Mewn perthynas â cheisiadau y mae gan y Cyngor ddiddordeb ynddynt un ai fel ymgeisydd/asiant neu fel perchennog tir neu eiddo, atgoffir yr Aelodau fod yn rhaid iddynt anwybyddu’r agwedd hon, gan ystyried ceisiadau o’r fath a phenderfynu yn eu cylch ar sail rhinweddau’r ceisiadau cynllunio yn unig. Ni ddylid ystyried swyddogaeth y Cyngor fel perchennog tir, na materion cysylltiedig, wrth benderfynu ynghylch ceisiadau cynllunio o’r fath.

In relation to those applications which are identified as one in which the Council has an interest either as applicant/agent or in terms of land or property ownership, Members are reminded that they must set aside this aspect, and confine their consideration and determination of such applications exclusively to the merits of the planning issues arising. The Council’s land owning function, or other interests in the matter, must not be taken into account when determining such planning applications.

COMMITTEE:

    PLANNING COMMITTEE

DATE:

    12 SEPTEMBER 2013

REPORT OF:

    HEAD OF PLANNING

I N D E X - A R E A W E S T

REF.

APPLICATIONS RECOMMENDED FOR APPROVAL

PAGE NOS.

W/25480

Proposed works to include alterations and complete refurbishment as required to convert building to residential use. New extension at rear and to two side elevations at Old Infirmary, Priory Street, Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire

4 - 14

W/26695

Erection of a single wind turbine with a maximum blade tip height of up to 61 metres and associated infrastructure at Clynblewog Farm, Trelech, Carmarthen, SA33 6DW

15 - 28

W/28286

Change of use from a commercial property (Public House) to a domestic property at Three Compasses, Crwbin, Kidwelly

29 - 33

W/28452

Proposed residential dwelling at land at Frondeg, 2 Bro Rhydybont, Llanybydder, SA40 9QX

34 - 41

W/28608

Amend planning condition numbers 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 21, 22 and 25 to facilitate the phased submission of reserved matters and other details; remove conditions 1 and 24 and revise construction phase plan all in relation to development of up to 212 holiday lodges and 48 serviced apartments (up to 26,529 sq m C1) and up to 1,709 sq m of floor space for ancillary facilities (A1, A3 and D2) including recreation and leisure facilities (extant planning permission W/24265) at Laugharne Park, Cliff Road, Laugharne

42 - 61

APPLICATIONS RECOMMENDED FOR APPROVAL

Application No

W/25480

Application Type

Full Planning

Proposal &

Location

PROPOSED WORKS TO INCLUDE ALTERATIONS AND COMPLETE REFURBISHMENT AS REQUIRED TO CONVERT BUILDING TO RESIDENTIAL USE. NEW EXTENSION AT REAR AND TO TWO SIDE ELEVATIONS AT OLD INFIRMARY, PRIORY STREET, CARMARTHEN, CARMARTHENSHIRE

Applicant(s)

ENSD LIMITED, 36A KING STREET, CARMARTHEN, CARMARTHENSHIRE, SA31 1BS

Agent

ALWYN JONES ARCHITECTS - MR ALWYN JONES, THE BANK, CARDIFF ROAD, TAFFS WELL, CARDIFF, CF15 7RA

Case Officer

Stephen Thomas

Ward

Carmarthen South

Date of validation

06/10/2011

CONSULTATIONS

Head of Transport – Recommendation that the application be refused as the submitted development is proposing a shortfall in the parking provision that falls below the minimum stated requirements in the County Surveyor’s Society Wales Parking Standards as adopted by South West Wales Integrated Transport Consortium (SWWITCH) and implemented in Carmarthenshire.

Carmarthen Town Council – Indicates that it commends the progress of a refurbishment scheme for the building, however, this has to be balanced with the strong views of local residents that the proposal should not be to the detriment of those local residents. The concerns being:-

Local Members – County Councillor A Lenny is a member of the Planning Committee and has made no prior comment on the application and County Councillor Jeff Thomas has made no observations on this application.

Whilst not the local ward members, other Carmarthen Town County Councillors have made observations on the application. County Councillor A D T Speake fully supports the proposal that will re-use the building. County Councillors A Lloyd and P Hughes-Griffiths object to the application on the following grounds:-

Dwr Cymru/Welsh Water – Has responded indicating no objections to the proposed development and provides advisory notes.

Dyfed Archaeological Trust – Originally required additional information in the form of an archaeological field evaluation be carried out prior to the determination of the application. However, on clarification of the impact on any buried archaeology from the development, services and landscaping being minimal, particularly as a slabbed foundation for the southern extension is being considered, a pre-determination fieldwork will no longer be required. It now recommends that an archaeological watching brief condition should be imposed on any planning permission which will ensure that no archaeological deposits are inadvertently damaged or, if exposed, can be properly recorded.

Neighbours/Public - The application has been publicised by the sending of one letter of notification to the residents association of a neighbouring property and the placing of a public notice at the site and in a local newspaper. Representations have been received from resident groups/ associations for two residential developments near to the project and seven letters of representation have been received objecting to/ concerned with the proposed development. Two letters have also been received from the local Member of Parliament and from the local Assembly Member supporting the objectors to the proposed scheme. A letter from the Carmarthen Civic Society has been received expressing concerns with the proposal as submitted. Representations have also been received from an interested person supporting the proposal and pressing upon the Authority not to let the building deteriorate further. The objections received are on the following grounds:-

RELEVANT PLANNING HISTORY

The following relevant planning applications have previously been submitted on the application site:-

W/25481 Alterations & refurbishment to convert to residential

use, including extension to rear and two sides and

repairs

Listed Building Consent Application Pending

W/16007 Demolition of former Carmarthenshire Infirmary

Listed Building Consent Refused 8 January 2009

W/15979 Amend conditions 2 & 14 of Application W/3686 No Decision

W/14057 Conversion of former Carmarthen Infirmary into 10

flats for residential purposes

Listed Building Consent 3 October 2006

TMT/02439 Alterations to conditions 2 & 4 of W/03687 dated 28th

July 2000

Removal of Condition 12 December 2002

TMT/02441 Alterations to condition no 2 of W/03687 dated 28th

July 2000

Withdrawn 2 December 2002

W/03687 Demolition and alteration to provide modern flat

accommodation

Listed Building Consent 14 December 2000

W/03686 Change of use of former hospital block to provide 2x1

D4/26057 Demolition of nursing home, ward block, boiler house

D4/26056 Siting of residential development

Outline planning permission 28 June 1996

APPRAISAL

THE SITE

The application site is the former West Wales General Hospital (Priory Street Annexe), located at the junction of Priory Street and North Parade in Carmarthen, and extends along the western side of North Parade for some distance to the car park of the recent construction of a flat complex to the south.

The former Carmarthenshire Infirmary was opened on the 1st July 1858. Extensions were added to the rear from 1899 to 1934. It was taken over by the National Health Service in 1948, and it was closed in 1995. The rear additions were demolished in 2002 for the construction of blocks of flats at the rear. The side extensions were also demolished at the time to allow vehicular access to the proposed car park at the rear of the property.

It became a listed building (Grade II) in 1981, being included as a purpose-built mid-C19 hospital building in Italianate style.

THE PROPOSAL

The proposal seeks full planning permission for the conversion of the former Carmarthenshire Infirmary into 19 flats. The original external and internal stone walls are to be retained but it is proposed that everything else be replaced, except for existing frames in the central section of the roof and, where possible, original windows to the front block. The works also include an extension at the rear, and two side extensions along the lines of the two that were demolished in 2002. The roof shape will be retained using new steel frames. Internally, all floors will be of concrete, with the upper floors spanning between steel beams built into existing walls. The new floors levels will enable a second attic storey to be created.

At the front of the building, the existing trees will be removed and the area will become a car park providing 13 spaces for residents. In order to achieve the maximum number of parking spaces the existing access adjacent to the junction with North Parade is proposed to be stopped up with a painted fixed metal gate. In addition, the removed northern gate pier will be reinstated to match the remaining original southern pier. The existing car park serving the flats to the rear of the Infirmary (Hafan Tywi) will be accessed via a new access from North Parade and the current vehicular access will be closed. The number of parking spaces at this car park will remain the same where two parking spaces are removed but are proposed to be replaced at other locations within the car park.

The existing pedestrian access between the car park and Priory Street will be maintained, necessitating the relocation of the retained vehicular access. The gate piers to this access are already removed and the new piers will be rebuilt to match the detail of the original pier to the stopped up access.

An application for Listed Building Consent has also been submitted alongside this planning application (W/25481) which is being considered separately purely on issues of how the proposed works will affect the listed building.

PLANNING POLICIES

In terms of the application's policy context, reference is made to the following existing development plan policies:-

Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan

Policy GDC1 encourages environmentally sustainable proposals including a reduction in car usage and energy consumption; energy and resource efficient.

Policy GDC2 supports development which can be appropriately provided in locations which do not adversely impact upon the public and private amenity and privacy of adjoining properties and open spaces. The density, scale and massing of any development should reflect that of neighbouring properties.

Policy GDC11 seeks to ensure that all new development is served by an appropriate access incorporating adequate visibility to allow for the safe access and egress.

Policy GDC12 seeks to resist development that would generate levels of traffic which would cause harm to highway safety or to the amenity of residents.

Policy T4 indicates that parking provisions of new development proposals will not exceed the Council’s maximum parking standards.

Policy BE6 states that it is Council policy that consent will not be granted for the alteration or extension of a listed building where it would adversely affect its character.

Policy BE9 states that consent will not be granted for proposals which would adversely affect the character and appearance of a conservation area.

THIRD PARTY REPRESENTATIONS

The application has raised several letters of objection/concern and the main material considerations are summarised as follows:-

Traffic Safety

The existing access onto Priory Street will be closed for the car park for the existing residential units at Hafan Tywi and will remain open for the intended parking for the proposed new units in the former hospital building. The intention is to create a new access onto North Parade for the existing car park for Hafan Tywi. The proposal is to retain the existing pedestrian access to the whole site from Priory Street along the western boundary of the site. Residents and others are concerned that the proposed new access on to North Parade together with the traffic calming and one-way proposals along the neighbouring streets will be to the detriment of existing residents. Whilst the proposal will be an inconvenience to those residents the Head of Transport has requested this as a result of the need to gain access to the existing car park due to the closure of the access from Priory Street by the construction of the side extension. The traffic proposal will be the subject of Traffic Order that will be pursued with the County Council as Highway Authority and is proposed to be to the benefit of all with the improvement of highway safety for local residents by a one way highway system adjacent to the site, thereby reducing the instances of traffic conflict.

Reduction in the Number of Parking Facilities

Several letters of concern/ objection have included that the proposal is considered not to provide adequate parking facilities for the proposed number of units, thus causing an overspill of parking requirements onto the surrounding streets and thereby affecting local residents. The Head of Transport has objected to the proposed development on the basis of the inadequate parking facilities. If sustainable principles are taken into consideration it is considered that there is a shortfall of 6 in number of parking spaces that are normally required to cater for the number of residential units proposed. It is acknowledged that this will have an adverse effect upon the parking facilities available for local residents.

Density and Occupancy

The letters of concern and objection have referred to the number of units that are being proposed in the development. Those letters are concerned with the increase in numbers to those that have previously been approved. The previously approved numbers were of 12 units with the current proposal increasing that to 19 units. This is a concern that has been expressed in most of the representations received and it is indicated that this has a knock on effect on the number of parking facilities required. The number of units proposed is a direct result of making the overall scheme viable in economic terms and that the reason the previously approved scheme has not been commenced is due to viability reasons.

The letters also refer to previous schemes and in fact the existing Hafan Tywi development had restricted occupancy by age. The current proposal for the hospital site does not include a proposal to restrict the occupancy of the units by age and this again due to viability reasons, in that such a restriction would have an effect on the market that would be available for the developer.

Mention is also made of whether the residential units would be for sale or rent, whilst this is not considered material to the determination of this application.

Sewer Capacity

Concern has been voiced in the representations over capacity in the sewer system to cater for the proposed development and Welsh Water have been consulted on the application. Welsh Water has confirmed that there is sufficient capacity within the sewerage infrastructure to cater for the increased demand from the proposed development.

Design and Refurbishment Issues

Mention has been made in the representations of the design of the proposed extensions to the building and how this and other work will affect the Grade II listed building. The Council’s Conservation Officer has been consulted on this application both prior to and after the submission of the planning and listed building consent applications. The Conservation Officer’s observations are included in the following paragraphs.

The neglect of the building over the last decade or so, resulting in dereliction and severe dry rot infestation, means that extensive works are now required for the proposed conversion. The proposed works (alterations and extensions) will compromise the building’s special architectural and historic interest. The replacement of the original roof, the addition of extensions, and the insertion of steel frames and concrete floors will be very harmful to the character of this building.

Most of these works would not have been necessary had the building been repaired and maintained in good condition. Furthermore, most of the works now proposed would not have been granted listed building consent some 13 years ago as they could not have been justified: the building could have been converted to a number of uses without the radical intervention works currently proposed. Listed building consent for two alternative configuration of flats were approved by the Authority over the years but were not implemented. An application for the demolition of the property was refused, one of the grounds being the failure to place the property on the market at a price which reflected its condition, thus not giving a proper opportunity for someone to convert the building with a less harmful effect on its character. The current situation is that any further delay in the renovation of this building will lead to yet further deterioration and possible complete loss.

Working within the limitations dictated by the results of the neglect the architect has nevertheless endeavoured to limit the harm as much as possible whilst also meeting the owner’s brief of a specified number of flats which the owner considers necessary to make the scheme viable.

Demolition of the extensions some 10 years ago revealed the form of the two-range building as it was when first designed and built. This form, with the front building linked by a recessed bay to a similar sized parallel range at the rear, is described in the listing description, which also refers to an illustration of it in an 1861 view. The architect has acknowledged the importance of the form by ensuring that the re-introduction of rear and side extensions are via elements so that the original form is still recognisable and the roof shape stays the same. The two proposed extensions at the rear are modest, and the proposed design will mean that they will blend in with the historic building. Whilst the re-building of the two side tower extensions, demolished some 12 years ago, is regrettable there is a precedent for them, having been added originally in 1899. The justification for the extensions is the need for 19 flats to make the scheme viable. The harm to the character is a price worth paying to prevent further deterioration by bringing the building back into use.

The justification for the additional floor level, making use of the large attic space, is also to enable 19 flats to be created and make the scheme viable. Again, the harm to the character is a price worth paying to prevent further deterioration. The proposal has retained the shape of the roof, stipulated natural matching slates (the existing slates being beyond salvage due to the bitumen coating some decades ago), placed the conservation roof lights in least harmful locations, and included the re-building of some lost chimney stacks.

The importance of the historic internal layout has also been recognised by the proposal: retaining main walls, principal corridors, main stair position, and minimising new openings.

With the original floors beyond saving, and a proposal to create an extra floor to make use of the attic space, the insertion of an internal steel frame with concrete floors is acceptable, but only because of the need to bring the building back into use as quickly as possible and hence save the building.

The external treatment (retention of all existing features, replacement of mortars on a like-for-like basis, repairs of existing windows to front range where possible, and making good damaged walls by reinstating original openings, etc.) are welcomed. The four stone gate piers to the front of the building are listed in their own right, and their reinstatement/repair is also welcomed.

The first floor window above the main entrance is not original, but there is good photographic evidence of what the original looked like. The foremost principle of conservation is to conserve as found but in this particular case the poor condition of the existing window will mean that it will need to be replaced, and therefore there is good justification to replace it with a replica of the original window and surround.

The parking of cars adjacent to the front elevation will be harmful to the setting of the listed building but in this particular case the benefits of the building being saved and brought back into use outweigh the harm to the setting

CONCLUSION

Clearly the neglect of the building over the last decade or so, has resulted in dereliction and severe dry rot infestation, means that extensive works are now required for the proposed conversion. Most of the proposed works will compromise the building’s special architectural and historic interest. Most of the works would not have been necessary had the building been repaired and maintained in good condition. The current situation however is that the condition of the building is such that works need to be carried out as soon as possible in order to save the building and bringing it back to an appropriate use to safeguard its future.

Working within the limitations dictated by the results of the neglect the proposal has endeavoured to limit the harm as much as possible whilst also meeting the owner’s brief of a specified number of flats which is considered necessary to make the scheme viable. Most of the proposed works will be harmful to the character of the listed building but the implementation of the proposed works should now be the quickest way to save the building and secure its future.

In the same way the proposed scheme will have an adverse effect on the local residents in terms of the re-alignment of the near roads, the insufficient parking spaces provided in a sustainable location and the creation of a new access onto North Parade. This has to be considered and balanced with the positive effects of having the building saved and brought back into a viable use to safeguard its future.

This a decision that is very difficult and in this particular case, with the importance given to the retention of as much of the building as possible is considered to outweigh the adverse effects of the proposal, on balance, it is recommended that the application be approved subject to the imposition of the following appropriate conditions and subject to the imposition of the imposition of other highway conditions.

RECOMMENDATION – APPROVAL

CONDITIONS

SUMMARY REASONS FOR APPROVAL

In accordance with Article 3 of the Town and Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2004, the Council hereby certify that the proposal as hereby approved conforms with the relevant policies of the Development Plan (comprising the Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan 2006) and material considerations do not indicate otherwise. The policies, which refer, are as follows:

Application No

W/26695

Application Type

Full Planning

Proposal &

Location

ERECTION OF A SINGLE WIND TURBINE WITH A MAXIMUM BLADE TIP HEIGHT OF UP TO 61 METRES AND ASSOCIATED INFRASTRUCTURE AT CLYNBLEWOG FARM, TRELECH, CARMARTHEN, SA33 6DW

Applicant(s)

WINDBERRY ENERGY OPERATIONS, C/O SAVILLS, WESSEX HOUSE, PRIORS WALK, WIMBORNE, DORSET, BH21 1PB

Agent

SAVILLS - ANDREW MANN, WESSEX HOUSE, PRIORS WALK, EAST BOROUGH, WIMBORNE, DORSET, BH21 1PB

Case Officer

Stephen Thomas

Ward

Trelech

Date of validation

06/06/2012

CONSULTATIONS

Head of Transport – Recommendation that any permission that may be granted should be subject to the imposition of four conditions on the access specification and provides advisory notes.

Public Rights of Way Officer – Advises that there are no public rights of way affected by the proposed development therefore has no comment to make on the application.

Head of Public Protection – No objections to the proposed wind turbine subject to the imposition of four conditions on any planning permission that may be granted in respect of noise to protect the amenity of the occupiers of any neighbouring properties.

Trelech Community Council – No observations received to date.

Local Member – County Councillor W D Thomas is a member of the Planning Committee and has not made any prior comment on the application.

Environment Agency – No objections to the proposed development and provide advisory notes.

Countryside Council for Wales – Does not object to the proposal providing that advice is addressed through the implementation of appropriate conditions on any planning permission that may be granted.

CADW – Observes that the impact of the proposed turbine will be minimal on the setting of Scheduled Ancient Monuments and advises that there will be a small, residual impact on this prehistoric landscape but does not recommend refusal.

Defence Infrastructure Organisation – Originally objected to the planning application on the grounds that the proposed development would have an unacceptable impact upon the range control radar at Aberporth. The developer discussed mitigation measures with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and forwarded a scheme of mitigation to try and overcome the objections of the MoD. The MoD has now accepted the technical proposal to mitigate the effects of the development on the radar subject to the imposition of a condition regarding its implementation. The MoD also recommended the imposition of a condition regarding the fitting of omni-directional red lighting or infrared lighting at the highest practicable point on the turbine.

Dyfed Archaeological Trust – No observations received to date.

Civil Aviation Authority – No objections to the proposal and provides standard advice.

Joint Radio Co Ltd – Has not responded to date.

MLL Telecom Ltd – No observations received to date.

OFCOM – No observations received to date.

BT Operate – No observations received to date.

National Grid – No observations received to date.

BBC Research and Development Department – No observations received to date.

Neighbours/Public – The application has been publicised by means of posting a public notice at the application site. Three representations have been received from two households objecting to the proposal on the following grounds:

As well as these letters of concern/ objection, letters of support have been received from the occupiers of properties in the Trelech area and surrounding north Pembrokeshire area as well as a few further afield. Many of these letters are of an identical type that each person has signed and included their address. Each letter supports the principle of renewable energy and indicates no harm to the landscape and is far enough away from other properties.

RELEVANT PLANNING HISTORY

The following relevant planning application has previously been submitted on the application site:-

W/25757 Erection of a temporary 40.5m high anemometer

mast for a period of up to 18 months

Full planning permission 20 March 2012

APPRAISAL

Procedural Requirements

Following the submission of the proposal the Local Planning Authority, having regard to the provisions of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 1999 determined that an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was not required for this proposed development. The proposed development is for a single turbine of more than 15 m in height and therefore falls within Schedule 2 of the Regulations, however, the impacts of the development are not considered of more than local importance and at no time have any statutory consultees requested an EIA.

THE SITE

The application site is in the south eastern corner of a large open field located adjacent to a country road leading in a north westerly direction from Dinas, Trelech towards Tegryn. The field forms part of a larger holding known as Clynblewog Farm. The field runs along the south-western flank of the highway. The land is fairly level at this location and the general landscape has a rural, upland and undulating appearance. There are generally open grazing fields with occasional copses of trees and the area is characterised by scattered large farms as well as some smaller smallholdings.

THE PROPOSAL

The application seeks full planning permission for the erection of a single wind turbine and associated access track and other ancillary works. The proposed turbine will have a generating capacity of 330 kW. It has a maximum height of 44.28 metres from base to hub and the turbine would have a blade diameter of 33 metres. Therefore the maximum height to blade tip will be 61 metres. The turbine is to be constructed of three blades and it would have concrete foundations with a 12.7 metre diameter.

The proposed access track would be via a new access point from the C3170 with it following the boundary with the highway until it turns in field to the proposed turbine location.

The temporary construction compound is proposed to be located in the field immediately to the south-east of the turbine location, including the crane pad and temporary laydown area. This is proposed to measure 20 metres by 22 metres. There is proposed a small equipment housing cabinet to be located close to the turbine base.

A number of supporting documents accompanied the application in the form of:

Additional information was also submitted in relation to some issues during the processing of the application in the form of an ‘Access Report’ assessing the route of delivery of the turbine components and a mitigation proposal in the form of a technical proposal to mitigate the unacceptable affects the proposal is considered to have on the range control radar at Aberporth.

PLANNING POLICIES

Proposals for wind turbines must comply with the criteria of Policy UT6 (Wind Energy). Favourable decisions will be given when proposals either individually or cumulatively would not cause demonstrable harm by virtue of having a significant adverse impact on the quality of the local environment, or to sites of nature conservation, historical or archaeological importance, agricultural value, areas designated for their landscape value, or to species of nature conservation and ecological value. Secondly, the siting, design, layout and materials used should be sympathetic to the characteristics of the landform, contours and existing features of the landscape. Thirdly, proposals do not give rise to problems of highway safety or place unacceptable demands on the provision of public services. Fourthly, ancillary works, buildings and structures are kept to a minimum and sited unobtrusively within the landscape. The fifth criteria states that proposals should not lead to a significant adverse increase in risk or nuisance to, and impacts on the amenities, of nearby residents or other members of the public arising from wind turbine operation, shadow flicker, safety risk, radio or telecommunications interference. Sixth, no turbine should cause harm to the amenity of any residents and finally new connections to the local electricity distribution network should accord to Policy UT2. This states that when electricity service lines are proposed they should have as little adverse effect as possible on the environment.

Policy UT5 relates to renewable energy proposals in general and the criteria for compliance are similar to those of UT6.

Policy GDC3 which relates to development in the countryside states that development will not be permitted except when for a purpose included within a list from within the Policy. This list includes renewable energy schemes subject to other policies within the Unitary Development Plan (UDP).

Policies BE1 and BE2 apply in relation to Scheduled Ancient Monuments (SAMs) and sites of archaeological interest. These policies seek to prevent adverse impact on these and their settings.

Renewable energy also features as one of the UDP 14 strategic policies. CUDP 14 states that it is the policy of the Council to support proposals for renewable energy schemes and developments which minimise energy and resource requirements, where appropriate.

Policy EN5 relates to the protection and enhancement of flora and fauna. Development will not be permitted where it would cause demonstrable harm to species or their habitats protected by legislation and where appropriate positive mitigation measures cannot be provided.

The proposal is considered to constitute a farm diversification scheme; therefore Policy E8 will be relevant. This policy, amongst other criteria, permits development provided that the proposal is of an appropriate scale and is compatible with the prime agricultural purpose of the existing farm and the proposed use will not have an adverse impact on the character, setting and appearance of the farm and surrounding countryside.

Policy EN21 relates to agricultural land and states that development which would result in the loss of the best and most versatile agricultural land will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that there is an overriding need for the development, and that either land of a lower agricultural quality or non agricultural land is not available for the purpose.

Policy GDC8 relates to visual impact and physical topography. It states proposals should have full regard to the physical character and topography of the site by avoiding conspicuous locations on prominent skylines or ridges, integrating into the contours of the site, avoiding locations that would have an adverse visual impact on prominent buildings, landscapes, open spaces and the general locality from the site, ensuring the height of any new building is in scale with adjoining buildings, so as not to lead to unacceptable overlooking or overshadowing and utilising topography to maximise energy efficiency, where feasible.

CUDP9 relates to landscape and environment and aims to safeguard the natural environment from inappropriate development.

Policy GDC19 looks at the retention of landscape features as does EN8. EN13 also applies in relation to hedgerows.

REC11 applies in relation to any public rights of way and bridleways that may be affected by the proposed turbine.

TAN6 makes reference to diversification schemes. At paragraph 3.7 the note states that many economic activities can be sustainable on farms. Renewable energy schemes are referred to as one of the options that may be appropriate.

At an international level the main driver for renewable energy developments is the EU Renewable Energy Directive (formally agreed April 2009). This has legally binding targets of 15% of energy from renewable sources by 2020.

At a national level the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) has published One Wales: One Planet (WAG, 2008) which sets out the sustainable development programme for Wales. This contains a commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Wales, and sets out how Wales will deliver its share of UK targets contained in the UK Climate Change Act. The programme recognises that Wales will need to reduce its use of carbon based energy by 80 – 90%, resulting in a similar reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

These targets have been translated into national planning policy and Planning Policy Wales (PPW) (2011) sets out the Welsh Government’s (WG) aims and objectives for infrastructure and services “to achieve sustainable development objectives, while minimising adverse impacts on the environment, health and communities. New approaches to infrastructure will be needed in light of the consequences of climate change” including “to promote the generation and use of energy from renewable and low carbon energy sources at all scales and promote energy efficiency, especially as a means to secure zero or low carbon developments and to tackle the causes of climate change;” 9para 12.14). It states that “Planning policy at all levels should facilitate delivery of both the Assembly Government’s overall Energy Policy Statement, and UK and European targets on renewable energy;” (paragraph 12.8.2). At paragraph 12.8.6 PPW states “The Assembly Government’s aim is to secure an appropriate mix of energy provision for Wales, whilst avoiding, and where possible minimising environmental, social and economic impacts. This will be achieved through action on energy efficiency and strengthening renewable energy production”.

It goes on in paragraph 12.8.9 “Local planning authorities should facilitate the development of all forms of renewable and low carbon energy to move towards a low carbon economy (see Section 4.4.2) to help tackle the causes of climate change (See Section 4.6.3). Specifically, they should make provision by:

Planning Policy Wales at paragraph 12.8.10: “At the same time, local planning authorities should:-

TAN8 makes reference to onshore wind developments outside of the Strategic Search Areas (SSAs). Para 2.13 states that most areas outside of SSA’s should remain free of large wind power schemes and that LPAs may wish to consider the cumulative impacts of small schemes outside SSAs. Outside of SSAs there is a balance to be struck between desirability of renewable energy and landscape protection. In the annexe D (8.4) it states in the rest of Wales outside the SSAs, the implicit objective is to maintain the landscape character i.e. no significant change in landscape character from wind turbine development. Para 3.4 of Annexe D states 500 metres is currently considered a typical separation distance between a wind turbine and residential property to avoid unacceptable noise impacts, however when applied in a rigid manner it can lead to conservative results and so some flexibility is again advised. This is in relation to feasibility studies for areas around SSAs

TAN18 applies in relation to safeguarding walking, cycling and horse rider routes (paragraph 6.1).

THIRD PARTY REPRESENTATION

Third party representations have been received from the occupiers of a two near property objecting to the application on three main grounds i.e. detrimental to their residential amenity due to potential noise, visual intrusion in the landscape and visual impact.

Noise

The first ground of concern is that of noise emanating from the turbine when heard from one of the nearby properties located at an approximate distance of just over 1000 metres from the proposed turbine. A Noise Assessment was submitted with the application. The submitted information identified the two nearest properties for monitoring as being Greenhall and Ffynnonwen Ganol. The report concludes that the wind turbine will not have a noise nuisance nor would it affect local residents. The Council’s Head of Public Protection has been consulted on the proposal and the Noise Scientific Officer observes that the noise assessment has demonstrated that the wind turbine will not comply with the lower fixed limit stated in ETSU (35dB (a)) at Greenhall property at a wind speed of 7 m/s at 10 metres height, as the predicted sound pressure level is 35.9 dB(A) and this is due to the +5 dB tonal penalty that has been applied. This would be the only instance that the noise levels are predicted to exceed the lower fixed limit of 35dB stated in ETSU. However, no objections have been raised in the response to the proposal, subject to a number of conditions being imposed in any planning permission. These conditions relate to the noise levels that should not be exceeded and the mechanisms for rectifying any breach.

Landscape and Visual Impact

The second ground of objection is that of visual intrusion in the landscape. The objectors indicate that due to its height it will have a detrimental effect on the landscape quality. The site is not within an area that has been designated for its landscape quality nor is it designated as of having any special landscape qualities within Carmarthenshire’s Unitary Development Plan. Pembrokeshire County Council as the adjoining local planning authority has been consulted on the proposal and to date no comments have been received.

Landscape effects are derived from the physical changes to the landscape that the development may cause in terms of its character and how the landscape is experienced and valued. Visual amenity concerns changes in the composition of views and people’s response to the changes or impacts the proposed development may cause.

The Countryside Council for Wales (as it was at the time) was consulted on the application and whilst referring to the slight adverse effect on the character of the Llanboidy and Blaenwaun upland area for visual and sensory and for the Waunfawr area for the historic landscape, it concludes that in its opinion, the development as proposed in its current form is not likely to have an adverse effect and therefore does not object to the proposal.

The application was accompanied by a Landscape and Visual Assessment. The Authority’s Landscape Officer was consulted and has made comments in relation to the submitted assessment.

Landscape Impacts

The application does not provide a cumulative assessment of impacts to landscape character and assessment has been made through site visit and interpretation of submitted information. The proposed turbine is a large structure and it will be the largest turbine within the immediate area, in relative proximity to two operational turbines which are set at a smaller scale than that proposed in this application. Cumulative impact of turbines of different scales can result in confusing visual effects, which can act to increase the impacts upon landscape character. It is considered that a turbine of this size is difficult to accommodate within the scale of other elements and features of this landscape, and that the proposed turbine will stand out as a prominent local feature.

However, it is noted that the LANDMAP aspect area in which the turbine is located is of an overall moderate evaluation in the visual and sensory aspect area (Llanboidy and Blaenwaun Uplands) and that of the receiving landscape is not otherwise designated for its landscape character. It is not considered that the addition of this turbine alone would result in the wider receiving landscape becoming characterised by wind turbine development, however cumulative impacts within this area of Carmarthenshire should be carefully considered in the future.

The Landscape Officer advises that the proposed development would result in significant residual adverse impacts to landscape character; however, it is not considered that the impacts to landscape character alone would be of a significance to justify a reason for refusal of the application. Notwithstanding this fact, these significant adverse impacts need to be considered with all other adverse impacts, against the benefits of the scheme, as part of the overall planning balance.

It is also considered that the elements of policies EN8 and EN13 which relate to landscape value could be accommodated through appropriate detailed scheme design. To ensure that appropriate detailed design is delivered as part of the scheme, it is recommended that a detailed Landscape and Biodiversity Enhancement Scheme be submitted. A condition is recommended in relation to this.

Visual Impacts

Impacts upon residential visual amenity of properties within 750m of the proposed turbine location have been considered.

Whilst the proposed scheme will form new, manmade moving elements within some views from residential properties and associated amenity space; the location of the scheme, scale of the turbine model and its relation to the topography; and the proximity and orientation in relation to the properties is such that the proposal is not considered to be of a significance to challenge the relevant objectives of policy UT6.

The proposed scheme will form new, manmade moving elements within some views from publicly accessible areas. The location and scale of the turbine model and its relation to the topography, and proximity to roads and footpaths, and other areas accessible to the public, is such that the proposal could be considered to be of a significance to challenge the relevant objectives of policy UT6. However, it is not considered that the impacts to visual amenity from areas accessible to the public alone would be of a significance to justify a reason for refusal of the application. Notwithstanding this fact, these significant adverse impacts need to be considered with all other adverse impacts, against the benefits of the scheme, as part of the overall planning balance.

Shadow Flicker

Whilst shadow flicker was an issue that has not been raised by any of the objectors it remains an issue that needs to be considered. Under certain combinations of geographical position and time of day, the sun may pass behind the rotors of a wind turbine and cast a shadow over neighbouring properties. When the blades rotate, the shadow flicks on and off; the effect is known as ‘shadow flicker’. There is no specific guidance in Wales in relation to shadow flicker distances and the distance at which it would have an impact. Annex C of TAN8 states “the problem is seasonal and only lasts for a few hours per day, but needs to be investigated where any potential exists. Developers should provide an analysis of the potential for shadow flicker impacting upon any nearby properties”. However PAN45 (Scottish Guidance) “Renewable Energy Technologies” 2002 refers to the issue of shadow flicker. This states “In most cases however, where separation is provided between wind turbines and nearby dwellings (as a general rule 10 rotor diameters), “shadow flicker” should not be a problem”.

The rotor diameter in this proposal is 33 metres therefore the shadow flicker area assessment is 330 metres from the turbine. There are no properties within 10 rotor diameters of the turbine location it is therefore considered that there will be no adverse impact from shadow flicker as a result of the proposal.

Ecology

An ecological assessment accompanied the application and the Council’s Planning Ecologist was consulted on the application. The Planning Ecologist examined the details submitted and has confirmed that there is no objection to the scheme in relation to ecology. Conditions have been recommended in relation to monitoring bat activity. Neither the Countryside Council for Wales (now National Resources Wales) nor the Planning Ecologist has raised any concerns over bats or any other aspects of the scheme.

The turbine will clearly have some adverse impact on the local landscape. The Planning Ecologist agrees with the comments made by the Landscape Officer that proposals should be submitted for a Landscape Design Scheme and a Landscape and Biodiversity Mitigation Scheme prior to the commencement of any part of the development and that these can be conditioned as part of any approval that may be granted.

Highways

An access report was submitted during the course of processing the application and this has been considered by the Council’s Head of Transport who observes that any permission that may be granted should include four conditions on the access specification and advisory notes, specifically that any alterations to the public highway should be undertaken via a Section 278 Agreement of the Highways Act 1980.

Telecommunications

A number of organisations were consulted and to date those that have responded have not raised any objections or concerns.

Ministry of Defence

As is usual with this type of proposed development the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has been consulted on this application. Initially, an objection was lodged on the grounds that the proposed development would have an unacceptable impact upon the range control radar at Aberporth. The MoD noted that if the developer was able to overcome these unacceptable impacts that the turbine should be fitted with appropriate aviation lighting.

The developer has submitted a technical proposal to mitigate the unacceptable effects of the proposed development on the range control radar at Aberporth. This proposal has been accepted by the MoD and a planning condition has been recommended that allows the MoD to withdraw its objection to the application. It further recommends a condition in respect of the aviation lighting.

CONCLUSION

After careful consideration of the scheme as submitted and the issues raised by third parties and consultees it is, on balance, considered acceptable.

The site for the mast is relatively isolated and mainly surrounded by farmland. The site is set away from dwellings and is close to a minor public road. In conclusion it is considered that the proposal will have a positive contribution upon the national renewable energy targets. These benefits are considered to outweigh the potential landscape and visual impacts. It is also predicted that there will be no significant impact in terms of noise, ecology and shadow flicker.

It is therefore considered that the proposal is in accordance with the relevant policies and guidance and is recommended for approval subject to the imposition of the following appropriate conditions.

RECOMMENDATION – APPROVAL

CONDITIONS

SUMMARY REASONS FOR APPROVAL

In accordance with Article 3 of the Town & Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2004, the council hereby certify that the proposal as hereby approved conforms with the relevant policies of the Development Plan (comprising the Adopted Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan, 2006 (CUDP)) and material considerations do not indicate otherwise. The policies which refer are as follows:

Application No

W/28286

Application Type

Full Planning

Proposal &

Location

CHANGE OF USE FROM A COMMERCIAL PROPERTY (PUBLIC HOUSE) TO A DOMESTIC PROPERTY AT THREE COMPASSES, CRWBIN, KIDWELLY, CARMARTHENSHIRE, SA17 5DR

Applicant(s)

FELINFOEL BREWERY CO LTD, FARMERS ROW, LLANELLI, CARMARTHENSHIRE, SA14 8LB

Case Officer

Gary Glenister

Ward

Llangyndeyrn

Date of validation

22/05/2013

CONSULTATIONS

Llangyndeyrn Community Council – Objects to the loss of the pub from the village as it is a community facility.

Local Member – County Councillor W T Evans is a Member of Planning Committee and has not therefore made prior comment.

Neighbours/Public – The application has been advertised by posting of two site notices with 27no objections received to date raising the following matters.

• Loss of community facilities.

RELEVANT PLANNING HISTORY

The following applications have been received on the application site:-

GW/01174 New room for band

Approved 06 June 2002

W/04207 Entrance porch

Approved 25 April 2001

APPRAISAL

Members will recall this application was reported to Planning Committee on the 18th July 2013 and was deferred to allow time for the community to enter discussions with the Brewery and seek funding for the community to purchase and manage the premises. The community has subsequently confirmed that funding is not available and therefore is in no position to purchase the premises.

THE SITE

The application site is a disused public house within the village of Crwbin. The pub is immediately adjoining the road with a small outdoor seating area to the front and small yard at the rear. The car park is directly across the road to the North West. To the rear of the premises is a band room which replaced an earlier structure.

The premises has been closed since June 2011 and the Brewery has been marketing the premises without success. The Brewery therefore considers the site unviable and is therefore looking for disposal.

Crwbin has no other public house, however there is a premises in nearby Llangyndeyrn some 1.7 km to the North West.

THE PROPOSAL

The application seeks to change the use of the premises from A3 Food and Drink to C3 residential with no exterior alterations at this time. The car park is also included edged red which indicates that the change of use to residential would include this area of parking to serve the proposed dwelling.

PLANNING POLICIES

In the context of the current development control policy framework, the premises is within the defined development limits of Crwbin as identified in the Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan (UDP) adopted 2006.

Policy GDC2 of the UDP requires that all forms of new development is expected to be designed, sited and landscaped so as to maintain or enhance the physical environment. Particular regard is given to a number of criteria including, the scale, form, materials, siting and layout in relation to the character of the surrounding environment.

Policy GDC11 seeks a satisfactory means of access, parking and where necessary turning facilities, GDC12 states that proposals which generate an unacceptable level of traffic on the surrounding road network which would reduce highway safety on the network or reduce the amenity of residents along the route will be refused. This policy is reinforced by Policy T3 which seeks to ensure that the local road network is sufficient to serve the development and that all development proposals shall be served by appropriate access provision.

Policy C3 seeks retention of Community Facilities unless there are alternative available locally or is no longer required.

THIRD PARTY REPRESENTATIONS

27 letters of objection have been received from residents of the village raising objection to the loss of community facility. There is concern that the post office and shop was lost some time ago and the public house would be a further loss to the village.

The village has formed a Committee in order to attempt to secure grant funding to create a volunteer run community facility with aspirations for an internet café, coffee shop, meeting rooms etc. Objection is also made to the impact on the Welsh language as the community hub would form the basis for encouraging the use of Welsh.

It should be noted that the information submitted from the Brewery is that the site has been empty for over two years, prior to that, it was open for six months, and prior to that it was closed for a year and prior to that there was intermittent trading with longs gaps between tenants. The premises has therefore had just six months trading in the last three and a half years and intermittent trading prior to this. The premises is currently being marketed and an extract from the Brewery’s website showing the particulars has been submitted. Additionally, an Invoice from the Llanelli Star for an advert in Nov 2012 has been included which shows that it has been advertised within the locality. The premises has also been subject to more specialised advertising in the specialist publican newspaper. It is therefore concluded that the premises is no longer a viable commercial proposition and therefore the Brewery seeks disposal.

The application was deferred from the 18 July Committee to allow additional time for the community to enter negotiations with the Brewery and seek funding in order to run the premises as a community hub. Since the application was deferred from Committee in July, the community has attempted to secure funding for their plans however has confirmed that this attempt has failed and therefore is not in a position to pursue the ambition. It can therefore be demonstrated that all reasonable attempts have been made to retain the premises for community purposes.

CONCLUSIONS

After careful consideration of the site and surrounding environs and representations received in respect of the application, it is considered that whilst the proposal involves the loss of a community facility within the village, the pub is not currently operating and has not done so for a number of years.

The Brewery has been attempting to secure a tenant during this time and the premises has been for sale during this time, however has failed to secure a tenant or buyer. There are many objections from local residents to the loss of the community facility, however they have not secured the necessary funds to buy and operate the premises for community purposes.

The adopted policy in the UDP seeks to retain such facilities unless they are no longer required, and the marketing has demonstrated that it is no longer a viable public house. It is also noted that there is a band room to the rear of the premises which is not affected by this application. It is considered that all reasonable attempts have been made to secure a community use and this has not been possible, the proposed change of use therefore complies with the above policies.

RECOMMENDATION – APPROVAL

CONDITIONS

REASONS

NOTE(S)

SUMMARY REASONS FOR APPROVAL

In accordance with Article 3 of the Town & Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2004, the council hereby certify that the proposal as hereby approved conforms with the relevant policies of the Development Plan (comprising Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan (UDP) Adopted July 2006) and material considerations do not indicate otherwise. The policies which refer are as follows:

Application No

W/28452

Application Type

Outline

Proposal &

Location

PROPOSED RESIDENTIAL DWELLING AT LAND AT, FRONDEG, 2 BRO RHYDYBONT, LLANYBYDDER, SA40 9QX

Applicant(s)

MR & MRS DAVIES, SWN Y NANT, GLANDUAR, LLANYBYDDER, SA40 9RN

Agent

ATLANTIC HOMES, AROSFA, FFOSTRASOL, LLANDYSUL, CEREDIGION, SA44 4TB

Case Officer

Jonathan Locke

Ward

Llanybydder

Date of validation

20/06/2013

CONSULTATIONS

Head of Transport No objection subject to the inclusion of conditions.

Llanybydder Community Council – No response received to date.

Local Members - County Councillor Ieuan W Davies is a member of the Planning Committee and therefore has made no prior comment.

Dwr Cymru/Welsh Water – No objection but provides advisory notes.

Neighbours/Public – Neighbouring properties have been consulted by the erection of a site notice within the vicinity of the application site and to date two letters of objection have been received raising the following issues:-

RELEVANT PLANNING HISTORY

The following previous applications have been received on the application site:

W/22025 Renewal of application W/15307 for a

proposed dwelling

Outline planning permission 07 January 2010

W/15307 House

Outline planning permission 11 April 2007

APPRAISAL

THE SITE

The application site is a plot located south of a rural lane which runs off the B4337 to the south west of the site. The site is currently part of the garden of the semi-detached property no. 2 Frondeg. The site is roughly rectangular in shape and generally level with measurements of 15m in width and approximately 21m-24m in length. The site is within the development limits of the settlement. There are 2 newer properties to the rear of the site, one bungalow and one 2 storey dwelling. All the properties along the cul-de-sac are 2 storey. The site can be accessed off the cul-de-sac or the lane to the rear. There is a hedgerow where the site borders the lane.

Application W/15307 was approved in 2007 for a single dwelling at the site and again under reference W/22025 in 2010. Therefore there remains a valid consent for a dwelling on the site until 6th January 2015.

THE PROPOSAL

The application seeks outline planning permission for a residential dwelling with all matters reserved for future consideration. In effect, the current application, if granted, would renew the existing outline permission providing a new 5 year consent.

An indicative layout has been provided showing the new access and a dwelling with a footprint of approximately 10 metres by 5.6 metres. A smaller dwelling should be sought to provide greater private amenity space, however, as the plan is indicative only, it is sufficient to show that the site would be large enough to accommodate a dwelling, perhaps along the same scale of the adjacent property, Branca.

A Code for Sustainable Homes Pre-Assessment report has been submitted which adequately demonstrates a dwelling on this site could achieve the minimum Code Level 3. The submitted Design and Access Statement discusses the main access issues that surround the site and any design considerations relating to access and the character of the surrounding area. From the deliberations within these statements it appears that a dwelling could be accommodated on this site as proposed.

PLANNING POLICIES

In terms of the application's policy context, reference is made to the following Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan (CUDP) policies:-

Policy GDC2 of the Unitary Development Plan (UDP) requires that all forms of new development are expected to be designed, sited and landscaped so as to maintain or enhance the physical environment. Particular regard is given to a number of criteria including, the scale, form, materials, siting and layout in relation to the character and amenity of the surrounding environment.

The site lies within the development limits designated by the adopted CUDP and therefore the appropriate policy is H2 of the plan which allows residential development within limits providing there are no conflicts with other policies and that there are no concerns over amenity, services or highways.

The provisions of Policy GDC9 will be considered i.e. new housing development should include appropriate amenity and utility space proportionate to the scale, layout, and location of the proposed development.

Policy GDC27 concerns development in gardens and states that such proposals will only be permitted where this would not represent overdevelopment of the site or cause loss of amenity and privacy to the dwellings in existence or proposed.

Regarding the relevant highways policies for the development, Policy GDC11 requires that all developments are served by an appropriate access incorporating visibility requirements, and Policy GDC12 seeks to ensure that proposals are only granted permission where they would not generate levels of traffic on the surrounding road network which would cause harm to highway safety on that network or to the amenity of residents living alongside that network. Furthermore, Policy T3 requires that proposed developments will only be permitted where the capacity of the local highway network is sufficient to serve the development without detriment to highway safety, that access provision should be sufficient and that the capacity of the local highway network is sufficient to meet the requirements of the development.

THIRD PARTY REPRESENTATIONS

To date two letters of objection have been received raising the following issues:

The application site is similar in size to the dwellings numbered as 1 and 2 Ty’n y Ffordd to the west and also those properties on Bro Rhydybont immediately to the east of the application site. Furthermore, the submitted indicative layout has effectively demonstrated that not only could the site accommodate a moderate sized dwelling and provide sufficient amenity/parking/turning areas, but it would also not have an unacceptable impact on the level of amenity areas available to the existing dwelling which would retain a sufficient amount of garden amenity area. Therefore, subject to an acceptable design which would be considered as part of a reserved matters application, the proposals are not considered to represent the overdevelopment of the site.

In terms of loss of light it is considered that there is sufficient separation distances between properties for this not to be an unacceptable issue. Along a similar line of argument, there is sufficient separation distances between the application site and neighbouring properties, including the applicant’s own dwelling, for there to not be an unacceptable loss of privacy, and the future design of a dwelling on the site could be designed as such to avoid aspects, such as overlooking first floor windows, that would unacceptably impact on the privacy available to neighbouring properties.

Both objections stated that they would not permit drainage to cross their boundaries. This concern could be addressed by the incorporation of sustainable drainage systems where water runoff from the dwelling could be absorbed into land within the application site. This would therefore not involve the direct running of water across the boundaries of the application site. As this detail would be expected within a reserved matters application it would not form a reasonable reason for refusal at this outline stage.

In terms of highway safety concerns, the Head of Transport have responded with no objections to the proposed development of the site subject to the imposition of conditions. Therefore it is considered that the proposals would not generate a level of additional traffic that would be detrimental to highway safety on the surrounding highway network and could be served by an appropriate access incorporating visibility requirements. These conditions on any consent, if granted, would ensure compliance with Unitary Development Plan highway policies.

Finally, a request for the proposal to include a 2m high boundary to separate the properties has been put forward amongst the objections. This is considered to be a reasonable request. As standard, the applicant would be required to demonstrate sufficient boundary treatment and this would be considered as part of a reserved matters application, required by a planning condition on this consent if granted.

CONCLUSION

The application site is located within the development limits of the settlement and as such would lend itself for consideration under Policy H2 of the plan which seeks to approve residential development within limits subject to accordance with the other policies of the plan. The plot is appropriately sized to accommodate a small scaled dwelling and would not look out of place. The proposal would be able to accommodate a sufficient garden amenity area and an appropriate level of privacy would be achievable for both existing and proposed dwellings. It is also relevant that the existing dwelling would retain a large garden amenity for Frondeg (No.2 Bro Rhydybont) even with the proposed site removed. All other matters concerning the design of the proposed dwelling would be subject to any following reserved matters application. As such, the proposed development is considered to be in accordance with Policy GDC27 of the plan.

There would be no overlooking, overbearance or any other detriment to the amenities of nearby properties or land, and the site would be able to accommodate a dwelling designed to be in accordance with the character of the area. Therefore, the proposal is deemed to comply with Policy GDC2 of the Unitary Development Plan.

With regard to highway considerations, the Head of Transport have responded with no objection to the proposals subject to the imposition of conditions on any permission, and as such the proposed development is considered in accordance with the requirements of Policies GDC11, GDC12 and T3 of the plan.

Finally it is worth noting that this site has a current consent which could yet be implemented. Whilst the 3 year period within which reserved matters should be submitted has passed, it would be a feasible option for the applicant to vary the relevant condition to extend that period and then submit reserved matters accordingly under the current valid Outline consent. This application would renew the current approval and provide a new consent valid for 5 years if granted.

In light of the above appraisal, it is considered that the proposal is acceptable in the context of its surroundings and accords with the general criteria set out in the policies of the UDP. Therefore it is recommended that the proposed development be approved.

RECOMMENDATION – APPROVAL

CONDITIONS

NOTE(S)

SUMMARY REASONS FOR APPROVAL

In accordance with Article 3 of the Town & Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2004, the council hereby certify that the proposal as hereby approved conforms with the relevant policies of the Development Plan (comprising the Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan (UDP) 2006) and material considerations do not indicate otherwise. The policies, which refer, are as follows:

Application No

W/28608

Application Type

Variation of a Planning Condition

Proposal &

Location

AMEND PLANNING CONDITION NUMBERS 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 21, 22 AND 25 TO FACILITATE THE PHASED SUBMISSION OF RESERVED MATTERS AND OTHER DETAILS; REMOVE CONDITIONS 1 AND 24 AND REVISE CONSTRUCTION PHASE PLAN ALL IN RELATION TO DEVELOPMENT OF UP TO 212 HOLIDAY LODGES AND 48 SERVICED APARTMENTS (UP TO 26,529 SQ M C1) AND UP TO 1,709 SQ M OF FLOOR SPACE FOR ANCILLARY FACILITIES (A1, A3 AND D2) INCLUDING RECREATION AND LEISURE FACILITIES (EXTANT PLANNING PERMISSION W/24265) AT LAUGHARNE PARK, CLIFF ROAD, LAUGHARNE, SA33 4SG

Applicant(s)

SEASONS HOLIDAYS PLC, WYNCHGATE HOUSE, WOODLANDS LANE, BRADLEY STOKE, BRISTOL, BS32 4JT

Agent

ALDER KING PLANNING CONSULTANTS - MR DALE EVANS, PEMBROKE HOUSE, 15 PEMBROKE ROAD, CLIFTON, BRISTOL, BS8 3BA

Case Officer

Stuart Willis

Ward

Laugharne Township

Date of validation

24/07/2013

CONSULTATIONS

Head of Transport - Has responded stating they have no observations on the application.

Laugharne Township – Has not commented to date.

Local Member – County Councillor Mrs J Tremlett has not responded to date.

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) – Have provided comments on the conditions to be amended. They have no comments on many of the conditions to be altered/removed. In relation to condition 8 (surface water) they provide advice on what details the scheme should look at. For condition 9 (method statement) they provide comments but no objection. They also have no objection to the alteration of condition 25 (bat mitigation details). In relation to the removal of condition 24 (need to submit a licence relating to protected species) they advise that they condition should remain. They comment that the requirement for the licence is a legislative requirement but that the condition also refers to a copy being submitted to the LPA.

CADW – have not commented to date.

Neighbours/Public - The application has been publicised by the posting of two Site Notices and at Press, with 2 letters of objection having been received from the same person. This raised the following matters:

RELEVANT PLANNING HISTORY

The following previous applications have been received on the application site:

W/24265 Development of up to 212 holiday lodges and 48

serviced apartments (up to 26,529 sqm c1) and up to

1709 sqm of floorspace for ancillary facilities (A1,A3

and D2) including recreational and leisure facilities

Outline planning permission 05 January 2012

W/23948 Application for screening opinion under Regulation 10

of the Town & Country Planning (Environmental

Impact Assessment) (England & Wales) Regulations

1999 (as amended)

Full planning permission 30 November 2010

W/22199 Replacement of 25 existing holiday chalets with

25 holiday lodges

Conservation area granted 05 March 2010

W/22198 Replacement of 25 existing holiday chalets with 25

holiday lodges

Full planning permission 05 March 2010

W/15156 Replacement of 20 existing holiday chalets with 20

two-storey holiday homes

Full planning refused 06 August 2007

W/14406 Replacement of 25 existing holiday chalets with 35

two-storey holiday homes

Withdrawn 14 November 2006

TMT/01660 Extension to existing reception building to form

additional office space including all ancillary works,

parking landscaping etc

Full planning refused 10 October 2002

W/02676 Single storey reception/office building

Full planning permission 28 July 1999

W/00318 Extension to existing dwelling

Full planning permission 04 November 1996

D4/26221 Notification of work to trees in a conservation area

tree felling

D4/26084 Construction of a new games room

Full planning permission 12 December 1995

D4/25905 Extension to swimming pool

Full planning permission 28 September 1995

D4/24255 Variation of planning condition under Section 106

under consent granted on 17 September 1991 to

allow amendments to chalet

Full planning permission 03 February 1994

D4/24253 Replacement maintenance building for holiday park

ground maintenance equipment and storage of sundry

maintenance materials

Full planning permission 18 January 1994

D4/20406 Restructuring of facilities and upgrading holiday

park removing all touring caravans replacing with

45 chalets

Full planning permission 17 September 1991

D4/14721 Erection of communal toilet/shower block

Full planning permission 02 July 1987

D4/13068 Base and residence for the site’s water sport director

Refused 15 January 1986

D4/13081 Extension to existing club buildings

Full planning permission 21 November 1985

D4/12799 Layout for 120 touring caravans (80 for caravan

rallies 40 for summer season) with toilet block &

open air swimming pool

Refusal 17 October 1985

D4/12574 Extension to club room

Full planning permission 30 May 1985

D4/10637 Construction of 11 no holiday chalets

Section 52 Agreement signed 15 March 1985

D4/10638 Construction of 8 no holiday chalets

Approved 26 May 1983

D4/10434 Carcwan rally (29/7-14/8)

Approved 14 April 1983

D4/10413 Proposed new reception area shop and games room

incorporating existing temporary building

Approved 10 March 1983

D4/9913 Enclosure of swimming pool and formation of

changing rooms and sun terrace

Approved 09 September 1982

D4/9504 Construction of swimming pool

Approved 27 May 1982

D4/9279 Construction of open air swimming pool plant room

and changing cubicles

Approved 11 March 1982

D4/19389 Staff accommodation on a temporary basis for

Timeshare sales staff

Withdrawn 20 February 1982

D4/10254 Extension to existing shop and new reception

area & games room Withdrawn

D4/8435 Caravan rally 24/7/82 to 7/8/82

Approved 02 July 1981

D4/6486 Electricity supply

Approved 06 September 1979

D4/5410 Demolition of existing chalets and replace with

motel units

Approved 04 December 1978

D4/4517 Extension to country club comprising of 8 bedrooms

with private bathrooms

Approved 27 April 1978

D4/4159 Erection of a single storey building comprising of

site warden’s dwelling site reception offices stores

and launderette

Approved 09 January 1978

D4/3460 Siting of tenting site and toilet facilities

Refusal 08 June 1977

The relevance of some previous applications at the site is particularly important in relation to extant consents allowing up to 125 units at the site. Below is a breakdown of the extant consents:-

APPRAISAL

Introduction

The application is submitted on behalf of Seasons Holidays PLC to vary and remove conditions imposed on outline planning permission W/24265 in respect of the proposed development of up to 212 holiday lodges and 48 serviced apartments (up to 26,529 sqm C1) and up to 1709 sqm of floorspace for ancillary facilities (A1, A3 and D2) including recreational and leisure facilities.

Procedural Requirements

Prior to the submission of the application the Local Planning Authority was not approached for a “Screening Opinion” for the development of this submission for variation/removal of conditions. Prior to the original application a pre-application screening request was made at the site for approximately 212-220 chalets and hotel, leisure and other facilities at the application site. The LPA, having regard to the provisions of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 1999 determined on that an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was required for the proposed development. An EIA was considered necessary was because the site is located adjacent to the Carmarthen Bay and Estuaries Special Area of Conservation and Taf Estuary SSSI. Therefore it was considered to be situated in an environmentally sensitive area. Furthermore it was considered that the proposal may have a visual impact upon a special landscape area. Additionally CADW considered that the proposed development would require an EIA to assess the impact of the proposal on the Historic Environment.

In October 2010 a formal “Scoping Request” was submitted under planning reference W/23948. Consultation took place with a number of consultees including CADW, CCW, EA, Dyfed Archaeological Trust along with a number of internal consultees. The details of the Scoping Opinion were then issued on 30 November 2010.

Application W/24265 was submitted with an Environmental Statement and outline permission was subsequently approved. This application is to vary/remove conditions on that permission and does not alter the scale or form of the development proposed. In light of the details contained within the original application, the consultation responses during the application, the outcome of the application and the nature and type of alterations proposed to conditions it is not considered that this application requires an EIA.

THE SITE

The application site is an existing holiday park located to the eastern side of the centre of Laugharne. The site has been in operation as a holiday park since the 1960’s. The application site is approximately 9.1 hectares. A further 7 hectares of surrounding land is owned by the applicant. The site is located adjacent to the settlement limits of Laugharne as delineated by the Carmarthenshire UDP. The majority of the site is located within the Laugharne Conservation Area. A central area within the site is a Scheduled Ancient Monument forming a crescent shape and is titled a fort thing. The woodland to the south eastern edged of the site is Milk Wood. The site slopes towards the centre of Laugharne and towards the sea, being steep in parts. Land levels vary from 80m AOD to 20AOD. The site is accessed via a dead end road leading from Victoria Road which leads to the A4066 at the centre of Laugharne. There are a number of listed buildings located to the south eastern boundary of the site. Some buildings in this area are in the ownership of the applicant but not included within the application site. There is a public footpath running along the north western boundary of the site, although outside the site and to Blood Lane along the eastern edge. The Carmarthen Bay Estuaries Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and the Taf Estuary SSSI.

The site is currently occupied by single storey lodge holiday homes of various ages with the site developed sporadically from the 1960’s to 1990’s. In addition to the lodges there is a large house in the middle of the site on the edge of Milk Wood that provides a club house with bar, restaurant and swimming pool. The site largely consists of mown grass area and hard standing for parking. The majority of the buildings on site are single or 2 storey. The main part of the site is rectangular is shape containing limited trees and vegetation. The entrance to the park is 2 ways while internal routes are single track and a one way system is in place.

There have been a number of applications at the site since the original park was established in the 1960’s. The original consent was for a country club and 6 holiday lodges. Various extant permissions are in place to increase the number of lodges on the site to up to 125.

An application was withdrawn in 2006 for the proposed replacement of 25 chalets at the southern end of the site with 25 lodges. An application for the replacement of 20 chalets with 20 lodges was refused in 2007. The application was refused as it was felt that the development proposed at that time would be more prominent and therefore detrimental to the landscape by being incongruous and the precedent this may cause for future developments. Permission was given in 2009 for the replacement of 25 chalets. An associated Conservation Area Consent was also issued at the same time. Some of the chalets in this area have been demolished and therefore this permission is extant.

Outline planning permission was granted on 5th January 2012 for the development of up to 212 holiday lodges and 48 serviced apartments (up to 26,529 sqm C1) and up to 1709 sqm of floorspace for ancillary facilities (A1,A3 and D2) including recreational and leisure facilities with all matters reserved for future consideration.

THE PROPOSAL

This application seeks to vary/remove conditions imposed on W/24265. A total of 28 conditions were imposed on the outline permission.

This application seeks to vary the following conditions:

This application seeks to remove the following conditions:

The reasons given for the proposed changes are to facilitate a phased development of the site and formal implementation of the permission via the commencement of the initial phase.

In relation to condition 2 the changes requested are to allow phased development and approval of reserved matters. The suggested revised condition would confirm that development of the first phase on site be considered commencement of development under the permission and would secure the permission for the site as a whole. It would also require the submission of the reserved matters for all phases within 15 years of the date of the permission.

There are also changes to conditions 3, 5, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 21, 22 and 25. With condition 3 the rewording would make reference to the intention to phase the development. Condition 5 would be reworded to include a phasing plan which has been submitted with this application. Condition 8 (surface water) and condition 9 (pollution prevention) again is to refer to phased development of the site. Changes to condition 13 related to minor wording. Condition 14 relates to landscaping and again the changes are to include reference to phasing. Condition 15 relates to landscaping for specific areas of the site and the changes are to clarify the timing of the submission of details. Condition 21 relates to parking provision and the rewording clarifies the phased development of the site. Condition 22 is concerned with visual appraisals and the changes reflect the phasing of the site. Condition 25 relates to mitigation details for protected species and again the change is to make specific reference to details relating to individual phases.

In relation to conditions 1 and 24 where the request is to remove them the submission feels these are not planning conditions and/or repeat over legislative requirements.

The submission has included suggested wording for the amended conditions.

Whilst the submission is primarily concerned with a phased development of the site overall the latter phases (A-E) are not to be formally fixed but shown for information purposes to allow flexibility for these parts of the site. The application indicates an intention to submit reserved matters for phase 1 shortly after this application is approved.

PLANNING POLICY

The Authority has based its consideration of the proposal in accordance with the current statutory Unitary Development Plan as required under Section 54A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 along with Assembly issued policy guidance and circular advice.

The site is located outside of the development limits of Laugharne as delineated in the Carmarthenshire UDP but adjacent to them. The site is also within and adjacent to a number of designated sites.

GDC3 relates to development in the countryside and outlines what developments are considered appropriate for such locations. This includes where a countryside location is essential and that the applicant has demonstrated such.

Policy GDC8 provides guidance on visual impact and physical topography considerations in development.

In terms of landscaping considerations policies GDC19 and GDC20 apply. GDC19 relates to the retention of landscape features. This states that wherever practical developments should make appropriate provision for the retention and protection of existing trees and hedgerows of high amenity value and also for other landscape features such as watercourses, bankside vegetation and wetlands. GDC20 is concerned with landscape design. Wherever practical developments should include an appropriate and comprehensive landscape design scheme. Any approved scheme should take place within the first planting season following the commencement of development. The policy goes on to provide details of the potential contents of such schemes.

GDC2 is the general development policy and encourages good quality design, landscape issues, visual impact, amenity and privacy concerns, and scale, massing and design being appropriate to the site and its location.

Policy GDC1 relates to sustainable development and aims to reduce car usage, reduce pollution and utilise vacant, underused or previously developed land. Other general polices that apply are GDC11 and GDC12 in relation to highways and traffic aspects of the development. These require appropriate access and parking facilities, including visibility to be provided by the development as well as traffic generation that would be not detrimental to highway safety or amenity. GDC15 relates to previously developed land and contaminated land. Proposals would need to demonstrate that possible problems with the land have been investigated and that any risk to public health, safety and the environment can be managed. GDC34 relates to previously developed land and CCC afford priority to the development of such land in preference to Greenfield sites.

Policy TRS1 relates to tourism development.

TRS3 concerns small scale proposals in the countryside.

TRS4 relates to major tourism proposals in the countryside.

Policy TRS5 concerns new build holiday accommodation.

TRS8 examinees where there is an extension to or intensification of static caravan and chalet sites.

In relation to the natural environment and landscape issues several policies apply.

The UDP contains a number of policies in the Environment - Nature and Landscape Conservation section which apply to this proposal. EN1 relates to site protection for international site such as SAC’s. Proposals which are likely to adversely affect the integrity of a European site or Ramsar site will not be permitted unless the reasons for the development outweigh the importance of the site, or there is no alternative solution for the proposal. The Authority will look to impose conditions or seek obligations/agreements to ensure positive enhancement, protection and management of the site and to provide mitigation/compensatory measures. Development is also not permitted where the site plays host to a priority natural habitat or species unless there are over riding reasons of human health, public safety or benefits to the environment.

Policy EN5 addresses the protection and enhancement of flora and fauna. The LPA should not allow proposals where they would cause harm to species or their habitats protected by legislation where positive mitigation measures cannot be provided. EN6 looks at the retention of habitats. EN9 also looks at protected species and their habitats. Policy EN8 also relates to protected species and their habitats.

The site is adjacent to The Carmarthen Bay Estuaries Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and the Taf Estuary SSSI and therefore policies EN1, EN2, and EN8 apply due to the designations and the features of them. EN1 focuses on site protection of internationally designated sites. This policy resists proposals that would be likely to adversely affect the integrity of the sites unless there is no alternative solution and the importance of the development outweighs the importance of the site or there are overriding reasons of human health or public safety. EN2 looks at regional and local designations and again resists developments where they are likely to cause harm to the designated area and its features. EN8 relates to landscape features of major importance for flora and fauna and once again resists proposals which would harm these features unless the reasons for the development outweigh the need to retain the features. EN16 relates to Special Landscape Areas.

EN11 and EN12 relate to woodlands and woodland management.

EN13 relates to the retention of hedgerows.

Policy UT8 of the UDP looks at surface water issues. The policy requires developments to take account of the impact of surface water drainage and water quality. In particular encouragement is given to soakaways, SUDS amongst other options. Policy UT1 “Infrastructure in New Development” states the Authority will only grant permission where infrastructure is sufficient to meet the needs of the development and that where it is available the public sewer system should be connected to for foul sewerage.

A number of transport related policies are applicable to the scheme.

In terms of transport polices T1, T2, T3 and T4 apply. T1 “Location of New Development” states developments which may have the potential for significant trip generation should be located within the plans existing urban areas or in locations well served by public transport and that are accessible by walking and cycling. T2 relates to major developments and requires safe and convenient pedestrian routes and cycle lanes as well as adequate provision for public transport and should seek to reduce environmental impacts such as the use of SuDS. Policy T3 “Highways Considerations of Development” only allows developments providing the capacity of the local highway network in sufficient to serve the development without detriment to safety of road users and pedestrians and that access provision, including turning areas are of appropriate standards. T4 “Parking Standards for New Developments” requires proposals to not exceed the maximum parking guidelines and standards.

Policy BE13 applies as part of the site is not within a Conservation Area and the rest adjacent to it. This policy requires the impact of the proposed development on the character and appearance of the conservation area to be taken into consideration. BE9 applies as part of the application site is within the boundary of the Conservation Area. This again requires the impact of the proposed development on the character and appearance of the conservation area to be taken into consideration. BE4 applies in relation to sites of archaeological interest. BE1 relates to SAM’s and remains of national importance.

In terms of national guidance and policy Planning Policy Wales (Edition 5) and several Technical Advice Notes are applicable.

TAN18 applies in relation to Transport and the transport assessment submitted by the applicants.

TAN 12 “Design” and TAN13 “Tourism” are particularly applicable.

TAN22 applies in relation to BREEAM and the Code for Sustainable Homes standards and sustainable development as does GDC1. Buildings such as that proposed of an internal floor area of more than 1,000sqm are required to achieve certain sustainable standards.

The Habitats Directive, as implemented by the Conservation (Natural Habitats Etc.) Regulations 2010, contain three "derogation tests" which must be applied by WAG when determine a Bat Licence are also a consideration. A LPA failing to do so would be in breach of Regulation 3(4) of the 2010 Regulations

THIRD PARTY REPRESENTATIONS

Turning to the representations received to date. There have only been objections received from 1 member of the public.

The application would issue a new/revised outline planning permission for the development. However the scheme has not been altered in terms of scale of development or any other details. The only changes relate to the inclusion and/or wording of conditions originally imposed on W/24265. That permission was approved in January 2013 and therefore still valid at this time.

Several of the issues raised by the objector are concerned with matters that would have been assessed in determining the original outline application. This included matters relating to highway safety and the road network as well as comments on the links between the site and Laugharne. The scale of the development was also referred to but again was agreed in the existing outline consent and is not to be altered.

Issues relating to landownership are not a material planning consideration. The availability of the planning application details is also not a relevant consideration. The details for the application have been made available via the usual channels. A lack of awareness of the previous application is also not a consideration. Incorrect notice was served on those with an interest in the land other than the applicant. Following this being highlighted amended notices were served.

The conditions to be removed relate to confirmation that the consent is in outline form and the need to submit copies of protected species licence details to the Authority. The removal of condition 1 confirming the consent is in outline form would not imply the permission is no longer outline. The applicant considers the condition is not necessary as this is clear from the submission and indeed the wording of the permission. Condition 24 is a condition suggested by the Planning Ecologist and NRW. This relates to separate legislation that requires a licence to works affecting protected species. Again the removal of the condition would not mean that a licence was not needed. This would still be required under the relevant legislation but there would be no need to provide evidence of this to the LPA. NRW have been consulted on the application and have feel that the condition should be retained. The removal of the condition would not remove the need to obtain the licence or for the mitigation to be agreed as part of condition 25. Therefore the condition simply requires a copy to be submitted to the Local Planning Authority. It is considered that the condition is not essential and therefore can be removed.

The conditions to be varied are generally altered to make specific reference to the phasing of the site. Details such as surface water drainage, parking spaces, landscaping etc would still need to be submitted. However the details required would only relate to the part of the site which any reserved matters included rather than the site as a whole. There is no concern with these changes and although some conditions currently do not make specific reference to phasing there was a clear indication in the original application that the development of the site would be in phases. Additional details and plan of the phases has been provided to be included within the revised condition 5. These are broadly similar to details within the original submission. The Head of Transport raised no concerns over the rewording of the parking condition. Cadw have been consulted due to the location of a Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM) in the “middle field” area of the site. Cadw have yet to comment on the application however the consultation period has expired. The layout shown in the proposed phasing plan is not significantly different from the plan originally referred to in the conditions. Matters of layout and design remain reserved and therefore the final details of any works/buildings within the zones would be assessed in the reserved matters submissions of the relevant phases. NRW have provided commented on but not objected to any of the conditions to be amended.

The changes to condition 2 are partly concerned with the specific inclusion of phasing. The suggested condition would also confirm that subject to the initial phase of development being implemented within the specified time period that this would implement/secure the consent for the whole of the site. The site is a substantial area and therefore is likely to take a number of years to develop in its entirety. This rewording would make it clear that permission is retained over the whole site in perpetuity following commenced of any phase rather than requiring commencement of all phases within the specified time period. The other change to this condition is to include a latest date for the submission of reserved matters. This is suggested as being 15 years from the date of the altered outline permission. As stated above commencement of the development would be considered to have occurred after the implementation of any phase on the overall site. The addition of the latest date of submission for reserved matters means that the development of the site is not open ended in perpetuity.

CONCLUSION

After careful consideration of the site and its surrounding environs in the context of this application, together with the representations received to date it is considered that on balance the proposed removal of conditions 1 and 24 and the variation of conditions 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 21, 22 and 25 is acceptable.

The application is put forward with the recommendation of approval subject to the following conditions.

RECOMMENDATION – APPROVAL

CONDITIONS

6 Prior to the beneficial use of the 126th unit of accommodation at the site:-

or

REASONS

2 In the interest of visual amenities.

3+4 For the avoidance of doubt and in the interest of visual amenity.

5 To protect historic environment interests whilst enabling development.

7 To prevent flooding and ensure appropriate drainage is provided.

8 To prevent pollution.

9-11 In order to comply with sustainable building standards.

12+13 In the interest of highway safety.

19+20 In the interest of highway safety.

24-26 In order to comply with sustainable building standards.

NOTE(S)

(i) Existing units on site;

(ii) New units;

(iii) New units in the reception block.

SUMMARY REASONS FOR APPROVAL

In accordance with Article 3 of the Town and Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2004, the Council hereby certify that the proposal as hereby approved conforms with the relevant policies of the Development Plan (comprising the Carmarthenshire Unitary Development Plan 2006) and material considerations do not indicate otherwise. The policies, which refer, are as follows: -