Agenda item

2023/1037 Sheerwater Estate


The Committee considered an application for the Section 73 application to vary Condition 4 (approved plans - relating only to the NIA plan for Parcel B (Phase Red) to alter the affordable/market housing split for Phase Red only) of planning permission PLAN/2018/0337 for the redevelopment of the Sheerwater Estate (please see PLAN/2018/0337 for the original description).


Following a question, the Planning Officer clarified that the one-bedroom specialist units were similar to sheltered housing, however, these were not restricted by age. These were specialist accommodation with an element of care.


Some Members of the Committee did not like the proposal, although understood why it was being changed. Some thought that the affordable housing numbers quoted were misleading, as the properties that were boarded up would not be ready for occupation for some time. There was also concern that it was the larger affordable homes that were being removed from the plan. The Planning Officer explained that the proposal changed thirty-nine units, only one of these was a larger three-bedroom unit, eighteen were two-bedroom units and twenty were one-bedroom units. Sheerwater was a priority place and therefore in terms of affordable housing is dealt with slightly differently by the local planning policies, however there would be no net loss in affordable housing on site.


Some Members were concerned that the larger numbers of one-bedroom properties would lead to a community of only single people or those in care. Planning Officers explained that the units were one-bedroom specialist properties and could be occupied by more than 1 person as planning conditions would not restrict the units to be occupied by only 1 person. The occupancy of these units is restricted by planning condition.


Beverley Kuchar, Strategic Director Place, advised the Committee that there was clear policy that this application should be assessed against and that if Members were to go against this, there were no planning policy grounds to reject this on. Although Planning Officers understood Members concerns, the extant permission on this site had not changed and the Committee should have due regard to the Local Plan. That said, the Committee were also free to reach their own conclusion.


Following a comment regarding the boarded up properties, the Chairman commented that the report considered by Council the previous week detailed that there was HRA money allocated to bring these properties back into use.


In accordance with the Standing Order set out in the Constitution, the Chairman deemed that a division should be taken on the recommendation to approve the application.  The votes for and against refusal of the application were recorded as follows.


In favour:                           Cllrs G Cosnahan, S Greentree, C Martin and T Spenser.

                                 TOTAL:  4

Against:                              Cllrs T Aziz, S Dorsett, D Jordan and S Oades.

                                 TOTAL:  4

Present but not voting:      Cllr L Morales (Chairman)

                                 TOTAL:  1

The application was therefore not approved.


Due to the equality of votes in favour and against approval of this application, the Chairman exercised a second and casting vote in accordance with standing orders to approve the application.


RESOLVED that planning permission be GRANTED subject to:


a)    the prior completion of a S106 Legal Agreement/Deed of Variation to vary the existing legal agreements in accordance with the changes approved as part of this application/report; and


b)    the prior completion of an Executive Undertaking to vary the existing Executive Undertakings in accordance with the changes approved as part of this application/report; and


c). Subject to conditions (and any minor amendments to those conditions).


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