Agenda and minutes

District Planning Committee - Thursday, 16th July, 2020 2.00 pm

As of May 2021, decision making of meetings of the Council have returned to in-person sessions. A number of meetings remain virtual, with appropriate Councillors attending via remote video link. Public access to these meetings is via a live stream video through the Council’s official YouTube channel

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No. Item


Roll call and Virtual Meetings explanation.


The Chairman commenced the roll call to confirm the Members present.


Carolyn Forster, Business Unit Leader for Legal Services, advised that new regulations have recently been introduced to enable the Council to hold its meetings to include those participants attending remotely. To ensure the smooth running of such remote meetings it has been necessary to amend some of the Council procedure rules and such rules have been amended by Tom Clark / the Head of Regulatory Services in accordance with urgency powers in the scheme of officer delegation to keep the Constitution legally updated.


To receive apologies for absence.




To receive Declarations of Interest from Members in respect of any matter on the Agenda.




To confirm Minutes of the previous meeting of the District Planning Committee held on 18 June 2020. pdf icon PDF 219 KB


The Minutes of the Committee meeting held on 18 June 2020 were agreed as a correct record after a minor amendment and signed electronically by the Chairman.



To consider any items that the Chairman agrees to take as urgent business.




The Chairman confirmed all Committee Members had received the Agenda Update Sheet.  He welcomed the speakers and he highlighted the public speaking procedure.



DM/19/5212 - Ardingly College, College Road, Ardingly ,West Sussex, RH17 6SQ. pdf icon PDF 645 KB


Joseph Swift, Senior Planning Officer introduced the report seeking planning permission for the construction of a new 193 space car park and new vehicular access from College Road to serve Ardingly College, along with associated landscaping.  He highlighted the amendments on the agenda update sheet.  He noted the provision of electric car charging points and relocation of trees within the site.  He confirmed there were no details of how the redundant car parking spaces would be landscaped.  Members were reminded that the application is in the countryside, and the development is not supported by Council policies and was  contrary to the Development Plan.  The proposal is deemed to cause less than substantial harm to the listed buildings, the benefits of the proposal do not outweigh the identified harm and the proposal will unduly urbanise the site.


Mr Ben Figgis, of Ardingly College, spoke in support of the application.  He noted the future growth in vehicular traffic at the college and the occurrence of several near misses in the college car parks. 


Mr J James, resident of Ardingly, spoke in support of the application. He noted the current congestion of traffic around the college and that the application would provide a suitable solution to benefit the wider community of Ardingly.


Mr G Dixon, agent, spoke in support of the application. He highlighted that part of the car park is within the built core of the college and that the proposed car park had been reduced in size.  


Ward Member, Cllr Gary Marsh spoke in support of the application.  He noted the recent developments within the local area of his Ward, all within the High Weald Area of Outstanding National Beauty, AONB.  He commented that three public schools in Mid Sussex are within the AONB have listed buildings and development at those sites has been permitted.  He highlighted the sympathetic car park lighting, the provision of electric car charging points and transplanting existing hedgerows and trees.  He noted the lack of public transport to the college site and that vehicular traffic to the site may increase due to the potential increase in day pupils, a result of the pandemic.


The Chairman explained the technical language in the report regarding harm to heritage assets and he confirmed that Members were aware of the meaning of the terminology for the scale of the application in the AONB.


Members discussed the issues of sightlines on College Road, screening of the car park from the road, the proximity of the reservoir car park; the temperature of the lighting to protect the local wildlife and the provision of minibuses.


The Senior Planning Officer advised West Sussex Highways had raised no objections to the proposed access to the car park, and they had not received details of the lighting temperature and if approved a condition could be included.


The Chairman noted that the reservoir car park was on private land and Ardingly PC has a policy in their Neighbourhood Plan to find a new car park for the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Questions pursuant to Council Procedure Rule 10.2 due notice of which has been given.