Agenda item

23/P/00835 - Land adjacent to 7 Unstead Wood, Peasmarsh, GU3 1NG


Prior to the consideration of this application, Councillor Catherine Houston sat in the ward councillor seat owing to speaking in that capacity and not participating as a Committee member.


The Committee considered the above-mentioned full application for erection of a pair of semi-detached dwellings and associated works following demolition of an outbuilding (revision of application 22/P/01543, refused on 24/04/2023).


The Committee received a presentation from the Senior Planning Officer, Katie Williams.  The outbuilding was currently used an osteopath clinic.  The proposal was a revision to a previously refused application, 22/P/01543.  The site boundary now incorporated a piece of land to the south of the existing property boundary to provide additional space for parking access and manoeuvring.  The agent for the application had confirmed that the applicant had an agreement with the landowner to acquire the land subject to planning permission being granted. 


The site currently consisted predominantly of the garden area of 7 Unstead Wood which was located at the end of a residential cul-de-sac.  The dwellings were of varying styles and sizes running along the northern side of the road.  The site also adjoined an area of woodland which ran to the site boundaries to the north.  The site was mostly located within the inset settlement boundary of Shalford, with the exception of the rear corner of the site in the north-east corner and a strip of land to the front of the site which was within the Green Belt.  The site was also within an Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV) and sat outside of the 5km to 400m buffer zone of the Thames Basin Heath Special Protection Area (TBHSPA).


The rear garden boundaries would remain as per existing in terms of the use of the land which lay within the Green Belt.  The proposed pair of semi-detached dwellings would be positioned on a similar building line to the adjacent pair of semi-detached houses.  The existing plot would be subdivided which would result in a plot similar in size to the adjacent properties within the cul-de-sac.  A minimum separation distance of 2.8 metres would be either side of the boundary with a shared access at the end of the cul-de-sac and driveways providing parking for two cars to the front of each of the dwellings.  The existing driveway to the front and side of the existing dwelling would be retained providing space for two cars.  The proposed parking provision complied with the Council’s adopted parking standards.  The Highway Authority had confirmed that it had no objection and considered that the proposal would not have a material impact on the safety and operation of the adjoining public highway.  The parking area to the south-east of the site would result in the removal of the existing hedge and vegetation, however there was sufficient space for replacement planting and a condition was recommended to secure this.


The proposed dwellings would have a traditional style, incorporating pitched roofs with half hipped gable ends.  Each dwelling would incorporate a single storey rear projection with a monopitch roof.  The overall floor space for the dwellings and the room sizes would accord with the nationally described space standards.  In the streetscene, the proposed dwellings would be of similar ridge height to the surrounding dwellings in the road.  


In summary, it was the planning officer’s view that the proposed residential development was considered acceptable in principle and it was concluded that there would be no adverse impact on the character of the area.  The wider landscape character of the AGLV and the corridor of the River Wey.  It was also concluded that subject to the recommended conditions, there would be no adverse impact on neighbouring amenity, ecology or trees.  It was noted that small parts of the site fell within the Green Belt, however, the proposed new dwellings were within the inset boundary.  The use of the rear part of the site, which was in the Green Belt would remain as a domestic garden.  The front part of the site, which was also in the Green Belt, would be used for access and turning and it was therefore considered that the proposal would not have a significantly greater impact on openness compared to the existing situation.  It was concluded that the proposal, due to the increase in onsite parking provision compared to the previously refused application had overcome the reasons for refusal attached to 22/P/01543 and would now accord with the Council’s parking standards and policy ID10 of the Local Plan and the application was therefore recommended for approval.




The Chairperson permitted Councillor Catherine Houston to speak in her capacity as ward councillor.  The Committee noted concerns that the application would increase the number of properties in a confined space by 25%.  The proposal represented a form of over-development.  There was also an unmade track that was in an appalling state which the owner had refused to maintain for 10 years.  5 additional conditions were therefore recommended.  That the unmade access track must be repaired and made good, inspected and signed off by the Council prior to the development proceeding.  The track which was accessed via Bradford Road was a busy road and the entrance to which was concealed.  A condition was therefore recommended to direct traffic via a concealed entrance sign. A condition that construction traffic must approach by driving past the entrance, turning at the roundabout and proceed back along Broadford Road and turn right into Unstead Wood.  A second application for the property number 89 would apparently be making land available for the new houses to have parking spaces.  There must be certainty that any future owners do not have the right to change their mind over the use of the land now or forever.  Currently number 7 operated an osteopathic practice in an outbuilding which would be demolished if this scheme went ahead.  The previous application included the ceasing of trading and if this was not included in this application there was concern that another outbuilding used for their business would increase the number of cars arriving and leaving and churn up the muddy track.  A condition was therefore required to forbid the potential for any business trade.


The Joint Executive Head of Planning Development, Claire Upton-Brown confirmed that it would not be possible to enact the conditions recommended.  If the Committee was minded to approve the application, it would not be possible to require a third party to carry out maintenance improvements to the access.  Similarly, it would not be possible to require the Highway Authority to erect a sign.  It would also not be possible to impose a condition requiring that any land agreement be put in the public domain or put a covenant on any of the three properties preventing them from being used for businesses or other purposes.  It was confirmed that the main difference from the refused application was that they had incorporated that section of additional land at the front which had given more space for parking.  Previously it was one space per dwelling and now it was two spaces.

The Committee discussed the application and noted the concerns raised.  However, the Committee agreed that the plot of land was fairly large and the spacing between the homes was adequate.  Access to and from the site also appeared to be okay with a good sight line.    


A motion was moved and seconded to approve the application which was carried.









Cait Taylor





James Jones





Bilal Akhtar





Fiona White





Sue Wyeth-Price





Joanne Shaw





Maddy Redpath





David Bilbe





Richard Mills





Stephen Hives





Vanessa King





Howard Smith










In conclusion, having taken account of the representations received in relation to this application, the Committee


RESOLVED to approve application 23/P/00835 subject to the conditions and reasons as detailed in the report.     



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