The new drastically-reduced-in-size Development Committee meets tomorrow evening at 7:30 . You can find the details here.
The main application is in Bullwood Hall Lane, Hockley. It is an outline application for the demolition of the prison complex building, conversion of Bullwood Hall to residential use and residential development , to provide up to 60 dwellings. 35% are to be affordable housing.
There is a long officers report with plenty of objections from local residents. The scheme is recommended for approval – one of the conditions is that there is 35% affordable housing.
News from the District Council about the big ” SW Hullbridge” application:
The Council has received notification from the applicant to confirm that, following a conversation with the Environment Agency, further fluvial modelling is required of the nearby watercourse. That being the case, the application will not be reported to a meeting of the Development Committee in September. When the modelling work is completed and assessed by the Environment Agency a date for the application to be determined by the Committee will be announced.
For anyone wondering exactly where the “Hullbridge” application is (it also includes a bit of Rawreth parish), here’s the official location plan:
It’s worth mentioning here a recent comment by Councillor John Mason:
I understand that ECC Highways as Statutory Consultee has Recommended as follows. Prior to first occupation, Highway works along the Lower road, Hullbridge Road and Rawreth Lane Corridor shall have been provided entirely at the Developer’s expense. This includes the: i) Provision of a ghost right hand turn at the junction of Watery lane / Lower Road with associated infrastructure . ii) Provision of a roundabout at the junction of Rawreth Lane and Hullbridge Road with associated infrastructure.
As Linda Kendall has mentioned in a comment today, the big housing application on the Hullbridge / Rawreth borders is NOT going to be dealt with on July 23rd. It is being delayed until a later date. This is apparently because the Gibraltar-based applicants want to work on some matters. Though some might think it would be better for it to go to committee as soon as possible , not to make a decision, but for the committee to look at what elements (if any) need improving, and then defer it for a full debate and decision on another night.
As to the “North of London Road” applications, we’re not sure of what’s happening with those either…
Keep your eyes peeled on this one. There could be more planning battles to fight…
From the District Council website:
Call for Sites (current stage)
The Council is looking to gather information from landowners and developers about land – particularly brownfield/previously developed land – that might be considered suitable for development (including residential, employment, retail and other uses) in the future through the Call for Sites. The Call for Sites is open from 22 June 2015 until 5pm on 28 September 2015.
The information attained through the Call for Sites will be assessed within the SHELAA and other evidence base documents and used to inform the preparation of the new Local Plan, should a need for additional land to be allocated be identified. It is not, however, guaranteed that any additional land will be required within the new Local Plan.
Even if a site has previously been put forward to the Council to be considered for allocation, the intention of the landowner or developer to continue to promote the site during the preparation of the new Local Plan should still be confirmed to the Council by responding to the Call for Sites.
If you would like to promote a site please complete and return the Site Information Form below along with an OS map of the site.
Additional supporting information / detailed site plans are not necessary at this stage. Only information submitted using the Site Information Form provided will be accepted.
Completed site information forms should be returned to the Council no later than 5pm on 28 September 2015:
by post: Planning Policy Team, Rochford District Council, South Street, Rochford, Essex. SS4 1BW
by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
by fax: 01702 318181
Back in 2010 we said that the District Council shouldn’t have continued so far in to the future with their Core Strategy:
Of course , once land is taken out of the Green Belt, it’s very hard to protect it again. Wouldn’t it better to let future councillors – in 2025 – make decisions on what housing is needed then rather than have councillors and council officers try to guess things now 15 or 20 years in advance?
Why is our council so keen to press ahead with all this?
So with the council having already allocated some unsuitable sites for development, we have two new planning applications to look forward to. One is at the old prison site at Bullwood Hall, mostly in Rayleigh but partly in Hockley. Harrow Estates are holding a public consultation session tomorrow at the Parish Hall (Upper Room) 58 Southend Road Hockley from 2 pm to 8 pm. There should be more info available after the event at Harrow Estates Website.
The other is for 100 new homes around the Timber Grove site off London Road Rayleigh.
This application shouldn’t be a surprise to coucnillors – there was an application in 2012 that was refused, but only on the chairman’s casting vote.
The submission from the Hullbridge Residents Association to the planning application on the Hullbridge/ Rawreth borders can now be found on the council website here.
It’s not a brief letter either, not even a long letter, its 46 pages long….
At tonight’s meeting of the Development Committee:
The outline application for 6 dwellings on the amenity space at Brocksford Avenue was refused by an overwhelming vote of councillors. Refusal was moved by Ian Ward and seconded by Heather Glynn. This pleased the public gallery, which was packed with concerned residents.
The application for 116 dwellings at the old Star Lane Brickworks in Great Wakering was passed – but only just. This is another one of the big sites that has come forward as part of the local plan. Chris Black and Ron Oatham moved refusal, saying that the application was contrary to our core strategy, because extra funding for the local primary school wasn’t being provided. We lost the refusal 11-9. Interestingly , none of the ward councillors supported our refusal. Cllr Mrs Wilkins voted against our refusal , Cllr Hookway was absent and Cllr Seagers declared an interest and quite properly left the chamber. A motion of approval was then moved and the scheme was passed 14-5
The District Council applied to itself for planning permission to install a banner in Bradley Way to advertise public events – and the committee refused this , on the grounds of it being a conservation area.
Slightly surprising comments in the Echo from Councillor Keith Hudson, bearing in mind that the Conservative Group has already voted to allocate enough housing to double the population of the parish of Rawreth, that also causes a merger with both Hullbridge and Rayleigh:
ROCHFORD Council fears overdevelopment in Wickford could lead to it merging with Rawreth. Major development is in store for Wickford over the next 17 years, which campaigners claim could change the face of the town forever.About 2,800 homes are planned by 2031 as part of Basildon Council’s local plan, with 760 homes to the south, 620 to the north-west, 220 on the western edge and 150 to the north-east. Rochford Council shares residents’ concerns claiming the influx of new homes – particularly plans for 150 properties north east of Wickford – will lead to the town becoming indistinguishable from neighbouring Rawreth.
The deadline for commenting on Countryside’s website is April 11th…
The minutes of the last full District Council Meeting are now on the council website.
All the four group leaders are quoted on the Allocations Document, which the Tories pushed through on the night:
The Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, Cllr C I Black, made reference to the Allocations Document needing to be seen in the context of the Council’s objectives and values, as set out on the second page of the meeting Agenda. The Rochford Core Strategy was the overall key document. The Allocations Document did not adequately address known issues associated with subjects such as flooding in Hullbridge and the Rayleigh Sports and Social Club. Community benefit aspects were relatively light in the context of what had been achieved with previous projects such as Sweyne Park and the Cherry Orchard Jubilee Country Park. As far as Cllr Black was aware, there had been no public meetings on the Allocations Document.
The Leader of the Rochford Residents Group, Cllr J R F Mason, referred to the Council having already given approval to over one thousand houses without an Allocations Document in place. The value of the Document was questionable and it could be argued that it would be appropriate for the Council to hold a face to face public forum to enable residents to have their questions answered, particularly in respect of concerns about flooding and District infrastructure. It would be inappropriate to adopt the Document if residents had material concerns.
The Leader of the Green Group, Cllr M Hoy, observed that addressing residents’ concerns should be seen as fundamental. Notwithstanding the Inspector’s Report, it was felt that appropriate weighting had not been given to some of the evidence and that the document in its current form did not serve the best interests of the District.
The Leader of the Council, Cllr T G Cutmore, quoted paragraph 7.1 of the officer’s report setting out the risk implications of failure to have an Allocations Document in place, which included the Council being vulnerable to planning applications for development on unsuitable sites and/or of an appropriate form. The intention was for development plans to be spread as evenly as possible throughout the District in a fair and equitable way. Public meetings had been held in many parts of the District.
On a show of hands it was:-
That the Allocations Document, as attached to the officer report, be adopted as a Development Plan Document. (HPT)
Note: Cllrs C I Black, Mrs D Hoy, M Hoy, C J Lumley, Mrs C M Mason and J R F Mason wished to be recorded as having voted against the above decision. Cllr Mrs A V Hale wished to be recorded as having abstained.
The District Council have displays in the Mill Hall for a few days and in our district’s libraries for at least the next two weeks. You can find the exhibition material here.
And the developers Countryside Properties are now showing what their ideas are
They say they will be holding 2 public exhibitions later this month and sending a newsletter to local residents.
They are also giving people a chance to register their comments with them online here.