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Agenda item

Land to the South of Northminster Business Park, Harwood Road, Upper Poppleton, York [21/00796/FULM]

Erection of distribution facility (use class B8) including formation of vehicle access onto Glaisdale Road [Rural West York Ward]


Members considered a major full application from Northminster Properties Ltd for the Erection of distribution facility (use class B8) including formation of vehicle access onto Glaisdale Road on Land to the South of Northminster Business Park, Harwood Road, Upper Poppleton, York.


The Head of Development Services outlined the application and gave a presentation on it. She then gave an update noting the comments from planning policy, highways matters, climate change, changes to draft conditions, and a late objection from an interested party. The additional information had been assessed and the planning balance and recommendation were unchanged from the published report.


Officers then responded to Members questions, noting that:

·        They were satisfied that the conditions addressed concerns regarding congestion on the A59 and that application would not have a negative impact on neighbouring properties.

·        Condition 5 could be changed to the lifetime of the development.

·        There were conditions relating to safe pathways and cycleways.

·        The speed limit on the site was 10mph and 40mph on Northfield Lane.

·        The application did not achieve BREAMM.

·        There was a condition to protect existing trees and if these trees should die they would need to be replaced.


Public Speakers

Kathryn Jukes, Agent for the Applicant, spoke in support of the application. She explained that DPD had been looking for a new site for a number of years as their existing site at Clifton Moor was not suitable for electric vehicles. She added that this application would allow DPD to operate electric vehicles, deliver 125 jobs for the district and although it was not possible to achieve BREAMM excellent, carbon emissions would be reduced. She was then asked and answered Members’ questions:

·        The previous application was from Unipart, not DPD.

·        The removal of fuel vehicles within the city walls related to the size of vehicles used and deliveries to those properties would be by electric vehicles.

·        She explained the BREAMM scoring system and why it was not possible to achieve BREAMM excellent, adding that the site there would be electric vehicles, provision for photovoltaic panels and a rainwater harvesting tank.

·        DPD had depots all over the country and the York hub served a wider area including Scarborough, Hull and Harrogate,

·        It was the intention that undelivered parcels would be at that depot.

·        At present DPD were limited by the size of electric vehicles but as more vehicles become available, they would be used further outwards.

·        The DPD drivers had the same benefits as other employees.

·        An overview of the structure of the 125 new jobs was given.

·        No employees would be self employed.

·        Most deliveries to the depot would be during the day and there were different shift patterns.

·        The was van washing at the site and a noise assessment had been submitted. The drainage met the drainage requirements for this.

·        Two new conditions addressed residents collecting parcels from the depot.


Officers were then asked further clarification questions from Members to which they responded that:

·        The site was in the Green Belt and had been allocated employment land in the draft Local Plan. The NPPF very special circumstances was the need to support economic growth and productivity.

·        The previous planning application was still live.

·        There was a shared pedestrian/cycle route from the A59 to Northfield Lane and a 10mph limit on the Northminster bus park and ride.


Cllr Warters moved approval, seconded by Cllr Daubeney. Following debate a named vote was taken with the following result:

·        Cllrs Ayre, D’Agorne, Daubeney, Doughty, Douglas, Fenton, Hollyer, Kilbane, Looker, Warters, Waudby, and Fisher voted for the motion.

·        Cllr Lomas voted against the motion.



The motion was carried and it was


Resolved: That delegated authority to be given to the Head of Development Services to:


i.             refer the application to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government under the requirements of Section 77 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, and should the application not be called in by the Secretary of State, then APPROVE the application subject to


ii.            The conditions set out in this report with the Head of Development Services granted delegated powers to determine the final detail of the planning conditions.



                     i.        The application site is located within the general extent of the Green Belt and serves two Green Belt purposes.  As such it falls to be considered under paragraph 143 of the NPPF which states that inappropriate development is, by definition, harmful to the Green Belt and should not be approved except in very special circumstances. Very special circumstances will not exist unless the potential harm to the Green Belt by reason of inappropriateness, and any other harm, are clearly outweighed by other considerations. National planning policy dictates that substantial weight should be given to any harm to the Green Belt.  In addition to the harm to the Green Belt by reason of inappropriateness, the proposal would have a harmful effect on openness and would undermine two of the five Green Belt purposes. Substantial weight is attached to the harm that the proposal would cause to the Green Belt.


                    ii.        However, the proposed development would make a significant contribution to achieving one of the council’s main objectives which is to meet the city’s employment needs.  The proposal would also enable an existing company to remain within the district and to continue to grow.  These benefits are, in combination, considered to amount to very special circumstances’ that clearly outweigh the harm to the Green Belt due to inappropriateness, impact on the openness and conflict with the purposes of including land within it.


                  iii.        Approval is recommended subject to the referral of the application to the Secretary of State under The Town and Country Planning (Consultation) (England) Direction 2009 (application received before 21 April 2021) and the application not being called in by the Secretary of State for determination. The application is required to be referred to the Secretary of State as the development is considered to be inappropriate development in the Green Belt, and the proposed 3 no. buildings would create floor space (1116.22sq.m) which is in excess of the of the 1000 sq.m floor space threshold set out in the Direction.

Supporting documents:


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