Agenda item

Application DM/2021/01693 - Demolition of existing dwelling and erection of a replacement dwelling and an additional dwelling. Overdale, 1 St Lawrence Road, Chepstow, NP16 5BJ


We considered the report of the application and late correspondence which was recommended for approval subject to the conditions outlined in the report and subject to a Section 106 legal agreement.


The local Member for Mount Pleasant attended the meeting by invitation of the Chair and outlined the following points:


·         The demolition of the derelict house is welcome.  However, objectors are asking for the new development that replaces the existing property uses the same footprint and is of similar form, character, size and scale.


·         It was considered that the application is not a simple like for like replacement.  The development footprint is larger than the existing property, the orientation differs with a 90° shift which is at odds with the houses located on St. Lawrence Road. In addition to this change, the applicant wants to build a further four bedroomed dwelling to the rear of the replacement property.


·         The local Member considers that the application is significant infill. It impacts on the local ecology, as well as impacting on the loss of amenity for several residents due to additional car movements, associated pollutions in relation to noise, light and air.  All of this occurring on one of the most challenging stretches of road in the County which abuts an air quality management zone.


·         Residents have raised considerable concerns, outlined in the report of the application, which have caused considerable local anxiety.


·         Regarding the replacement dwelling, residents have serious concerns regarding the report of the application, namely, 6.13, which related to the replacement dwelling being orientated 90° and would not be front facing.  This will produce a fundamentally different outlook in relation to the houses located along that street. The replacement will be visually incongruous.


·         The creation of an additional dwelling to the rear of the plot is the most concerning aspect of the application as it is considered to be overdevelopment of the site and unjustified.


·         This element of the application will impact residents to the side and rear of the plot. If approved, residents’ will be impacted by overlooking, loss of privacy, traffic disturbance, affected by additional vehicle movements and associated air, noise and light pollution.


·         Residents question 6.1.5 of the report regarding how the erection of a new dwelling in a space that was a garden will enhance the local character.


·         The local Member disagrees that this is one of the most sustainable sites within the County.


·         In 2019 the Authority called a climate emergency.  It was considered that to approve this application goes against the Authority’s calling of a climate emergency.


In response, the Development Management Area Manager informed the Committee, as follows:


·         With regard to air quality management, this is one additional dwelling. The Environmental Health department has been consulted and raises no objections.


·         With regard to light and noise pollution, the adjacent property is separated by a fence and there is a garage on the other side. Therefore, noise and light pollution will be minimal in terms of the impact of the adjacent property. Additional tree planting will be undertaken to the rear of the property with a view to protecting the amenity of neighbouring properties.  As this is only one property, there will be limited car movements to and from that property during the day.


·         In terms of design, it differs slightly to the other neighbouring properties but is not out of context with the design and scale positioning of the buildings along the street scene. The application is not incongruous in terms of design materials and the scale is acceptable.  There is a substantial tree in the front garden that will help soften the impact of the dwelling.


·         The density of development is similar in that location. The building at the rear of the property is well screened from the front elevation.


Having considered the report of the application and the views expressed, the following points were noted:


·         The Highways Department has not raised any concerns regarding vehicle turning on site.  Highways and parking arrangements are therefore acceptable.


·         A garage is proposed at the rear property.


·         The roof tiles will be concrete.  Samples of materials can be conditioned.


·         The orientation of the replacement dwelling remains front to back, is more linear in its form and is slightly narrower providing access to the side of the property to the property at the rear.


·         In due course, the Tree Officer could be asked to consider putting a tree preservation order on the trees at the site. However, the trees lie outside the Conservation area and are not currently protected but they are to be retained as part of the planning application.


·         The Highways department has not raised objections but has requested passing places.  However, Planning officers had made the recommendation to approve the application despite these concerns as the length of the driveway is linear in form and the number of traffic movements to and from the rear property will be limited.


·         The root protection zones of the trees will be maintained and protected throughout any demolition or construction.


·         Within the framework of the replacement Local Development Plan officers are looking at increasing our energy efficiency.


The local Member summed up as follows:


·         Highways concerns were reiterated given the plot’s boundary and associated tree route infrastructure and it was considered that this would be difficult to achieve.


·         No bat survey had been undertaken.


·         The electricity pole to be removed supplies electricity to more than 20 properties. It has yet to be removed.


·         Any new development should have regard to the character, form, scale, siting and layout of the neighbouring buildings that surround it.  It was considered that the plans and the application conflict in this regard.


In response, the Development Management Area Manager informed the Committee, as follows:


·         The electricity pole still remains.  However, it has been confirmed that the cables have been put under ground. The removal of the pole is a separate matter for neighbours to deal with the electricity company.


·         The ecologist considers that the assessments were sufficient and the net benefit was acceptable.


It was proposed by County Councillor A. Easson and seconded by County Councillor M. Powell that application DM/2021/01693 be approved subject to the conditions outlined in the report and subject to a Section 106 legal agreement.


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


For approval             -           12

Against approval      -           2

Abstentions               -           2


The proposition was carried.

We resolved that application DM/2021/01693 be approved subject to the conditions outlined in the report and subject to a Section 106 legal agreement.



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