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Posted by: John Brace | 21st July 2017

How was the planning application (APP/17/00306) for a fire station in Saughall Massie decided?

How was the planning application (APP/17/00306) for a fire station in Saughall Massie decided?

Wirral Council’s Planning Committee 20th July 2017 voting to approve planning application APP/17/00306 (Saughall Massie fire station)

Wirral Council’s Planning Committee 20th July 2017 voting to approve planning application APP/17/00306 (Saughall Massie fire station)

Edited 21.7.17 by JB to include contact details of National Planning Casework Unit and video clip part 2

Edited 23.7.17 by JB to include video clips part 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7

Edited 24.7.17 by JB to include video clips 8, 9 and 10

Edited 26.7.17 by JB to include published video clips

Yesterday evening a large number of people waited in the Civic Hall for Wirral Council’s Planning Committee’s decision on planning application APP/17/00306 (for a fire station with a training tower, drill yard and car park on Wirral Council owned land in Saughall Massie in the greenbelt).

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 1 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 2 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 3 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 4 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 5 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 6 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 7 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 8 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 9 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 10 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 11 of 17

You can watch the end of that agenda item in the video below (including the two votes on refusal and a third vote on approval) or how that item started in the first video clip above.

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 12 of 17

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 21st July 2017 Part 13 of 17

Both votes for refusal were lost (6:7). An extra condition for a construction management plan was then added by councillors.

At least one councillor then got confused and thought they were voting on the condition (rather than approval with an extra condition) and the final vote for approval with the extra condition was 9:4.

However Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service don’t get to start building a new fire station immediately as there are still some arcane hoops for this planning application to jump through before that happens.

It could be a further six months (or longer) before they have permission to do so as the matter has to be referred to a government minister first (Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP to see if he wishes to call in the planning application decision. His contact details are sajid.javid.mp@parliament.uk or Department for Communities and Local Government, 2 Marsham Street, London, SW1P 4DF. Alternatively you can contact The National Planning Casework Unit, 5 St Philips Place, Colmore Row, Birmingham, B3 2PW. Their phone number is 0303 444 8050 and their email address is npcu@communities.gsi.gov.uk

One of those who voted twice against refusal and in favour of this application is Cllr Steve Foulkes (who is Vice-Chair of the Planning Committee). Cllr Steve Foulkes is also a director of Wirral Partnership Homes Limited.

Wirral Partnership Homes Limited own the sheltered accommodation adjoining this site and this very sheltered accommodation was given as one of the reasons in the votes for refusal.

However I shouldn’t just single out Cllr Foulkes for criticism. Wirral Council also owns the land (the value of it will if planning permission is given go from £NIL to £300,000 (at 2014 prices)) as a result of the decision by Wirral Council’s Planning Committee.

None of the 13 councillors (of four different political parties) on Wirral Council’s Planning Committee that evening declared a prejudicial financial interest in the outcome or to my knowledge received a dispensation from Wirral Council’s Standards and Constitutional Oversight Committee to vote in this matter.

But Wirral Council’s Planning Committee have managed previously to grant a planning application that was overturned by the courts.

It was made a criminal matter for councillors to participate and vote in decisions at public meetings in which they had a prejudicial interest a while ago.

I’m not implying by that, that the councillors on Wirral Council’s Planning Committee are behaving in a criminal way, as this would require them to actually understand what they were doing!

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Responses

  1. Philly boy has put his order in for 300,000 pieces of silver and has made sure his planning committee is stuffed with enough mindless, brown-nosing, bankrolled servants to carry out his scheme. So much for promising to defend the Wirral Greenbelt, more ‘piecrust promises’ from a pathological liar.

    • Well that’s £300,000 at 2014 prices, by the time this gets sorted out (probably around 2018) I would guess the price would have gone up!

      Anyway Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service have neither the planning permission (yet) or land (still owned by Wirral Council).

      • But will the SoS call it in? Well, I’ll certainly write to Sajid Javid and remind him about the man who wrote to him in February 2017 to tell him he would oppose building on Wirral’s Greenbelt, and how this man is now doing the opposite of what he said he would do!

        • I’m not sure what the likelihood is that the Secretary of State will call it in for determination.

          However waiting for the Secretary of State to make a decision, means the planning application decision letter can’t go out to Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service from Wirral Council.

        • Right timescales are as follows.

          Wirral Council sends letter to SoS.
          SoS sends written confirmation to Wirral Council of receipt of letter.
          SoS then has 21 days to decide on call in.
          If doesn’t decide to call in, then Wirral Council can send out letter to applicant.
          If does decide to call in, goes to a planning inspector to make a recommendation to the SoS.

          However SoS can also issue a “holding direction” giving the SoS more time to assess the application before deciding whether to call it in.

          So my guess is Wirral Council writes to SoS. SoS writes back. SoS issues holding direction (especially considering the time of year) and the whole thing is in limbo for another few months…

        • However in answer to your question, based on the last year I could find available, there were 431 requests for the SoS to make a decision. 2 of those were called in.

          However Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council could be lucky (or unlucky) and end up either in the 0.4% called in or the 99.6% that aren’t!

  2. G’day John

    I was listening to Roger Lightbulb on that rubbish radio station over Kev and Stella’s Stinking Stagnant wirral Waters interviewing the whinging whining “Philly Liar”.

    The man makes me puke.

    He let Wirral “Funny” Bizz walk away with £2,000,000.00 and then pays the victims £300,000.00,

    Just to protect himself, Adderley and Jones.

    The man is a deceitful cretinous moron.

    The man , using the term loosely, is still defending Big, ISUS and Working Neighbourhoods the jerk.

    He is paying his neighbours and mates like “Fartin Lobsterpot” and him from York more in a year, for what?????, than he is giving those victims.

    Can you imagine if it was in Caldy, West Kirby or Hoylake?

    Ooroo

    James

    • I haven’t listened to BBC Radio Merseyside today James.

      “Can you imagine if it was in Caldy, West Kirby or Hoylake?”

      What “it” are you referring to?

      • New Ferry

        and

        What was the cause really?

        • The cause of what happened to New Ferry was an explosion.

          What caused the explosion on the other hand though, I don’t have that information (although you can tell from the photos where the explosion started).

  3. So John

    Do you think it is alright for “Philly Liar” to defend Adderley and Jones over the Wirral Funny Bizz, BIG, ISUS and Working Neighbourhoods for six years and let them get away with £2,000,000.00 which according to them is not material?

    So why would “Phil the Very Very Very Very Slimy, Elusive, LYING Dill” then go whinging and whining to government as a political point to get some dosh for New Ferry when he has only put in a tiny portion of the knock off amount towards the victims.

    Raworth and Turnbull should be in jail with their aiders and abetters.

    Ooroo

    James

    How can the peanut say £2,000,000.00 is nothing to worry about and then give £300,000.00 to a genuine cause?


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