onlineFOCUS – News and Stuff For Rochford District since 2003

 

Archive for Council Drama

An Uneasy Committee Meeting!

Last week’s Development Committee wasn’t as dramatic as the meeting last month, where the “North of London Road” application was refused. In fact at one stage it was very dull. But there were a lot of twists and turns, and a bit of bad feeling. Cllr Toby Mountain writes a report on it here.

In brief:
Tesco Car Parking application – approved
Tiny cafe in Hockley Woods – refused (even though it was an application by the council!)
Conversion of an outbuilding in Rayleigh Town Centre into a house – approved
Retrospective application to remove mechanical wheel cleansing equipment from the big site in Hawkwell – refused.

Goodbye June

blue rosette

We heard from our Lib Dem colleague June Lumley today that she is going to seek re-election to the District Council this year – but this time as a Conservative.

June has been both a District and Town councillor in Grange Ward for a long time, with a good reputation that has helped her survive repeated Conservative challenges. June has indeed been a dignified and serene chairman of the District Council this year.

If June had stood as an independent, that would not have been a surprise – June has been an independent on the Town Council for a long time. But standing for the Tories isn’t going to be easy- the Conservatives are pretty unpopular in West Rayleigh right now! Her switch is bound to be seen as an endorsement of the Tory District Core Strategy which may lead to all the proposed development North of London Road.

If she wins it will be interesting to see how she manages moving from the Lib Dems, where she has not been whipped, into a tightly-whipped Conservative Group.

For the local Lib Dems , this gives us the chance for more some vigorous campaigning and recruiting in Grange Ward. In a period of 10 years, we found 7 good candidates in Downhall and Rawreth to stand for us around Rayleigh. No new candidates came from Grange Ward.

The Council Chamber Last Night

Stevie Turner Council Chamber Photo

 

This was at the very start of the meeting, when district councillors were declaring if they were parish councillors as well…

Photo by Stevie Turner. Double click to enlarge (3.4 Mb)

 

 

 

REFUSED 23-10 …. Victory For Now

nolr plan

 

The application “North of London Road” was refused tonight by 23 votes to 10.

Chris Black and Ron Oatham moved refusal on the grounds of:

  • inadequate  flood risk assessment
  • highways (particularly lack of guarantees on improving the Hullbridge Road / Rawreth Lane junction
  • objection from Sport England regarding Sports Pitches
  • issues around secondary school places

The Echo had a live blog:

9:18pm

And with that, I shall end the blog.

For the full fallout of tonight’s decision, make sure to pick up a copy of the Echo on Monday.

9:17pm

The public, in their vast numbers, leave the council chamber with a spring in their step.

The application will no doubt be back in front on councillors with amendments, but for now the people of Rayleigh will be breathing a sigh of relief.

9:12pm

Linda Kendall, who has lost around £45,000 fighting this application, takes a bow as the public leave the chamber.

9:11pm

They’ve done it – the proposal is refused!

Twenty-three members voted with Mr Black, ten against.

Rapturous applause from the public.

9:07pm

Linda Kendall calls out from the gallery and sparks further angry jeers from the public.

Mr Capon brings about calm but if the public interrupt again I’m not sure he will be so understanding.

9:04pm

Committee chairman Phil Capon calls time for a vote.

9:03pm

Mr Scrutton again: “The flood risk assessment does not need to assess the Church Road flooding issue.”

Cue despairing laughter from the public.

9:00pm

Shaun Scrutton, head of planning for the council.

He said: “The fact of the matter is that the flood risk assessment meets necessary criteria and members would have trouble to pass a refusal on that ground.”

9:00pm

Sean Scrutton, head of planning for the council.

He said: “The fact of the matter is that the flood risk assessment meets necessary criteria and members would have trouble to pass a refusal on that ground.”

8:56pm

Mr Black sums up.

He said: “If we refuse this tonight and get a better flood risk, better road, more sports pitches then it might come back to the committee again.

“This application here tonight is not acceptable.

“The flood risk assessment does not recognise areas that houses have flooded, how can that be appropriate?

“I object due to a lack of highways planning, the Sport England objection and an inadequate flood risk assessment.”

8:53pm

We’re just going through a few questions from councillors now to clarify aspects.

The public have been very respectful so far and the meeting has gone without interruption.

8:51pm

Jo McPherson, Conservative: “This provision would provide 140 affordable homes, we have a need for 600 from the Rochford District at the minute – that should be known.”

8:49pm

Mr Burton again: “The people fo Rayleigh are intelligent.

“They are not against building, we have already tolerated building.

“If there is a site where building is the only option then I’m sure people would welcome it.”

8:47pm

Neil Hookway, UKIP councillor for Foulness and Great Wakering objects.

Keith Hudson, Conservative and former councillor for planning.

He said: “There are problems and they need to be addressed before development commences.

“One thing no-one has mentioned is that Rawreth Brook is tidelocked so in the event of a deluge, where does that water go?

“That is not for the developer to fund, but it is for the authorities to resolve.

“Partially within their remit is the roundabout in question – that needs to be forward funded.

“The developer has put forward around 25% of the cost.

“The junction is already ridiculous.

“Why would we wait for up to ten years for this roundabout to be sorted when it has already got worse in recent years.

“It needs to be forward funded, build the roundabout, and only then build the houses.”

8:42pm

Heather Glynn (Con), states her support for the plan.

She said: “We have not seen a plan come to us for a long time with so much green open space.”

8:39pm

Keith Gordon, Conservative councillor for Rochford.

He said: “I am amazed at some of the comments being made by some of the councillors here tonight who voted for an application in Rochford that makes this one pale into insignificance.

“I cannot go with what Mr Black states.”

:

8:33pm

Michael Hoy (Green): “It is not acceptable to rely on funding from a development in Hullbridge, that has not been before the council yet, to fund the roundabout at Hullbridge Road and Rawreth Lane.

“There is not room to expand at Sweyne Parkand I am worried a provision for education would go into the general pot, and not be spent on our area.”

Jamie Burton, UKIP: “This is a vast amount of land that was once arable green belt and this should not be lost forever.

“I see very little benefit that the plan will bring to Rayleigh.

“It should not be the case that education, traffic and flooding only get funding when a development is planned.

“The west of Rayleigh is not a dumping ground for new homes, traveller sites, golf courses or any other application the council cares to throw at us.

“Those that have officially objected is a significant and powerful group to ignore.”

John Hayter, UKIP leader on the council, also objects.

 

8:28pm

Toby Mountain, former Tory but now a member of Rochford District Residents, takes his turn.

He said: “£250,000 for a roundabout is quite laughable really.

“Also, what will happen to the allocated space for the school if Essex County Council do not need it – will it be turned into housing?

“The application should be refused.”

8:25pm

Chairman of the full council, June Lumley, another Lib Dem, speaks now.

“There will be no places in Rayleigh for the children to attend secondary schools unless either Sweyne Park of FitzWimarc are able to expand.

“Two other proposals will be coming before the council in the future which will also provide children for these schools, they cannot cope.”

8:23pm

Ron Oatham, fellow Lib Dem for Downhall and Rawreth, seconds Mr Black’s movement to object.

8:23pm

The reasons for objection from Mr Black (Lib Dem)

Objection from Sport England

Inadequate highways provision

Inadequate flood risk assessment

8:21pm

Mr Black continues: “The developers modelled flood area does not pick up the Church Road area in Rawreth and these people do and have flooded.

“They are real people that have not been considered.

“The flood risk assessment is unsatisfactory, so we can refuse the plan on flooding.

“Councillor Hudson mentioned to be today that the Rawreth Lane, Hullbridge Road, junction is the second worst junction in the district.

“There is no money for it and county highways will take forever to do anything.

“This should be refused tonight.”

8:17pm

That’s it for public speakers.

Councillor Chris Black, ward councillor for Downhall and Rawreth, goes first for members.

He said: “I was against this land being for housing and is no longer green belt so we cannot refuse it on those grounds.

“I will be moving refusal.

“There are eight different aspects to the plan.

“We are offered a possible site for a possible health centre, which may happen or it may not.

“There are concerns for school places from secondary level.

“I am genuinely fearful of all the screw ups that will happen if this is passed and the open spaces is run by a management company.

“Sport England also thinnk the sports pitch area should be bigger – the pitches are the smallest they can be.

“Sport England want to see adult pitches there, the Sports and Social Club also want a cricket pitch – not for kick arounds but for proper, organised sport.”

 

8:12pm

Mr Mitchell continues: “If approval were to be granted, first occupation would be late in 2016.

“This development accords to the council’s plan and is accompanied by the infrastructure required to support it.”

8:11pm

Ian Mitchell now speaks on behalf of the developer.

He said: “The application site is specifically allocated for residential use in the council’s allocations document.

“We are already within the window to which the allocated housing needs to be built [2015-2021].

“Our scheme goes further than the measures recommended by the Environment Agency.

“The transport impact has been fully considered by the county council and they have no objection to the proposals.”

Residents are now holding up signs saying “Silenced. Democracy UK 2015.”

8:07pm

Mark Francois, MP for Rayleigh and Wickford, is up now.

He said: “I wish to oppose this application.

“Having lived in the Rawreth Lane area for 15 years I know the area very well.

“The council have said development is only allowed is the necessary infrastructure is met.

“I believe is has not on two grounds, flood prevention and traffic.

“Flooding is an important and controversial issue.

“This site will create significant run off which will affect the drainage systems beyond the site itself.

“I asked the Environment Agency about Rawreth Brook in 2012.

“It is likely to be many years before work on Rawreth Brook is undertaked.

“The impact of 500 houses and 1,000 cars is obvious.

“The mini-roundabout at Hullbridge Road needs to be upgraded.

“To build a traditional roundabout would require £1million but the developer has only put forward £250,000.

“The plan for homes in Hullbridge offers no guarantee of funding for the upgrade of the roundabout either.

“The money for the junction is not guaranteed or funded.

“The infrastructure has not been provided.

“If the council is to be consistent I would urge them to turn it down.”

8:02pm

Mr Matthews gets a round of applause at the end of his five minutes but the chairman warns the public again.

Deborah Mercer, from Rayleigh Town Council, is next to speak.

She said: “Based on the information provided, the council objects as the proposed road access is inadequate and would have a detrimental effect on our residents.

“Of partiuclar concern is the impact the plan would have on the whole of Rayleigh, the surrounding roads and the people that use them.

“Further access roads, of already congested roads, would cause further congestion and have a detrimental effect of the whole town.

“It is widely known that the congestion the town experiences along these roads, prevents residents and visitors coming into the town.

“The economic stability of the town centre is already considered to be fragile.

“The town council believes that many improvements to the existing highways structure is needed before any development is begun.”

7:56pm

Mr Matthews continues: “Roads are not adequate to take current traffic movements, let alone new developments.

“East-West routes are at capacity, we all know this but it is ignored.

“Future gridlock is inevitable.”

7:55pm

The chairman of Rawreth Parish Council, Alistir Matthews, is now addressing the room.

He said: “We have three main concerns, flooding, access and loss of green belt.

“Rawreth has suffered increasingly from flooding in recent years.

“Smaller scale developments along Rawreth Lane has increased the flow along Rawreth Brook.

“Ditches have been badly maintained despite promises from developers and Anglian Water.

“Our residents below the site have very real concerns about flooding.”

7:52pm

Planning officers suggest the site would be acceptable regarding flood risk.

A sustainable urban drainage system would be put in place, as well as open ditches and storage ponds.

The developer has agreed a contribution of £200,000 to the district council for flood alleviation work in the Rawreth parish.

7:51pm

An extended bus service would be put in place, with two free bus passes given to each residence to encourage use of public transport and to ease congestion.

7:50pm

Submitted transport assessment showed the development would impact on the roundabout with Hullbridge Road, but only a small impact – cue laughter from the public.

7:49pm

Cycle ways, footpaths and woodland would be provided in the allocated green space.

There are three access points to the site, with one each from London Road and Rawreth Lane, and another into the Rawreth industrial estate.

7:48pm

The pitches would be two mini-football pitches, set out to Sport England guidelines, and would be put over to the district council for control.

7:47pm

The decision to build a school on the site would ultimately be taken by Essex County Council, but the developers, Countryside, would have to pay a proportion of the costs.

Alternatively, a financial contribution to educational provision would be needed if the school is not built.

7:46pm

A planning recommenration has been put forward to limit the homes to 500, with an average density of 35 dwelling per hectare.

A neighbouring estate already has a density of 45 per hectare.

7:44pm

The principle of residential dwellings at the site has already been accepted by the council thanks to their Allocations Document, which was voted through last year.

7:43pm

The site is mainly allocated for residential use (up to 500 homes) but there is non-residential use as well.

A day centre/care home/shops or restaurant could be possible.

There is also land allocated for a new school and sports pitches.

7:39pm

The site, north of London Road and south of Rawreth Lane, is currently green belt land and is adjacent to the Rayleigh Town Sports and Social Club.

7:38pm

Here we go, the reason we’re all here tonight is being explained by planning officers.

7:37pm

High profile campaigners against the Rayleigh homes on green belt land are out in force tonight.

Linda Kendall, leader of the Rayleigh Action Group, and Brian Carleton, chairman of the Hullbridge Residents Association, is also here, as is Peter Plummer, chairman of the Rawreth Flood Action Group.

7:35pm

We’re just going through declarations of interests at the minute, I expect this to get a bit lively.

Chairman Phil Capon has already read the rule book to the public, no heckling or jeering or the meeting will be closed to the public.

7:33pm

Good evening and welcome to the Echo’s live blog of the Rochford District Council development committee.

Tonight’s Council Meeting

It was reasonably lively but without any bad temper. Here’s a few points:

Council Chairman June Lumley was admirably frugal tonight. Most Council Chairman request a buffet with wine for councillors on the night of the December meeting. June didn’t do this, but did arrange refreshments to the public who attended the Civic Carol Service on Sunday, which raised about £245 for charity.

Green Party Leader Michael Hoy made the best point of the evening. The decision to offer free parking on 3 Saturday afternoons before Christmas was taken as “an urgent item” which couldn’t be challenged. Michael asked why the decision was taken so late in the year that it had to be an urgent item. “Didn’t the Council know Christmas was coming?” The answer given was that the council didn’t know it could afford this until quite late in the year. John Mason and Chris Black followed this up later with some forensic questioning , which revealed that the council knew in June it had about £60,000 available – the cost of 3 free Saturday afternoons was about £9,000. Chris Black asked for an earlier decision next year, which might allow an extra free afternoon, either earlier in December or just after Xmas.

UKIP leader John Hayter had a go at the adoption of the “Development Management Plan”: This is basically a new version of the council’s “Bible” of planning policies. Not the zoning of land for development, but all the other policies. Things like the design of new developments, housing density, infilling of gardens, phone masts, what is allowed in the Green Belt, green tourism, playing pitches and other leisure and recreational uses…. John criticised the document because of all the new development proposed in the district, but John Mason, Chris Black, and Michael Hoy pointed out that he was criticising the wrong document for that.

The Tories best part of the night was a report showing that the council’s financial situation was improving.

Ron Oatham made it clear his opinion of central government when John Mason asked whether a certain financial amount “was being lost back to central government, or worse?” Ron immediately called out “Could anything BE worse?”

Chris Black asked how many planning enforcement cases were currently ongoing – the answer was 362, just four less than last year. He asked what could be done to reduce this figure quicker, and was told they would soon have three members of staff again, instead of the current two.

An Extra Meeting…

The defection of Phil and Tracy Capon from the Tory Group has prompted an extra meeting of  Extraordinary Full Council next Thursday to verify committee places. It shouldn’t take long….

 

PS there is no public question time at extraordinary meetings….

BREAKING NEWS: Phil & Tracy Capon Quit Tory Group

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We understand that District councillors Phil and Tracy Capon have quit the Tory group today and gone independent.

That means we now have 25 Conservatives and a combined opposition of 14….

The Capons’ Greatest Moments

 

Phil and Tracy Capon are husband and wife, and both are currently  Conservative Councillors on Rochford District Council. In fact Phil is the Chair of the Development Committee. Word reached us at the weekend that they had both been deselected by the Conservative Association – so they cannot stand as Conservatives when they both come up for election next May.

This is pretty dramatic by Rochford standards – councillors are very  seldom deselected against their wishes, except on the grounds of old age, which doesn’t apply here. Might it possibly be that they can’t manage to slavishly follow the party line? Here’s a  few things we have written -on onlineFOCUS over the years:

 

September 12th, 2014 |

An Admirable Attitude

Rochford Life has a short interview with Hawkwell Tory District Councillor Phil Capon. Phil is Chair of the Development Committee – the one that deals with planning applications. He makes some good points, for example:


I’ve always believed that if you are going to be on the Council you should be open to all views and be open to change. It’s what I don’t like about party politics where it tends to be go with the prevailing view rather than think through alternative possibilities that may be good from other parties.

July 27th, 2014 |

The Ones Who Signed – And The Ones Who Didn’t

These are the 20 Conservative Councillors who signed the motion to abolish ordinary councillors’ rights to call in a decision to full council:

Cllrs T G Cutmore; Mrs C E Roe;
K H Hudson; D Merrick; I H Ward; M R Carter; M J Steptoe; Mrs L A Butcher;
Mrs M H Spencer; Mrs G A Lucas-Gill; Mrs J E McPherson; M Maddocks;
C G Seagers; K J Gordon; S P Smith; Mrs A V Hale; Mrs C A Weston;
R R Dray; Mrs J A Mockford and B T Hazlewood:-

and these 7 are the ones who haven’t signed:

Phil Capon
Tracy Capon
Heather Glynn
John Griffin
Jack Lawmon
Dave Sperring
Barbara Wilkins

June 20th, 2009 |

A Very Important Principle

At the last meeting of the Standards Committee, there was an item on updating the Councillors Code of Conduct On Planning Matters.

You can find the full officers report here. Chris Black noticed that something quite startling was being suggested by officers:

Members should copy and pass on any lobbying material, such as correspondence or leaflets they receive, to the Head of Planning and Transportation.


This would have meant that if anyone wrote to a councillor about any planning issue, the councillor would have been required to pass a copy on to the Head of Planning – Shaun Scrutton – or otherwise face disciplinary action!

Chris strongly opposed this. One reason is that it would destroy any privacy between councillors and members of the public. (What would be next? Tapping councillors’ phones? ) The other is that it wasn’t practical. On a really contentious planning application, 20 people might write to each councillor. That means that Mr Scrutton would have to receive nearly 800 copies of letters!

Thankfully, other members of the committee supported Chris on this – in particular, Cllr Phil Capon. And the sentence was changed to something reasonable:


‘Members should consider whether it is appropriate to copy and pass on any lobbying material, such as correspondence or leaflets they receive, to the Head of Planning and Transportation’.

 

October 10th, 2006 |

“Vote for Parent and Child places? – We’ll throw you out of the Tory Group”

At tonight’s District Council Committee meeting we had the debate on whether to allow some Parent and Child bays in our Council Car Parks.

As we wrote a few days ago, the officers were recommending… doing nothing. Apparently there are some spaces that could be widened into Parent and Child spaces, but it would cost an estimated £500 per space (!) to adjust them, and then it might be a problem that they might be left empty when they could be occupied by non-parents.

However the item was up for debate by councillors. The committee has 9 Tories (2 of them didn’t turn up), 1 independent (who didn’t turn up) and 1 Lib Dem (Chris Black.) When the chairman of the committee, Tory Phil Capon , began speaking, it looked like we would get some spaces agreed:

“Since becoming a father my eyes have been opened to the many issues and problems that the parents and carers of children face. I can appreciate what my residents have been telling me for some time.

To return to your car and find you are unable to get your child back in his or her car seat due to the thoughtlessness of others is potentially dangerous and annoying.

I don’t advocate the loss of parking bays but merely that end bays should be designated ‘parent and child”

We continually hear that we must prevent the High Streets from dying and that ‘out of town’ shopping centres are luring people away. This is true – they appreciate the problems and offer suitable parking bays.

We can not only show our commttment to child safety but also that we support local businesses.”

Chris Black felt quite good at this point as he was on balance in favour of the idea and it looked like it was going to happen. BUT THEN – a sombre Cllr Capon continued to speak:

 

Sadly members, my dream is not to be. Due to the blinkered views of other members, who I can only assume care nothing for the wellbeing of children and who don’t want local shopping centres to survive, a wonderful chance is being lost.

The “whip” is on, I cannot vote against it otherwise I lose my right to represent ny residents. Morally , I cannot vote for the recommendation so I will abstain”

The situation became clear. Cllrs Phil and Tracy Capon had raised the item in the private Tory group meeting. They’d lost out in a vote to the Tory ‘dinosaurs’ . Then the Tory leadership had enforced a whip, so that if Phil Capon voted for Parent and Child parking bays, he’d be thrown out of the Tory group.

After Phil Capon spoke, there was an embarassed silence. Chris jumped in and proposed allowing some Parent and Child parking spaces but didn’t get a seconder. So Tory leader Terry Cutmore proposed having no Parent and Child Bays and Cllr Tony Humphries seconded that.

Chris then scornfully said that in his 20+ years on the council he’d never seen any political party impose a whip on such a small item. He was very disappointed with the Tory group’s behaviour.

The voting was:

No Parent and Child Bays : 5 Cllrs Terry Cutmore, Tony Humphries, John Pullen, Mavis Webster and David Merrick (all Tories)

Abtaining : 2 Cllrs Phil Capon and Colin Hungate (both Tories)

For Parent and Child Bays: 1 Cllr Chris Black (Lib Dem)

A big mistake by the Tory leadership tonight. If they’d let Phil Capon vote with his conscience, the issue would have been over in 5 minutes. But now it won’t be forgotten so quickly, and it shows them in a bad light.

Tory Whip Wins the Votes

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It was a long and frustrating evening in the Council Chamber tonight. The Tories won all the key votes – but by a narrower margin than they would have liked:

Chris Black proposed keeping firm minimum standards for the sizes of new flats and houses – vote was lost 17-12.

Toby Mountain proposed cancelling the increases in car parking charges – vote was lost 19 -11. So car parking charges are still going up, though Saturday afternoons stay free.

Tory Leader Terry Cutmore proposed abolishing the right of any 3 councillors to refer a cabinet member decision to Full Council – this was passed 20 -11. A sad day for local democracy.

Tuesday Night’s Questions And Call-Ins

There ‘s a lot happening at the council on Tuesday night. You can download the agenda from here, but here’s the public questions and the call-ins:

First of all , two questions from members of the public:

 

1 QUESTIONS BY THE PUBLIC

1.1 the following question has been received from Mr J E Cripps of 5 Durham Way,
Rayleigh, Essex of the Deputy Leader of the Council, Cllr K H Hudson:-
‘On the 21st September 2013 Cllr Hudson issued an open letter making
various personal pledges in respect of the Local Development Framework-
Rayleigh & Rawreth. My question relates to the following “quoted”
statement:-
“To facilitate this it will be necessary to relocate the Rayleigh Sports and
Social Club (a valued facility for our residents), they will receive new and
enhanced facilities in recognition of their contribution to Rayleigh life at no
cost to themselves – this is my pledge.”
Recently the Leader of the Council (Cllr Cutmore) has announced, via the
letters page of the Evening Echo, that there will not be any new and enhanced
facilities for RTSSC.
My question is, therefore, at what Council meeting was this discussed/agreed
and recorded.’

1.1 the following question has been received from Mr R Lambourne of 7 Whitehouse
Court, 158 Eastwood Road, Rayleigh, Essex of the Leader of the Council,
Cllr T G Cutmore:-
‘I note from the latest edition of Rochford District Matters that the Council has
employed a barrister to defend an action by a local resident concerning the
Core Strategy and Allocation Plan.
Can you confirm who authorised the defence of this action and in particular
the considerable extra expense that is presumably budgeted for and will be
paid for out of the council tax and why that authorisation hasn’t been
sanctioned by the Full Council?’


And here are the four call-ins to council by the opposition. If the Tories get their way, this will be the last time anything can be called in to council!  The first is an item regarding open spaces taht will be dealt with in private because it has been deemed confidential. The second and third are from UKIP. The fourth is a last-minute one regarding planning policies on density of housing developments, floorspaces etc.

 

REFERRAL OF DECISIONS TO COUNCIL

1 Draft Open Spaces Strategy
1.1 Pursuant to Overview and Scrutiny Procedure Rule 15(b) a requisition has
been received in the names of Cllrs C I Black, M Hoy, J R F Mason and R A
Oatham requiring that the decision under Minute 74 (Draft Open Spaces
Strategy) of the meeting of the Executive held on 2 April 2014 be referred to
Full Council.
Note: The report in relation to this decision was exempt, so this referral will
need to be considered following exclusion of the public and press and is
picked up at Item 18 of the Council agenda.

2 Collections Support Officer
2.1  a requisition has been received in the names of Cllrs J Hayter, J C Burton and N J Hookway
requiring that the Portfolio Holder decision on the post of Collections Support
Officer be referred to Full Council.
2.2 A copy of the decision and associated report is set out at Appendix A.
2.3 The reasons given for referral are that the further work envisaged could be
carried out more economically and reasonably by the existing workforce, in
particular without putting at risk £11,650. Further, as there is £11,650
available in case of no additional income, surely this money could be made
available to support our sorely neglected front line services. These include
the proper care and management of our parks and open spaces, the locking
of our park gates to reduce crime, and the Rayleigh car parking fees issue.

3 Essex County Council Call for Waste Sites Submission
3.1  a requisition has been received in the names of Cllrs J Hayter, J C Burton and N J Hookway
requiring that the Portfolio Holder Decision on a waste sites submission be
referred to Full Council.
3.2 A copy of the Decision and associated report is set out at Appendix B
3.3 The reasons given for referral are that this will not be a fair and equitable
service for the people who live in the East of Rochford District, and may
encourage fly tipping. The Council should consider the following options:-
(1) Two sites, one at Michelins Farm and one at the Eastern end of the
Rochford District.
(2) Accept the Michelins Farm Site for the Rochford District but re-instate
the concession at Stock Road, Southend for Rochford District Eastern
Residents.
COUNCIL – 29 July 2014 Item 8
8.2
(3) Provide one centrally located waste site in the Rochford District
accessible to all Rochford District Residents.

Development Management Plan Examination – Proposed Schedule of
Modifications to Development Management Submission Document
a requisition has been received in the names of Cllrs C I Black, T E Mountain and R A Oatham
requiring that the Portfolio Holder Decision on approval of the Proposed
Schedule of Modifications to Development Management Submission
Document (April 2013).
1.2 A copy of the decision and associated report is set out in Appendix A.
1.3 The reason given for referral is to allow the Full Council to discuss, amongst
other items:-
Ref MM4 “The density across a site should be a minimum of 30 dwellings per
hectare, unless exceptional circumstances can be satisfactorily demonstrated”
Ref MM9 “New dwellings (both market and affordable housing) must adhere
to the minimum habitable floorspace standards set out in Table 3, unless it
can be clearly demonstrated to be unviable or undeliverable.”
Ref MM56 – “Regarding non-retail uses in primary shopping frontages.”

 

Crunch Vote On Car Parking On July 1st !

Chris Stanley collecting names for the petition to keep free Staturday afternoon car parking.

Chris Stanley collecting names for a petition to keep free Saturday afternoon car parking.

We have the final vote on car parking charges at an extraordinary council meeting on July 1st. There’s a very good chance that we can win the vote to keep free car parking on Saturday afternoons. Though probably the other increases in charges will go through.

You can find the agenda here.

The officers report is signed by Shaun Scrutton as Head of Planning and Transportation , rather than someone on the finance side of things. Here’s some extracts:

DISCUSSION – SATURDAY AFTERNOON CHARGES
5.1 The proposal to reintroduce charges on Saturday afternoons resulted in the
greatest number of objections to the proposed Parking Order, with the
concerns primarily focussing on the car parks in Rayleigh.
5.2 Of most concern to objectors was the possible impact of Saturday afternoon
charges on trading in the town centres and that being the case, Members will
need to determine whether this element of the proposed Parking Order should
be retained

10 RECOMMENDATION
10.1 It is proposed that Council RESOLVES
(1) To agree the revisions to the tariff change for Blue Badge holders, and
the introduction of a one hour concession beyond the expiry time
printed on their ticket.
(2) Determine whether to introduce car parking charges on Saturday
afternoons.
EXTRAORDINARY COUNCIL – 1 July 2014 Item 4
4.4
(3) To agree all the remaining proposed changes to the Parking Order
including the tariff revisions and adjustment to the charging period in
Old Ship Lane, Rochford.

Interestingly, the officers’ recommendation is to agree to all the increases and changes proposed EXCEPT for charging on Saturday afternoons. The recommendation on this is merely to make a decision…. so there is no pressure from council officers to start charging on Saturday afternoons.

It would be good to have some people in the public gallery for this one… could be an interesting night. The meeting starts at 7:30 pm at the Civic Suite in Rayleigh.

Politics And The Highways Panel

Independent Tory Toby Mountain writes on his blog about the selection of the Local Highways Panel for the new civic year. He’s pretty scathing…

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Daily Reporting by Chris Black

With support from:
Ron Oatham Ron Oatham Bruce Smart Bruce Smart Chris Stanley Chris Stanley
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Latest Comments

  • Chris Black: Geoff , I spoke to County Highways yesterday, the junction has been inspected, and its on the list to be...
  • Christine Paine: I would like to wish all the non Tory candidates the very best of luck in the election. If they take...
  • Christine Paine: Janet, I saw the queue of traffic Saturday and decided to go London Road way. London Road/Crown Hill...
  • David Montgomery: The car that Clive is sitting in in the photo above has a Buckler DD2 chassis.
  • Janet Warner: AND AGAIN! On Saturday it took me the best part of half an hour to get from the Carpenters Arms...
  • Ruth Keetch: I love Rayleigh Mount…jus t taken my 7 yr old son there and told him that this “used to be...
  • Oz the Positive: A little bit of light relief, how about from the High Street down Crown Hill to Rayleigh...
  • admin: Hi Jim, yes I saw that and was going to link to it today. Will do so later on after Ron and I done our...
  • Jim Cripps: The Echo has been running a piece on the recent ( recurring ) local Highway problems for the last week or...
  • admin: Good point Geoff, as you know we reported it in February, I will make a phone call on Monday…
  • Geoff: If there is any paint left any chance of marking the junction at Harbets Way/ Downhall Park Way ?, I will send...
  • Oz the Positive: Folks, as we all just can’t get enough of the election this is a useful site ( from the BBC )...
  • Ron Oatham: The email detailing the changes went to Rawreth Parish council, not Rayleigh Town Council and to Stephen...
  • Ron Oatham: I note the bit about “maximisi ng the efficient use of brownfield opportunities&# 8221; Is that why...
  • Jim Cripps: This seems at odds with the Royal Town Planning Institute’ ;s rose coloured view in the item listed...
  • Chris Black: Oz, I’m grateful for your concern, but things are OK. Besides – and this shows that some...
  • Oz the Caring...: Chris, I can only echo James’s post @ 13. I have not met anybody that does not value the work...
  • Christine Paine: If they are among the best I hate to think what he worst are like
  • Jim Cripps: A truly stunning manipulation of the facts – you have to admire their ability to talk it up and get...
  • James Newport: Chris, you’re an excellent councillor and have my upmost respect, but seriously save your money...
  • James Newport: It’s not April fools is it?
  • admin: :)
  • Steve Tellis: I would certainly agree that Kingley Wood and adjacent parkland is a beautiful open leisure area. There...
  • Jim Cripps: Admin – I assure you it has’nt been forgotten , we have four teams of three people , each...
  • John Mason: RAG have a large team of residents working on the four main reasons for refusal just in case that The...
  • Chris Black: It’s important that we don’t forget about this appeal just because there’s an election...
  • Chris Black: Christine, I’m not sure how one defines ‘serious& #8217; here. Certainly Mike is capable of...
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  • admin: Christine, yes if Mike overturned Mark Francois’ 22,338 majority at the last election and won he would...
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500 HOUSES BETWEEN LONDON ROAD AND RAWRETH LANE

There's lots of information on the District Council website about the planning application "North of London Road ". To see it , just click here.

The Core Strategy

This is the official master document for planning policy in our district! To download it, click here click here. (2.5mb)

Planning Applications…

If you want information on a particular planning application, you can find it on the District Council website here.

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There's also an independent website called FixMyStreet. It's very good for reporting minor street problems like holes in the road, grafitti or failed streetlights. You can find FixMyStreet here.

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“Rayleigh was the birthplace of Britain’s first surviving quintuplets, but that’s just one of its many claims to fame”

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