Agenda item

19/00828/FUL Land Adjacent George And Dragon, East Tilbury Road, Linford, Essex (Deferred)


(In line with Thurrock Council’s Constitution, Chapter 5, Part 3(d), 13.5, Councillors Akinbohun and Chukwu were unable to participate or vote on the application as they had not been present when the application was first heard at Committee on 15 August 2019.)


The report was introduced by Chris Purvis who gave a brief recap of the application. He reminded the Committee that trees had been removed from the site at the end of July and after the last Committee meeting, all trees and shrubbery had been removed. This now opened up the landscape of the site.


A new site plan had been received following the last Committee meeting and in light of this, reason two for recommendation of refusal of the application was removed. However, the other two recommendations for refusal remained.


Noting the new site plan, Steve Taylor sought clarification on the number of trees that was currently on the site. Chris Purvis replied that one tree had been retained at the site and the site plan proposed other trees to be planted.


Councillor Sammons noted the landscaping to the front of the site on the site plan and was that it would obscure the view of the road upon exiting the site. The road itself was often heavily congested and busy. Chris Purvis explained that the plan was indicative and if it the application was to be approved, then there would be conditions attached to this which would be requested from the Highways Team in relation to access and site splays.


The Vice-Chair thought the reason for the site visit at the last Committee had been to view the road where the site was situated by. He queried if there was weight attached to this concern. Chris Purvis answered that if the application was to be approved, it would be subject to Highways conditions regarding sight lines and visibility splays.


Steven Lines, Senior Highway Engineer, explained the conditions included a keep clear marking that should be implemented across the entrance to ensure the road was kept clear at times of congestion and when the level crossing barriers were down. The Highways Team were aware of the proximity of the site to the level crossing and the Applicant had worked with the Highways Team to ensure the safest option.


Councillor Sammons understood the purpose of the keep clear box but was still concerned. She said that when the level crossing barriers for the railway was shut and traffic was queuing, vehicles often turned around thus ending up on the wrong side of the road and continued along on the wrong side of the road to overtake queuing traffic and vehicles that would exit the proposed exit of the site would not be able to see vehicles on the wrong side of the road. Steven Lines pointed out that the vehicles performing this move was illegal and was not aware of this as it had not been picked up in the surveys that had been undertaken.


Referring to the site visit that took place on 5 September at 10am, Steve Taylor mentioned that there had been a number of vehicles on the road that morning and most of those were large trucks that had little consideration for road safety. He found the road to be horrifically dangerous. Steven Lines explained that the Applicant had considered the road within the site boundary and the road was to be slightly widened to allow room for larger vehicles. Steve Taylor pointed out that the location of the site was still dangerous and there was a limit to what could be done at the site.


Councillor Sammons pointed out that large vehicles did not tend to slow down along the road and tended to mount the pavement. Steven Lines answered that the road would be widened and as part of the investigation, accident statistics had been checked which had shown none.


Councillor Sammons queried which side of the road would the widening take place and whether a section of the pavement would be taken off for the widening. Steven Lines replied that the pavement would not be affected as the widening of the road would be on the Applicant’ side of the road.


The Committee went into debate on the application which Councillor Churchman started by saying that he knew the road well which was often busy with large tipper trucks in the day time. His concerns were regarding the amount of traffic frequenting the road and access to the site.


Steve Taylor said the site was located in the Green Belt and was not a brownfield site. The site was not isolated and there were houses opposite and a pub next door. Considering the proximity of the junction, he was surprised there were no accidents and hoped there would be none but the road was still dangerous regardless.


The Chair thought the architecture of the proposed plans were unique but the issue of the road raised concerns. He proposed the Officer’s recommendation which was seconded by the Vice-Chair. The Committee moved onto the vote.


(In line with Thurrock Council’s Constitution, Chapter 5, Part 3(d), 13.5, Councillors Akinbohun and Chukwu were unable to participate or vote on the application as they had not been present when the application was first heard at Committee on 15 August 2019.)


For: (7) Councillors Tom Kelly (Chair), Councillors Mike Fletcher (Vice-Chair), Gary Byrne, Colin Churchman, Angela Lawrence, David Potter and Sue Sammons.


Against: (0)


Abstained: (0)


Planning application 19/00828/FUL was refused following Officer’s recommendation.


Supporting documents: