Sites and Policies Plan Consultation Draft

Comment ID 4209089//1
Document Section Sites and Policies Plan Consultation Draft Delivering a Prosperous Economy DM49-50 View all on this section
Respondent Deleted User View all by this respondent
Agent Turley Associates (H Tilton)
Response Date 18 Apr 2013

On behalf of my client, St. Modwen Developments Ltd, I am pleased to provide representations to the current North Somerset Sites & Policies Plan Consultation (February/March 2013).

Our representations focus upon the importance of ensuring the allocation of land for employment uses to the west of Kenn Road, Clevedon. The land in question (‘the site’) is referenced by Policy DM50 (Schedule 2) as a

‘Site[s] for employment development’ on 9.02 ha of land.

The site is shown as Appendix 1a and 1b enclosed. St. Modwen has development interests in this location and in due course intends to develop the land for a mix of B-class employment uses.

Our representations also provide comment as appropriate on the other emerging policies, where we consider these policies could affect the successful viable delivery of employment development in this location.


Principle of Allocation

We consider that land to the west of Kenn Road Clevedon is suitable to be retained as an allocated site for employment development, for the following principle reasons:


The land is currently allocated for employment use by saved/retained policy within the adopted Replacement Local Plan

The LPA has previously established that this site is suitable to be allocated for employment development.

A land area of 8.2ha is allocated for employment use in the adopted North Somerset Replacement Local Plan through Policy E5. The policy refers to the site as ‘

E39 Land west of Kenn Road


The principle of employment growth is supported by the adopted Core Strategy


Policy CS20 of the adopted Core Strategy refers to the safeguarding of sites in existing economic use, and paragraph 3.259 states that further sites may be allocated through a future Development Plan Document (DPD). The on-going allocation of this site for employment use through Policy DM50 of the emerging Sites and Policies Plan DPD is in accordance with the adopted strategic growth objectives of the Core Strategy.


The site benefits from an extant Outline permission for B-class development


The site has been identified to be suitable for B-class employment development with access from Kenn Road, as demonstrated through the grant of planning permission ref.10/P/1270/F. This permission granted consent for the same uses on the same site area as is now proposed to be allocated by the emerging Sites and Policies Plan (i.e. B1/B2/B8 use on 9.02ha of land to the west of Kenn Road).


The emerging Sites and Policies Plan acknowledges that the permission is extant, and thus capable of implementation.


In light of the extant permission, it is both logical and appropriate for the LPA to continue to allocate the land for employment development.


There are no alternative sites that are suitable, available and viable to deliver employment growth of the required scale and type


The on-going allocation of this site for comprehensive development for B-class uses will deliver net gain in terms of job creation and wider wealth and economic growth benefits. There are no other suitable, available or viable sites (or sites that are sequentially preferable in flood risk terms to meet the need identified) in Clevedon that could satisfy locally generated employment needs.


The site is available now, and is capable of being delivered in the medium term.


Notwithstanding current market conditions, the delivery of employment development at this site is achievable (development can be completed/committed) within the medium-term (approximately 6-10 years).


Turley Associates are progressing planning and technical assessment work on behalf of St. Modwen in readiness for the submission of a new Outline planning application for B-class development. This will ensure that there is adequate time provided by an implementable and viable planning permission to enable the future delivery of employment development at this site. A failure to continue to allocate the site for employment development could prejudice a successful outcome.

There are no in-principle technical or environmental constraints preventing the site’s allocation for employment development

The site is not located within a ‘sensitive area’ as defined by the EIA Regulations, and nor is it located directly adjacent to any such area. No significant impacts are anticipated to arise from the future development of the site for employment use.

The extant permission for the site’s redevelopment confirms that the site is capable of being developed for employment uses without detriment to the site or wider area; any negative effects can be appropriately mitigated through development.

A brief overview of key technical issues is provided as Appendix 2 of this correspondence.

The site is accessible, and sustainably located

The site is situated adjacent to Kenn Business Park, with good access to Clevedon and the strategic road network (J.20 of the M5). Safe access into the site is achievable from Kenn Road.

Principles of Policy DM50

Policy DM50: ‘Allocated and safeguarded B1, B2 and B8 use class’ states that:

"Land is allocated for new business development broadly in accordance with Core Strategy Policy CS20. The Proposals Map and Schedule 2, sites for employment development, sets out the sites to be allocated and specifically safeguarded for these uses. Proposals for development on these sites will be permitted provided they fall within the B1, B2 or B8 uses classes (or on specified sites within the B1 use class). Proposals for non B uses classes on these sites will only be permitted if:

they are ancillary to the main B use;

they have a direct relationship with the existing businesses by providing a service to the business or employees; or

they are very small scale and provide a supporting service for the employment uses or employees e.g. crèche, gym, café etc."

Policy DM50 confirms that development for a range of types of B-class use will be acceptable (i.e. B1, B2, B8 use). There is no prescribed requirement within the policy for a particular mix or proportion of B-class uses. We consider that this is the correct approach for the LPA to take, as it is important that the LPA provides a robust policy that is capable of being implemented at the planning application stage in accordance with the NPPF, by positively and proactively encouraging sustainable economic growth and by being flexible enough to accommodate unexpected needs or respond rapidly to changes in economic circumstances.

We consider that it would be helpful if Policy DM50 could be amended to confirm that appropriate Sui Generis employment development could also be considered.

Policy DM50, and all associated policy relating to flooding, should be absolutely clear that the significance of the site’s allocation for reasons of economic growth and regeneration will be a significant material consideration in the assessment of future planning applications in flood risk terms. By definition the site should be considered to have met the ‘sequential test’ by virtue of the site’s allocation through the Plan.

Amendments to the Proposed Map

The LPA will note that if the site access from Kenn Road, as granted through permission ref. 10/P/1270/F, is to be included as part of the proposed allocation, than a land area of at least 9.02 ha is required to be allocated as shown by

Appendix 1b. This would mean slightly enlarging the site area currently shown by the LPA’s emerging map (Appendix 1a).

The LPA’s interactive map should also be amended to be clear as to whether the high risk flood zone extends across the proposed allocation area, or around it.