Planning applications before Strategy Planning committee 15 March 2017

You may already be aware that all three major outline-planning applications are being considered at the Strategic Planning Committee on Wednesday 15 March.

All three applications are recommended for approval by NCC Planning Officers.

Notifications have been posted adjacent to the three sites and many residents have received notification by post.

THE INFORMATION PROVIDED WITHIN THE NOTIFICATIONS IS INCORRECT – The meeting starts at 1pm and not 2pm as stated in NCC Notification !  

 Ponteland Green Belt Group fully expect the Committee to agree the recommendation and say that ‘they are minded to grant approval’

Do not be surprised at this pre determined outcome  – ( there will no doubt be some  attempt to make it look  anything other than  a decision already made some time ago  behind closed doors )

What will happen next? The outline applications are all on Green Belt land and NCC have an obligation to refer the application, and their recommendations, to the Secretary of State  (via the National Planning Casework Unit )  for review.

Ponteland Green Belt Group, Ponteland Town Council, Ponteland Civic Society, Ponteland Community Partnership and our County Councillors have already requested that all 3 applications  are “called in” by the Secretary of State

Our proactive approach has the full support of Guy Opperman MP. Ponteland Green Belt group have had it confirmed  that the National Planning Casework Unit have the applications on their radar and are monitoring the situation.

We are hopeful that the Secretary of State will ‘call in’ the applications.  We feel very strongly that the applications, and the impact of them, should be considered cumulatively – the applications should not be considered in isolation.

Our case for seeking the Secretary of State intervention and “call in” the applications is based on the fact that it is National Planning Policy that Green belt should only be released in exceptional circumstances and in any case must be done through the Core Strategy process. The applications are therefore premature

Prior to the Strategic Planning Meeting the Committee will undertake a site visit. This is scheduled for Monday 13th March; the Committee is expected to arrive at Ponteland Leisure Centre at 2.15pm and will then visit the other 2 proposed sites (behind Cheviot View and the Dissington Estate.

Residents have been consistent in their objections to the excessive housing numbers allocated to Ponteland; we will use this as evidence when applications and NCC decisions are independently reviewed – either as part of the Core Strategy inspection or as part of the Secretary of State ‘call in process’.

What can you do?

  • Attend the site visit (2pm Monday 13th March at Ponteland Leisure Centre). 

We expect press presence and this is an opportunity to demonstrate that Ponteland  residents are consistent in their continued objection

  • Attend the Strategic Planning Committee Meeting ( Wednesday 15th March at 1pm –County Hall – Morpeth   )

Ponteland Town Council, County Councillors and some residents have registered to speak on our behalf – as residents we need to support them.

Fantastic turnout of Ponteland residents

Many thanks to each and everyone of you who attended today’s event at Memorial Hall. The turnout was fantastic – despite the weather. We know that more than 700 attended. The response from Ponteland residents has been consistent since commencement of the consultation in 2012.
NCC can be in no doubt that their proposals for Ponteland are wrong on so many levels. It will be interesting to see if the valid concerns raised will be listened to – we will not accept destruction of Ponteland!
Your support for Ponteland Green Belt Group is very much appreciated thank you. We will be in touch soon as we continue to prepare for the next stage.

So Much for 880 houses for Ponteland

So much for Mr Hepple and his 880 houses for Ponteland.
Freedom of Information request received from Northumberland County Council (NCC) yesterday . NCC’s own figures currently show 1,119 houses in the plan period. They also show they anticipate a further 245 houses beyond the plan period. This is without any windfall sites being included – (NCC say they cannot supply at settlement level as their figures are for the Central delivery area) Remember this is a minimum figure – the true number built will be far higher

Latest NCC Core Strategy released for “consultation.”

Please find below the link to the Northumberland Local Plan Core Strategy – Pre Submission Draft Consultation.

We are currently reviewing the content and will update you with our views as soon as possible. The consultation period runs until 25th November.

A drop in session is scheduled for the 7th November at the Memorial Hall

NCC Pre Submission Draft Consultation

Latest NCC Core Strategy Draft Released

The latest Draft Core strategy from NCC has been released

Two immediate headlines.

1) The housing allocation for Ponteland has been increased to 900 – remember thats minimum!  Far greater than has been suggested in any other previous Core Strategy document or in any NCC so called “consultation’ events.

2 ) Ponteland has been re designated as a Main Town from being listed previously as a Service Centre – This is no doubt an attempt to justify the vast increase in housing allocation.

We will give further information once we have had time to digest the document.

The document can be found at. NCC Draft Core Strategy Sept 2015

 

 

What else is going on in the North East, Durham County Council

As there are so many similarities between Northumberland and Durham’s proposed plans we decided to pass on this information for your viewing.

A brief summary follows on the INSPECTOR’S INTERIM VIEWS on the legal compliance and soundness of the submitted County Durham plan

To view the full report click here Durham Report

Released on Wednesday 18th February – this Inspectors interim report indicates that Durham County Council (DCC) Local Plan is unsound. DCC now has three options.

a) To continue the examination
b) To suspend it or
c) To withdraw the plan.

The Inspector has advised that it would not be in the best interests of plan making to recommend an unsound plan.
There are so many similarities between Northumberland and Durham’s proposed Plans; the findings are key to Ponteland residents and evidence that our concerns are justified!
Ponteland Green Belt Group has asked NCC for their initial response to this key DCC document due to the similarities of NCC Draft Core Strategy – we await their reply.
Key Points

  • Population and economic growth scenarios provided from Edge Analytics across both Plan areas.
  • Assessment of housing needs is too high…. the Council’s vision incorporates unrealistic assumptions about jobs growth and associated in-migration.
  • Following each stage of DCC Consultation following comments made by residents many changes were made to the Plan relating to both sites and policies – unlike NCC who have ignored residents’ concerns.
  • Unnecessary dwellings proposed for the Green Belt and a full review of non-Green Belt sources of supply should be undertaken.
  • Proposed relief roads are not justified.
  • The jobs target is very ambitious.
  • The employment statistics are an unacceptable risk and the housing potential is an overprovision.
  • No allowance has been made for bringing empty houses back into use, there is no allowance for small windfall sites and many brownfield areas of land have not been assessed.
  • The housing requirement should be reduced (suggests 29%)
  • Incursions into the Green Belt are directly contrary to national policy.
  • There is no need to release 3 large sites from the Green Belt.
  • Development of some sites would contribute to urban sprawl.
  • There are no exceptional circumstance which would justify release of 72.4 hectares of Green Belt land in Chester le Street.

NCC Final Draft Core Strategy Response

Response to Northumberland County Council (NCC) Core Strategy Final Draft for Housing, Employment and Greenbelt

Question 1 (Page 10) – Do you have any comments on the introductory section?
National Planning Policy states that household projections published by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) should be used as the starting point. Release of DCLG2012 is imminent; this document does not offer assurances that current assumptions will be reviewed to incorporate DCLG2012.

Within the Introduction Councillor Alan Hepple acknowledges the need to use the most up to date … Read full document

Update from Northumberland County Council

The following information has been received from Northumberland County Council in regard to their current position with the Core Strategy.
“As a result of the release of the 2012 sub national population projections by the Office for National Statistics the proposed publication and consultation on a full draft of the Northumberland Local Plan Core Strategy will now be delayed.
This will provide us with an opportunity to fully consider the implications of the latest population projections for the proposed approach in the Core Strategy.
We are currently drafting a revised timetable for the consultation on the next version of the Northumberland Local Plan Core Strategy.
We will publish details of this on our website as soon as possible and we will also notify those on our consultation database when the consultation begins”

Ponteland Has Its Say On The Northumberland Local Plan

NO DELETION OF THE DEFINING GREEN BELT

Green Belt Committee MembersGreen Belt Committee members Tony Noble, Lesley Noble, Alma Dunigan, Steve Carss and Gaye Templeton gather on Coates Green in Ponteland with the responses to the County’s Core Strategy before delivering them to County Hall.

The members of the Green Belt Committee have spent many hours honing their response to the Core Strategy as proposed by Northumberland County Council. This has not been an easy exercise but the extraordinary skills and dedication of this committee have eventually produced a 25 page document which was delivered to the County Hall in Morpeth on 31st December.

The Committee wish to thank the hundreds of supporters who have worked hard for the group and supported them financially. All of this hard work paid off at the end of October when the Lugano application to build on land at Birney Hill was refused by both the planning officers and the councillors of the County Council. Now the Committee have gone on to the next step of examining the Core Strategy or County Plan for the next twenty years and looking in great detail at this opaque planning document. The Committee have a wealth of experience and brains and in close examination of the Core Strategy they have pulled the population figures to pieces, binned the projections for numbers of houses needed and generally put the planners’ proposals under the microscope. A phrase they have used more than once is ‘It regrettably brings into question the integrity of the process’. The document can be viewed from the website: pontelandgreenbelt.co.uk

Delivered at the same time were the hundreds of responses from the supporters of the Green Belt Group in Ponteland. Many more have been posted directly to County Hall and many have been done by email. It is expected that almost one thousand individual replies will land on the planners’ desk when they return from holidays. The deadline was the 2nd of January. And all this when most of us had other equally important people and events to attend to in December!!

The Committee once again give a big Thank You to their supporters. The marathon has not yet finished! What will 2014 bring?