Agenda and minutes
Venue: Remote Meeting
Declarations of Interest
At this point in the meeting, Members are asked to declare:
· any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests
· any prejudicial interests or
· any disclosable pecuniary interests
which they may have in respect of business on this agenda.
Members were invited to declare at this point in the meeting any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests, or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests, which they might have in the business on the agenda. No interests were declared.
To approve and sign the minutes of the last meeting of the Local Plan Working Group, held on 20 June 2019.
Resolved: That the minutes of the meeting held on 20 June 2019 be approved as a correct record, to be signed by the Chair at a future date.
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It was reported that there had been two registrations to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.
Nicholas Allen spoke on Agenda Item 4 (Proposal for an Article 4 Direction for the Heslington Conservation Area), as Chair of Heslington Village Trust. He outlined his involvement in the Village Design Statement and support for an Article 4 Direction focused on Main Street / Main Street West, where most of the historic buildings were situated, noting that it would only affect developments visible from the public highway and would not conflict with energy efficiency measures, as these already required planning permission.
David Blaketer also spoke on Item 4, as a Member of Heslington Parish Council and of the working group on the Neighbourhood Plan for the area. He re-iterated the parish council’s support for the proposal, which would preserve and enhance the distinctive character of Main Street, noting that he would expect any representations received during consultation to be taken into account.
This report asks Members to consider a proposal for the preparation and service of a non-immediate Article 4 direction covering parts of the Heslington Conservation Area and to recommend that Executive approve the proposal.
Members considered a report which asked them to make recommendations to Executive on proposals to prepare and serve a non-immediate Article 4 Direction covering parts of the Heslington Conservation Area, in order to strengthen planning controls and preserve the historical features of buildings in this area. A map of the area to be covered was attached as Annex A to the report and a draft of the proposed Direction as Annex B.
Service of an Article 4 Direction for the area had been recommended by the Heslington Conservation Area Appraisal in 2009 and requested since 2015 by Heslington Parish Council, which had recently offered £3,000 to fund the preparation and implementation of a Direction. Of this, £2,000 would come from ward funding, £500 from the parish council and £500 from Heslington Village Trust.
The purpose of an Article 4 Direction was to restrict particular types of development in an area, by requiring planning permission for certain works to private dwellings that would otherwise be classed as permitted development. Full details were set out in the report. In Heslington, a recent inspection had indicated that a small number of harmful alterations, such as PVC windows and rooflights, were starting to pose a tangible threat to the historic character of the area and that further controls were warranted. In response to questions from Members, officers confirmed that:
· With regard to solar panels, only those on the front of properties would need planning permission; the council was preparing local guidance that would assist with appropriate locations and detailing for these and for double glazing.
· The Article 4 Direction was intended to protect non-listed historic buildings in the conservation area.
· A non-immediate direction would remove the risk of compensation and was not considered likely to accelerate developments by giving notice of impending controls.
· No funding was allocated for ongoing costs or enforcement of the Direction; however, other authorities’ experience indicated that it would not result in an increase in planning applications, with residents encouraged instead to ‘replace like with like’.
· The Direction would not apply to outbuildings.
After debate in the light of this additional information, and taking into account the representations under Public Participation, it was
Resolved: (i) That Executive be recommended to approve the proposal for the preparation and service of a non-immediate Article 4 Direction covering parts of the Heslington Conservation Area, as indicated on the map at Annex A to the report.
(ii) That an update be provided to the Executive meeting on the costs of implementing and enforcing the Direction.
(iii) That officers also provide further information on the number of properties affected by the Direction and how restrictions on solar panels could be mitigated.
(iv) That it be noted that some Members of the Working Group are concerned that the Direction would make the installation of solar panels on affected properties more difficult.
Reasons: (i) Due to the convincing justification for strengthening planning control in Heslington Conservation Area, local pressure to do so, and the availability ... view the full minutes text for item 4.