Dear Fellow Residents
As requested by the Parish meeting on Tuesday, here is an article that gathers the latest thinking on how to, should you wish to, object to the Application for residential planning.
I believe that the overwhelming majority of the attendees to the Parish Council meeting felt that this Application is clearly an opportunistic and inappropriate attempt by the Applicant to create a windfall gain from Planning to the detriment of the future viability of our village Pub.
All anyone in the village wants is for the Pub to re-open, and I have not heard anyone say they think this Application will make it more likely.
I have collated and distilled various points, both from the meeting and from professionals. As far as I’m able I have satisfied myself they are valid, relevant and correct. If you wish to register your Objection, it’s quite simple. Please choose any points below to help you frame your response in your own words, but the advice is to keep comments succinct, and relevant to you. They only allow one comment per household. I suggest you pre-prepare your comments as it only allows 20 minutes before timing out!
Here's a link to Ian Johnson’s excellent guide to How To file online : https://goo.gl/Tn32AX Please act soon as your comments must be lodged by the end of this Thursday to be considered.
Bighton has had a Pub on this site since at least the 17th century. Policy CP6 (Local Services and Facilities) in Winchester’s Local Plan Part 1 seeks to retain and improve facilities available across the district, including pubs. The policy clearly states that development proposals should not threaten or result in the loss of premises or sites used to provide services and facilities unless it can be demonstrated that the site / premise is no longer needed to serve the locality. There are also similar statements in the National Planning framework about promoting the retention of local facilities in villages such as public houses.
The owner claims this scheme would make the Pub more viable as a business, but offers no evidence, and we are told he wishes to dispose of the site, therefore this could not be construed to be an enabling project. The Pub has been closed for nearly a year. How is its viability increased if the property is now reduced by approaching 40%? Loss of the attached open-fronted wooden building that provides sheltered seating and games for patrons (not a ‘modern carport’?), nearly half the garden including digging into the western bank, and reduced parking would dramatically impact the value and sustainability of the business.
The Pub is an attractive Grade 2 listed building in the centre of a suitable sized plot of pleasing symmetry. We believe the application would cause substantial harm to the setting.
Section 66 of the Planning Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas Act 1990 requires the Local Planning Authority (or Planning Inspector) to have special regard to the desirability of preserving the building or its setting. Paragraph 132 of the NPPF requires Local Planning Authorities to give great weight to the asset’s conservation. Significance can be harmed or lost through alteration or destruction of the heritage asset or development within its setting. Paragraph 133 of the NPPF states that local planning authorities should refuse consent where a proposed development will result in substantial harm.
Another ground for objecting would be that noise and smells from the pub may have a detrimental impact on the amenity of the occupiers of the new dwelling and could lead to the Environmental Health department of the Council issuing an abatement notice on the pub if they consider the noise/smell causes a public nuisance. If the Council consider that there is a public nuisance they have no discretion about whether to issue an abatement notice (unlike planning enforcement notices). There have been a number of cases, particularly in cities, where music venues which have existed for decades have been shut down because of the effect of the noise on residential properties that were constructed more recently.
The Pub is Grade 2 listed. The application would take approaching 40% of the property, including removing the attached wooden building to the east. Should the Listed status be taken into consideration?
There is an Asset of Community Value status on the Pub and its curtilage. The ACV Policy Statement says, ‘The fact that the site is listed may affect planning decisions – it is open to the Local Planning Authority to decide that listing as an asset of community value is a material consideration if an application for change of use is submitted, considering all the circumstances of the case’. We believe that this application would constitute change of use for a significant portion of the property.
The dwelling design has a number of issues, including but not limited to the west elevation looking directly over the Pub, and vice versa, with no privacy, and there are questions over the environmental impact of waste treatment and localised flooding.
The application offers 14 standard parking spaces, which we understand complies with the Highways recommendation. However we do not believe this would work in practice within the space available. The plan shows the 14 spaces, but artist drawings submitted do not show that a large piece of existing garden to the west would have to be dug out and banked to accommodate spaces 1-4. Unless the whole car park was levelled, tarmac’d and line-painted, free form parking would not result in 14 spaces ever being viable, especially with large numbers of locals driving 4x4s.
Thank you for reading this, and for your support. Remember, if you wish to lodge a comment, you must do so by the end of Thursday 8th March.