Agenda item

Agenda item

Erection of 5 No Self Build Dwellings (Outline Application with all matters reserved except for access) Application Reference 23/00740/OUT

Land At Main Street Swannington Coalville Leicestershire

LE67 8QL


Land at Main Street, Swannington, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 8QL


Officer’s recommendation: Permit, subject to conditions and S106 agreement


The Senior Planning Officer presented the report.


Ms Stafford, Parish Councillor, addressed the Committee. She argued that the development contravened every policy of the Council’s Local Plan and Swannington’s Neighbourhood Plan. This reflected a growing national issue that the self-build category was being unscrupulously misused by developers. She set out the reasons behind this claim. She added that this application was only being recommended to meet the Council’s self-build quota, and advised Members that there was no precedent for Planning Committees having their decisions successfully appealed when the application so clearly contravened the Local Plan. Alternatively, she felt that the Committee would be setting an unwise precedent if this application was approved.


The Planning and Development Team Manager advised the Committee that National Government requires all councils to provide self builds in their area. It was explained that the judgement on whether self-build applications were to be supported or not was based on a judgment of the impact of the scheme on the surrounding area and their impacts on policy weighted against the positive impact that they deliver self-build housing in line with national requirements.


A few Members of the committee expressed strong criticisms of the proposed development and the wider concept of self-build. Members felt that permitting the application would be overruling the wishes of the Parish Council, which had selected other sites in the Parish to be developed in their Neighbourhood Plan of March 2023; that it would clearly violate three of the five criteria of Policy S3 of the Local Plan; and that it was outside the limits to development. Relatedly, but more generally, Members felt that the concept of self-build as currently used was highly misleading; and permitting the application would send a poor message about the value of Local Plans.


The Planning and Development Team Manager clarified the distinction between self-build and custom-build and noted that this development was an example of the latter. He added that some concerns raised were addressed in the conditions and would be reflected later in the process. He also advised the Committee that the quota discussed would be combined with the following year if it was not met and this was something Members should bear in mind.


Due to the nature of the discussions, the Head of Planning and Infrastructure reminded the Committee that material planning reasons were required if they were minded to go against the Officer’s recommendation.  Further debate was had on possible reasons to refuse the application.

Members stated the following reasons: it was contrary to Policy S3 of the Local Plan being outside limits to development, was considered to form a suburban form of development and would harm the character of the settlement and contrary to the Neighbourhood Plan Policy H2 agreed in March 2023


The recommendation to refuse the application on the grounds that it was contrary to Policy S3 of the Local Plan in relation to the fact that it is outside of the limits to development, a suburban form of development, and it would be harmful to the character of the settlement and the requirements of Policy H2 of the Neighbourhood Plan was moved by Councillor R Canny and seconded by Councillor D Bigby.


The Chair put the motion to the vote.  A recorded vote being required the voting was as detailed below.




The application be refused on the grounds that it was contrary to Policy S3 of the Local Plan, and Policy H2 of the Neighbourhood Plan agreed in March 2023.

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