouse Theatre at the February meeting.


Members noted that the report on the Welfare Advice Work in South Somerset would be an information report only.


The Communities Lead advised members that there were less annual service reports on the Forward Plan due to the Transformation Project.  In response to a member comment, she informed members that there was a Working Group looking in detail at Forward Plans for Area Committees.


Members noted that the next meeting of the Chard Regeneration Board was scheduled to be held in February and hoped to see an update report at the March meeting.



That the Area West Committee Forward Plan be noted as attached to the agenda report.



Schedule of Planning Applications to be Determined by Committee pdf icon PDF 91 KB


Members noted the schedule of planning applications to be determined as outlined in the agenda.



Planning Application: 17/03597/REM - Eastfield House, East Street, North Perrott pdf icon PDF 452 KB


Application Proposal: The erection of 1 No. dwelling


The Planning Officer introduced the report and summarised the details of the application.  She advised that the proposed dwelling would use the existing access to Eastfield House and a new access would be created for Eastfield House under permitted development.  She explained that amended plans had been received which removed the garage from the proposal.  She updated members with the comments of the Landscape Officer who felt that the layout was more simplified with the removal of the garage and considered it to be an improvement.  Members were informed that the Parish Council objection remained and that two further letters of objection had been received concerning the design of the property and landscaping.  The Planning Officer’s recommendation was for approval subject to conditions.


In response to questions from members, the Planning Officer confirmed the following:


·         A sample of the colour to be used for the render;

·         The Village Design Statement was printed in 2013.  It was not an adopted document and therefore carried very limited weight.  The application should mainly be assessed against the NPPF and EQ2 and EQ3;

·         The principle of the development, agreed during the outline application, was a delegated decision and no objections were received to the principle of development;

·         The garages would remain part of the site outlined in blue and would be for use by Eastfield House;

·         There was no garage for the new dwelling.  Three parking spaces would be provided which met standard requirements;

·         The proposed dwelling would be set back 30 metres from the access.


The Committee was addressed by J Hoskyns representing North Perrott Parish Council.  He explained that the design of the building was of such high importance in the village and that the Parish Council objected to the style and visual impact of the design.  The design would however be more acceptable located on the other side of Eastfield House away from the Conservation Area and naturally hidden from public view.  They wished to see a building that reflected the neighbouring properties in the conservation area either to the west or north.


J Hall, an objector to the application referred to the North Perrott Village Design Statement and commented that the development would detract from the appeal of the village to tourists.


The Applicant, J Burton explained why he had chosen the design for the proposed bungalow and his preference for a modern, honest and eco-friendly design which would be low cost and quick to build.  He had chosen a bungalow with a flat roof to keep the profile low and advised that following advice of the Planning Officer the colour of the render had been changed to nearly match the colour of the neighbouring property.  The bungalow would be screened by a wall and new planting. 


The Agent, H Ferdinand advised that the applicants currently lived in Eastfield House, wished to remain in the village and that no other suitable properties had come onto the market.  They wished to build a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 106.


Planning Application 17/02693/FUL - Land At Bullring Farm Knowle Lane Misterton pdf icon PDF 478 KB


Application Proposal: Alterations to widen access with associated landscaping


The Area Lead Planner explained that the application related to works that started in 2014 to widen and excavate the existing access on to Knowle Lane, Misterton.  The application proposed the permanent retention of the works with improvements to the visibility, surfacing and landscaping.  With the aid of photographs, the Area Lead Planner illustrated how the access had been cut into the site and the bank cleared out to create a more level access. In terms of updates, she noted that members had received further information including a number of photographs from the objectors to the site.  She explained that a position had now been reached where the application was an acceptable compromise that addressed both highway and landscaping issues.  The application was supported by a highway assessment and the visibility splays were acceptable. The applicant had worked with the Landscape Officer to achieve an acceptable landscape scheme.  The Area Lead Planner recommended approval of the application.


In response to questions from members, the Area Lead Planner confirmed the following:


·         The approval in 2015 was to allow the scrap metal to be cleared.  There were issues with land ownership and sale of land so unfortunately that was not achieved.  There had always been an access to the site in this location although only lightly used.  It was preferable for the applicants to have an improved access instead of having to travel 300 metres up the lane and then 300 metres back down into the site;

·         The works that required planning permission were the engineering works that had taken place to make the access larger.  In terms of the need it should be taken into account that it was an existing access and the application was not for a new access;

·         If the applicant did not comply with the imposed conditions, a breach of condition would need to be looked at and there would be no flexibility with regard to going forward with enforcement;

·         The improved access would enable an access with appropriate visibility and appropriate servicing to serve the barns. The previous access would not have been suitable for any large farm traffic and needed improvement to serve the farm buildings.


The Committee was addressed by M Bellamy in support of the application.  He commented that the access was an existing vehicular access.  Reference was made to vehicles speeds being no greater than 30mph and the proposed visibility splays being in accordance with a 30mph zone. He noted that the surface of the access would be significantly improved and the drainage proposals across the entrance would mitigate any increase in surface water run off.  The application improved an existing access, was of benefit to highway safety and there were no objections from the Highway Authority.


The Applicant’s Agent, C Alers-Hankey commented that the Council’s Landscape Officer raised no objections to the proposals on the basis that landscape impact would be limited.  The upgraded entrance and driveway provided an appropriate and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 107.


Planning Application: 17/03908/OUT - Land Os 7216 Part Church Street Winsham pdf icon PDF 519 KB


Application Proposal: The erection of a dwellinghouse and detached double garage


The Area Lead Planner introduced the report and summarised the details of the application.  She informed members that outline permission was granted in 2016 for a single dwelling on the site and that this application was for the erection of a further dwelling and detached double garage to be sited to the west of the dwelling approved in 2016.  She informed members that there had been concerns locally with regard to the use of the access and advised that the access had been assessed in relation to safety and was recommending approval of the application subject to conditions.


In response to a member question, the Area Lead Planner confirmed that as County Highways had provided a response on the application the SSDC Highway Consultant was not consulted.


The Committee was addressed by A Simkins in objection to the application.  He raised concerns over the access and the traffic levels along the B3162 and felt that the entrance even with conditions would cause a traffic hazard. 


M Bellamy speaking in support of the application commented that the combined vehicle movement as a result of an additional dwelling would be minimal.  He noted that the location of the entrance, surface and drainage had all previously been approved and that there were no highway objections.


The Committee was then addressed by G Frecknall. He explained that his parents were the applicants and that their circumstances had changed since the approval of the previous application and that he and his brother wished to return to the village and would occupy the dwellings.    


The Applicant’s Agent, C Alers-Hankey commented that as the Council was unable to demonstrate a five year supply of deliverable housing land the proposal should be deemed acceptable.  She noted that there were no objections from the Landscape Officer or the County Highway Authority.


Ward Member, Cllr Sue Osborne referred to concerns raised from local residents over the potential for further dwellings using the access.  Concerns had also been raised with regard to visitors parking on Court Street creating potential parking issues.


During the discussion on the application, members felt that the impact of the development was not severe; a precedent had already been set, and were therefore content to support the Officer’s recommendation to approve the application.


It was proposed and seconded to approve the application subject to conditions as per the Planning Officer’s recommendation.  On being put to the vote the proposal was carried by 10 votes in favour and 1 against.



That Planning Application No. 17/03908/OUT be APPROVED for the following reason:


01.       Notwithstanding the objections from local residents and the Parish Council, the proposed residential development of the site is considered to be acceptable in this location, and could be carried out, subject to detail, with respect to the character of the area, and without causing demonstrable harm to residential amenity and highway safety, in accordance with policies SD1, SS1, SS2, TA5, TA6 and EQ2  ...  view the full minutes text for item 108.


Planning Application: 17/03271/FUL - 3 Church Path Crewkerne TA18 7HX pdf icon PDF 617 KB


Application Proposal: Demolition of existing dwelling and erection of replacement dwellinghouse


The Area Lead Planner introduced the report and summarised the application.  She advised that the plans had been amended to delete the first floor rear terrace and balcony.   She was of the opinion that the scheme was well designed and had taken into account the sensitive nature of the site with traditional materials proposed.  Her recommendation was for approval of the application subject to conditions.


In response to a member question, the Area Lead Planner advised that the church authorities had not been consulted on the application as the church did not share a boundary with the application site.


The Committee was addressed by Mr Butt on behalf of the Applicants.  He felt that the relationship with 1 Church Path was now acceptable and the issue of overlooking had been addressed with the submission of amended plans.  The proposal did not impact on the streetscene and views were limited due to vegetation.  The property was a well-designed house that preserved the character and appearance of the Conservation Area. 


Having earlier declared a personal and a prejudicial interest in the application, Councillor Angie Singleton made a statement prior to leaving the room.  She was of the view that there were no reasons to demolish a perfectly habitable bungalow.  She commented that although the original design of the balcony had been removed the issue of overlooking still remained.  She also referred to a neighbouring property wishing to build an underground property which would not be supported due to light pollution and was of the opinion that a two storey house would have a similar affect.  She felt that the proposal would cause harm to the Conservation Area and setting.  In summary she objected to the application on the grounds of the detrimental impact on the neighbouring property, light pollution and contrary to polices EQ3 and the NPPF.


A member speaking against the application felt that the existing bungalow was perfectly habitable and that the proposal would compromise the views of the Conservation Area particularly the church.  Those members who spoke in support of the application felt that the church would not be affected and that the level of overlooking was not unreasonable for the town centre.  


In response to a member question, the Planning Officer advised that Permitted Development Rights were already restricted as the application was located within a Conservation Area.


It was proposed and seconded to approve the application subject to conditions as per the Planning Officer’s recommendation as outlined in the agenda report.  The proposal to approve the application subject to conditions was carried by 9 votes in favour and 1 against.



That Planning Application No. 17/03271/FUL be APPROVED for the following reason: 


01.       The proposed development is considered to be acceptable in this location, and due to its size, design and position, will preserve the character and appearance of the conservation area and will result in less than substantial harm to the area's heritage assets and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 109.