Agenda and minutes

Estate Management Appeals Panel
Monday 8th April 2019 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL8 6AE

Contact: Helen Johnson 

Items
No. Item

31.

SUBSTITUTION OF MEMBERS

To note any substitution of Members made in accordance with Council Procedure Rules 19-22.

 

Minutes:

Councillor S.Roberts for Councillor A.Chesterman.

32.

APOLOGY

To note any apologies.

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Councillor A.Chesterman.

33.

MINUTES

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 30 January 2019 (previously circulated).

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting on 30 January 2019 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

34.

ACTIONS UPDATE

Revisions to the Council’s Constitution was debated and agreed at Council on Monday 25 March 2019.  A number of general changes to committee procedures were agreed, but there were no changes to the number of Councillors that will form the Estate Management Appeals Panel.

 

Minutes:

Revisions to the Council’s Constitution were debated and agreed at Council on Monday 25 March 2019. A number of general changes to committee procedures were agreed, but there were no changes to the number of Councillors that would form the Estate Management Appeals Panel.

35.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST BY MEMBERS

To note declarations of Members’ disclosable pecuniary interests, non-disclosable pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests in respect of items on this Agenda.

Minutes:

Councillor S.Roberts declared a non-pecuniary interest in Item 9.

 

Councillor M.Cowan declared a non-pecuniary interest in Item 7 and section 3.7 of Item 13.  He asked that section 3.7 of the report for Item 13 was put to the end of the agenda item to enable him to stay for most of the item.

36.

97 HANDSIDE LANE, WELWYN GARDEN CITY - 6/2018/1776/EM - RETROSPECTIVE ERECTION OF A TWO STOREY REAR EXTENSION pdf icon PDF 481 KB

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) sets out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the retrospective erection of a two storey rear extension.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) set out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the retrospective erection of a two storey rear extension.

 

The property was a large two storey detached dwelling house located to the east of Handside Lane. The property featured a front gable and a flat roof front porch, a rear conservatory and side to rear garage built up to the northern boundary of the site.

 

Planning permission was originally granted in February 2016 (ref.  6/2015/2470/HOUSE) for a development of the same description. However, no Estate Management application was submitted for that development.  The development commenced and during the course of construction, it became apparent that the works were not entirely in accordance with the previously approved plans including:

 

·         An additional window serving an en-suite bathroom to bedroom three had been introduced at the first floor level in the northern side elevation (facing number 95 Handside Lane).

·         An additional window had been introduced in the southern side elevation at first floor level serving a bedroom (facing number 99 Handside Lane).

·         The existing permitted first floor window serving the landing in the southern elevation (facing number 99 Handside Lane) had been made smaller.

·         A gabled roof on the extension had been built when the approved plan for the planning application showed a hipped roof on the proposed side elevations but a gabled roof on the rear elevation (an inconsistency in the approved plans). The result of this is that either roof form could be constructed lawfully. 

 

The Estate Management application sought consent for the same development that was proposed under the planning application which included the above variation to the original two storey extension that was granted permission.

 

The first floor window in the northern elevation of the extension had clear glass and was openable and was not considered to have resulted in a detrimental loss of privacy for the occupants of number 95 Handside Lane and had not impacted on their residential amenity. The proposal was therefore in compliance with Policy EM1 of the Estate Management Scheme.

 

Officers recommended that the appeal be allowed subject to conditions which were circulated as a late item prior to the meeting.

 

The applicant, Mrs. M, advised the Committee that she became aware in June 2018 that her builders were working to different plans with additional windows and also that her surveyor had not sought Estate Management consent. Mrs. M also stated that several of her neighbours had direct and unobstructed views of her rear garden.

 

Mr. F spoke against the scheme, explaining that the bedroom view of the extension had a direct view into his living room and overlooked his patio. He felt it was greatly at odds with Council and government guidelines. In addition that the gable end roof had increased the roof height by one meter and had been built differently to what had been approved. Mr. F invited the Committee to visit the site.

 

In addition, Mr.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 36.

37.

202 KNIGHTSFIELD, WELWYN GARDEN CITY - 6/2018/2849/EM - REPLACEMENT FRONT DOOR pdf icon PDF 444 KB

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) sets out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management Consent for the replacement of a front door.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) set out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the replacement of a front door.

 

The appeal property was a two storey end terrace dwelling located on a corner plot with Knightsfield and a non through road. The front door was on the side of the property, facing the non through road and was white upvc with the top half in one glazed panel of six panes.  The street scene comprised of semi-detached and terraced dwellings with a relatively consistent design and appearance. The visibility of doors and their overall style and design contributed to the values and amenities of the area

 

The appeal sought consent to change the front door from white to a composite red, with its style and design altering the two glazed panels in the upper half.

 

Accordingly the proposal would not preserve the unique architectural heritage of the town and would cause harm to the character and appearance of the property, the row of terrace properties and the surrounding street scene, resulting in a detrimental harm upon the amenities and values of the Garden City contrary to Policy EM1 of the Estate Management Scheme.

 

            The applicant, Mr. Briant felt that the Council was being unreasonable, with the report being subjective and unjustifiable.  He felt that the Council had no legal basis to decide on the colour of the door.

 

The Chairman asked the Officer to remind the Committee of Clause 4 of the EM Scheme, which was the importance of changes being in harmony and of similar colour as their neighbours. As such, changing the door colour did require consent.

 

The following points were raised by Members and discussed:

 

·                That there was an eclectic mix of door colour in the area, which did not appear to be detrimental to the area and the proposed door could enhance the property.

·                That if the policy did not explicitly state the requirement of permission to change the colour of a front door, then it was difficult for the Council to insist on permission. The Development Management Service Officer reiterated that colour and style had been considered to change the appearance of a building, and over the years it had been established that consent was therefore required.

·                That the appeal highlighted the pressing need for a design guide to be published by the Council to help inform residents.

·                One of the key issues that seemed to have been overlooked was the number of panels being reduced from six, however it was agreed that it would be unfair to consider it at this stage.

·                The height of the letter box from the ground ought to have been considered as well. Such matters ought to be included in the design guide. 

 

It was then moved by Councillor M.Cowan, seconded by L.Musk and

 

RESOLVED:

(6 For and 1 Abstained)

 

That Members allow the appeal, contrary to Officer recommendation, and subject to the following conditions:

 

  1. All  ...  view the full minutes text for item 37.

38.

74 ROSEDALE, WELWYN GARDEN CITY - 6/2018/2851/EM - REPLACEMENT OF CONSERVATORY pdf icon PDF 496 KB

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) sets out the appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the replacement of an existing conservatory.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) set out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the replacement of an existing conservatory.

 

The appeal site was a detached two storey dwelling which formed part of a collection of nine properties of similar styles in Rosedale. Six of the nine properties had single storey extensions/conservatories. Of the six, two had flat roofs and four had conservatories. 

 

The property has a rear conservatory that was granted Estate Management consent in 2005 (ref: W6/2005/0360/EM.

 

The proposal sought consent for the replacement of the existing conservatory with a new conservatory type extension of the same size and footprint. Instead of having a glass roof, the new structure would have a mixture of contemporary grey panels combined with glass on the roof. The new frames would be white upvc with glass and brick elevations.

 

Whilst there was no objection to the principle of a replacement conservatory, the refusal related to the introduction of a more solid form of roof. Single storey extensions were expected to be designed with a flat roof which limited the impact of the development on rear elevations and maintained a consistency with the design and appearance of single storey extensions.

 

The proposal would not be in keeping with the character and appearance of the application property and the surrounding properties and street scene and would be detrimental to the amenities and values of the Garden City.  Accordingly, the proposal would be contrary to Policy EM1 of the Estate Management Scheme.

 

Ms. Hutchinson spoke on behalf of the applicant. She highlighted that the previous application had a larger proportion of a solid roof form and the proposed roof was energy efficient. Ms. Hutchinson pointed out that other properties in the area had solid roof conservatories that had been approved and that she had a list of neighbours with no objections to the proposal. She also said they had had conflicting advice from Officers.

 

The following points were raised by Members and discussed:

 

·         If there was a solid roof then perhaps it would be better classed as a ground floor extension. The Development Management Service Manager agreed with the point in principle and that there was tension with some of the EM schemes details.  Ground floor extensions required a flat roof under the scheme.

·         That if the conservatory could not be noticed due to the applicants’ hedge, then there was no detrimental impact on the street scene. The Development Management Service Manager advised that, if the appeal was allowed, the Panel could recommend the height of the hedge as an informative rather than a condition.

·         The conservatory could have a visual impact. The Development Management Service Manager advised that it was not considered to harm the living conditions of neighbours.

·         The key issue was the use of solid roof on the conservatory as a matter of principle.

It was then moved by Councillor H.Bromley, seconded by Councillor H.Bower and

 

RESOLVED

(4 Voting For and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 38.

39.

UPDATE ON OUTSTANDING ENFORCEMENT CASES AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ENFORCEMENT ACTION UNDER THE TERMS OF THE MANAGEMENT SCHEME FOR WELWYN GARDEN CITY FOR BREACHES OF THAT SCHEME

Minutes:

The Panel considered the report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance), which updated Members with regard to outstanding arbitration cases that were put before the Panel, up to and including, April 2019.

 

(Note:  A more detailed record of the Panel’s decision is contained in the exempt Minute 42A).

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the Panel note the action taken for each case