Agenda item

Queens Park Community School, Aylestone Avenue, London, NW6 7BQ (Ref. 19/1477)


DECISION: Granted planning permission as recommended subject to the addition of a condition restricting the use and operational hours of the development approved.


PROPOSAL: Erection of a temporary single storey classroom building to provide additional teaching facilities, addition of associated single storey staff

room/admin office, storage container and canopy over playing area to include mesh fence enclosure, new tarmac footpath and associated cycle storage (DEPARTURE FROM POLICY CP18 OF BRENT'S LOCAL PLAN).


RECOMMENDATION: To grant planning permission subject to conditions.


That the Head of Planning be granted delegated authority to issue the planning permission and impose conditions and informatives to secure the matters set out within the Committee reports.


That the Head of Planning be granted delegated authority to make changes to the wording of the committee's decision (such as to delete, vary or add conditions, informatives, planning obligations or reasons for the decision) prior

to the decision being actioned, provided that the Head of Planning is satisfied that any such changes could not reasonably be regarded as deviating from the overall principle of the decision reached by the Committee nor that such change(s) could reasonably have led to a different decision having been reached by the Committee.


Mr Damian Manhertz (Development Management Team Leader) introduced the report and answered Members’ questions.  He drew Members’ attention to the objections raised by the residents to the proposal, highlighting the objections submitted by MRPP on behalf of some local residents and officers’ responses to them as set out in the report. He then referenced the supplementary report which provided a further clarification of staffing numbers and added that the additional of 3-part time members of staff was not considered material as to impact on the residential amenities of nearby residents beyond the existing use.


Mr Manhertz also referenced the revised planning statement and added that the alterations within the statement were rather minor.  He clarified that the Planning Statement had amendments to confirm that the building would not be hired out to other users outside of the hours of use stated in the planning statement, clarifying that one part of the committee report incorrectly specified that it would not be hired out at all..  He explained that the proposal had been tested with the requirements of NPPF and Brent Policy CP18.  He set out that there was some impact on openness, but that when balancing the impacts and benefits of the scheme, officers considered that the need for SEN places and associated provision within this scheme far outweighed the potential harm to the open space.  He also highlighted that the school appears to be located within a sensible location within the playing field, and the response from Sport England highlights the usability of this space and lower impact.  .  He continued that the Council’s Environmental Health officers had considered the proposal and had advised that they did not consider that a noise impact assessment was required as the proposal was not expected to give rise to undue levels of noise impact.   He referenced the operational hours as submitted by the school (pupils attending from 8:50 am to 3:20 pm, with the school buildings open 7:30 am to 6 pm Monday to Friday and 8:30 am to 2 pm on Saturdays.) and recommended an additional condition restricting the use and operational hours. The presentation of this application was concluded by Mr Manhertz confirming that the application was recommended to be granted and it is considered that any harm of the temporary building and use would be outweighed by the benefits of the scheme.


Mr Alex Norman (objector) considered that the proposal would be detrimental to the enjoyment of his residential amenities.  He added that the proposal would be intrusive particularly in the summer months and without any buffer, the playground noise would be rather distressing to nearby residents. Mr Norman explained that the noise created by the proposal and existing use is different to general playground noise and that it would be more intrusive.   Mr Norman added that the school had not engaged with the residents to discuss their legitimate concerns including noise impact and detriment to residential amenity and urged refusal.


Mr Miles Young, objecting on behalf of some residents, alleged that the proposal breached policy CP18 and the NPPF.  Mr Young referred to his paper previously circulated to all members which highlighted concerns on noise.  He expressed a view that the noise impact of the proposal including mitigation measures had not been fully explored.  He urged Members to either refuse the application or defer it for further investigations.


Mrs Jayne Jardin (applicant) clarified that the proposal was for a temporary use until 2021 when the new build would be ready.  It would be a primary school setting with non-verbal SEN pupils and that there was no intention to increase the pupil numbers at the school beyond that specified within the application. It was explained how the building would allow more internal sessions and explained some of the characteristics of the pupils that would be attending the school, including pupils that are not able to speak and communicate. She confirmed that the building would not be used in the evenings and weekends.  In response to members’ questions, Mrs Jardin stated that the school consulted with local residents.  She added that in the absence of the temporary buildings, the SEN pupils would need to send to schools outside of the borough.


In the ensuing discussion, Members sought legal advice on the issues raised by the objectors to which Ms Saira Tamboo (Senior Planning Lawyer) responded that the consideration of the application was legally sound.  Mr Manhertz also clarified that the location, part of an open space within the school, would be appropriately sited and that the level of potential noise would not be unduly harmful to the neighbours.  In response to members, he added that any change the location [to reduce the impact on the open space] would be likely to push the temporary structure closer to the residents. Mr Manhertz continued that noise assessment was neither required nor justifiable and reiterated the operational hours of use.  Members also heard that Sport England raised no objection to the proposal.


DECISION: Granted planning permission as recommended subject to the addition of a condition restricting the use and operational hours of the development approved. 

 (Voting on the amended recommendation was as follows: For 5, Against 1; Abstention 1).


Councillor Kabir, having declared an interest in the application left the meeting room and did not take part in the discussion or voting on the application.


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