Update on Planning Inquiry for Application 20171386 – 6-10-2020
Progress at the Quantum Land Planning Inquiry so far (Planning Application 20171386 Land east of Brundall Memorial Hall – application was previously refused 10-7-2019 at Broadland Planning Committee). The Inquiry began last Tuesday and from then on covered going over the policies that Broadland (BDC) cited had not met the criteria for approving the application. The main bones of contention were: Heritage issues – the view to Blofield Church and the value that should be placed upon it from the application site Landscape issues – does the application fall foul of issues surrounding the impact of the application upon the Landscape 5 year housing land supply BRU3 – Local Plan policy under the JCS (Joint Core Strategy). The Chairman of Brundall Parish Council delivered his Summary to the Inquiry. This can be found on Broadland’s Planning portal amongst the other Appeal documentation. See below link (copy and paste to browser):
Comments and questions from members of the public, Brundall Parish Council, the Clerk to the Council as well as Brundall Future representatives were mainly about the Heritage, Landscape and Road (roundabout) issues. Other members of the public watched the proceedings. Early on there was an opportunity for Ian Roberts Highways agent for QL to try to defend the report and suggested amendments to the roundabout.
Two days were spent on what they call round table discussions on Heritage, Landscape and the 5yHLS. From the discussions the Heritage issue was conceded by Broadland. There was also much discussion and disagreement about interpretation of policy regarding Brundall being a sustainable site. Broadland Planners were arguing that the reason the application should be refused is that there are more sustainable sites to approve.
QL pointed out that Broadland Planning had allowed 3 Brundall housing developments to be approved subsequent to the 2009 site allocations, stating that Brundall should only have 50 houses. However, there is a further 2000 houses to call upon if a village is in the Norwich Policy Area (NPA), which Brundall and Blofield are as they are Key Service Centres. QL argued that, in allowing the Pastures, Berryfields and the Mallards developments, which were outside the settlement limit and having surpassed the 50 houses limit (even though when they were approved BDC did not have a 5yHLS) there would have been a presumption in favour of development.
It was pointed out that if this application is approved the village will have seen 10 times the amount of houses delivered from the original planned in 50 houses. There was a lot of scrutiny about the 5-year housing land supply sites that featured in QL’s 5yHLS document, where QL had produced a table of 48 sites in the S Norfolk, Broadland and Norwich area which contribute to the 5yHLS that QL claimed should not have been counted in. Therefore, the Inspector had to hear about each and every site in dispute so that took up a lot of time. There were cross examinations of Broadland’s Planning Officer, Charles Judson. Yesterday there was the cross examination of QL’s expert witness Robin Meakins of Barton Willmore.
Turning to the issues surrounding the recreational contribution of the Country Park and Sports park with a commuted sum to develop and maintain the site, this cropped up quite often. QL maintain the offer is above and beyond what they are required to contribute. Their contribution had been raised from £850,000 to £900,000 to be split 50/50 between the Country Park (Run dike) and the Sports Park (3 Ha field) in order to mitigate the impact of the loss of the 1.9H to housing which should be used for recreation. Broadland’s solicitor did raise the points she should raise about the need for more formal recreation. She also mentioned that the attenuation ponds were not much use or desirable in a “Country Park”. Also the question was raised as to how flexible the commuted sum would be, but it would not be allowed to use any unspent sums in the Country Park to be transferred for use in the Sports Park and so if facilities were to be developed by the potential owner of the 3Ha site, for example, the owner would have to find funding above the £425K on offer.
Today the Inspector is visiting Brundall to see the site and assess it in person. Tomorrow she is summing up and will then issue letters to all parties involved with her decision.
The Council has been formulating a solid plan for a central village area which will provide facilities that fit with its Local Plan status. Please see the below plan which it hopes it will be able to achieve:Feasibility options 7c_2020-05-19