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Section Two – General and Development Management Guidance

Part i) Overall Approach

Overall approach

2.1 All development proposals will be determined in accordance with the provisions of the Development Plan – the Hastings Local Plan comprising the Hastings Planning Strategy and the Development Management Plan, unless material considerations indicate otherwise. Those material considerations could include the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) with its emphasis on sustainable development and any neighbourhood plans where they exist. Particular requirements are set out for the development of each allocated site.

2.2 The purpose of this Plan is to guide the determination of planning applications that are presented to the Council. Any scheme to be considered by the Council will be determined using both the Planning Strategy and its policies for overall sustainable growth in the Borough, and the policies in this Development Management Plan. In particular, specific consideration should be given to design, amenity and access that are appropriate to the scheme and to its locality. The solutions to these issues should be described to the Council as part of the application process.

2.3 The aim is to help individuals and businesses create good schemes with sufficient flexibility to achieve the best outcomes for themselves, their neighbours and the wider community.

2.4 If the relevant policies of both the Planning Strategy and this Development Management Plan are not adhered to in applications for planning permission then it is likely that that application will be refused or opposed.

Policy LP1 – Considering Planning Applications

All development applications will be determined using national guidance (particularly contained in the National Planning Policy Framework) and the policies of the Hastings Local Plan unless there are material considerations that indicate otherwise.

The policies of the Local Plan are those contained within the Planning Strategy, Development Management Plan and any other Local Development Document produced (including Supplementary Planning Documents and any neighbourhood plans where they exist).  The spatial extents of the policies are also shown on the Policies Map.

All policies of the Local Plan will be considered in the decision making process as appropriate to the proposal presented.  As outlined in both national guidance and the Planning Strategy; the Council will make a presumption in favour of sustainable development that avoids adverse impacts upon the natural and built environment and increases social inclusion.

Some of the allocated sites in the Development Management Plan are supported by design briefs that will give additional detail to the associated site policy.

Affordable housing will be expected with every housing development site where there is a net increase in the number of homes. Affordable housing should be well-integrated with market housing in terms of site layout, appearance, detailed design, build quality and materials. With regard to housing mix, large scale development will be expected to deliver a mix of tenure and dwelling types within the scheme. On smaller schemes applicants will need to consider the tenure and housing mix in the locality and show how their development can contribute to increasing housing choices in terms of household sizes and the ages and incomes of possible residents.

When making planning decisions and advising applicants the Council will take advice, as appropriate, from partner organisations including Rother District Council, East Sussex County Council, the Environment Agency, Historic England, Natural England or their successor bodies and utility providers to ensure that all development is acceptable and adequately serviced.

Development proposals will need to show careful consideration of the transport impact onto and off locally important routes, particularly along The Ridge. The delivery of appropriate and effective mitigation will be required in conjunction with the proposed development coming forward. The traffic impact will be monitored over the Plan period and data will be available from the County Council's transport monitoring programme.

2.5 Part of the planning application process includes the requirement for supporting documents to be provided with an application before it can be validated (i.e. accepted as complete).  To view what is required in support of an application, please see the validation checklist available at: http://www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/info_advice/app_forms_guidance_notes/.

2.6 The Council provides a high quality pre-application advice service to those customers who are seeking professional advice as to the likely acceptability of development proposals.  The Council has a Planning Performance Agreement (PPA) in place to provide a project management framework for handling a significant major planning application from the pre-application stage through to its determination.  Further advice is available at www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/info_advice/pre_app_advice.

2.7 The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2011 and the NPPF (paragraph 192) set out the circumstances in which an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is required. Where relevant, the Screening for an EIA will be undertaken as part of the national validation requirements.

Householder applications

2.8 The majority of enquiries to the Council about planning issues concern homes; often the questions relate to whether a proposal requires permission. Not all changes require planning permission; there are some things that occupiers/householders are allowed to do (including within the curtilage or garden) without the need for planning permission2.

2.9 To find out if you need planning permission please visit: http://www.planningportal.gov.uk or, for further information, contact Hastings Borough Council's Development Management Team by telephone on 01424 451090 or email dcenquiries@hastings.gov.uk. Further advice is available at http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/blog/guidance/before-submitting-an-application/

2.10 The Council has information and advice available online at http://www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/info_advice/app_forms_guidance_notes/, and has produced a Supplementary Planning Document (SPD), specifically for householder applications concerning design and sustainability. This is available at http://www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/localplan/spd/.

2.11 Planning application forms, guidance notes and validation checklists are available at: http://www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/info_advice/app_forms_guidancenotes/.

2.12 Most planning applications are decided within 8 weeks unless they are major applications (being large or complex) – in which case the time limit is extended to 13 weeks.  If an EIA is required the time limit is extended to 16 weeks.  The Council will seek consent from the applicant to extend the statutory time limit for any type of application if it cannot determine the application within the specified number of weeks. All applicants are encouraged to seek pre-application advice before submitting their planning application.

2.13 Information on the right of appeal against Local Authority decisions on planning permission and other planning decisions, such as advertisement consent, listed building consent, prior approval of permitted development rights, and enforcement is available at http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/blog/guidance/appeals/.

2.14 The Council has a proactive approach to enforcement issues in accordance with Government Guidance available at http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/blog/guidance/ensuring-effective-enforcement/.

2.15 The NPPF requires a site-specific flood risk assessment (FRA) to be prepared to assess the flood risk to and from a development site where there is a risk of flooding. Applicants considering preparing an FRA should take advice from the Environment Agency.


Part ii) General Guidance Policies

Design

2.16 Urban design is about making connections between people and places. It brings together the many strands that make up a place: environmental stewardship, social equity and economic viability. The aim is to create places with distinct beauty and identity. Urban design is derived from planning and policy writing, architectural design, development economics, engineering and landscape. But it goes beyond the single aspect of each of these disciplines and it draws them together creating a vision for a building, site or area that is as much about the usability and sustainability of development as it is purely about aesthetics.

2.17 When development does take place, it is important that it has regard for local character and it achieves a good standard of design. The use of resources and impacts on the environment and the community should also be considered. Allowing some flexibility in the form a development might take, can sometimes however, result in more imaginative and innovative schemes being built.

2.18 There is much guidance available on the subject of design and the Council will have regard to this where appropriate, in particular from The Design Council. It is important to note that design is a dynamic and changing field, and it is not felt appropriate to write into policy now, what might become outdated during the life of this Plan. Instead plans submitted to the Council should show consideration, appreciation and inclusion, where appropriate, of the latest design guidance and best practice, but crucially, set within the context of Hastings Borough, but also the locality where a scheme is proposed.

2.19 Chapter 6: Developing Sustainable Communities in the Planning Strategy describes what Hastings Borough Council's expectations are, especially in terms of carbon and energy efficient buildings and construction. The following policy, DM1, should be read with particular reference to policies of that chapter.

2.20 Policy SC7 of the Planning Strategy is also of particular importance to consider as it requires that the proposals are in accordance with the Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) and that they are subject to the sequential test, seeking to avoid development in flood risk areas before considering mitigation measures.

2.21 Outlined in the Planning Strategy, Policy CI1, are the Council's likely infrastructure requirements to support new development and these should also be integrated into the design of proposals at an early stage, together with, where appropriate, the inclusion of children's play facilities in accordance with Policy CI3. For further information on the Council's expectations for community infrastructure please see Chapter 10 of the Planning Strategy.

2.22 As well as the Policy DM1 (and where appropriate DM2) of this Plan, the potential impact of a scheme on the  built and historic environment should be considered with reference to the environmental policies of the Planning Strategy, and Part iv) Historic and Natural Environment, of this Plan.

2.23 Policies H1, H2 and H3 within the Planning Strategy, should also be read in conjunction with Policy DM1. For further information on the Council's expectations for housing please see Chapter 8 of the Planning Strategy.

2.24 In addition to the more general issues described up to this point, in Hastings, because of its unique combination of heritage, ecology, topography, townscapes and landscape, it is also important to consider:

  1. the selection of appropriate materials – these should have regard to the area's character and the Council's objectives for sustainability. This would include, where appropriate, the re-use of materials; and
  2. the use of plant and tree species for landscaping and border treatments, appropriate to the local area;
  3. views of a development – these should be considered both from close by and from a wider area. The particular topography of the Borough means that there are many areas that are visually prominent, but there are also those areas that have an unexpected prominence; there can be 'glimpse views' of places like the castle and these should be given the same consideration. The impact upon protected areas of countryside must also be considered, like the Country Park and the nearby High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty;
  4. particular attention should be given to the 'gateways' into developments to reinforce a sense of character and distinctiveness.

2.25 In order that the overall design of a proposal is considered as well as all the various aspects that are required to achieve good design, Policy DM1 lists those things, in no particular order, that will be considered important to achieve a good and appropriate scheme. Policy DM2 considers the specific case of proposals for telecommunication installations.

Policy DM1 – Design Principles

All proposals must reach a good standard of design, which includes efficient use of resources, and takes into account:

  1. protecting and enhancing local character;
  2. showing an appreciation of the surrounding neighbourhood's historic context, street patterns, plot layouts and boundaries, block sizes and scale, height, massing and materials;
  3. good performance against nationally recognised best practice guidance on sustainability, urban design and place-making, architectural quality and distinctiveness;
  4. the layout and siting of buildings to make efficient use of land, the orientation of frontages to achieve attractive streetscapes and to best take into account the effects of solar gain;
  5. an assessment of visual impact, including the height, scale, and form of development that should be appropriate to the location, especially given the complex topography of the Borough and the need, in some instances, to consider the visual effect from key viewpoints. This is particularly important when there are potential impacts upon areas of heritage and/or landscape value as outlined in the Planning Strategy (this could include a landscape assessment where appropriate).

Supplementary Planning Documents provide further detail to this policy.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2: Design and Access Statements
SC3: Promoting Sustainable and Green Design
SC4: Working Towards Zero Carbon Development
SC5: District Heating Networks and Combined Heat and Power Systems
SC7: Flood Risk
EN1: Built and Historic Environment
EN2: Green Infrastructure Network
EN3: Nature Conservation and Improvement of Biodiversity
EN7: Conservation and Enhancement of Landscape
EN8: Open Spaces – Enhancement, Provision and Protection
H1:    Housing Density
H2:    Housing Mix
H3:    Provision of Affordable Housing
CI1:   Infrastructure and Development Contributions
CI3:   Children's Play Provision

Telecommunications technology

2.26 Modern telecommunications systems have grown rapidly in recent years with more than two thirds of the population now owning a mobile phone. Mobile communications are now considered an integral part of the success of most business operations and individual lifestyles. With new services demand for new telecommunications infrastructure is continuing to grow. We are keen to facilitate this expansion whilst at the same time minimising any environmental impacts. It is our policy to reduce the proliferation of new masts by encouraging mast sharing and siting equipment on existing tall structures and buildings.

Policy DM2 – Telecommunications Technology

In accordance with Government advice, if a proposed installation meets the International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) guidelines for public exposure then it will not be necessary to consider further health aspects and concerns.

Prior approval for the siting and appearance of antennae will be given and full planning permission granted for telecommunications installations provided that the following criteria are met:

  1. the siting and appearance of the proposed apparatus and associated structures should seek to minimise impact on the visual amenity, character or appearance of the surrounding area in accordance with Policy DM1, above, and where appropriate HN1;
  2. if on a building, apparatus and associated structures should be sited and designed in order to seek to minimise impact to the external appearance of the host building;
  3. if proposing a new mast, it should be demonstrated that the applicant has explored the possibility of erecting apparatus on existing buildings, masts or other structures. Such evidence should accompany any application made to the Council;
  4. if proposing development in a sensitive area, the development should not have an unacceptable effect on areas of ecological interest, areas of landscape importance, archaeological sites, conservation areas or buildings of architectural or historic significance;
  5. when considering applications for telecommunications development, the Council will have regard to the operational requirements of telecommunications networks and the technical limitations of the technology.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2: Design and Access Statements
SC7: Flood Risk
EN1: Built and Historic Environment
EN2: Green Infrastructure Network
EN3: Nature Conservation and Improvement of Biodiversity
EN7: Conservation and Enhancement of Landscape
EN8: Open Spaces – Enhancement, Provision and Protection

Amenity

2.27 Amenity is a broad term that can encompass protection from unacceptable impacts on an area as a whole or on neighbouring occupants, for example avoiding loss of privacy, overshadowing and loss of daylight.

2.28 Amenity also includes layout and proportions (internal and external) of buildings.  Amenity is a term that is used to describe the spaces between buildings, the public spaces that, when well maintained, help to increase a person's sense of wellbeing. Amenity, then, is a crucial issue to consider with proposals and Policy DM3 offers guidance towards the Council's expectations.

2.29 The management of the spaces between buildings can also help to contribute to objectives of environmental sustainability. Green infrastructure, Policy EN2 of the Planning Strategy, is a crucial part of development proposals that can safeguard biodiversity, natural features and wildlife habitats.

2.30 Despite differences in size, tenure and density, it is important that all homes in the Borough are of high quality. This is, indeed, also Objective 2 of the Planning Strategy and, as such, amenity is closely linked to Policies SC1, SC2, H1 and H2 of the Planning Strategy.

2.31 As well as the design Policy DM1, Policy DM3 also provides guidance, in no particular order, towards what the Council believes to be a decent home that safeguards the amenity of its inhabitants, neighbours and the local community.

2.32 The Council may deem it necessary to reference national guidance on housing quality, particularly that from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), who cite the Housing Quality Indicators of 2008 as a good grounding for assessing the standard of proposed new homes. As with design, this is a dynamic and changing subject area. It is, however, considered that a standard for internal space that is appropriate in new build housing is to provide at least a minimum of liveable space. The management and orientation of that space can be negotiated on a site specific basis.

2.33 Advertising can look unattractive if poorly executed. Badly designed, very bright or inappropriately sited signs can detract from the character of a building or street. The effects of advertisement on the amenity and highway safety will be carefully considered before express consent will be given. The Council has an adopted Supplementary Planning Document - Shopfronts and Advertisements (2007), which has been programmed for updating in the current Local Development Scheme (LDS).

Policy DM3 – General Amenity

In order to achieve a good living standard for future users of proposed development and its neighbours it should be demonstrated that amenity has been considered and appropriate solutions have been incorporated into schemes. Permission will be given for development where:

  1. the use of the scale, form, height, mass, and density of any building or buildings, reduces or avoids any adverse impact on the amenity (privacy, over shadowing, loss of daylight) of neighbouring properties;
  2. there is adequate space for storage of waste and the means for its removal (where appropriate, turning areas for refuse vehicles). This includes provision for the general management of recyclable materials. Space will also be required for necessary servicing areas, ancillary structures and landscaping;
  3. there is a means of landscaping that contributes to crime prevention; a permeable and legible green infrastructure network of routes and spaces to create a public realm that is attractive, overlooked and safe;
  4. considerate design solutions for the spaces between and around buildings are shown. This should respect the character of the surroundings; a well-designed scheme in terms of private, semi-private and public open space, to include, where appropriate, the provision of public art;
  5. arrangements are in place for the future maintenance of any public areas;
  6. dwellings are designed to allow residents to live comfortably and conveniently with sufficient internal space. The guidelines for minimum internal floor areas are: 1 bedroom/2 person 51m2; 2 bedroom/3 person 66m2; 2 bedroom/4 person 77m2; 3 bedroom/5 person 93m2; 4 bedroom/6 person 106m2;
  7. appropriate levels of private external space are included, especially for larger homes designed for family use (dwellings with two or more bedrooms). In respect of proposed family dwellings the Council would expect to see the provision of private garden space (normally at the rear), of at least 10 metres in length;
  8. it can be adequately demonstrated that there is no safety risk to the public, and that development is appropriately protected from any existing facilities that may affect amenity; for example busy roads, waste water treatment works etc;
  9. outdoor advertisements and signs do not detrimentally affect the appearance of any building(s) and/or the surrounding area and do not result in a danger to the public highway.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2: Design and Access Statements
EN2: Green Infrastructure Network
H1: Housing Density
H2: Housing Mix

Access

2.34 When new development is proposed, the ways that people move on and off and through the site are important considerations. The impact on existing transport networks from completed schemes is also an important matter. Particular consideration might need to be given to roads in the town that are, as yet, un-metalled, as further development that uses these roads for access could create a situation that would lead to their deterioration.

2.35 Design and Access Statements are a prerequisite of certain planning applications, and are required by Policy SC2 of the Planning Strategy. They should explain how proposals are capable of successful integration onto a particular site. Consideration should go beyond the strict boundaries of the site in order to appreciate how people move between different places and how various uses connect together.

2.36 Where existing transport infrastructure is inadequate to meet the needs of new development, planning conditions or development contributions will be used to ensure that developments are made acceptable through securing the provision of necessary improvements.

2.37 Whilst acknowledging its importance to modern life, designs that put further reliance on travel by private car alone should be discouraged. The provision of car parking in developments must not lead to vehicles having an overbearing effect on the streetscape. Policy T3 of the Planning Strategy advocates the promotion and increased use of sustainable forms of transport and to support this, proposals should include clear access to and routes for alternative modes of transport to the car. This will also support the strategic cycle network through Hastings Borough. Proposals for larger schemes are likely to require travel plans in accordance with Policy T4 of the Planning Strategy. For further information on the Council's transport infrastructure please see Chapter 11 of the Planning Strategy.

2.38     Parking provision in connection with a specific development is the responsibility of the developer. East Sussex County Council has produced guidance that has now been adopted by Hastings Borough Council as a Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). This sets out the thresholds for provision of parking spaces and is available at www.hastings.gov.uk/environment_planning/planning/localplan/spd/parking_provision/.

2.39     The Council will apply the Parking Provision in New Developments SPD when considering development proposals. There is also national guidance on access issues available, such as, from the Design Council and the Homes and Communities Agency. The Council will also have regard to this advice where appropriate.

2.40     Policy DM4 below describes in no particular order, those matters that the Council expects to see included in development proposals.

Policy DM4 – General Access

Attention must be paid, not only to the access onto the site, but also access within all parts of any resultant development.  Planning permission will be granted provided that:

  1. safe access into (and within) the development for all users is provided, and is accompanied by a Transport Assessment Statement or Report where appropriate.  Hastings Borough Council will take advice from the local Highway Authority (East Sussex County Council) when taking decisions on this point;
  2. public transport provision, pedestrian and cycle access are promoted and enhanced, and where appropriate, pedestrian and cycle routes are incorporated into and through sites to aid connectivity and safety;
  3. provision for non-car based modes of transport have been shown to be considered and included as appropriate in the development of the site;
  4. parking standards set out in the adopted Parking Provision in New Developments Supplementary Planning Document (or any future replacements) are complied with;
  5. development that would generate additional traffic on an un-metalled carriageway, will be required to bring the road up to an acceptable standard and for it to remain private or alternatively to be brought up to an adoptable standard capable of adoption by the Highway Authority.  This requirement will be secured through a legal agreement;
  6. good accessibility is provided for all, especially for people with a physical or sensory impairment;
  7. powered lift systems are installed to all floors, for any new buildings (except a single dwelling house) of three storeys or more. The lifts should be designed to allow for their use by disabled people and particularly those who use wheelchairs;
  8. good performance against nationally recognised best practice guidance on internal building design and layout is achieved.

 

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC2: Design and Access Statements
T3: Sustainable Transport
T4: Travel Plans

Ground conditions

2.41 Where a site is affected by contamination or instability, responsibility for a safe development rests with the developer and local authorities cannot refuse planning permission on these grounds alone. National planning guidance states that to prevent unacceptable risks from pollution and land instability, local authorities should ensure that the development is appropriate for its location and that the site itself is suitable for its new use taking account of ground conditions and land instability (paragraphs 120 and 121 of the NPPF).

2.42 The NPPF also requires planning authorities to seek to ensure that when remediation measures are undertaken, the land should, post development, not be capable of being determined as 'contaminated land' under Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Paragraph 121). The Planning Authority therefore needs to be satisfied that, where it is necessary, ground conditions and contaminants have been fully taken into account in proposals for development.

2.43 Conditions will be applied to planning decisions that will prevent the commencement of development until the Council is satisfied that ground conditions and any identified remediation or mitigation measures are acceptable for it to begin. These conditions will be in accordance with Policy DM5 below, and should be read in conjunction with Policies SC1, and where appropriate SC2, of the Planning Strategy.

Policy DM5 – Ground Conditions

In order to protect human health and water quality, planning permission will not be granted unless assessments of existing ground conditions are undertaken, and details submitted to the Local Planning Authority under the following circumstances:

Land instability

  1. On land potentially subject to instability (such as steeply sloping sites or in areas with a history of land instability), convincing supporting evidence (from a relevant and suitably qualified professional) must be supplied before planning permission is granted. This evidence is to show that any actual or potential instability can be overcome through appropriate remedial, preventative or precautionary measures. At the application stage, for those sites with a history of instability, information about the extent of remediation and/or mitigation measures will be required. Any further detail that may be required will be conditioned.

Contaminated land

  1. Proposals for sites known or suspected to be contaminated (through previous or historical uses) must be submitted with suitable ground investigation reports. New developments within 250 metres of a landfill site or land suspected of contamination will require investigation and demonstration that development is acceptable. At the application stage information about the extent of remediation and/or mitigation measures will be required. Any further detail that may be required will be conditioned.

 

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2: Design and Access Statements

Pollution and hazards

2.44 Where a development has the potential to create pollution to land or water environments, it is important to consider this at an early stage to keep its effects to a minimum. Lighting, noise, odour, hazardous and non-hazardous substances and airborne particulates are all potential pollutants and their impact in new development must be properly assessed. Airborne pollutants are a particular issue in the Air Quality Management Area in Bexhill Road/Bulverhythe.

2.45 There are a number of water courses and wetland habitats in Hastings and, of course, the Borough is next to the sea. Development will be expected to avoid adverse impacts to water quality and applications will be expected to be accompanied by surveys and mitigations measures where appropriate. Advice will be sought as necessary from Natural England and/or the Environment Agency.  To help protect ecology, and the viability of important local businesses, the Council will seek to preserve local sea water quality and further information on this can be obtained from the Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authority (IFCA).

2.46 Sometimes pre-existing sources of pollution or specific hazards need to be taken into account when proposals are made.  In these cases the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are able to advise potential applicants about these. The Council will use the advice of the HSE in its decision making process. Any site that needs to use or store hazardous substances, requires hazardous substances consent (HSC) before it can operate. Further advice is available at http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/blog/guidance/hazardous-substances/.

2.47 Policy DM6 sets out the Council's expectations for minimising of pollution from development. This policy should be read in conjunction with Policy SC1 and where appropriate, SC2 of the Planning Strategy.

Policy DM6 – Pollution and Hazards

In order to protect human health and water quality planning permission will only be granted for development providing:

  1. external lighting proposals avoid unnecessary light pollution beyond the specific area intended to be lit;
  2. the level of airborne pollutants caused by the proposed development does not exceed statutory guidelines, unless appropriate mitigation measures are agreed;
  3. noise and odour that is detrimental to neighbouring and/or local amenity is kept to a practical minimum; appropriate means of assessment may be required;
  4. appropriate pollution control measures are incorporated where necessary to protect the quality of both ground and surface waters;

Applicants will be required to supply convincing supporting evidence (from a relevant and suitably qualified professional) that any actual or potential pollution can be overcome through appropriate remedial, preventative or precautionary measures. For an application involving the use or storage of hazardous substances, a separate consent has to be sought from the Hazardous Substances Authority.

Where appropriate, the Local Planning Authority will consult the Health and Safety Executive on applications near “notifiable installations” (examples include high pressure gas mains and overhead power cables). The determining factors are the distance, risks and nature of the proposal.

 

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2: Design and Access Statements

Water resource availability

2.48 The use and management of water resources (rivers, lakes, wetlands, underground aquifers etc) in Hastings and how developments might affect them are matters that need to be taken into consideration in accordance with guidance from the Environment Agency.

2.49 Flood Risk as an issue is covered by Policy SC7 of the Planning Strategy.

2.50 The availability of water resources and the impact of increased abstraction on environmental water needs will be taken into account in the determination of development proposals. A licence may be required for water abstraction and this should be sought from the Environment Agency.

2.51 The Council will work with applicants and advice will be taken as necessary from the Environment Agency and/or Natural England about the impact upon the availability of water. The impacts could be to the needs of navigation, fisheries, recreation and nature conservation.

2.52 Policy DM7 sets out the expectation of the Council in the specific circumstances of development that has the potential to have an impact on the availability of water resources. The quality of water resources (i.e. pollution by hazardous and non-hazardous substances) is dealt with in Policy DM6 above.

Policy DM7 – Water Resource Availability

The protection of ground water sources and reserves (rivers, lakes, reservoirs and underground aquifers) is important. Therefore, development will be permitted that can demonstrate the availability of ground water resources will not be threatened. Development will not be permitted within areas where there is significant risk to ground water resources (such as Source Protection Zones) in accordance with the records of the Environment Agency.

Development may have a local impact upon water resources in Hastings. In considering planning applications, the Council will have regard to the impact of the development on overall availability of water in the town. This particularly will be the case where the end user will have abnormally high water consumption, for example, as part of a manufacturing process.

Consideration will also be given to possible environmental effects of development. The Council will seek to ensure that development does not cause unacceptably low river flows or the drying out of wetlands on or off the site. In order to assess the impact of a development on water resources, in appropriate cases the Council will seek advice from the relevant body, the Environment Agency or Southern Water.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policy:

SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way


Part iii) Housing and the Community Policies

Conversion of dwellings

3.1 It is an aim of the Planning Strategy to both increase the supply of new dwellings and at the same time promote an appropriate mix of dwellings types and sizes in the Borough, with an emphasis on increasing the supply of larger and family sized units. Policy SC1 of the Planning Strategy seeks to meet the housing needs of all sectors of the community. This can be achieved through new development and/or the conversion of existing dwellings. The conversion of large single dwelling houses into flats can provide a useful source of new dwellings, but at the same time care needs to be taken to ensure that valuable family housing is not lost or, that as a result of inappropriate conversions poor living environments are created either for the occupiers of such units or existing neighbouring residents. Policy H2 of the Planning Strategy requires housing developers to have regard to housing mix in new development. Even in a conversion scheme there is the potential to provide good quality family accommodation.

3.2 Policy HC1 supports the Planning Strategy policies with regard to housing mix and quality. Judgements about a house and whether it should be retained as a single dwelling will be made based on the existing number of bedrooms within the dwelling, and amenity factors such as whether the proposed layout of rooms reflects, as far   as practicable, the existing room layout.  The subdivision of floorspace to create internal rooms to provide facilities will not normally be acceptable, for example. Also, the desirability, particularly in Conservation Areas, and necessity (in respect of family dwellings) of preserving front and rear gardens and other landscape features will be important.

3.3 This policy should be read in conjunction with Planning Strategy policies SC1, H2 and H4 and the general guidance polices in Part ii) of this Plan, particularly DM1 and DM3.

Policy HC1 – Conversion of Existing Dwellings

To support the provision of quality homes and dwelling mix, planning permission will be granted for the conversion of all or part of a dwelling to another use or into multiple dwellings, provided that;            

  1. the building can no longer be retained in its entirety for single family housing occupancy;
  2. it would not include significant extension(s) or significant changes to room layouts to achieve an adequate standard of accommodation;
  3. it would not involve the self-containment of basement areas or other parts of any property having inadequate light or low ceilings or which would result in a poor outlook from main windows; and
  4. it would make adequate provision for refuse storage.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1: Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
H2:    Housing Mix
H4:    Houses in Multiple Occupation

Residential institutions and student halls of residence

3.4 Where residential institutions or student accommodation are proposed a reasonable balance has to be achieved between the needs of the prospective occupants and the local amenity of existing residents.

3.5 Residential Institutions (Use Class C23) are those places where people live with an element of on-site care provided for them. Examples of these are: residential care homes, nursing homes, boarding schools, residential colleges and training centres.

3.6 Residential accommodation for students can take a variety of forms and consequently fall within a number of planning use classes. Policy HC2 applies to proposals for residential institutions and student halls of residence.

3.7 A mixture of housing and other types of residential accommodation in a given locality can contribute towards sustainable communities, but it is also important that the specialist accommodation described here is located appropriately.

3.8 Any proposal for a residential institution or student halls of residence must demonstrate that the new development reflects the local character and meets the specific requirements of prospective inhabitants; in accordance with the general guidance policies in Part ii) of this Plan. Design, access and location in relation to services and facilities are of particular importance, but the weight to be accorded to each criterion will depend upon the precise nature of the proposals. It should also be noted that there are no permitted changes of use away from Residential institutions (Use Class C23) or halls of residence and as such any proposed change will require a planning application.

3.9 The needs of prospective inhabitants should be set out in the submitted planning application. For example, a proposal for a home for elderly residents will have different requirements to that of student halls, and these requirements will be different again if a specialist home or institution is proposed for long term ill people. Scheme promoters should assess the particular needs of their project and explain how identified issues have been resolved in submitting their planning application. This will support Policy SC1 of the Planning Strategy, and should be set out in design and access statements as required by Policy SC2. To support the delivery of the Council's aspirations for sustainable communities, Policy HC2, below, will address those matters that the Council consider of particular importance in considering planning applications for residential institutions and student halls of residence. Policy HC2 should be read in conjunction with the general guidance policies in Part ii) of this Plan, particularly DM1, DM3 and HC1 above.

Policy HC2 – Residential Institutions and Student Halls of Residence

Planning permission for residential institutions (including for the elderly, infirm and physically and sensory impaired) and for student halls of residence will be granted subject to the following criteria:

  1. The site should be appropriate in terms of accessibility for its prospective residents (particular assessment may be required for institutions proposed for disabled people).  Parking arrangements should reflect the needs of residents, particularly disabled people, with adequate space also available for servicing and amenity space;
  2. Changing the use of an existing building should not detrimentally affect its character or setting;
  3. Account may be taken of existing accommodation in the locality to ensure an adequate residential mix remains for all sectors of the community.

 

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policies:
SC1:  Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way
SC2:  Design and Access Statements

Community facilities

3.10 To support the aspirations of the Planning Strategy to achieve sustainable communities, proposals that impact upon an existing community facility or propose a new one will require specific consideration.

3.11 Community facilities provide for the health and wellbeing, social, educational, spiritual, recreational, leisure and cultural needs of the community. The communities of the Borough are set to grow and as such, these facilities will not only need to provide for the needs of the existing population but also for more people as they move to the area.

3.12 For the purposes of this policy, a community facility includes any building used by local people for community purposes. This can include community halls, meeting rooms, youth centres and church halls. Other community facilities, such as open spaces, are dealt with in section 2, Part iv) of this Plan – Historic and Natural Environment Policies.

3.13 It is important that if new facilities are proposed they are appropriate to their surroundings and do not adversely impact upon the amenity of their neighbours. It is also important that the value of existing facilities is appreciated and that their retention or appropriate replacement is an early consideration in any proposed scheme.

3.14 Policy HC3 gives guidance on the siting of community facilities and the consideration of proposals involving the change of use, or the removal of such facilities. Depending on the particular circumstances, the best option may be to retain a facility, to allow an alternative solution, or to close an economically unviable facility. An unviable community facility will be determined on a case by case basis.

Policy HC3 – Community Facilities

Proposals for the provision of community facilities will be granted planning permission, provided that the development is acceptable in terms of location, design, access and impact on the locality, and is in general conformity with other policies of this Plan, in particular DM1 and DM3.

Planning applications involving the loss of a community facility will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that the existing community use is no longer required, not viable, or proposals for its replacement are included in the application.

Relationship to the Planning Strategy (2014)

Policy:
SC1:    Overall Strategy for Managing Change in a Sustainable Way



2 Under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order as amended

3 Use Classes of the Town and Country Planning Use Classes Order 1987 (as amended)


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