Tuesday, 10 November 2015

New planning application submitted for lakeside site in Theale

An outline planning application for a residential development of 325 houses and apartments (including 70 extra-care units) has been submitted for the Lakeside site in Theale. The application number is 15/02842/OUTMAJ. The planning documents can be accessed by clicking here

The following map shows the location of the site (shaded black):

The proposal is for:
  • 91 3-bedroom houses
  • 38 4 or more bedroom houses
  • 16 1-bedroom flats
  • 110 2-bedroom flats
  • 29 1-bedroom "cluster flats"
  • 41 2-bedroom "cluster flats"

"Cluster flats" are flats that share a kitchen or common room. I suspect that the 70 "cluster flats" make up the extra-care sheltered housing.

Access to the site is proposed to be by both the existing (closed off) access off The Green and from the end of St Ives Close.

The southern part of the site already has planning permission for 350 homes, including 5-storey blocks of flats.

A special meeting of Theale Parish Council will be held on 30th November to decide on objections to the application. The meeting will start at 7:30pm and will be held at:

    The Peter Gooch Room
    The Pavilion
    Englefield Road

Although the application says "matters to be considered - access", many details are supplied that will set the scene for detailed applications. These details need to be taken into account now if you are considering any objections.

You can comment on the application on the Public Accesssystem or send them to mailto:planapps@westberks.gov.uk

West Berkshire‬ Housing Site Allocations DPD, including the sites in Theale approved for submission

The West Berkshire‬ Housing Site Allocations Development Plan Document was approved for submission at a special West Berkshire Council meeting on November 5th. The DPD allocates sites around the district for building homes and included these two sites in Theale:

THE003: 15 homes (reduced from 50 in the "preferred options" version of the DPD)

THE009: 70 homes (reduced from 125 in the "preferred options" version of the DPD)

I tried to table an amendment to exclude site THE009 (70 homes) in Theale, among others in Thatcham and Newbury, but this was ruled out of order. Council officers claimed that my amendment would negate the motion to approve the DPD. I disputed that removing four sites out of a total of 29 negated the motion but had to accept the Chairman's ruling. I then spoke against these sites in my speech on the main motion.
The DPD has now gone out to formal consultation, which will close on 21st December. It is important for as many of you as possible to respond to the consultation. These responses, along with the ones submitted to the preferred options DPD last summer, will go to the planning inspector who has to approve the DPD before it can be adopted. Things have changed since the preferred options stage. It is important to comment on those changes and to support the rejection of the old Theale sewage works site, land at M4 J12, and Pincents Hill - the landowners/developers will be likely to try to get them put back in.

You can read the DPD and associated documents by clicking here. You can take part in the consultation on that site or by emailing your comments to planningpolicy@westberks.gov.uk