Agenda item

Planning Appeal Update: Change of use of stable building (building 4), outbuilding and containers for storage purposes; and the change of use of stable (building 1) to dog breeding kennels at Star Fields, off Mountain Road, Ebbw Vale

To consider the report of the Team Leader Development Management.


Members considered the report of the Team Leader Development Management.


The Service Manager – Development and Estates spoke briefly to the report and explained that the previous Planning Committee had refused permission for the above proposal based on the grounds that the main building was a large and prominent feature and was sited within a Special Landscape Area.


However, the Inspector had acknowledged that after the Decision Notice for refusal had been issued, the Council had issued a Certificate of Lawfulness of Existing Use of Development (CLEUD) in relation to the appeal site which confirmed the lawfulness of the six substantially completed structures on site but did not extend to the lawful use of the buildings.


Therefore, the Inspector noted that the granting of the CLEUD represented a material change in circumstances since the planning application had been determined and that he had to have regard to it.  This had directed the Inspector to allow the appeal and whilst the Inspector noted that some of the structureson site had an unkempt visual appearance, given that a CLEUDhad been issued he advised that in the event that he was todismiss the appeal the structures were likely to remain in place.


In relation to the separate application for costs, the Planning Inspector had acknowledged that the lawfulness of the structures was not verified at the time the decision was taken to refuse the planning application and that whilst he found that the buildings did not harm the Special Landscape Area he had acknowledged that they did have a visual impact from public viewpoints.  The reason for refusal was, therefore, not without foundation and the Council had provided sufficient evidence to substantiate its reason for refusal and dismissed the application for costs.


In reply to a concern raised regarding the location of the proposal, the Service Manager confirmed that it was Mountain Road, Ebbw Vale and not Mountain Road, Rassau.


A Member expressed her appreciation to the previous Planning Committee for taking the decision to vote against the proposal and to the organisations who had taken the time to write to the Planning Department and the Planning Inspectorate expressing their concerns relating to the proposal. She also acknowledged and welcomed the view from the Inspector’s report that the grounds for refusal had been reasonably substantiated.


The Member continued by welcoming the conditions to restrict noise levels and a condition prohibiting the sale and purchase of dogs at the site.  She advised that when Lucy’s Law came into force, the appellant would not be lawfully able to use the premises for this purposes -  puppies would have to be sold from the place that they had been bred.


She continued by referring to Condition no. 8 i.e. that within 2 months of the date of the decision letter (8th April, 2020) a Waste Management Plan specifying the method of disposal of all waste produced was required to be submitted in writing to the local planning authority for approval and enquired whether this document had been received by the local planning authority, within the specified timescale.


The Team Manager Development Management confirmed that a form of correspondence had been submitted but at this point in time she would need to check if this was the actual Waste Management Plan. The Team Manager undertook to pursue this matter and contact the Member following the meeting to confirm whether the Plan had been approved and also implemented within the specified timescale.


For clarification, the Service Manager – Development and Estates advised that the Planning Inspector’s condition stipulated that if no Waste Management Plan was approved within 2 months of the date of the decision, the use of the site should cease until such time as a Waste Management Plan approved by the local planning authority was implemented.  This meant that the grant of planning permission would remain in any event.


In reply to a question, the Service Manager confirmed that the Certificate of Lawfulness of Existing Use of Development (CLEUD) application was an entirely separate matter and the Council had not been in a position to hold this application in abeyance because the Certificate of Lawfulness hinged on matters of fact i.e. if the applicant was able to prove on the balance of probability that buildings had been on site for a certain period of time, the Council had an obligation to determine the application and was duty bound to issue a certificate. 


It was, thereupon, unanimously,


RESOLVED, subject to the foregoing, that the report be accepted and the two separate appeal decisions in relation to planning application C/2019/0090 be noted, namely:-


-      The appeal was allowed and planning permission was granted for the change of use of stable (building 4), outbuilding and containers for storage purposes; and the change of use of stable (building 1) to dog breeding kennels, at Star Fields, off Mountain Road, Grid Ref 317718 209001, Ebbw Vale, in accordance with the terms of the application, Ref C/2019/0090, dated 29 May 2019, subject to the conditions set out in the schedule to the decision letter.


-      The application for an award of costs was refused.


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