Agenda and minutes

Development Management Committee
Tuesday, 2nd March, 2021 6.30 p.m.

Venue: To be held remotely, please use the following link to access:

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No. Item


MINUTES pdf icon PDF 76 KB


            The Minutes of the meeting held on 1 February 2021, having been circulated, were taken as read and signed as a correct record.




Additional documents:


The Committee considered the following applications for planning permission and, in accordance with its powers and duties, made the decisions described below.


20/00153/FUL - Proposed development comprising 249 dwellings, reconfiguration of Golf Course, demolition of existing clubhouse and associated buildings and erection of new clubhouse and greenkeepers store, creation of new vehicular accesses, roads, car parking & ancillary development at Widnes Golf Club, Highfield Road, Widnes, WA8 7DT pdf icon PDF 5 MB


The consultation procedure undertaken was outlined in the report together with background information in respect of the site.


The Case Officer advised that since the publication of the AB Update List one more representation had been received.  This raised issues relating to the traffic survey undertaken as well as drainage and increased flood risk which were already dealt with in the Committee Report.  Following presentation of the application it was explained why it was recommended for refusal and the fundamental issues with the proposal were described, as outlined in paragraph 8 of the report relating to the following:


·         Greenspace / Strategic Greenspace / Potential Greenway / Green Infrastructure / Health and Wellbeing;

·         Highways / Transportation;

·         Flood Risk/Drainage; and

·         Trees / Landscaping / Landscape Impacts

The Committee was addressed by Mr Peter Hurst, who as a long-standing member of the Golf Club, spoke in support of the application.  He explained how the Club was once thriving with people of all social backgrounds offering various recreational activities to Members.  Unfortunately, in recent times the membership at the Club had declined to a point where its existence was now threatened; he gave examples of reasons why this had happened.  He argued that the Club would prosper if the application was approved as new membership would be encouraged by the new facilities.  He also added that:


·         It was not unusual for a town’s golf club to be situated outside its boundary;

·         Widnes Golf Club was currently private land so there was no direct benefit to the public as open space;

·         The proposal would benefit existing and future residents of the Borough with its high quality design and landscaping;

·         It was in a sustainable location;

·         It would bring affordable housing to the area and local investment; and

·         It would relieve pressure to develop other green spaces in the Borough.


In conclusion, he added that improvements in the sport’s technology had changed the game over the past 60 years and the Club needed to respond to this.


Mr Morris, the applicant, then addressed the Committee.  He had been a member of Widnes Golf Club for many years and now spoke as a Board Member in support of the application.  He recognised the concerns made by the public over the proposals in relation to the loss of green space.  He advised that the Club was in financial difficulty and if the development did not go ahead the Club faced an uncertain future and the facility could be lost altogether.  He explained the problems with the existing substandard 18 hole course in relation to quality and drainage and how this had affected its appeal and that improvements needed to be made.  The Club had seen a reduction in membership numbers over the years and now found itself in a challenging position, being unable to maintain the Club or invest in its future.  He added that:


·         The current course was now too small and sub-standard;

·         There was no policy requirement for Widnes to have an 18 hole golf club;  ...  view the full minutes text for item 33.


20/00636/OUT - Outline application with landscaping reserved, for proposed development of 26 No. apartments and ground floor retail unit for bookmakers with associated parking and ancillary space at Sporting Ford, 164 Hough Green Road, Widnes, WA8 4PG pdf icon PDF 175 KB


The consultation procedure undertaken was outlined in the report together with background information in respect of the site.


The Committee was advised that since the publication of the agenda and as per the published AB Update List, Highways Authority had responded to the amendments and were now satisfied with the layout subject to the additional conditions for car parking management plan, offsite highways works relating to the access and removal of a taxi rank, and a condition restricting the use of the retail unit to a bookmakers. 


Further comments had also been received from a local Ward Councillor raising the following matters:


·         The height of the building and requested a condition so that it could not be increased;

·         Securing and controlling provision of car parking;

·         A condition that materials, boundary treatments and landscaping  were submitted and approved; and

·         The need for further site investigations.


Members were advised that the scale and appearance of the building had been submitted in full detail and a condition was recommended so that it would be built in accordance with the submitted plans, this would control the height of the building.  The Ward Councillor also wanted to be sure that any cladding used was fire safe and that the building had suitable means of escape, both of these matters would be dealt with under the Building Regulations for the project.


The Committee was advised that the consultation period was due to expire the following day and that delegated authority was therefore sought to determine the application, in consultation with the Chair, once the consultation had expired and considering any further comments received.


The recommendation was moved and seconded and the Committee agreed to approve the application, subject to the conditions listed below which include the additional conditions discussed above.


RESOLVED: That authority be delegated to the Operational Director – Policy, Planning and Transportation, in consultation with the Chair, to determine the application, subject to any consultation responses and to the following:


a)    a legal or other appropriate agreement relating to securing financial contributions for open space;


b)    conditions relating to the following:


1.    Outline planning permission conditions setting out time limits and reserved matters (BE1);

2.    Condition specifying approved and amended plans (BE1);

3.    Requiring submission and agreement of a Construction Management Plan including vehicle access routes and construction car parking (BE1);

4.    Materials condition, requiring the submission and approval of the materials to be used (BE2);

5.    Landscaping condition, requiring the submission and approval of landscaping details (BE2);

6.    Boundary treatments to be submitted and approved in writing (BE1);

7.    Wheel cleansing facilities/strategy to be submitted and approved in writing (BE1);

8.    Construction and delivery hours to be adhered to throughout the course of the development (BE1);

9.    Vehicle access, parking, servicing etc to be constructed prior to occupation of properties/commencement of use (BE1);

10. Condition relating to the implementation of bin store provision (BE1);

11. Requiring submission and agreement of site and finished floor and site levels (BE1);

12. Site investigation, including mitigation/validation  ...  view the full minutes text for item 34.