Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee - Tuesday, 12th September, 2023 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, County Hall, The Rhadyr, Usk, NP15 1GA and remote attendance

Contact: Democratic Services 


No. Item


Declarations of Interest


County Councillor Jayne McKenna declared a personal, non-prejudicial interest pursuant to the Members’ Code of Conduct in respect of application DM/2023/00939 as a family member works for the applicant.


Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 324 KB


The minutes of the Planning Committee meeting dated 1st August 2023 were confirmed and signed by the Chair.


Application DM/2023/00063 - Conversion of barn to dwelling and installation of sewage treatment plant. Proposed Barn Conversion, Gethley Road, Parkhouse, Trellech pdf icon PDF 175 KB

Additional documents:


We considered the report of the application and late correspondence which was presented for refusal for the reasons outlined in the report.


The local Member for Mitchel Troy and Trellech United, County Councillor Richard John, attended the meeting by invitation of the Chair and outlined the following points:


·         Gethley Barn was originally built in the 1700s. Recently, the property has fallen into disrepair.


·         The applicant is an agricultural worker at Llan Y Nant Farm and wants to remain in her community but also needs to be close to the family farm itself for work and health purposes. The applicant has had serious health issues recently. The barn conversion would provide ideal accommodation for an agricultural worker.


·         Currently, the building is falling into ruin and was considered to be out of keeping with the landscape.


·         Approval of the application would provide a low impact, affordable property for a young person.


·         The application differs from other similar applications due to its proximity to the family farm and the applicant’s specific personal circumstances.


·         The proposed design is sympathetic to the building’s historic background and its rustic character is proposed to be protected.


·         The visual impact on the Wye Valley AONB is minimal and the building is proposed to be in keeping with similar barns within the area.


·         The local Member asked that the Committee considers approval of the application due to the very specific circumstances outlined.


The applicant’s agent, David Glasson, attended the meeting by invitation of the Chair and outlined the following points:


·         This is not a typical Monmouthshire barn. Research indicates that it goes back to 1765 and is a survivor of the ancient Gethley Farm hamlet.


·         Repairs have been undertaken over the years. All barns require repairs, but new uses must be found, or they will be lost.


·         The applicant has tried to unsuccessfully purchase a one bedroomed property in Devauden but is unable to obtain a mortgage as a single person with an agricultural wage. The applicant requires a permanent home for her health and work and to receive family support.


·         The proposed conversion will not impinge on the Wye Valley AONB.


·         The applicant will contribute to a Section 106 agreement if required and subject to the details.


·         The report of the application has appended a previous appeal decision for a rural enterprise dwelling, and it was considered not to be relevant for this application. It was lodged by the applicant’s father under a different policy context.


·         The application is for a conversion and should be considered under planning policy H4.


·         Policy H4 is satisfied in all respects. The report of the application is misleading in its claim that only a small part of the original walls is being retained. The majority is being retained.


·         The report of the application bears no relationship to the structure report. It was considered to be false to state that the majority of the barn required rebuilding. Barn conversions often need an element of repair allowing for up to 30% rebuilding.


·         Most barn  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.


Application DM/2022/00473 - Proposal of 7 mews cottages to replace Hebron Hall, a disused Pentecostal chapel and community room positioned off Monnow Street in Monmouth. Proposed removal of an existing garage. Creation of a new public through route from Monnow Street to Howell's Place. Pentecostal Church, Monnow Street, Monmouth, NP25 3EQ pdf icon PDF 354 KB


We considered the report of the application and late correspondence which was recommended for approval subject to the conditions outlined in the report.


The application had been presented to Planning Committee on 4th July 2023 with a recommendation for refusal.  However, the Committee had been minded to approve the application subject to the conditions being confirmed by the Delegation Panel. The conditions, outlined in the report, had been presented to the Council’s Delegation Panel on 10th August 2023.


In noting the detail of the application, the following points were identified:


·         At the July 2023 Planning Committee meeting and after detailed debate, the Committee used planning balance to depart from Planning Policy in relation to flooding given the regeneration of the site, the provision of the pedestrian link and that the consequences of flooding could be reasonably managed with living accommodation being on the first floor.


It was proposed by County Councillor Ben Callard and seconded by County Councillor Maureen Powell that application DM/2022/00473 be approved subject to the conditions outlined in the report.


Upon being put to the vote, the following votes were recorded:


For approval             -           13

Against approval      -           0

Abstentions               -           1


The proposition was carried.


We resolved that application DM/2022/00473 be approved subject to the conditions outlined in the report.



Application DM/2022/01155 - Hybrid application comprising: 1) Full planning for the erection of a roadside facility comprising petrol filling station, 2no. drive through units and associated development; and 2) Outline application for storage and distribution / logistics or industrial / manufacturing floor space and associated development (B2/B8 use class). Land At Newhouse Farm Industrial Estate, Chepstow pdf icon PDF 237 KB


We considered the report of the application and late correspondence which was recommended for approval subject to the conditions outlined in the report with an additional condition to secure the provision of electric vehicle charging points on site in accordance with details to be agreed with the local planning authority prior to works commencing on site, and to be installed in accordance with the approved details and available for use by customers prior to the development being brought into use.


The local Member for Bulwark and Thornwell, County Councillor Sue Riley, also a Planning Committee Member, outlined the following points:


·         The petrol station will take pressure off Highbeech roundabout.


·         The employment prospects are welcome.


·         Concerns were expressed regarding the safety of the roundabout where some pedestrians will take the shortest route. Further consideration is required regarding the safety of the most direct route from Bulwark to the takeaway site.


·         Complaints have been received regarding accumulation of rubbish at a takeaway site. A request was made for additional bins to be located on the route to and from the site.


The Development Management Area Team Manager responded as follows:


·         A request had been made for additional bins to be located on the site plan. The public is expected to be socially responsible and to use the bins provided on site. However, this is not an issue for the Planning Department to manage.


·         The Planning Department wants to actively discourage pedestrians crossing the roundabout. Crash barriers are in place to prevent pedestrians from doing this. The underpass nearby allows pedestrians to safely travel from Bulwark to the south of the roundabout. The pedestrian route then continues towards the site.


·         The applicant will provide additional signage regarding access to the site along the route which will be secured via a Section 106 agreement.


The Member for Wyesham outlined the following points:


·         Information was requested regarding how the site will be used by passing motorists and its effect on the vitality of neighbouring town centres.


·         Consideration should be given to the provision of a controlled pedestrian crossing near the site.


·         Litter on the site is a concern.


Councillor Dominic Power, representing Chepstow Town Council, attended the meeting by invitation of the Chair and outlined the following points:


·         Chepstow does require enhanced employment opportunities for its young people.


·         Concern was expressed regarding the safety of people using the site via pedestrian access.


·         The site neighbours Thornwell and Bulwark and there will be many people attracted to the site from these locations. Concern was expressed that the roundabout will be used as a direct route to the site rather than using the conventional safe routes. This is an overriding safety concern.


·         Chepstow Town Council considers that insufficient consideration had been given to this proposal to allow it to progress.


The applicant’s agent, Matthew Gray, attended the meeting by invitation of the Chair and outlined the following points:


·         The site has been allocated for employment generating development and planning policy at a local level for in excess  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Application DM/2023/00939 - Change of use from residential to mixed use - Residential/Childminder. 75 St Lawrence Park, Chepstow, NP16 6DQ pdf icon PDF 212 KB


We considered the report of the application and late correspondence which was recommended for approval subject to the conditions outlined in the report.


The local Member for Mount Pleasant, County Councillor Paul Pavia, addressed the Committee via video recording and outlined the following points:


·         This is a contentious and delicate application.


·         From the rationale behind the enforcement investigation as subsequent application for change of use has been laid out in the report of the application.


·         The majority of objections raised are from residents in St. Lawrence Park and concerns have been raised regarding a range of issues such as noise and disturbance relating to activity on the site, loss of own personal amenity, lack of parking and road safety issues and pollution. All these issues are outlined in the report of the application.


·         Whether a residential location in a dense estate and limited cul-de-sac is suitable for such business use. The business has been operating on the site since 2017 and is known by Monmouthshire County Council Early Years Services and by the regulator Care Inspectorate Wales.


·         There is also a large number of supporting correspondence from affected parents and from people who know the applicant although many of these do not live in the near vicinity.


·         Praise the professional way in which the child-minding business is operated, emphasize the local acute need for such child-minding services and highlight the provisions that are in place that aim to mitigate the disruption.


·         It is understood that the applicant has a number of policies that clients are expected to adhere to in order to mitigate the impact of issues such as noise and parking disruption. However, the local Member is unaware if these polices do reduce impact and whether such mitigation steps are considered to be acceptable by neighbours living close to the property in the cul-de-sac. Many of these neighbours have considered it necessary to respond to the application’s consultation in order for the Planning Committee to hear their views on this matter.


·         There is an acknowledgement in some of the objecting comments that there have been improvements to noise and disruption over recent months. However, the view reflected is that this has been due to the planning applications pending. Concern has been expressed that if this application is approved then the problems may recur. 


·         The local Member considered that the Planning Committee needed to fully satisfy itself that the residents living directly in the vicinity of the property will not have their own personal peace and amenity infringed if the application is approved and whether any further conditions should be imposed.


·         The applicant has informed the local Member that they have no intention of extending their child-minding business. However, there is a degree of scepticism amongst their near neighbours as to whether this is the case in light of the previous approved application. 


·         If the Committee is minded to approve the application then it should be mindful of the conditions outlined in the report which will provide neighbours with some  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


New Appeals Received - 1st April to 30th June 2023 pdf icon PDF 334 KB


We noted the new appeals received by the Planning Department for the period 1st April to 30th June 2023.