Decision details

Planning Application No.SL/2018/0741 - Preston Patrick - Unit 14, The Old Cooperage, Gatebeck Business Park, Gatebeck

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No

Decisions:

Change of Use from B8 (Storage and Distribution) to B2 or B2/B8 Mixed Use and erection of a chimney for a wood burning heater (Mr A Wright).

 

The Planning Officer presented Planning Application No. SL/2018/0741 which sought planning permission for the Change of Use from B8 (Storage and Distribution) to B2 or B2/B8 Mixed Use and the erection of a chimney for a wood burning heater. He referred to the site visit and displayed plans and photographs which detailed the proposals and drew Members’ attention to the Late Representations which had been circulated prior to the meeting. He highlighted that the main issues related to the impact of the proposal on the visual character of the area and residential impacts in respect of noise and dust, smoke and odours.

 

Mr Andrew Barlow, a local resident, addressed the Committee and displayed photographs during his address. He stated that he objected to the current application and informed Members that the applicant had stated that South Lakeland District Council (SLDC) had carried out extensive pollution monitoring over a six week period. However, the response to a Freedom of Information request had revealed that every visit from SLDC had been announced to the applicant. In addition he advised Members that SLDC did not have pollution monitoring test equipment and relied on ‘sniff tests’. Mr Barlow went on to inform Members that SLDC’s Principal Environment Health Officer and Chief Executive could not confirm if it was ok to breathe in noxious fumes. He stated that the wood burning heater was not used for heating, the applicant used it as an incinerator and planning permission was not in place for this form of use. In addition the wood burning heater had been used when the weather was comfortably warm and therefore not required for heating and also that black smoke had been seen coming from the chimney, which, Mr Barlow stated, indicated the incineration of plastic. Mr Barlow informed Members that he had also noted that local residential properties, which had wood burning stoves and coal fires, used these much less frequently and none, that he had witnessed, used their wood burning stoves as often as the applicant. He stated that the village was filled with stinking smoke, which was choking and that this should not be permitted in the heart of a village. He concluded his address by referring to the relocation of the spray booth and the health implications of the chemicals used and stated that it was unbelievable that the application had been approved by officers, regardless of the objections received, which included the Parish Council. He urged the Committee to reject the application.

 

Mr Hayhurst, a local resident, addressed the Committee. He explained that his home was the closest residential property to Unit 14 and that he did not object to the change of use, but strongly objected to the installation of the additional chimney for the wood burning heater. He stated that on 4 November 2018 he had witnessed, and had video evidence of, intense black smoke billowing out of Unit 14. He went on to state that in his opinion the existing spray booth and associated extraction unit was non-compliant, due to bends in the extraction flue, and also its proximity to the tower on Gatebeck Business Park would hinder the dispersion of fumes and this had not been taken into consideration by the applicant. He concluded his address by stating that the chimney flue, of the existing spray booth, did not comply with current legislation as it was not three metres higher than the roof of buildings within a 15 metre proximity.

 

Mr Mike Sweetman, the applicant’s agent, addressed the Committee. He began his address by refuting the claims that the applicant had been notified in advance of the pollution monitoring inspections by SLDC. He went on to advise Members that the applicant had developed knowledge and procedures over the past two and a half years in a programme of incremental improvements and was ready to expand the business. The applicant understood that the application would attract criticism. However, an element of doubt was expressed regarding the reliability of a number of the digital images which had been displayed. He advised Members that the wood used by the applicant in the manufacturing process was from a sustainable source and inevitably there was a by-product of the manufacturing process and if this by-product was not used on site, it would end up in landfill or be used as briquettes elsewhere. He acknowledged that smoke was generated by the wood burning heater during the initial start-up and referred to the photographic evidence of black smoke and stated that this was likely to have occurred during the afternoon re-start, if the external vent had not be opened. He concluded his address by stating that when burning wood the main cause of smoke was by burning damp wood. The by-product briquettes, used by the applicant as a heat source, were stored inside and therefore had minimal moisture content and would not cause excessive smoke pollution.

 

In further presenting the report the Interim Development Management Team Leader clarified the planning issues for consideration by the Committee and advised Members that other concerns of local residents, such as the control of processes or emissions, where these were subject to separate pollution control regimes and dealt with by other agencies such as the Environment Agency and SLDC’s Public Protection Department,  the local planning authority should assume that these regimes would operate effectively and planning decisions should not seek to duplicate those controls

 

The Environmental Protection Officer, Planning Officer and Interim Development Management Team Leader responded to questions raised by Members of the Committee. Members gave consideration to the concerns expressed by local residents and the Parish Council, to the environmental impact of the application and the expansion of an existing local business. Members’ attention was drawn to the planning conditions which were outlined within the report and which would address the concerns of local residents.

 

RESOLVED – That the application be approved subject to the following conditions:-

 

Condition (1)   The development hereby permitted shall begin not later than three years from the date of this decision.

 

Reason:           To comply with the requirements of Section 91 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as amended by Section 51 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.

 

Condition (2)   The development hereby permitted shall be carried out in accordance with the following approved plans and documents:

Location Plan, received 24th August 2018

Block Plan, received 24th August 2018

Elevations, Scale 1:100, received 24th August 2018

Airstream 1 Specification, received 7th November 2018

Haltec Product Guide, received 7th November 2018

Haltec Paint Arrestor Filter Media, received 7th November 2018

EPR Compliance Assessment Report, 7th November 2018

 

Reason:           For the avoidance of doubt and in the interests of proper planning.

 

Condition (3)   No machinery, including the woodburner, shall be operated, no process shall be carried out and no deliveries taken at or despatched from the site outside the following times 08.00-18.00 Monday-Friday and 09.00-1300 Saturday nor at any time on Sundays, Bank or Public Holidays.

 

Reason:           To safeguard the amenity of neighbouring occupiers in accordance with National Planning Policy Framework para 127.

 

Condition (4)   The flue for the Airstream 1 spray booth hereby permitted shall terminate a minimum of 3.0 metres above the ridge height of the building from which it exits and any other building located within 15.0 metres of the building from which the flue exits. The gases emitted from the flue shall have a minimum exit velocity of 15m/s and there shall be no plate, cap or cowl fitted to the exit terminal. The associated spray booth shall be fitted with Haltec Glass Fibre paint arrestor particulate filters. The spray booth and filters shall be serviced, maintained, cleaned, and replaced in line with manufacturer’s instructions at all times.

 

Reason:           To safeguard the amenity of neighbouring occupiers in accordance with National Planning Policy Framework para 127.

 

Condition (5)   The flue for the 35-45KW MTM NPS wood burner hereby permitted shall terminate a minimum of 1.5 metres above the ridge height of the building from which it exits. The wood burner shall be operated in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines at all times.

 

Reason:           To safeguard the amenity of neighbouring occupiers in accordance with National Planning Policy Framework para 127.

 

Condition (6)   Noise from operation of the site, including the use of fixed plant and machinery, shall not exceed the measured background level (LA90) quoted in the Clover Acoustics Noise Assessment Report reference 3527-R1 (submitted by the applicant with planning application reference SL/2016/0649), at any noise sensitive receptor.

 

Reason:           To safeguard the amenity of neighbouring occupiers in accordance with National Planning Policy Framework para 127.

 

In the exercise of its judgement in determining the appropriate balance of considerations, the Local Planning Authority has acted positively and proactively in determining this application proposal, taking into account all material considerations. Material considerations include planning policies and any representations that may have been received preceding the determination to grant planning permission in accordance with the presumption in favour of sustainable development as set out in the National Planning Policy Framework.  The Local Planning Authority is satisfied that its processes and practices are compatible with the Human Rights Act and the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights.

Publication date: 29/01/2019

Date of decision: 09/01/2019

Decided at meeting: 09/01/2019 - Planning Committee

Accompanying Documents: