Agenda and draft minutes

Dorset Council - Western and Southern Area Planning Committee
Tuesday, 2nd February, 2021 10.00 am

Venue: A link to the meeting can be found on the front page of the agenda.. View directions

Contact: Denise Hunt  01305 224878 - Email:


No. Item



To receive any apologies for absence



No apologies for absence were received at the meeting.



Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest


Councillor Susan Cocking declared a non-pecuniary interest in application WP/19/00919/0UT - Royal Manor Arts College, Weston Road, Portland, DT5 2DB as she had a link to Albion Stone.  She had sought legal advice and would speak only as a Ward Member and not take part in the debate or vote on this application.


Councillor Louie O'Leary declared a general interest in WP/20/00814/FUL - Mount Pleasant Park and Ride Car Park, Mercery Road, Weymouth, DT3 5FA as he had met with the Bus Shelter charity during Summer 2019.  He declared that he would keep open mind during consideration of the application.


Councillor Nick Ireland declared a non-pecuniary interest in application WP/20/00814/FUL - Mount Pleasant Park and Ride Car Park, Mercery Road, Weymouth, DT3 5FA as his wife was a Trustee of The Lantern Trust.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 111 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 7 January 2021.

Additional documents:


The minutes of the meeting held on 7 January 2021 were confirmed as a correct record and would be signed at a future date.



Public Participation pdf icon PDF 37 KB

To receive questions or statements on the business of the committee from town and parish councils and members of the public.

Public speaking has been suspended for virtual committee meetings during the Covid-19 crisis and public participation will be dealt with through written submissions only.

Members of the public who live, work or represent an organisation within the Dorset Council area, may submit up to two questions or a statement of up to a maximum of 450 words.  All submissions must be sent electronically to by the deadline set out below.  When submitting a question please indicate who the question is for and include your name, address and contact details.  Questions and statements received in line with the council’s rules for public participation will be published as a supplement to the agenda.

Questions will be read out by an officer of the council and a response given by the appropriate Portfolio Holder or officer at the meeting.  All questions, statements and responses will be published in full within the minutes of the meeting.  The deadline for submission of the full text of a question or statement is 8.30am on xxxx.


Representations by the public to the Committee on individual planning applications are detailed below. There were no questions, petitions or deputations received on other items on this occasion.



Planning Applications

To consider the applications listed below for planning permission


Members considered written reports submitted on planning applications as set out below.



WP/19/00919/0UT - Royal Manor Arts College, Weston Road, Portland, DT5 2DB pdf icon PDF 795 KB

Demolition of existing buildings and hardstanding and the development of up to 98 new homes with all matters reserved with the exception of site access.


The Committee considered an outline application to demolish existing buildings and hardstanding and the development of up to 98 new homes with all matters reserved with the exception of site access.


The Lead Project Officer outlined the update sheet circulated to the Committee prior to the meeting.  This contained details of additional representations as well as a list of the revised conditions.  She advised that further objections had been received and outlined the nature of the objections, however, the points raised had not had a material effect on the conclusions reached in the report.  Members were also alerted to an error in paragraph 16.52 of the report which should have referenced paragraphs 203-205 of the NPPF.


The Committee was shown a presentation of the application site within the settlement boundary which became redundant following the closure of Royal Manor School in 2016.  Various plans were shown identifying nearby listed buildings, nature conservation sites, temporary mining consents, indicative layout and a parameter plan as well as photos of the site and its surroundings.  The parameter plan differed from the indicative layout in that it excluded development in the northern area of the site.  This was further to comments made by the Design and Conservation Officer who now considered the scheme to result in "less than substantial harm" that would be outweighed by the provision of housing.


The key planning points were highlighted including the principle of development; impact on mineral resources, heritage assets, nature conservation and highways; and visual and residential amenity.


Portland Town Council had lodged an objection to the number of dwellings, the impact of development on the local infrastructure and the protection of recreational facilities, the latter falling under policy PORT/CR1 in the draft Neighbourhood Plan. However, this policy did not include the application site and the former school sports facilities had been replaced by the Atlantic Academy provision and there had subsequently been no objection by Sport England on that basis.


Councillor Paul Kimber, Dorset Council Ward Member - Portland, addressed the Committee and requested that the application be deferred for one month to allow full consideration by Portland Town Council who had raised concerns regarding the level of affordable housing and the time limit for mineral extraction beneath the site.


Councillor Susan Cocking addressed the Committee as the Dorset Council Ward Member - Portland, raising concerns in relation to the future viability of the affordable housing, given the potential for unforeseen contamination costs; overdevelopment (to 86 homes had been recommended by the Urban Design Officer); a request by the housing team for less flats and more houses,  the impact on the existing overstretched GP surgeries; the unacceptable level of harm to SSSI sites; mineral extraction and its contribution to the local economy as well as the outstanding issues raised in the report that required resolution in relation to mining activity.


The Senior Planning Officer responded to the points raised and highlighted that the application had been brought to Committee due to an objection by Portland Town  ...  view the full minutes text for item 66.


WP/20/00814/FUL - Mount Pleasant Park and Ride Car Park, Mercery Road, Weymouth, DT3 5FA pdf icon PDF 222 KB

Temporary use of land for the stationing of mobile accommodation units for rough sleepers and associated facilities with subsequent reversion to use of site for park and ride parking.


The Committee considered an application for the temporary use of land for the stationing of mobile accommodation units for rough sleepers and associated facilities with subsequent reversion to use of the site for park and ride parking.  The application was being considered by the Committee as the land was in the ownership of Dorset Council.


The Lead Project Officer - Corporate Projects presented the application submitted by The Bus Shelter charity which provided accommodation and support services in a bus located at Preston Road beach car park.  This arrangement needed to be changed due to the Covid pandemic.


The Committee was shown plans and photographs of the site which was outside but close to the Defined Development Boundary for Weymouth.  The site was within a low risk Flood Zone 1.  Although other parts of the car park were a higher flood risk, no changes were proposed to the water management plan in place due to a membrane beneath the surface of the car park. The arrangement of the site in 2 phases was explained with funding currently in place to deliver phase 1 and currently being investigated for phase 2. All units had the appearance of shipping containers, they would not be stacked and connected to mains services.

Officers considered the extent of the temporary permission to 31 January 2028 to be appropriate for the temporary use that would allow the charity to acquire funding and continue to make an important contribution to reducing rough sleeping in Dorset in the medium to long term. 


In response to questions it was confirmed that the facility was staffed 24/7, and that the lease notice period of a minimum of 3 months was anticipated in line with the lease for use of the Preston Road beach car park. Subsequent removal of the containers would be the responsibility of the charity as owner of the asset.


The Committee welcomed the scheme and highlighted that this would also provide a registered address for occupants.  Members raised concerns about the lease notice period and it was explained that, this would be relayed to relevant officers as the lease was not a matter for the planning permission.


Proposed by Councillor Louie O'Leary, seconded by Councillor Nick Ireland.


Decision: That the application be approved subject to the conditions outlined in the appendix to these minutes.


Appeals Decisions pdf icon PDF 214 KB

To inform members of notified appeals and appeal decisions and take them into account as a material consideration in the Area Planning Committee's future decisions.


The report was noted.



Urgent items

To consider any items of business which the Chairman has had prior notification and considers to be urgent pursuant to section 100B (4) b) of the Local Government Act 1972

The reason for the urgency shall be recorded in the minutes.


There were no urgent items.



Update Sheet pdf icon PDF 105 KB


The update sheet is attached to these minutes.

Appendix - Decision List pdf icon PDF 105 KB