Planning Board refuses planning permission for West Road

5 07 2011

The Planning Regulatory Board met this afternoon in the central library. The second-fourth items on the agenda were the three applications for outline permission to develop some of West Road as a mixed-use site.

The meeting took place in the lecture theatre, with the chair and officers on the platform, the members of the board in a u-shaped arrangement below the platform, looking at plans appearing on a large projector screen. The public area at the back of the room was packed, with approximately 40 people, who were there to watch the progress of three different applications.

When the West Road applications were heard, Vicky Simpson spoke first, followed by a resident who supported her applications. After this Joe Jenkinson, from Planning, presented the case against the applications, making the points outlined in the officer’s report. Several councillors then raised matters relating to the plans.

When a vote was called for, two councillors abstained, with the rest voting to refuse the applications.

Most of the points discussed were quite technical and not particularly easy to follow. However, in conclusion, the Board felt that proposals to develop the south side of West Road for housing/mixed uses should not be considered prior to the adoption of the Sites & Places Development Plan Document, which forms part of the newly-introduced Local Development Framework. The Sites & Places document will take a fresh look at which sites should allocated for employment and which should be made available for housing. The timetable for introducing this is: approval by the council cabinet in the Autumn followed by consultation after that. Many of us will be interested to read, and comment on, this plan. And many of us will be interested to find out how we influence what the plan says for the south side of West Road.


West Rd Planning applications – Planner’s recommend refusal

29 06 2011

The planning applications for West Road go before the Planning Regulatory Board next Tuesday.  The planning officer’s recommendations have been made public today.  As suggested on this website on Sunday, by a Pogmoor resident, the recommendation to the Board is to refuse permission for this outline planning application.

The previous application, for a gypsy site, attracted 200+ objections from local people.  Interestingly, this time, local opinion was not against the applications in principle.  Eighteen residents wrote letters of support for the scheme and just two objections were received.

The reasons given for recommending refusal are as follows:

  1. Employment land – Barnsley Council’s core strategy calls for 350ha of employment land, with 130-155ha in urban Barnsley.  This site fails the criteria for change of use from employment land to mixed-use.  This is because it is judged that it will result in job losses from adjacent land (due to restrictions on it caused by having housing nearby) and because there is already a lack of employment land locally.
  2. Piecemeal development – The applicant would have been better advised to have submitted one overall plan rather than three separate plans.  There is concern that the overall plan might not come to fruition.  Furthermore, there is no precident for the piecemeal re-development of a wider employment area. However, the applicant has been advised to seek re=designation of the whole of this side of West Rd as residential when the new Sites and Places Development Strategy is adopted by the council.
  3. Suitability for employment use – The applicant argues that this site can no longer support employment use.  The officer disagrees, stating that this is a prime location between the town centre and the motorway.  Most of it is at a lower level than surrounding houses, restricting its impact upon them.
  4. Suitability for residential use – It would be suitable if the whole of that side of the road was re-designated as residential.  With the current, piecemeal approach, the residential element does not meet the quality criteria in the planning strategy.

Assuming that the Planning Board adopts the recommendations of the planning officer, and refuses these applications, where does that leave us?

As the officer points out in his report:
“This is a dirty industrial/skip yard/waste transfer station at the heart of a densely-populated residential location.  Keeping the site in its existing use would result in environmental problems.”
Your comments would be appreciated.

So who makes the decision about planning applications in Barnsley?

27 03 2011

Planning decisions are made by the Planning Regulatory Board .  The members of this board are:

Cllr Wilde (Chair), Cllr D Birkinshaw, Cllr MB Brankin, Cllr MP Brankin, Cllr Brown, Cllr G Carr, Cllr Cave, Cllr Clarke, Cllr Fisher, Cllr Franklin, Cllr Gillespie, Cllr Hancock, Cllr Hand-Davis, Cllr Higginbottom, Cllr Markham, Cllr Marsh, Cllr Mathers, Cllr Morgan, Cllr Perrin, Cllr Picken, Cllr Price, Cllr Sheard, Cllr Spence, Cllr Worton, Cllr CC Wraith, Cllr R Wraith

The board meets each month, in the middle of the month, on a Tuesady afternoon at 2pm in Barnsley Central Library.  As soon as we know the date of the meeting at which the Pogmoor planning applications will be heard, we shall let every one know.

The council has rules governing the right to speak at Planning Regulatory Board meetings.  Only one objector from a group such as ours may speak against an application. To be permitted to speak at the meeting, our representative will need to register with the council at least five days before the meeting.