The representative of the Head of Development Management made the following points by way of introduction:-
1. The application had been referred to Committee by Councillor Bolton;
2. The application had previously been considered at the DC B Committee on 25 April where it had been deferred for officers to seek further amendments to the roof scheme due to concerns that it would result in unacceptable loss of light and amenity to neighbouring gardens;
3. In response, the applicant had submitted a revised application which included a hipped roof form at the eastern side of the building and the boundary fence being reduced to 1.8m height at the rear and redesigned to a stepped design to increase privacy for occupants and neighbours. There was also a revised sunlight assessment study;
4. Officers had reassessed the application and found that there was not unacceptable harm. The applicant had readdressed the roof impact and officers deemed the application acceptable and recommended grant subject to conditions.
The following points arose from questions and debate:-
1. It was confirmed that the full application was before the Committee for approval based on its merits. However the minutes for the previous application were a public document and the Committee should give great weight to them in their deliberations;
2. It was noted that the application fell within the Conservation Area for Bedminster and the building was listed which were material planning considerations. However, officers found the design not so harmful as to warrant refusal and the loss could be justified;
3. The applicant had considered amending the other side of the roof but this would not impact on light and would alter the internal layout;
4. Councillor Brook stated the design was of a high quality and sympathetic within a Conservation Area. This proposal was a great improvement on the existing building;
5. Councillor Clough believed the amendments to the roof design did not address the previous Committee’s reasons to defer the application and was minded to vote against the officer recommendation;
6. Councillor Hance expressed concern that the massing had not been addressed and questioned whether the design was an improvement on the current building. She was minded to vote against the officer recommendation;
7. Councillor Bradley questioned whether the applicant had sufficiently addressed the overshadowing and felt the internal design layout was not a valid argument;
8. Councillor Davies was content with the application and moved the officer recommendation and this was seconded by Councillor Brook. On being put to the vote it was lost – 2 for, 7 against, 1 abstention. The Chair then proposed that the application be refused due to unacceptable overshadowing of surrounding residential properties and loss of light caused by the design of the roof, the impact on residential amenity and that the application was within a Conservation Area. This was seconded by Councillor Clough. On being put to the vote, it was:-
Resolved (7 for, 2 against, 1 abstention) – that planning permission be refused for the following reasons:-
The design of the roof as proposed would lead to unacceptable overshadowing of surrounding residential properties and would therefore have a detrimental impact on residential amenity, contrary to Core Strategy Policy BCS21 (Quality Urban Design) and Policies DM26 (Local Character & Distinctiveness) and DM27 (Layout and Form) of the Site Allocations and Development Management Policies (Adopted July 2014). For this reason, the design would also lead to harm to this part of the Bedminster Conservation Area contrary to Core Strategy Policy BCS22 (Conservation and the Historic Environment) and Policy DM31 (Heritage Assets) of the Site Allocations and Development Management Policies (Adopted July 2014).