COUNCIL MEMBERS PRESENT
* – Attendance; A- Absent; N – No Apologies Received
Cllr. M. Fice – Mayor (in the Chair) – *
Cllr. A. Biggs – *
Cllr Mrs C. Bricknell – A
Cllr. R. Wheeler – *
Cllr D. Cohen – *
Cllr T. Lang – *
Cllr R. Whitfield – *
Cllr Mrs L. Sinnott – A
Cllr Mrs A. Clacy – A
Also in attendance:
Dist. Cllr S. Wright – *
Dist. Cllr Mrs Pearce – *
Cty. Cllr. R Gilbert – *
Gill Claydon (Clerk) – *
Pete Robinson (Cemetery Manager and Project Officer) – *
WPC Jo Pengilly – A
PCSO D. Gibson – A
Chris Derrick – Kingsbridge Gazette reporter – *
Jane Clark tendered her resignation due to her health issues and the Mayor on behalf of Town Council sent his thanks for her input and wished her all the best in her recovery.
733. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Members were invited to acknowledge any declarable interests, including the nature and extent of such interests that they may have in any items to be considered at this meeting. Cllr Biggs declared an interest in application 2826/15/FUL and Cllr Lang in 2918/15/FUL.
734. OPEN FORUM
Martin Beck was present to provide an update on the Salcombe Gin Factory. He explained that he owned Goodshelter Company Limited and gave his historical connections to the area. A few years ago he and his wife obtained the Island Cruising Club shed which had an existing planning application for it and they were now to introduce a brand new start-up company on the first floor for the Gin Distillery. They had lost the downstairs tenant as the Island Cruising Company no longer had funds to rent below. Therefore he would now use the below personally as a boat house but the front unit was completely self-contained and had current planning for a workshop/office and this would be ancillary. The Gin Factory owners could not afford at present to rent the lower unit and to satisfy viability Mr Beck with the opinion of town council as to whether they would be vehemently against using this unit as retail. It was noted that this property replaced two cottages that were long since washed away and the current property had existing corner glass which lent itself to another use such as retail but having talked to District it was an issue for them as the planning policy in this area was for light industrial and boat related.
The Gin Factory had raised enough money and the fitting out could be finished and ready before the summer masses. Cllr Cohen asked if the whole building was a shell at present. The rear was but the front was a self-contained two storey unit with parking down the side and access to the rear. The Gin Factory owner would in time like somewhere to sell their gin from but could not afford to take on the other unit so there were business people interested in a wine shop. The Gin Factory were not installing a larger ‘still’ to start with just a smaller would probably go for further funding in 12 months when the business had proven it worked. Cllr Wheeler noted the planning policy for marine associated trade but this had long gone by the board and he felt personally the building was in keeping with the style of the street that had a significant amount of retail and he was a believer in market forces, so he had no problem but it depended on what retail was proposed. Viability of this project had suffered due to the loss of the ground floor tenant and Mr Beck felt that the user in the unit needed to be in keeping assisting the Gin factory. Discussion took place as to other nearby provision and consideration of adjacent business. The Mayor noted that the Neighbourhood Plan was also being developed and the economic group were currently embarking on a business needs survey and had indicated there was a huge demand for units but not for retail.
Dave Jobbins was in attendance with regard to the planning application for the Tides Reach Hotel. He acknowledged the planning application on the table and all statements within noting there was already an existing planning consent on this site and his personal view was that this old permission was wrong. He showed the bold black outline of the existing building and indicated that the new proposal was lower and curved around the site. All acknowledged that something needed to be done to the site and Mr Jobbins stated that the new scheme could be delivered as the hotel across the road showed and would provide approximately 60 jobs which an economic report illustrated and was supporting tourism. The developers had tried to keep the design sympathetic to the existing hotel and County highways, South West Water and the Environment Agency had not indicated any objections on the District website.
The Mayor noted that on Mr Jobbins previous visit town council asked if the proposed building was coming out a lot further into the valley than the current planning approved and Mr Jobbins had replied no but it wrapped around the valley. However the Mayor continued that these plans indicated it came way beyond the public toilets.
A member of the public in attendance said that the plans provided would be solid a building right across to the toilets and the bulk of the building was much larger. She continued that she felt that the percentage increases and number of bedrooms was 94% higher than the original building with 71% gross floor over the existing structure. She felt there was no economic proof that a hotel this large was needed to ensure it would be viable. South Sands ran at a smaller size as the Tides Reach used to. The new Tides Reach proposal was to include some apartments of 2 and 3 bedrooms so she felt this should be considered as ‘new development’. The Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty legal/policy obligations needed to be considered in such a sensitive area but there appeared no consideration of the surrounding land and they might have dealt with a flood prevention scheme but they had not looked at the outflow of the stream. Consideration was only as to how the stream went under the proposed building but not the inadequate stream flow onto the beach which currently existed. Her assertion was that there was an increase in flow concerns as the area behind the old Tides Reach Hotel never used to flood as it did now leaving it unviable for cattle. Further considerations from others objecting to this application would be fully written up and sent in to District Planning. On a final note she observed that it was felt inconsiderate for this planning application to be lodged on Christmas Eve.
Jackie Squire of Sunny Mill was also present and noted the area within the adjacent caravan site was for a childrens play area but this now flooded and nothing had been referred to with regard to fuel that leaked into their land along with sewerage. This problem had been ongoing for years. The current hotel unit was to become apartments but if this was suitable structurally why could these not suit the main body of the hotel before any extra was added. Mr Jobbins responded that the apartments were to be converted and extended within the hotel to bring funds into the hotel project to make it viable from investment. Cllr Lang advised that local people felt that the new plans suggested that the old site was not going to be demolished when this building was not felt sustainable. Consulting structural engineers had looked at the repairs to the main body of the building and confirmed it could be converted and adapted and the spa etc at the rear was to be retained. Cllr Wheeler noted all the correspondence with regard to the previous and current plans for this hotel over the last few years and acknowledged that town council needed to consider the community concerns. He noted that there was a planning permission already in place and felt the suggestion to return to that permission was a thinly veiled threat. What was deeply concerning was that in years gone by the car parking in this locality was used as general public parking. There would be nowhere for people to stop to visit this beach and surrounding walks if it was removed and it would become a gated community with no visible parking provision for people working there. There was a strong undercurrent with regard to viability and it was perhaps a reason why the previous group pulled out. Nowadays planning appeared to move forward on ‘big is best’ and Salcombe was being eroded.
Martin Beck noted with regard to this application that hotels around Salcombe and the area had closed over time and cited previous ones continuing that now all of a sudden developers were wanting to open hotels and he questioned whether they were viable and would this be developed as a hotel and evolve into apartments.
Police Report – None received.
County Councillor Report – Cllr Gilbert noted that Highways had commented on the Tides Reach application and had no objection. He had chased for a response today with regard to Poyntz Croft building work and the access problems highlighted by neighbours. Sgt Green had replied to say that the police had visited the site and following investigation the situation was improving and contractors had provided evidence that maters would continue to improve. If there was any further concerns the police would enforce on this matter.
The Devon County Boundary Review had completed its process and the recommendations were now set to go to Parliament. At present his seat from 2017 would become 16 parishes an increase from 13 and then would include Modbury, Rigmore, Bigbury, Kingston and Aveton Gifford but would drop East Allington to another councillor. He noted he had agreed to give £1000 to Salcombe Library from his County grant fund to assist towards getting them started. The roads were suffering from all the rain but at least so far there had been no frost. He hoped weather conditions would improve and although it might get colder it would not be quite as wet.
The Mayor raised concern with regard to highways enforcement and the Service Level Agreement for the park and ride field. It was felt that the response received from the officer was lacking as town council had been discussing these points for over twelve months and within the latest message on 19th January the officer stated he hoped to get things in place by 1st May if County received a cheque for £1500. If this was the case the car park would be missing more weekends before the Traffic Order for permits and Ringo with differing day options were in place. These should have been in place last year on the back of a TRO that was going through for County on which town council were advised they could have ‘piggy backed’ but now they were being asked to pay for a bespoke TRO. Cty Cllr Gilbert agreed and said he would grant money towards the creation of the Traffic Regulation Order and then press for this matter to be sorted.
Cty Cllr Gilbert and Martin Beck left the meeting.
District Councillor Report
Cllrs Mrs Pearce and Wright agreed that there was nothing significant to report. It was noted by town council that at the bottom of Market Street on the crossroads corner the public bin had disappeared when BT installed a new cabinet and a replacement was requested.
Also with regard to dog mess there had been signs asking for owners to pick up dog mess but there were not many bins to place this in. Dist Cllr Mrs Pearce advised that any public bin could be used but it was observed that there was a distinct lack of bins serving Herbert Road, Grenville Road and the top of town. She advised that town council could purchase bins and District would empty and the Mayor asked for this to be an agenda item and advice to be obtained as to the cost and process.
The Minutes of the meeting dated 13th January 2016 were before being approved by council and then duly signed by the Mayor as a true and correct record.
DEFERRED due to no further applications.
737. PLANNING APPLICATIONS:
The Mayor observed that town council did not appear to be receiving planning application on a timely basis and that the planning portal was an absolutely nightmare. The applications were very slow and users needed to click three times to view any application. Cllr Wright advised that over Christmas District had loaded over 2.5million documents and applicants were using the portal site to upload so District had not seen items missing. Cllr Wright went on to advise that the local newspaper stated a date when application consultation would end but this could be different to the date provided to town council when applications were finally sent out. The portal closed for four days before Christmas so the Tides Reach application arrived at a bad time and this was why receipt by town council had been delayed.
Cllr Wright now felt that all should progress well and any actual problems should be reported directly to him and Dist Cllr Mrs Pearce. There had been a meeting a few days ago and district councillor were being assured that things were getting done. There had been a changeover of system and/or lack of staff and Dist Cllr Wright explained that the sheer manpower needed to load documentation had meant in house staff being used but also District had employed another company who were not up to speed, therefore District were reviewing this contract. A lot of issues could be sorted in-house so this was what they were doing. Cllr Lang noted that the old online application system worked far better. With planning being loaded on the central planning portal this came to District directly but applicants were not submitting all necessary information and not labelling documents clearly. Cllr Mrs Pearce noted that the Tides Reach documents were not labelled well when put on the portal which caused a problem.
Two or three years ago there was a proposal to ensure that associated neighbouring properties were shown in plans and it was thought this was going to become District policy. Cllr Wheeler enquired if this fell off the District radar. Cllr Mrs Pearce agreed it was really useful to see juxtaposition of neighbours and noted they do have to provide a location plan that shows the neighbouring property but agreed they did not currently show the actual prposed development against the neighbours. CGI was only necessary on large developments would be good practice for all. Government were at pains to make applications less onerous rather than more but all agreed the addition of neighbouring properties would be useful to view development proposals, especially in Salcombe.
The following applications were considered and town council observations submitted to District Planning:
Cllr Biggs left the meeting whilst the following application was considered.
• 2826/FUL Refurbishment and extension of existing hotel including erection of new bedroom wing to form a 44 bedroom, 4* hotel and part change of use of existing upper floors of existing hotel to create 10 apartments with associated car parking Tides Reach Hotel Cliff Road Salcombe Devon TQ8 8LJ – Applicant Tides Reach (Salcombe) Harbour Hotel Ltd. – It was mentioned that an email from the AONB team stated they had not been consulted by District. The hotel needed to be remodelled and reused but this was a sensitive part of town and from this proposal the Listed Building lifeboat building would be dwarfed. A question was raised considering that SW Water did not have an objection as this was worrying particularly with problems on this site. Objection – This application was felt to be out of keeping with the locality due to overdevelopment and its impact on the AONB. The lack of parking for staff and visitors to the area was question along with the sustainability of the proposed size of hotel due to economic viability. In principle the town council had no problem with the proposed design but felt that the mass was not acceptable in such a sensitive site.
Dave Jobbins and the other two members of public left the meeting along with Martin Beck.
Cllr Long left the meeting whilst the following application was considered.
• 2918/15/FUL New parking area to east of property (resubmission of approval 41/0845/14/F) Moult Moor Moult Road Salcombe Devon TQ8 8LG – Applicant Wendy Pearson – Stone wall and gate entrance to higher garden. Remove a section dig out level and create car parking. No objection but town council requested that the applicant be requested to match the existing stone where the join was intended.
• 3051/15/HHO Householder application for demolition of Existing Rear extension and erection of Replacement Single Storey Extension Bigbury Cottage 11 Church Street Salcombe Devon TQ8 8DH – Applicant Debbie Codling – No objection.
• DEFERRED due to non receipt from District: 3069/HHO Householder application for demolition of single storey wing of house together with 2no. outbuildings. Erection of side extensions, front entrance and partial additional storey, basement, terrace, driveway and associated works Bridleway House Moulthaven Service Road Salcombe TQ8 8LF – Applicant Mr D. Blatchford
• DEFERRED due to none receipt from District: 3081/15/HHO Proposal to build 2x single storey extensions to the front replacing existing veranda and at a two storey extension to the rear and a new garage set into the sloping garden St Nicholas Coronation Road Salcombe Devon TQ8 8EA – Applicant Graeme Lennox
• Nothing further other than information already provided.
• Noted that ten emailed communications were received with regard to the Tides Reach Hotel application 2826/15/FUL all which had been forwarded to town council for their consideration prior to this meeting.
Both District Councillors left the meeting.
738. TRAFFIC ORDERS
Responses from councillors with regard to any suggested changes to Traffic Orders in relation to parking in Salcombe were listed and AGREED as follows:
• To consider residents parking permits for Chandlers Heights.
• At Gould Road install double yellow lines and reinstate two coach parking spaces on the right hand side.
• Ember Road to provide a stop at junction, yellow lines and delineate park and ride entrance markings.
• Consider pedestrianisation of Fore Street
• All item agreed in the previous Minutes noted and included
It was further suggested that these proposal be advised to the Neighbourhood Plan Group. These were recommendations that would have to be considered by County engineers and of course in the fullness of time put out for consultation. At present these were suggestions.
It was AGREED to DEFER this grant to Salcombe Maritime Museum due to town council ongoing consideration of their property provision and future usage.
740. PROJECT PROCESS
A sign from South West Water now stated that users could walk on their land at the Berry although this had only recently been installed. Discussion surrounded whether town council should make a statement on their website but it was felt that with ongoing legal discussion advice should be taken first.
Always inform those surrounding.
Must have more specific plan from town councillors of what they want to see on specifications and quotes. This irons out (c) but especially need to consider whether to go completely different to what there is there now.
It was AGREED;
(a) to communicate with those affected by intended town council works
(b) that town council must provide a specific project plan before requesting specification/quotes to aid a balanced consideration
(c) that final works would align to the content of a project specification.
741. TREE REPORT
DEFERRED pending a report to be provided by Hi-Line:
Chris Derrick, Kingsbridge Gazette left the meeting.
742. PARISH PATHS PARTNERSHIP
Cll Lang advised that FTP4 needed signage to indicate the route down to Lincombe or Snapes and suggested a fingerpost may be missing too. At FTP 6 the newly installed gate was being left open and the footpath officer would be advised that perhaps a stile was better. FTP15 there were trees across the path but a pending tree works application should cover this. FTP 35 overhanging branches were a hazard for horse riders. He would consider FTP 303 further.
The footpath review carried out by Cllr Lang was duly APPROVED in order that it could be forwarded to Devon County
743. REMEMBRANCE DAY PARADE
It was advised that Reggie Gough had agreed to be Parade Marshall in 2016 and AGREED that Cllr Whitfield would liaise with him to ascertain arrangements.
744. QUEEN’S 90TH BIRTHDAY
No local projects or celebrations had been advised of and it was AGREED this matter would be deferred unless any approach to arrange an event arose.
745. TOWN COUNCIL EMAIL
It was AGREED that individual councillors should each be provided with a ‘salcombetowncouncil.gov.uk’ address and such protocol for usage would be
746. MAYOR’S REPORT
The Mayor noted that town council needed to start to consider Citizen of the Year applications and therefore tthe forms would be provided to the shops and posted on the website. He, Cllr Land and the Town Clerk met with Tally Ho last week and noted that they had experienced problems with their newer buses. The second bus had to be rebuilt due to an electrical fault and Tally Ho had considered changing this bus for another for this year but this was resisted due to advertising already installed. If the bus did not manage the hill that one would be pulled and replaced. The charge to town council had increased by £4 on school days and £5 p day on non-school days. Also a notice would be placed in the car park indicating that the bus fare was not included in the parking charge. Tally Ho also suggested installing benches for waiting passengers.
A report was made to the Mayor that there were rats in the grounds of Chandlers Heights so the town clerk contacted District and District said the resident must report directly and they would arrange a rat catcher. Works to the land on the corner of Sandhills and Bennett Road which formed part of the Hipplefield property had also been raised by residents. The adjacent owner had cleared an area with a digger but the Mayor had not noted any trees removed just the ground works. Therefore it was felt this was a civil matter but it was noted that it would be of concern if the Greyhomes owners were to start exiting onto the Main Road. At present no works contravened the AONB or TPO policies etc. This matter had been referred to the District Councillors to raise with planning.
747. COUNCILLORS REPORTS
Cllr Biggs – With regard to the South West Water works as he understood it the contractors were supposed to partition roads and carry out works in stages but he was concerned that the bottom of Herbert Road been closed for three weeks. Residents could not at present get into their driveways and he felt that parking was being pushed on to surrounding locations. Discussion took place but town council felt that the works were not causing undue concerns and this would be monitored.
• Email received from Ivybridge Town Clerk setting out Ivybridge Town Council concerns with regard to the loss of banks within Ivybridge Town (they are now down to just Lloyds Bank) and asking for support and comments to be forwarded in order that such could be taken into account and presented at the Larger Councils meeting in London. It was noted that one problem locally was that a user could no longer go into the local bank and deposit for a rival bank. With regard to usage though it was noted that the bank was rarely used and when closures took place banks shut the rural branches and retained more than one outlet in larger urban areas. This meant that those visiting and residents businesses were not served in a balanced way.
• Kingsbridge Foodbank had notified their move to the Horizons centre and also that they would take referrals from town council of people who needed their assistance. This would cover a three week period until they could be directed to another solution or assistance.
• District had notified of the public consultation currently out on the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Estuaries Management Plan. This consultation would run until Friday 11th March. Councillors agreed that this was a well written document due to the knowledge of the Estuary Officer but could perhaps benefit from a summary at the front with bullet points of what is included as it was not user friendly.
• The Rural Services Network had sent out a questionnaire as they wished to engage with more representatives across the rural community. They asked if town councilors wished to have the RSN weekly update forwarded to them and if anyone wished to be a representative on their forum. Town Council was content with the current arrangement.
• Regatta and Crab Fest – A request was received as to whether there were any occasions in the town for the locality officer to be involved in. It was felt that all those who were involved in these festivals paid for a stall as in Regatta week. Therefore any attendance needed to be directed to the organizers and an offer from District to pay towards such in support.
• Letter received from a resident complaining about the inconsiderate behavior of dog walkers allowing them to use her parents’ grave within Shadycombe Cemetery as a toilet and asking that dog owners must keep their dogs on a lead within the cemetery. Town Council asked that signs be obtained that stated ‘Please Keep Dogs on Leads within the Cemetery’.
• The times for Tally Ho had been discussed and submitted to Department of Transport.
• Consideration to be given to Devon County Council proposed date of 1st May for Ringo and permits. Further decision would be needed with regard to management of issuing of permits. If use of the reverse of the parking tickets was required artwork would be needed. This matter would be dealt with through Cty Cllr Gilbert as noted during his report.
• District had been forwarded the proposed layout of Fairweather Fountain but to date no response had been received.
• Information was received from Peninsula Transport with regard to supporting further investment in reports for transport across the South West. It was not felt that town council could add to this at this point.
• Noted that the inspection of the Jubilee Play area was now covered by the District Locality Officer.
• Town Council was notified that the Cliff House Trust invoice received this year covered until the end of February 2016.
Current Account £501.00
Deposit Account £257,942.17
Councillors APPROVED the following payments:
Pending being released for payment due to bank only transmitting sums up to £25,000 at each transaction – South West Highways Ltd – P&R Tarmac and edging £31284.00
Held awaiting confirmation of installation – Devon County Council – Park and Ride and Town Signs £2412.74
Day Signs- Car park T&C and Berry No Parking signs £115.20
HMRC – Tax & NI £739.26
Wages – £1774.99
P. Robinson – PC World A3 Photocopier/scanner/colour printer £154.99
003440 Salcombe Christmas Light – Grant £700.00
749. NEXT MEETING
The next meeting would be held on Wednesday 10th February 2016 in the Library at Cliff House, Cliff Road, Salcombe at 6.30p.m.
Meeting Closed: 9.30p.m.
……………………………………………….. 10th February 2016.