Agenda item

Planning application - MC/21/1287 - Land at Town Road, Cliffe Woods, Rochester, Medway

Strood Rural


Application for approval of reserved matters being appearance, landscaping, layout and scale, pursuant to planning permission MC/19/0287 - Outline planning permission with some matters reserved (appearance landscaping layout and scale) for up to 225 residential dwellings including  up to 25% affordable housing, introduction of structural planting and  landscaping, informal public open space and children's play area, surface  water flood mitigation and attenuation, vehicular access point from Town  Road and associated ancillary works.




The Head of Planning outlined the planning application in detail and reminded the Committee that in May 2017, the Council had refused an outline application for development of this site for the erection of up to 255 residential dwellings. However, following a public inquiry, the Planning Inspector had recommended that the appeal be allowed but the Secretary of State had then called in the appeal for his determination.


The Secretary of State had subsequently dismissed the appeal on two grounds, one relating to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the other due to the lack of an adequate local bus service. However, since that decision, the NPPF had been changed and therefore the first reason for dismissing the appeal was no longer applicable and, when considering a revised planning application MC/19/0287, it had been noted that a financial contribution to fund a new bus service had been agreed. Therefore, the two reasons given by the Secretary of State for dismissing the original appeal had been addressed and therefore in 2019, the Committee had no alternative but to approve the outline application subject to conditions and a Section 106.


The principle of the development at this site had therefore been established by the granting of outline planning permission under planning application MC/19/0287 for up to 225 dwellings.


The Head of Planning informed the Committee that a new developer had now taken over the site and the current application sought approval of all reserved matters, except access, for 184 dwellings. Access to the site had been approved as part of the outline application and therefore those matters now requiring approval related solely to appearance, landscaping, layout and scale.


He confirmed that the development would include 25% affordable housing (46 properties).


The proposal would comprise of onsite open space, children’s play space surface water attenuation and ancillary works, a landscape buffer along the eastern and southern boundaries of the site and a pedestrian link to the adjoining footpath to the north of the site.


To the north of the site a separate, full application for allotments had been submitted and this application had also been included on the agenda for consideration at this meeting.


The Head of Planning suggested that if the Committee was minded to approve the application, a new condition 4 be approved dealing with energy efficiency and climate change as set out on the supplementary agenda advice sheet and he drew attention to an amendment to the planning appraisal section of the report relating to Climate Change and Energy Efficiency.


The Committee discussed the report and the Head of Planning and Principal Transport Planner answered questions on a number of issues including: provision of a bus shelter and real time information, cycle routes, hedgerows, access, private and open space allocation and management, cat ownership, energy efficiency/climate change and current regulations, school places and 106 educational contributions, electric vehicle charging points and the traffic management plan.


Arising from the discussion Members requested that:


·       the welcome pack for each new homeowner include details of local cycle links and bus service credits;

·       the location and provision of real time information of bus services be the subject of liaison with local Ward Councillors;

·       when more information is available on the agreed S278 and timings as well as traffic management, details to be shared with Ward Councillors.

·       condition details pursuant to landscaping consider provision of a replacement hedge along boundary with properties in Ladyclose Ave.


During discussion, it was suggested that as this planning application involved detailed information and drawings, the application be deferred to enable more time for this information to be considered. In response, the Head of Planning informed the Committee that in line with Government recommended guidance on the national planning application process, this application had previously been the subject of a detailed presentation to Members by the developers. In addition, officers within the Planning Team were always available to speak to Members of the Committee on planning applications and Ward Councillors had taken up this opportunity in advance of the meeting.


The suggestion of a deferral was not supported upon being put to the vote.




Approved with conditions 1 – 3 as set out of the reasons stated in the report and condition 4 as follows:


4.       The development shall be carried out in accordance with the climate change and energy efficiency measures details in the letter Redrow Homes – Sustainability and Energy Efficiency dated and received 1 February 2022.


Prior to the occupation of the 184th dwelling a verification report shall be submitted to and approved in writing by the local planning authority. The verification report shall detail and confirm the measures that have been implemented.


Reason: In the interests of energy efficiency and climate change in accordance with paragraphs 8, 149, 150 and 151 of the National Planning Policy Framework

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