Declares that much needed family homes are being shoe-horned into unsuitable former garage sites that compromise the visual amenity and environment of old and new residents alike, and that the local Council thus pays disrespect to New Addington.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to investigate whether value for money is being achieved from the housing grant paid to Croydon Council and to place improved conditions on quality of design and setting for new Council housing in the London Borough of Croydon.
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government understands that the London Borough of Croydon has granted planning permission for a housing scheme on a former garage site in New Addington and that the Registered Social Landlord is preparing to go on site. The Secretary of State also notes that although the garages were a source of anti-social behaviour, there are objections to the housing scheme.
The Government's policy is not to interfere with the day-to-day planning control functions of a local planning authority unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. This is because local authority councillors are elected to represent the views of local people and, in the main, it is these councillors who are in the best position to decide whether a development should go ahead or not.
As part of their proposals for Building the Big Society, the Government intend to give communities more powers. In relation to the planning system they propose to give neighbourhoods far more ability to determine the shape of the places in which their inhabitants live.
The Government recently revised Planning Policy Guidance 3: Housing, putting power back in the hands of local authorities and communities to take the decisions that are best for them, and decide for themselves the best locations and types of development in their areas. This gives Local Authorities the freedom to prevent overdevelopment of their areas.
The majority of grant funding for house building is not paid to Councils, but direct to Registered Social Landlords. The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) works closely with Local Authorities to agree strategy and investment based on locally determined priorities. The HCA is working in this way with the London
Borough of Croydon to provide housing which meets local needs and contributes to the creation of high quality places. Key funding provided directly to Croydon Council is for the Local Authority New Build (LANB) programme. The HCA assesses all bids made by Local Authorities for LANB funding against four areas of criteria-value for money, deliverability, strategic fit and design and quality. The Secretary of State has no reason to believe that value for money is not being achieved and does not propose to investigate at this stage, but he understands that the HCA will raise the concerns lodged in the petition from New Addington residents with the London Borough of Croydon to ensure that the housing which is provided within New Addington provides the best solution possible for residents.
Declares that the residents are concerned that there should be a regularisation of the planning arrangements for Pear Tree Farm, a waste transfer station nestled in the Green Belt on the borders of the London Borough of Croydon and Tandridge District Council.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to take steps to see Croydon and Tandridge Councils regularise the planning arrangements at the site and to see the Environment Agency review the Waste Transfer Licence for Pear Tree Farm.
"the dumping and transfer of waste building materials, top soil and manure and for the parking of farm and other commercial vehicles".
The Secretary of State is informed that following increases in the activity on the site and local complaints, Croydon Council undertook a series of enforcement investigations, subsequent to which-across a number of years-a series of planning applications and applications for Lawful Development Certificate have been made and refused, and that there are four enforcement notices requiring remedial action by September 2008 which remain extant. He understands that Croydon Council is continuing to collect evidence to establish the degree of planning control breaches further to the extant enforcement notices in relation to the possibility of further action.
The Government's policy is not to interfere with the day to day planning control functions of a local planning authority unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. This is because local authority Councillors are elected to represent the views of local people and, in the main, it is
these Councillors who are in the best position to decide whether a development should go ahead or be refused, or whether enforcement action should be taken. In determining any planning application the local planning authority are required to have regard to all material considerations, including the development plan, national policies and views expressed by third parties. It is, of course, for local planning authorities to provide whatever justification it may be appropriate to give for their decisions and procedures. The Secretary of State's potential formal decision-making role in relation to any planning application or appeal (against refusal of permission or in relation to enforcement) also means it would be inappropriate for him to seek to influence the decisions of the local planning authorities in relation to the site in question.
The Secretary of State is informed that the London Waste Regulation Authority (predecessor of the Environment Agency) issued a waste management licence (permit) to Samuel Smith to receive and handle certain low risk types of waste on the site in 1982 and again in 1986. He is also informed that the Environment Agency regularly inspects the permitted area of the site against the licence conditions. Although there have been minor permit breaches, no legal action has been taken against the operators. It is understood that the Environment Agency has some operational concerns with the site, and has begun a permit review to address these. The reason for any such review is to update an old permit and to provide the appropriate level of regulatory control to this site relevant to current activities.
Sheweth, that in the process of our new Local Authority of Cheshire West and Chester planning the disposal of its Chester County Hall in a restricted preferential sale to Chester University, and of making a costly move of its Chester headquarters, on a leasehold agreement, to the new so called 'HQ Building' beside Chester racecourse, the local community has found itself excluded throughout from any meaningful consultation over the plan with Council; and has additionally been denied essential information prior to the completion of the scheme, and subsequent to it, that we are certain we should have been entitled to know.
Sheweth, that this failure by our local authority to consult with its people over this planning matter is in conflict with the legislative requirements and advisory guidance issued by Parliament in the form of, for example, the publication 'Communities in Control-real people, real power', and the 'Action for Empowerment' and 'Duty to Involve' white papers stating a statutory duty for all councils to engage fully and from an early stage with the public over such matters; and that this behaviour towards its public by Cheshire West and Chester Council is, in addition, in conflict with its own published 'Statement of Community Involvement' and the operative interim and draft forms of its 'Sustainable Community Strategy'.
Sheweth in addition the validity of this most respectful submission by dutifully reminding this House of the relevance of and of the UK's commitment as a full signatory to the 'European Convention on Access to
Information, Public Participation in Decision Making, and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters'; this generally being known as 'The Arhus Agreement'.
Wherefore your Petitioners pray that your Honourable House refer our petition to the relevant Select Committee for Communities and Local Government or other body as you deem appropriate requesting that the body review the effectiveness of the said legislation and guidance concerned with the duty to involve provided by this House with reference to the way local authorities are interpreting and operating that legislation and guidance in the public interest and with regard to our legislated rights.
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government is aware that a planning application was submitted to Cheshire West and Chester Council in respect of County Hall. He is advised that the application was submitted on 15 September 2009.
Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council are responsible for the day to day planning control in their area, and the Secretary of State cannot comment on the merits or otherwise of any application. The Government's policy is not to interfere with the jurisdiction of a local planning authority unless it is necessary to do so. This is because local authority Councillors are elected to represent the views of local people and, in the main, it is these Councillors who are in the best position to decide whether a development should go ahead. It is, of course, for local planning authorities to provide whatever justification it may be appropriate to give for their decisions and procedures.
In determining a planning application the local planning authority who have full knowledge of the local circumstances are required to have regard to all material considerations including the development plan, national policies and views expressed by third parties.
The Secretary of State can decide to call-in an application for his own determination if he considers that it raises matters of more than local importance, but his policy is to be very selective about this.
Following the application to the Council, representations were received requesting the Secretary of State to call-in the application but it was considered that the matter did not raise issues of more than local significance and so the matter was left to the Council to determine.
Declares that they object to the proposed development of the area between Nos. 18 to 32 High Road, Benfleet to construct a building providing 5 Retail Units at Ground Level, 22 Parking Spaces, 2 Offices, plus 12 x 2 bed flats and 2 x 1 bed flats at 1st and 2nd floor levels; that this development should be rejected because the proposed, much larger building would dominate and overlook existing properties, bring unacceptable problems including inadequate parking, fails to show where access
to and from the site parking area, bearing in mind an existing public parking area in Adelaide Gardens, vague refuse storage area, restricted sight lines for emerging traffic from St Mary's Drive, reduction of the pavement, loss of light entering adjoining buildings and relocation of the heritage telephone kiosk and post box; further declares that this development would further spoil the Conservation Area and create unacceptable stress on the existing infrastructure, including roads, schools, rail, doctors, dentists, etc.; that for these and many other valid planning reasons this application be rejected by the local Councillors, elected to represent their constituents, and that given the importance to the wider community of protecting this unique Conservation Area, unelected and unaccountable officers must properly and widely consult the public before permitting such developments.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to press Castle Point Borough Council, and all Councillors, to reject this planning application and to substantially protect the unique St Mary's Conservation area.
The Secretary of State is aware that a planning application had been submitted to Castle Point Borough Council in respect of the above development. He is advised that the application was rejected by the Borough Council on 26 May 2020.
Declares that the proposed development is out of character with the area, has insufficient parking and garden amenity space, would make an unacceptable imposition on the street scene, is by its bulk and design over obtrusive, would make unacceptable impositions on local road congestion, and on fresh water demand and sewage and surface water disposal, would make local road junctions serving the streets more dangerous, does not provide suitable access to the site from the road and would create disturbance, noise and other problems for local residents; further notes that there is sufficient previously developed land to provide all the housing needs for this region without such intensive building in the green belt or back gardens and that the council is under no obligation or pressure from the Government to vote for this application if it chooses not to.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to press Castle Point Borough Council, and the Conservative Council Group,
to ensure this application is decided by councillors who can be held to account, rather than officers, and that it is rejected.
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government is aware that a planning application had been submitted to Castle Point Borough Council in respect of the above development. He is advised that the application was rejected by the Borough Council on 8th April 2010.
Declares that the town of Dunstable suffers serious traffic congestion; further declares that a link road between the A5 and M1 would relieve this congestion; and notes that HM Treasury approved this link on 9 December 2009.
Draft Orders for the A5-M1 link were published on 9 December 2009, but HM Treasury has never given funding approval for this scheme. On 11 December 2009 HM Treasury approved funding for the construction of M1 Junctions 10-13 Hard Shoulder Running scheme that is now on site. This scheme is separate from the A5-M1 link.
The A5-M1 Link scheme is being prepared. However, the Public Inquiry due to be held in July this year has been postponed, in common with other Highway Agency schemes at the same stage, because it is important to ensure that there is clarity during the statutory process on the availability of funding for this scheme. Unfortunately, clarity on the availability of funding will not be available until after the Spending Review. If the scheme is prioritised in the Spending Review it would need to successfully complete the statutory process and receive final approval of the construction budget before it can proceed to site.