Agenda and draft minutes

Strategic and Technical Planning Committee - Monday, 4th March, 2024 10.00 am

Please Note:

Our committee pages will be unavailable on Saturday 25 May due to website maintenance.

Venue: Council Chamber, County Hall, Dorchester, DT1 1XJ. View directions

Contact: Elaine Tibble  01305 224202 - Email:


No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 25 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 8 January 2024.


The minutes of the meeting held on 8 January 2024 were confirmed and signed.



Declarations of Interest

To disclose any pecuniary, other registrable or non-registrable interests as set out in the adopted Code of Conduct. In making their disclosure councillors are asked to state the agenda item, the nature of the interest and any action they propose to take as part of their declaration.

If required, further advice should be sought from the Monitoring Officer in advance of the meeting.



Cllrs Jean Dunseith and John Worth declared an interest in application no: P/FUL/2023/02446, as they were both predetermined and had elected to address the meeting as Ward Members.



Application to divert Footpath 1, Lyme Regis pdf icon PDF 6 MB

This report considers an application to divert Footpath 1, Lyme Regis.

Part of the affected land is registered to Dorset Council therefore in the interests of transparency, the application needs to be considered by the Strategic and Technical Planning Committee. The proposal is unopposed, and the legal tests are regarded to be fulfilled, therefore the application should be accepted and a diversion order made.


Cllr Dunseith left the chamber during the presentation.  Cllr Bartlett joined the meeting at 10:08.  Neither took part in the debate and vote for this application.


Senior Definitive Map Technical Officer presented the application which had come to committee as part of the application was on Dorset Council land.


With the aid of a visual presentation members were shown details of the alterations that had been carried out together with pictures of the footpath from various points of view on the route.


All registered landowners affected by the proposal had been consulted and there were no objections received.


Members were advised that work on the footpath had been completed, however the definitive map can only be altered by legal order.


Proposed by Cllr Bolwell, seconded by Cllr Coombs


Decision: That:


    a.         The application to divert Footpath 1, Lyme Regis was accepted and an order made.


    b.         The Order included provisions to modify the definitive map and statement to record the changes made as a consequence of the diversion.


    c.         If the Order was unopposed and was considered to meet the legal tests for Order confirmation, it be confirmed by the Council.


    d.         If the Order was opposed but the objections were not relevant to the legal tests, it be submitted to the Secretary of State for confirmation without further reference to Committee.



Application No: P/FUL/2023/02446 - Land south of Coldharbour, Chickerell, Dorset DT3 4BG pdf icon PDF 341 KB

Installation of a Battery Energy Storage System of up to 60MW, associated infrastructure and enclosing compound, together with access and landscaping works.


Cllrs Dunseith and Worth had declared an interest in this item, they did not take part in the discussion and vote as they had elected to address the committee as ward members.


The Lead Project Officer presented the report for the installation of a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) of up to 60MW, associated infrastructure and enclosing compound, together with access and landscaping works.


The Lead Project Officer outlined the proposal with the aid of a visual presentation, highlighting views from various boundaries, screening from trees and views from the public footpath.  The proposed BESS was outside of the Defined Development Boundary (DDB) and would consist of two mirrored rows of five transformers and five pairs of battery units with five circular water tanks for a 40-year life span, at the end of which it was to be de-commissioned.


There was one access route to the site, this was supported by a turning space within the application site to enable effective firefighting and movement of vehicles.


As part of the presentation the committee were given information regarding the benefits of the energy output the site would contribute to the National Grid.


61 representations had been received, 57 of which were objections with many objectors concerned about fire risk.


The Key Planning Issues were explained, there were no objections from Highways Officers and from a Health & Safety Perspective the site was suitably distanced from neighbouring properties. 


Oral representation in objection to the application was received from Dr John Fannon, Helen Hazell and John Perrott.  They highlighted flaws in the application and the fire risks involved from a BESS, which could also cause a toxic cloud and possible water contamination.  They considered the site inappropriate being close to residential properties and the priority should be safety of residents.


Cllr Brian Heatley spoke in support of the application and the need for renewable energy, whilst still appreciating the concerns of many residents.


Helen Donnelly, the agent on behalf of the applicant spoke in support of the application and emphasised the key benefits of the proposal.


Cllr Dunseith, Ward Member said that residents were worried and frightened as the BESS was too close to large population areas of Southill and Chickerell.  She felt that the Health and Safety of residents was a valid material consideration for refusal.


Cllr Worth, Ward Member felt that it was the right solution in the wrong location, being outside DDB.  It would impede the wildlife corridor and be contrary to the Chickerell Neighbourhood Plan.  But more important was the safety aspect.


The Lead Project Officer responded to objectors concerns and Cllrs Dunseith and Worth left the Chamber at 11:25.


The committee members were invited to put forward their questions and debate the application.


In response to member questions regarding the likelihood, detection of and fighting a fire, committee were advised that there had been no independent clarification of Tesla being the safest storage batteries of its kind, the submission of a Battery Safety Management was conditioned to be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.


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.




Exempt Business

To move the exclusion of the press and the public for the following item in view of the likely disclosure of exempt information within the meaning of paragraph 3 of schedule 12 A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended). The public and the press will be asked to leave the meeting whilst the item of business is considered.  


There are no exempt items scheduled for this meeting.  



There was no exempt business.

Appendix pdf icon PDF 12 KB