Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee
Wednesday, 18th December, 2019 6.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber. View directions

Contact: Liz Hornby 

No. Item


Minutes of the Previous Meeting

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee held on 13 November 2019 (attached).

Supporting documents:


RESOLVED: That the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 13 November 2019 be approved as a true record and signed by the Chairman, subject to the following amendment:


Planning Application Number 18/06215/FUL: that the Committee was addressed by Councillor R Scott the local Ward Member and Councillor N Marshall, a neighbouring Ward Member.


Declarations of Interest

To receive any disclosure of disclosable pecuniary interests by Members relating to items on the agenda. If any Member is uncertain as to whether an interest should be disclosed, he or she is asked if possible to contact the District Solicitor prior to the meeting.

Members are reminded that if they are declaring an interest, they should state the nature of that interest whether or not they are required to withdraw from the meeting.


There were no declarations of interest.


Planning Applications


RESOLVED: that the reports be received and the recommendations contained in the reports, as amended by the update sheet where appropriate, be adopted, subject to any deletions, updates or alterations set out in the minutes below.


19/05142/FUL - Castlefield Development Area, Chairborough Road, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire

Supporting documents:


Members noted the Update and the amendment to the recommendation. The Planning Committee were minded to grant planning permission, and subject to:


a detailed concept drawing (including details of levels, means of enclosure, retaining structures, pathways, provisions for people with ambulant disability, hard and soft landscaping, sustainable urban drainage features, locations of play areas and a classification of the spaces as private spaces, spaces available to the residents only and public open spaces) for the central space on the northern site being submitted including an indication of how the 25% canopy cover policy would be achieved for the entire site given the concept contained in the detailed central space plan. The plan would form the guide to drawing up the details required to be approved by planning condition.


Members voted in favour of the motion that the Head of Planning and Sustainability be given delegated authority to grant Conditional Permission, provided that appropriate details had been submitted and a Planning Obligation was first made to secure


(a)  Affordable housing;

(b)  Management and maintenance and of the open space and sustainable urban drainage features at the site


or to refuse the application if either such appropriate details were not provided or the Planning Obligation was not made.


RESOLVED: that the application be delegated to the Head of Planning and Sustainability for the reasons outlined above.


The Committee was addressed by Mr A L Khan in objection and Mr Steve Brooks (Arcus) on behalf of the applicant.


Pre-Planning Committee Training / Information Session

Supporting documents:


Members noted that a provisional presentation regarding Land East of Clay Lane and North of Clay Hill, Clay Lane, Booker proposed residential development by Bovis Homes had been booked for the next Pre-Planning Committee training / Information Session on Wednesday 15 January 2020 at 6.00pm


RESOLVED: That the details of the pre-Committee information / training session to be held on 15 January 2020 be noted.


Appointment of Members for Site Visits

To appoint Members to undertake site visits on Tuesday 14 January 2020 should the need arise.


RESOLVED: That in the event that it was necessary to arrange site visits on Tuesday 14 January 2020 in respect of the agenda for the meeting on Wednesday 15 January 2020, the following Members be invited to attend with the relevant local Members:


Councillors: Mrs J A Adey, S Graham, D A Johncock, N B Marshall, H L McCarthy, N J B Teesdale and A Turner.


Delegated Action Undertaken by Planning Enforcement Team

Supporting documents:


Members noted the Delegated Actions undertaken by the Planning Enforcement Team.


File on Actions Taken under Delegated Authority

Submission of the file of actions taken under delegated powers since the previous meeting.


The file on actions taken under delegated authority since the previous meeting was circulated for the Committee’s attention.


Urgent Item: Public Speaking


The Chairman had been briefed by officers in respect of this Urgent Item regarding Public Speaking. The inclusion of which he had agreed to.


He outlined that when the system of public speaking had been set up, in January 1997, the main objective had been to redress the imbalance that many saw between the rights of applicants and the rights of third parties.


In the case of an aggrieved applicant there was a right of appeal to an independent body, the Planning Inspectorate.  On the other hand the third party objecting to the grant of a planning application had nowhere to go once a decision has been made locally.


For this reason Wycombe District Council’s scheme had been devised to give an opportunity to third parties, objecting to applications, the right to summarise their concerns before the Planning Committee, with the applicant having the right to reply.


To focus public speaking on the cases where it matters most, and reduce the time taken by public speaking, it only applied to those applications considered by the Planning Committee which:


·         were being recommended for approval, and,

·         where written objections had been received. 


This meant that where proposals were being recommended for refusal, and members in weighing and balancing the issues were minded to approve the proposal it had to be brought back to Committee to allow public speaking.  At this point the Committee were already minded to approve and it appeared to the objectors that the matter has already been decided.


This was happening more often than before and so it was therefore proposed to exercise powers his powers to suspend normal public speaking arrangements for the remainder of the life of the Council and to invite public speaking whether the application was recommended for approval or refusal if objections had been received.


Councillor Johncock proposed that these changes to public speaking be agreed and Councillor Whitehead seconded them.


RESOLVED: That the Chairman of Planning Committee exercises his powers to suspend normal public speaking arrangements for the remainder of the life of this Council, to invite public speaking whether the application is recommended for approval or refusal if objections have been received.


Closing Remarks


The Chairman permitted a Member to outline the contribution made to the work of the Planning Committee of Councillor Tony Lee over a considerable number of years; Councillor Lee was no longer sitting on the Committee due to his recent resignation from the Majority Group.