Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee
Wednesday, 10 March 2021 2.00 pm

Venue: Remote Meeting

Contact: Jayne Clarke / Kieran Robinson  01952 383205 / 382061

Media

Items
No. Item

PC143

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

None.

PC144

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 236 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – that the minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee held on 10 February 2021 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman.

PC145

Deferred/Withdrawn Applications

Minutes:

None.

PC146

Site Visits

Minutes:

None.

PC147

Planning Applications for Determination pdf icon PDF 470 KB

Please note that the order in which applications are heard may be changed at the meeting.  If Members have queries about any of the applications, they are requested to raise them with the relevant Planning Officer prior to the Committee meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members had received a schedule of planning applications to be determined by the Committee and fully considered each report and the supplementary information tabled at the meeting regarding the planning application TWC/2020/0851.

PC148

TWC/2020/0851 - Land north of Roden Lane Farm, Roden Lane, Roden, Telford pdf icon PDF 285 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This application was for the installation of a renewable energy scheme comprising ground-mounted photovoltaic solar arrays and battery-based electricity storage containers together with transformer stations, access, internal access track, landscaping, security fencing, security measures, access gate, and ancillary infrastructure on land north of Roden Lane Farm, Roden Lane, Roden, Telford, Shropshire.

 

This application was before Committee at the request of Councillor S Bentley.

 

An update and additional information from the speakers had been circulated to the Committee prior to the meeting.

 

The Planning Officer addressed the Committee and confirmed that this application was located on the north of the B5062 and covered an area of 133 hectares.  It was envisaged that it would develop 49.9MW of renewable energy for a period of 40 years.  Further representations had been received prior to the meeting and an update report circulated to Members.

 

Councillor R Wickson spoke against the application on behalf of Ercall Magna Parish Council.  Although the Parish Council were in support of green energy, they raised concerns regarding this application due to the size of the site, loss of agricultural land, the disposal of waste from the chicken farm, the accumulative impact of planning applications on the area, not a recognised power company, purely for profit application, change of ownership, the use of wildflowers and sheep grazing and the contamination of the land.  It was felt that the application did not comply with Policy ER1 and NE2. Decommissioning and the lack of a financial package on the site was also a concern and they felt that this application was not fit for purpose.

 

Councillor S Bentley, Ward Councillor, addressed Members that whilst he was not opposed to the solar farm or renewable energy, he needed to be confident that this application met the requirements of the Local Plan and policy ER1.  This application was on productive agricultural land situated in a picturesque area.  He raised concerns regarding the poultry waste and decommissioning and asked that a financial plan be in place prior to the farm becoming operational.  It was requested that a legal agreement be secured at the end of the 40 year life in order to protect the community, the land be cleared of contamination and returned to agricultural land. 

 

Mr P Birne, a member of the public, supported green energy but spoke against the application and raised concerns regarding the cost and legal arrangements for the decommissioning the site and the financial risks, impact on the community, loss of agricultural land if the land became a brownfield site and asked if this application could be deferred in order for the application to be looked at more transparently.

 

Mr C Cox, Applicant’s Agent, spoke in favour of the application and addressed the Committee that the solar farm would help to the Council to become carbon neutral by 2030 and the energy generated would be equivalent to that needed to serve 15,000 homes during its operation lifetime.  Funds would be set aside for the decommissioning of the site and  ...  view the full minutes text for item PC148