Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee - Thursday, 22nd October, 2020 6.00 pm

Venue: This meeting will be livestreamed and can be watched via

Contact: Wendy Le, Democratic Services Officer  Email:


No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 277 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 17 September 2020.


Additional documents:


The minutes of the Planning Committee held on 17 September 2020 were approved as a true and correct record.


Item of Urgent Business

To receive additional items that the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency, in accordance with Section 100B (4) (b) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Additional documents:


There were no items of urgent business.


Declaration of Interests

Additional documents:


There were no declarations of interests.



Declarations of receipt of correspondence and/or any meetings/discussions held relevant to determination of any planning application or enforcement action to be resolved at this meeting

Additional documents:


Councillor Lawrence declared that she had received a voicemail.


The Committee declared they had received an email or phone call from Hilary Goodban in regards to 19/01058/OUT.


Councillors Potter and Rice declared receiving an email from Gillian Sanders in regards to 20/01051/FUL.


Planning Appeals pdf icon PDF 142 KB

Additional documents:


There were no questions or comments from the Committee.




That the report was noted.


19/01058/OUT Land part of Little Thurrock Marshes, Thurrock Park Way, Tilbury (deferred) pdf icon PDF 263 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 13 – 96 of the Agenda was presented by Matthew Gallagher. Since the publication of the Agenda, there had been two updates, the first was that the Applicant’s representative had sent legal advice from a QC which Members had also received. The second was a letter of objection from a resident highlighting the flood risk; highway safety particularly at the junction between Churchhill Road and Dock Road; and did not feel that the reasons for approval put forward by Members were enough to outweigh the harm to the Green Belt.


Matthew Gallagher went through the application proposals and highlighted that the reasons that Members had provided for wanting to approve the report were assessed on pages 27 – 31 of the report. The benefits of the scheme and the Members reasons for wanting to depart from the Officer’s recommendation in March was not considered to clearly outweigh the harm to the Green Belt, therefore a case of Very Special Circumstances (VSC) did not exist and the Officer’s recommendation to refuse planning permission remained.


Referring to the trees on the site and the Ecology Adviser’s notes within the report, Councillor Byrne questioned whether the shade of the trees, if left to grow, would affect the invertebrate interests on the site. Matthew Gallagher explained that the existing habitats on the site were important to invertebrates and that the current site consisted of a mix of vegetation alongside bare grounds. If the vegetation was left to overgrow, there would be increased shading and the interest to invertebrates would diminish. He referred to page 17 of the Agenda and highlighted that the site had been identified as a potential non-statutory Local Wildlife Site (LoWS) which was a material consideration as legislation required the Local Planning Authority (LPA) to take into the interests of biodiversity and wildlife conservation. If the scheme was to be approved, ecological mitigation and compensation would be required.


Councillor Lawrence commented that there had been horses on the site during the site visit and questioned whether the site had been maintained by the land owners or by volunteers. Matthew Gallagher answered that to his knowledge, the site had not been maintained and that the horses were potentially preventing an overgrowth of vegetation which, as an indirect result, was helping to keep the diversity of the habitat. Without the horses, the vegetation would overgrow and would then become an interest to other biodiversity interests. Although the site was not yet a non-statutory designated LoWS, biodiversity habitats and protected species were material planning considerations which Members needed to consider.


The Chair noted the site was next to Asda and queried, if the application was approved, whether a safe footpath could be provided for pedestrians to walk through the site to access Asda instead of walking along the industrial estate path. It would also be in the interests of potential residents on the proposed development to have a safer footpath. Matthew Gallagher explained that the site did  ...  view the full minutes text for item 54.


20/00983/ELEC Tilbury Green Power, Tilbury Freeport, Tilbury, RM18 7NU pdf icon PDF 517 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 97 – 120 of the Agenda was presented by Matthew Gallagher. Since the publication of the Agenda, there had been one update which was a consultation response from Highways England who had raised no objection in regards to the proposed amendment to exclude the river jetty.


The Vice-Chair questioned whether there was a practical reason for removing the jetty. Matthew Gallagher answered that the Applicant was fairly confident that road transport would continue to be the most economically viable solution for the power station and would not need the jetty although, as explained in the report, there could be a point where river transport could become viable and the jetty would be handy at that time.


Referring to paragraphs 6.3 to 6.7, Steve Taylor sought clarification on whether there was an intention to use the river to diversify routes as that had been the intention when the application first came to Committee. He commented that there could be maintenance costs where there were issues of unauthorised access to the jetty. Matthew Gallagher explained that the jetty was within the port complex which was not easy to access. The original application was in 2008 and national policy for energy generally encourages sustainable modes of transport, subject to cost effectiveness. The Applicant had submitted a viability statement which concluded that rail and/or river transport was more expensive than road transport.  Officers had no reason to dispute the applicant’s statement, however a more robust planning condition was required to require review and potential implementation of sustainable transport modes.


Councillor Rice felt use of the river was needed as it helped minimise the transport of waste on the roads. Councillor Potter felt the application to remove the jetty was disgusting as HGVs carrying waste would be used on Thurrock’s roads instead and would contaminate the Thurrock’s environment and air quality. Matthew Gallagher said that Highways England was the responsible body for the road network (A1089) and had raised no concerns. It would be for the Secretary of State to consider the cost effectiveness of the rail, road and river use and to make the decision. Councillor Rice commented that the Secretary of State needed to be made aware that the Port of Tilbury had a railway track that could be used and that the A1089 was already reaching its capacity which raised concerns of air quality. Matthew Gallagher explained that the nearest Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) to the site was at Calcutta Road, Tilbury but the A1089 to Tilbury Docks was not a designated AQMA.


The Chair proposed the Officer’s recommendation and the Vice-Chair seconded this.


FOR: (7) Councillors Gary Byrne, Mike Fletcher, Tom Kelly, Angela Lawrence, Gerard Rice, Sue Sammons and Sue Shinnick.


AGAINST: (1) Councillor Dave Potter.




20/01065/FUL Treetops School, Buxton Road, Grays, Essex, RM16 2WU pdf icon PDF 489 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 121 – 146 of the Agenda was presented by Nadia Houghton. Since the publication of the Agenda, there had been a few updates. A consultation response from Environmental Health Officer who raised no objections subject to a CEMP condition. A consultation response from Essex Police with guidance regarding the development following the Secured by Design guidance with particular reference to the community use. This approach had been taken within the recommendation and conditions relating to the community use and it was considered that there were no objections arising as a result.  A letter of support had also been received from the CEO of the Treetops Learning Community.


The Chair referred to a previous planning application near the current application’s site where there had been traffic issues along Buxton Road. There had been a discussion of a potential roundabout at Treetops School that would link to the new rugby clubs nearby and he sought more detail on this. Nadia Houghton explained that the current access arrangements via Buxton Road had been considered to be acceptable for the recently approved new school given the school’s size and existing capacity. There had been discussions regarding the proposal of a new roundabout off to the north of Stanford Road which had been ongoing for a year and the Council was still considering its options regarding this. The Chair felt road infrastructures were important as most roads in Thurrock were at capacity and needed to be considered to avoid potential problems in the future.


The statement of support from Paul Smith, CEO of Treetops Learning Community, was read out by Democratic Services.


Councillor proposed the Officer’s recommendation which was seconded by Councillor Shinnick.


FOR: (8) Councillors Gary Byrne, Mike Fletcher, Tom Kelly, Angela Lawrence, Dave Potter, Gerard Rice, Sue Sammons and Sue Shinnick.






The application was approved, subject to conditions.


(Suspending orders were agreed at 8.10pm to allow the Committee to continue until the end of the Agenda).


(The Chair announced that item 12 would be heard before item 11.)


20/01053/FUL 63 Wharf Road, Stanford Le Hope, Essex, SS17 0DZ pdf icon PDF 232 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 167 – 178 of the Agenda was presented by Nadia Houghton.


The Vice-Chair questioned what local amenity would be lost as the site was overgrown and could not be accessed. Nadia Houghton explained that there was a small path around the back of existing homes that allowed residents to access their bins. The new development would be built very close to existing homes and there would be a poor outlook for the proposed bungalows as it would face directly into the back of those existing homes. She explained that the proposed development was a particular form of backland development that would be out of character with the area.


Councillor Rice asked whether two cars could pass in the proposed 4.8m access. Julian Howes confirmed that two cars would be able to pass in the proposed 4.8m access but that there would be pedestrian access issues. He explained that it was not just a matter of pedestrian visibility but the Applicant had also not shown the potential visibility splays for vehicles either. The junction would have several cars coming out and there were also issues regarding stagger on Cabbons Crescent.


Steve Taylor questioned whether there were trees and shrubbery around the area where the proposed 4.8m access would be. Nadia Houghton answered that the actual access would be just over half the width of bungalow no.63 as the Applicant also proposed four parking spaces adjacent to the access along with a pedestrian footpath; a landscaped strip between the four parking spaces and bungalow no. 61 so the width would not be the full 4.8m mentioned.


The statement of objection from Keith Mager, a resident, was read out by Democratic Services.


The statement of objection from Ward Councillor, Terry Piccolo, was read out by Democratic Services.


The statement of support from Gary Coxall, the Agent, was read out by Democratic Services.


Councillor Rice questioned the difference between the current application and the previous application 08/01054/FUL that had been approved at Committee in 2009. Nadia Houghton explained that the 2009 application had proposed for eight dwellings and had sought to remove bungalow no. 57. The layout was very similar to the current application and the 2009 application had also been recommended for refusal with almost identical reasons to the current application particularly relating to the overdevelopment cramped nature of the site and layout; the amenity impacts; concerns about the access; and the backland development and its impact on the character of the area. Members at the consideration of the 2009 application had resolved to grant planning permission subject to a legal agreement that the eight bungalows would be secured for over 55’s. No such agreement had been secured and there were also issues in relation to the red line plan so no planning permission had ever been issued and the Applicant withdrew the 2009 planning application. With the current application and since the 2009 application, new planning policies had been introduced in the NPPF in 2012 and in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 57.


20/01051/FUL 40 High Road, Fobbing, Essex, SS17 9HN pdf icon PDF 508 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 147 – 166 of the Agenda was presented by Lucy Mannion.


Steve Taylor mentioned that the dropped kerb shown in the Officer’s presentation used to have a gate behind the hedge row that was used to hay from there to the farm across the road.


The statement of support from Nick Westlake, the Agent, was read out by Democratic Services.


Councillor Byrne questioned what features of the proposed dwellings indicated that it was designed for over 55’s such as a ramp. Lucy Mannion answered that there were no specific features indicating that the dwellings were for over 55’s and that anyone could live there.


Councillor Rice questioned if the proposed dwellings were secured for over 55’s. Lucy Mannion answered that the location was not suitable for over 55’s and that an agreement could be secured for over 55’s to purchase the homes but this could potentially be overcome by future buyers.


Steve Taylor noted that the previous application for four proposed dwellings had been refused and the current application now proposed five dwellings. He questioned whether the Applicant had discussed the application with the LPA before submitting it. Lucy Mannion said that the Applicant had not approached the LPA for advice or discussion before submitting the application since the refusal of the first application.


Councillor Lawrence thought that the location of the proposed development was ideal as it was not in a busy area. She also pointed out that there would be changes to the Green Belt soon through the Development Plan and that Thurrock needed to be more forward thinking before other bigger companies took these opportunities of developments. The Vice-Chair noted the speaker statement and thought there was a local need for homes for older people and that there was not a good supply of homes for over 55’s. He felt more weight should have been attached to specialist older people’s home need and that some of the case of VSC put forward by the Applicant should be considered again.


Councillor Rice pointed out that the Applicant, as part of the s106 agreement, would remove the Permitted Development Rights (PDR) to ensure the proposed bungalows would remain bungalows forever. He stated that there was a lack of bungalows in Fobbing and that there was a planning application down the road that was for 180 homes. He referred to the correspondence from Gillian Sanders who had given a history of the site in that a home had been on that site but had been bombed in the war and had never been replaced. He said the site was not within the Fobbing Conservation area; the proposed development was well connected to the central village with bus stops nearby that arrived every hour and that the internal designs of the proposed dwellings were good as they were single storey with rear gardens.


The Chair did not feel that the comments regarding the previous building on site in 1939 was relevant to the application. Officers explained that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 58.


20/00905/FUL Land Part of St Cleres Hall Adjacent to James Court, Stanford Road, Stanford Le Hope, Essex pdf icon PDF 462 KB

Additional documents:


The report on pages 179 – 198 was presented by Lucy Mannion. There had been one update to the report which was from the Applicant highlighted their dismay at the objections raised in the speaker statement.


Councillor Lawrence raised concerns on the entrance to the site from Stanford Road as it was dangerous where cars cut across houses to get to the other side of the road. She felt these concerns had a knock on effect and should be resolved before approving the current application. Lucy Mannion said that the Council was aware of the issues but that these were outside the remit of the current application before the Committee. Julian Howes explained that the original application had access through St Cleres Golf Club access and barriers had been erected to prevent cars from cutting across London Road to the houses and going over the kerbs. Recently, a vehicle was grounded at the site trying to avoid the barriers but the on-going issue of parking would be a planning enforcement issue.


The Committee noted the incomplete works of the car park on the site and questioned whether the failure of the incomplete works could be incorporated as a condition within the current planning application. Officers explained that the car park was outside of the red line boundary of the site application and could not add as a condition to the current application. The development of the current site would enable better access to the existing residents. However, the car park issue could be looked at as an enforcement case where concerns would be actioned.


The statement of objection from Ward Councillor, Terry Piccolo, was read out by Democratic Services.


The Chair sought clarification on the number of car park visitor spaces. Julian Howes explained that there was 1 car park visitor space between the proposed five dwellings as the proposed development was in a medium accessibility area so was close to local amenities and transport.


The Vice-Chair proposed a site visit to see the issues of the incomplete car park works that had been raised in the speaker statement and the development of the first site. Councillor Rice seconded the site visit.


FOR: (6) Councillors Gary Byrne, Mike Fletcher, Dave Potter, Gerard Rice, Sue Sammons and Sue Shinnick.


AGAINST: (2) Councillors Tom Kelly and Angela Lawrence.




The application was deferred for a site visit.