Councillor Gloria Cawood, who represents Cranmore, Doulting and Nunney on Mendip District Council, has written a report on her activities.
There have been even fewer Mendip meetings than usual, with some being postponed, the Easter and bank holidays appearing to reduce the availability of staff to bring forward reports on such matters as the Bath and West Local Development Order.
I have had to spend more time looking after my mother, though she should be able to manage on her own better now the disabled adaptations are complete. (Well, almost!)
Please accept my apologies that I have had to miss some of your meetings, though I have been able to keep in touch with Clerks, Councillors, Mendip Officers, Developers and individual members of the public through e-mail reports, the telephone and I.T. and make a number of site/home visits.
Planning continues to keep me very busy. From May 1st. the new system for dealing with planning came in. I attach a copy of the process for your reference. Some Parishes have already received it – along with my tirade on the new system, which seems to make the process less democratic.
As usual I have also been involved in a number of personal cases and progress has been made with most.
The Waterlip Quarry application which intruded on a County Wildlife Site was agreed by the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Planning Board. Despite strong objections from both Cranmore and Doulting parish councils and my support for their views it was agreed without going to Board. Enforcement failed to deal adequately with encroachment on to the CWS and County Council seemed unconcerned. I have to wonder what protection for our wildlife exists when planning conditions can be flouted so easily and permissions given to developers with no compensation or rebuke for their destruction of wildlife habitats.
Wind Turbine Update: Following the refusal by the Planning Board by 1 vote of the Torr Quarry Wind Farm, the turbine at Rockhouse Farm, Whatley was turned down 12 votes to nil. I was unable to attend the Board meeting due to caring duties, but sent in my views. There had been over 170 objections to the application, though all statutory consultees had raised no objections.
While the officer recommendation on Torr had been for refusal, Rockhouse was down for approval. Given this I have to admit that such a resounding result came as a surprise. The siting of this 77 metre turbine east of Asham Wood and just south of the Old Wells between Leigh and Chantry crossroads would certainly mean it was very prominent in the landscape.
The Bath and West Wind Turbine is going to appeal, I hear.
Housing at Nunney: There have been objections to this development for up to 100 houses at the Glebe from the Environment Agency and County Highways. It is anticipated that it will go to Planning Board on June 18th. though Baratts are submitting amended plans which they hope will overcome these objections. Basically the access is being moved to the southern part of the site. However, these are still for up to 100 houses in the proposal which appears to be the main objection from Nunney residents. The Diocese has asked for £60K for the Church roof to go into the Section 106, which is thought acceptable by the planners.
At the same time I have had communications from families who do not live in Nunney at present, but who have lived/been brought up there and are in need of housing for rent. These people are already on Mendip’s waiting list and I have advised them to up-date their applications and stress their local connection. Please advise those you know who are interested in social housing here that they should ensure they are on the Council waiting list.
Housing in Doulting: David Wilson Homes are to present their proposal for around 50 houses at an Extraordinary Parish Council Meeting on Thursday 15th. May at 7.30pm at the School. It will be interesting to see what changes have been made since the presentation in the Church.
The Willow Cottage, Whatley, development for 3 houses on the site at Chantry will come to me after the closing date for consultation and I will be able to agree the officer recommendation or ask for it to be referred to Board. There have been a large number of objections to this application and very few letters of support.