Agenda and minutes

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No. Item




There were none.


Declarations of Interest


There were none.


Declarations of independent site visits


Planning view visited all sites.


Councillor Nelson visited all three sites and Councillor Andrews visited The Swan


Minutes of the last meeting pdf icon PDF 228 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 15th December 2022.


The minutes of the 15th of December meeting were approved and signed as a correct record.


Planning Applications


22/01473/FUL and 22/01473/LBC The Swan, 35-37 High Street, Cheltenham, GL50 1DX pdf icon PDF 557 KB

Additional documents:


The Planning Officer, Claire Donnelly, presented the report, which related to the retention of a temporary structure within an enclosed rear courtyard for up to two years. The application was at committee at the request of Cllr. Tailford because the structures would help a local business during a time where help is needed, and the officer recommendation was to refuse.


Speaking in support of the application, the public speaker explained that he had run the Swan since 2012, enjoyed being a part of the Cheltenham community and hoped to continue doing so. The business employed 14 local people and had a strong policy of supporting local businesses and local independent suppliers, in order to build a better, more affluent and more characterful town. The ongoing impact of the pandemic had hit his businesses hard, and they were facing an existential threat for the first time. Another consequence of the pandemic was that some customers were still only comfortable sitting outside. They were not able to sell as much as they could before the pandemic, their costs were considerably higher and they had debts to repay, it is an environment that is very tricky and we need support to continue.


The temporary structures have been a lifeline to the business, enabling it to trade and serve our community in exceptionally difficult circumstance over the last few year. The structures continue to play an invaluable roll in keeping us afloat, providing shelter to 78 covers, when without them we have no outside cover. Without them the business would miss out on trade that the business cannot afford to miss out on, jeopardising the business. Cheltenham has lost around a third of its pubs in my 20 years of trading here and leaving The Swan empty and tenantless now at a time when new capable tenants would be a fool to take it on would be a real risk to its continued existence as a pub, which would politely suggest, is the bigger threat to the heritage of the building and of the town.


The structures that have been put up are temporary and understand the need to remove them in good time and, if they need to be replaced them, it was understood that the applicant would need to go through the necessary planning procedures.  The applicant has  produced a schedule to this effect. The applicant was asking the council for the time and the commercial space to do this. 


The structures themselves are very easy to remove and will leave no mark on the building, it will be as if they never existed. Furthermore the structures are not visible from the High Street and barely visible from St James’s car park, my customers, who have chosen to be sheltered by them, will ever see them. They have sheltered us for the pandemic but there is still a need for them.


Councillor David Willingham – speaking as night-time economy champion made the following points:

           Heritage assets are important, but this decision  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


22/01743/FUL St Peters and The Moors Big Local pdf icon PDF 865 KB

Additional documents:


The Planning Officer, Claire Donnelly, presented the report, which related to the erection of a new single-storey Community Sports Hub building, the creation of a new private access road off St. Peters Close, the expansion of the existing carpark and the enhancement of the riverside park including realignment of existing foot/cycleway (Chelt Walk) and compensatory tree planting. The application was at the committee because the council owned the majority of the site, and the officer recommendation was to permit.


Speaking in support of the application


Councillor Victoria Atherstone spoke as Ward Councillor and made the following points:

           Fully supportive because it will provide many advantages to the local community in St Peters and beyond.

           Planned enhancements are for a dedicated sports club (Saracens FC) and a community space. Area has seen improvements over the years thanks to the club, sincere thanks to them for what they’ve done in the community. They’ve waited many years for this application to come to fruition, will provide proper facilities for matches and training. Connects building to wider community.

           The area currently prone to ASB, e.g. joyriding and fires. Dedicated community space will help to reduce this. Hidden gem that it would be great to draw more people to.

           Popular with families, dog walkers and cyclists, will be a safer piece of green space as a result. St Peters Close feels disconnected from the rest of the community due to poor infrastructure, this will connect communities together. Feels like an important moment in time, proud to be able to speak in support. Hugely valuable development for residents.


 Also speaking in support of the application Councillor David Willingham echoed his Ward Colleagues words and went on to make the following point:

           This has been a long time and a lot of hard work in coming, negotiating leases and much more. Big Local investment recognised areas of deprivation in need of money to leave a positive legacy. St Peters Close and Square is an isolated community, faces onto Tewkesbury Road with very little access. This is a community hub with a transformational effect on that. We’ve worked with Saracens FC for a long time and many council departments to bring this to the committee. Really important, please vote to permit as per the officer recommendation.


There being no Member questions, the Chair moved into the debate, where the following points were made:


           Supportive of the application as this will give a chance for Saracens FC to move onto the next level. They provide a real service to the community, with teams for boys, girls and juniors too. Money well invested, generational impact. Excellent scheme.

           Cheltenham is blessed to have fantastic football clubs, like Leckhampton Rovers, Southside, Charlton Rovers, Old Pats. All provide such a focus for the community, so many children and young people getting involved. Not something we ourselves cause as a council, it grows organically within the community, we can just support it. Staggering to see the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


22/0186/FUL 27 Hulbert Close, Cheltenham, GL51 9RJ pdf icon PDF 413 KB

Additional documents:


The Planning Officer, Claire Donnelly, presented the report, which related to a proposed new attached garage on a two-storey residential dwelling. The application was at the committee at the request of Councillor Fisher, due to the impact on the amenity of the neighbouring property, impact on the street scene, and turning a detached property to a semi-detached property, and the officer recommendation was to permit.  There were no speakers on the item.


The Chair moved to Member questions and the responses were as follows:


           The Planning Officer confirmed that there was no policy requirement for an electric charging point in the garage.

           The Planning Officer clarified that the proposed doors would be 1.6m wide

           measured existing gap as 2.5m

           distance from neighbouring wall would be 100ml

           plans show that the guttering would go in that gap

           gap between guttering and wall would be very small, but they wouldn’t physically touch

           The Planning Officer clarified that while the existing car port was attached to the neighbouring house, the proposed garage would have a gap.

           There was not any way the committee can compel the applicant to do more than just leave a piece of wood up there with pitch on it. The Planning Officer responded that that is not a committee matter but a civil matter.

           The Legal Officer added that building regulations would deal with the suitability and legality of the build. Any ‘snagging’ would be a matter for the relevant parties.


There being no further questions, the Chair moved into the debate, where the following points were made:

           It is hard to call this a garage when you would struggle to get a car in there, though you could put two motorcycles in there.

           Serious reservations given that no car manufactured today would fit through the door, making it a social issue. Approval for wraparound extension mentions that car parking area will be kept available for such use at all times in perpetuity, to enable car parking availability without affecting the highway. This was a reason for planning acceptance, but it doesn’t apply as you can’t fit a car in there. Changes the appearance of link detached houses. Maintenance aspect also relevant, as they will need to go via the neighbour’s land to access the drains and more. Can refuse this on grounds of design, i.e. changing the street scene, and highway safety, as it will encourage people to park in the road more.

           There is a driveway, so plenty of off-road parking available. Not for us to decide what exactly they park in the garage, if anything. No planning reason to refuse it.

           The design leaves a lot to be desired, but it’s very similar to a lot of other houses in the area. Can Legal Officer advise on the point relating to previous planning application? The Legal Officer clarified that this referred to a condition attached to the decision notice requiring parking. This condition  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.


Appeal Update pdf icon PDF 97 KB

Appeals information.

Additional documents:


The appeal update was noted. One Member highlighted the inspector’s comments in paragraph 2 (Preliminary Matters) about permission in principle, which advised that this was an alternative way for obtaining permission for housing-led development. They asked whether this would enable applicants to dodge coming before the committee.


The Head of Planning clarified that permission in principle was just a different application type, and he didn’t see any reason why Members would not be able to bring it before the committee.


The status of the appeals re: the Pump Room café and 131 were confirmed by the planning officer -  Pump Room have not appealed (exploring options for a revised proposal) while 131’s appeal has been submitted, not sure of a start date yet.


A Member queried whether Brecon House had appealed.  The planning officer confirmed that they had and that was a paragraph 80 dwelling, subject to a hearing.  The date was not available to the officer at that time but will keep the committee updated.


Any other items the Chairman determines urgent and requires a decision


There were none and the meeting closed at 19.20.


Next meeting 16th February 2023.