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Session 2006 - 07
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Supplement to the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings
17 November 2006

SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [1st March] from residents of Canvey Island and others against an application to build twelve flats at the corner of Somnes Avenue and Maple Avenue.

    The planning application referred to is for 10 x two bedroomed flats and 2 x one bedroomed flats in two blocks with associated parking on the corner of Maple Avenue/Somnes Avenue, Canvey Island. The application was heard at Committee on 7 March 2006 and the application was refused for visual amenity reasons and that there was the potential for a significant increase in traffic movements on Leige Avenue.

    Parliament has entrusted local authorities with responsibility for development control in their areas. It is for them to decide, with particular regard to the provisions of the County Structure and Local Plans, any relevant views expressed by neighbouring occupiers, local residents and other third parties (although they are not bound to accept those views) and any other relevant material considerations which fairly and reasonably relate to the application concerned, to decide whether or not a proposal should be given planning permission. The First Secretary of State intervenes in this responsibility only in the most exceptional circumstances and then only when issues of national or regional importance are involved. To do so more often would undermine the responsibility given to local planning authorities.

15th November 2006


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [24th April] from residents of Canvey Island and surrounding areas against a proposed change in use of the Canvey Calor Gas site.

    The application to Castle Point Borough Council, reference CPT/4/06/FUL and CPT/3/06/HAZ, is in respect of alterations and redevelopment of the existing Calor Gas Terminal, Thames Road, Canvey Island, Essex, to provide a combined liquefied natural gas (LNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) importation facility.

    The application was received by Castle Point Borough Council on 6th January 2006 and was referred to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Once a response is received from the HSE, the application will be considered at the Council's Planning Committee.

    Parliament has entrusted local authorities with responsibility for development control in their areas. It is for them to decide, with particular regard to the provisions of the County Structure and Local Plans, any relevant views expressed by neighbouring occupiers, local residents and other third parties (although they are not bound to accept those views) and any other relevant material considerations which fairly and reasonably relate to the application concerned, to decide whether or not a proposal should be given planning permission. The Secretary of State intervenes in this responsibility only in the most exceptional circumstances and then only when issues of national or regional importance are involved. To do so more often would undermine the responsibility given to local planning authorities.

    In certain circumstances where a planning application departs from the development plan for the area, the local planning authority is required to refer the application to the Secretary of State under the terms of the Town and County Planning (Development Plans and Consultation) (Departures) Directions 1999. It is, however, for the local planning authority to decide whether a particular application should be referred under the directions.

    The Secretary of State has been informed by Castle Point Borough Council that this planning application will not be referred to him in relation to the departures directions.

13th November 2006


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [10th July] from residents of Benfleet, Essex, and others against the proposed development of a military style assault course near Rivenhall.

    The application to Castle Point Borough Council, reference CPT/264/06/FUL, is in respect of the use of land for an obstacle course at Rayleigh View Nursery, Kingsley Lane, Thundersley. The application was refused on 13th July 2006, as the proposed development represented inappropriate use within the green belt and would be detrimental to the character and appearance of the landscape.

    Parliament has entrusted local authorities with responsibility for development control in their areas. It is for them to decide, with particular regard to the provisions of the County Structure and Local Plans, any relevant views expressed by neighbouring occupiers, local residents and other third parties (although they are not bound to accept those views) and any other relevant material considerations which fairly and reasonably relate to the application concerned, to decide whether or not a proposal should be given planning permission. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government intervenes in this responsibility only in the most exceptional circumstances and then only when issues of national or regional importance are involved. To do so more often would undermine the responsibility given to local planning authorities.

15th November 2006


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [11th July] from the residents of Thundersley and Benfleet against the storage of hazardous asbestos waste in their area.

    The application to Essex County Council is in respect of the proposed change of use of one unit on the Manor Trading Estate in Thundersley to allow the storage of hazardous asbestos waste. This application was withdrawn on the 8th September 2006.

    Parliament has entrusted local authorities with responsibility for development control in their areas. It is for them to decide, with particular regard to the provisions of the County Structure and Local Plans, any relevant views expressed by neighbouring occupiers, local residents and other third parties (although they are not bound to accept those views) and any other relevant material considerations which fairly and reasonably relate to the application concerned, to decide whether or not a proposal should be given planning permission. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government intervenes in this responsibility only in the most exceptional circumstances and then only when issues of national or regional importance are involved. To do so more often would undermine the responsibility given to local planning authorities.

13th November 2006


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [18th July] from citizens of Buckinghamshire and others for the provision of infrastructure improvements to support local development.

    The Pre-Budget Report and our response to Kate Barker's review on housing supply make clear the Government's commitment to providing infrastructure to support growth. Infrastructure investment must support housing growth, using a mix of funding from mainstream programmes, investment by the private sector and top up funding from the growth areas programme. Aylesbury is a growth location within the Milton Keynes South Midlands Growth Area. In March 2005, the Deputy Prime Minister published his Milton Keynes and South Midlands sub regional strategy covering the plans for new housing growth and supporting infrastructure, including those for Aylesbury.

    The sub regional strategy is being taken forward by local partners. The Local Delivery Vehicle for Aylesbury (Aylesbury Vale Advantage) is looking at infrastructure requirements associated with new housing at a detailed level and will be working with relevant agencies as part of this process and examining how to make best use of the various sources of potential funding for infrastructure. Local partners have yet to complete this work.

    We have already made available an additional 37 million through the Growth Funds, for projects in Aylesbury such as green infrastructure, a public transport hub and new railway station.

    In the run-up-to the Comprehensive Spending Review, there will be a cross Government review to co-ordinate the strategic delivery of local and regional infrastructure that is necessary to support additional housing; and we will be consulting on Kate Barker's recommendation for a Planning Gain Supplement which would increase resources going back to local communities to invest in local and strategic infrastructure.

15th November 2006


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport on the Petition [25th July] from the North Riding Infirmary Campaign for action to save the North Riding Infirmary.

    Applications to list North Riding Infirmary were received by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in 2002 and 2003. English Heritage, the Secretary of State's statutory advisers on the historic environment, assessed the building in 2002 and 2004. The advice provided by English Heritage on each occasion was that the building is not of sufficient architectural or historic interest in a national context to fulfil the criteria for listing. In light of this advice, the Secretary of State decided, on both occasions, not to add the building to the statutory list of buildings of special architectural or historic interest.

    In 2005 multiple applications to list were received. On the basis that no new information had come to light since the advice given by English Heritage in 2004 that the building was not of sufficient architectural or historic interest to merit listing, the Secretary of State again decided not to add the building to the statutory list. Should any new evidence come to light, the Government would be prepared to ask English Heritage to assess the building again and to re-consider the question of listing.

    In deciding not to add the building to the statutory list the Government is not saying whether the building should be retained - buildings of local interest can be given protection by local means. For example, the local planning authority can draw up lists of locally important buildings and formulate local plan policies for their protection, and it can designate conservation areas. Middlesbrough Borough Council as the local planning authority, has primary responsibility for the proper planning of the area. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government is very selective about intervening in local planning authorities' exercise of that responsibility. She would only do so where the issues raised in a development proposal are of more than local importance.

13th November 2006



 
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Revised 17 November 2006