A number of emails regarding the planning applications at the Beehive Storage have been forwarded to me so I thought it might be helpful to clarify a few points, as your Dorset Council Councillor and Chair of the Planning Committee. Do please pass this on to anyone whose email address I do not have.There have been a number of applications for this site.
Application number 2/2018/0595/OUT, for 68 dwellings, was refused by Dorset Council on 28 October 2019.
An appeal against this refusal was lodged with the Planning Inspectorate on 2 March 2020. On 5 March Dorset Council notified everyone who had commented on the application, including the eight residents who had responded, giving them until 6 April to submit any further comments directly to the Inspectorate. Child Okeford Parish Council received this email but, after consulting with me, decided that they had no further comments to make. It is important to note that all the comments made to Dorset Council on the original application are automatically available to the Inspector, so this second response is really only for new or additional evidence.
The deadline for further comment has now passed and the appeal is with the Inspector who will determine it in due course.
Meanwhile, on 30 March 2020, a new, separate application, 2/2020/0433/OUT for outline planning permission for 28 dwellings on the same site was received and verified by Dorset Council. This is currently out for consultation and 10 residents have already commented to Dorset Council. Child Okeford Parish Council are holding a virtual meeting on 11 May to formulate their response. The deadline for comments is 11 May, so you might want to remind others of this deadline if they wish to comment.
Once the 21 days consultation period is over and all responses are received the Dorset Council Planning Officer will consider all the representations and, in due course, come to a recommendation. The application might go before my Planning Committee for decision, but that is decided later in the procedure.
Every planning application must be considered on its own merit. This means that the fact that there is another outstanding application for homes on land off Allen Close is not a material planning consideration for the Beehive application. However, it is material to the issue of housing need within the village. Should the Appeal Decision for the earlier application be given before this application is determined that could also be relevant. The application from Leaper has not yet been submitted so is only “hypothetical” in planning terms and has no bearing at all.
Finally, you might be wondering why I have not expressed a view on this application as your Ward Member. As Chair of the Planning Committee I must not be seen to “predetermine” the outcome of a committee discussion. I must listen to the committee discussion and only then take a view. I am, however, able to advise you on process, to listen to and note and to represent your views at any committee meeting.
Do get in touch if I can help in any way.
Cllr Sherry Jespersen
Member for Hill Forts and Upper Tarrants Ward
Chair. Northern Area Planning Committee