Planning Committee – 21/6/2011 – Part 7 – APP/11/ 00065 – Townfield Close, Claughton – Demolition of an existing petrol filling station and erection of Class A1 retail unit

Cllr Kelly said he had concerns at the time which didn’t amount to predetermination. In October 2010 there had been permission for four shopping units. Almost immediately a variation of the condition regarding merging had been applied for. He said the first thing (unusually) was saying well done to the planning department to insist on a full application with supporting data. He did not approve of development by stealth which was far from satisfactory.

The impact on shops ranged from no impact, a positive impact or a detrimental impact. They were not allowed to take into account competition, but this didn’t extend to the impact on the Post Office which he felt was classified as an amenity. No other Post Office was easily accessible. The Post Office was not affected directly, but the store was. He was raising it as a concern and said this was “the evidence of [his] own eyes”. Claughton Village’s host store had closed and the Post Office had been allowed to continue in an empty building. There was the evidence of the applicant’s evidence or the evidence of an independent firm of accountants, that said in their experience it would result in the loss of an amenity.

His second area of concern was regarding deliveries. He referred to a circuit at Townfield Close and a sweep pattern. The HGV had limited clearance, the chance that a driver would have to select reverse gear one in three times was high. He had asked twice and yellow lines on an unadopted road were not enforceable. They couldn’t be enforced regarding parking. People lived about the shops and once they asked why they couldn’t park, the turning circle argument was gone.

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