The planning application was for the construction of a new standalone nursery facility at Peakirk Cum Glinton Voluntary Aided Primary School, School Lane, Glinton.
The main considerations set out in the reports were:
· The principle of the development
· The impact of the development on the character and appearance of the Glinton
· Conservation Area
· The impact of the development on neighbour amenity
· Highway Implications
· Landscaping implications
· Other issues
It was officer’s recommendation that planning permission be granted, subject to the conditions set out in the report.
The Head of Development and Construction provided an overview of the application and raised the following key points:
· The proposal was for the replacements of an existing mobile with a permanent structure. This would be location on a different part of the site.
· There would be losses to scrub and trees for the construction of the proposal, however no officer objection had been received.
· The proposal consisted of a two storey, flat roofed, wood clad structure.
· 3 School Lane was the nearest residential property. The Crown Inn opposite the site currently housed a playgroup.
· Any overlooking windows were to be obscure glazed and the structure was to be connected to the main school building by a covered walkway.
· Access for construction vehicles would be via Lincoln Road, to avoid disruption in the village.
· There were an extensive number of updates included within the additional information document. These included further information from the Council’s Tree Officer, who had requested additional conditions, further information from the Council’s Conservation officer, comment from Councillor Holdich and comments from the neighbour at 3 School Road.
Councillor Bob Johnson, Glinton Parish Council, addressed the Committee and responded to questions from Members. In summary the key points highlighted included:
· The Parish Council were supportive of extending the school facility, however in the right place and design.
· As the site was within the Glinton Conservation Area, the design should be in line with the village design supplementary planning document.
· The current design and material, it was suggest, would fail. Glinton was selected as a limestone village and wood cladding did not fit in with this character.
· It was considered that the location identified within the application was inappropriate. The Parish Council believed that the site of the current temporary mobile structure was the most appropriate and that a single storey development would be suitable.
· The Parish Council was unanimous in its oppositions to the proposal and supported the objections of residents in School and Rectory Lane. The Parish Council were unaware of any representations of support within the village.
Leigh Titman addressed the Committee in objection to the application and responded to questions from Members. In summary the key points highlighted included:
· Mr Titman had provided a number of visuals which were included within the Committee’s additional information document. These visuals highlighted the overlooking and overbearing nature of the proposal on his residential amenity.
· Concern was raised regarding the architect’s planning statement and how a number of disadvantages raised for alternative sites also applied to the proposed site.
· The available funding for the project was not a relevant consideration.
· The current site was more advantages with regards to continuity and access for pre-school and after-school clubs.
· There had been no consideration for a single storey site, which would be more appropriate.
· It was noted that a number of the trees due to screen the proposal were diseased and designated for removal.
Rob Diamond, Agent, and Andrew Finding, School Governor, addressed the Committee in support of the application and responded to questions from Members. In summary the key points highlighted included:
· The current mobile structure had been on the site since 1995.
· All available space on the grounds was investigated for a potential development site and a number were dismissed because of the impact they would have on the conservation area.
· The existing site had created a ‘pinch point’, which the application hoped to address.
· It was noted that the materials of the current school building would not be considered appropriate for the conservation area. As such, the design of the proposal would not be out of place.
· The proposed cladding would be sustainable and of high quality. This material would soften over time and blend into the environment.
· The shape of the design resulted from the limited available space and the need for accommodation.
· It was noted that if the proposals were to extend further into the school playing field, Sport England may object on the grounds of insufficient open space.
The Acting Head of Legal Services reminded the Committee it was the application in front of them that the Committee should consider. Matters such as Diocese land, school funding and alternative locations were not for the Committee to consider.
The Committee discussed the application and highlighted that the application site was within a conservation area. It was suggested that this proposal would not be considered acceptable from another resident. The Committee sympathised with the school’s need to expand, however considered that the provisions of the conservation area needed to be adhered to. It was further suggested that the applicant consult with the Parish Council on any future proposals.
A motion was proposed and seconded to agree that permission be refused, contrary to officer recommendation, as the proposal was located within the Glinton Conservation Area and would not contribute positively towards the area. The motion was carried eight voting in favour, one voting against and one abstaining from voting.
RESOLVED: (eight voted for, one voted against and one abstained from voting) that planning permission is REFUSED.
Reasons for the decision
The application site was located with the Glinton Conservation Area. Whilst the school itself was constructed using a variety of styles and materials, the general area was characterised by more traditional building designs and materials. The proposed modern box like structure with its wood clad exterior would not be in keeping with the tones set by the general character of the buildings in the Conservation Area and therefore would not contribute positively towards it and be harmful including in the context of views of the Parish Church. The proposal was therefore considered to be contrary to the provisions of the NPPF (paras 58, 61,131), Peterborough City Council Core Strategy DPD 2011 Policies CS16 and CS17, Peterborough City Council Planning Policies PD 2012 Policy PP2 and Peterborough Design & Development in Selected Villages SPD 2011 Policies BM1, and Glin 1 and 2.