Agenda and minutes

virtual consultative meeting, Strategic Planning Committee - Friday, 7th October, 2022 9.30 am

Venue: Online via the zoom app

Contact: Wendy Harris  01395 517542; email


No. Item


Public speaking

Information on public speaking is available online



Councillor Alasdair Bruce, speaking on behalf of Feniton Parish Council, spoke on item 8 as follows:

“On your agenda today you are asked to endorse the Consultation Draft of the Local Plan and specifically to make a recommendation on the scale of growth appropriate at Feniton. The draft plan is to contain specific sites that have come forward in the HELAA and have initially been categorised as either “preferred locations” or “2nd Best Sites” for housing.

For the rural village of Feniton, the HELAA process identified potential for 42 houses at one “preferred location” and a surprising 442 houses at various “2nd Best sites”.  In total these would represent an extraordinary 67% increase in housing numbers in the village.

I would urge the Committee to not go out to public consultation with these figures.  A proposal for such growth in Feniton would be completely contrary to the agreed strategy to achieve sustainable development in East Devon.

Feniton has the lowest jobs to workers ratio in the District.  There is already extensive out-commuting, most of it by private car.  The very limited bus and rail capacity are inadequate to meet the needs of the working population.  Additional housing at anything like the levels identified for Feniton would exacerbate this already unsustainable position.

Furthermore, with a school already at capacity, no medical facility and one small shop in the village, housing growth will add further to the need for unsustainable car journeys.

I would ask the Committee to consider what is to be gained by consulting on housing numbers in a small rural village at a level which it already knows cannot be sustainable.  An expansion of 67% at Feniton makes no sense in the context of the agreed strategy to locate new housing close to jobs, services and infrastructure.  It will certainly make no sense to the community.

The draft plan on today’s agenda contains a holding statement about Feniton with final text to be agreed at your meeting on 1st November.  Please do not proceed to publish a consultation draft that includes the unqualified and unjustified figures resulting from the HELAA.  The Local Plan must be driven by a sustainability strategy, not by the development aspirations of landowners and housing developers.”


Mr Graham Long, speaking on behalf of Upottery Parish Council, spoke on item 8 as follows:

“Love her or loath her our new Prime Minister said on Wednesday that she has three objectives, Growth, Growth, Growth. Delivering growth is not only essential for a nation, its also essential for every County, City, Town and Village. The only alternatives are stagnation or decline. Last week I asked you to include my village as a Tier 4 settlement in your emerging Local Plan up to 2040, but you chose to stick with the list of Tier 4 settlements that you agreed on last year, excluding Upottery although the village has a 2017 HELAA site suitable for ~ 20 houses. The lack of a village shop appears to be why we are  ...  view the full minutes text for item 43.


Declarations of interest

Guidance is available online to Councillors and co-opted members on making declarations of interest


Minute 49. Consultation on the draft East Devon Local Plan – first draft of the proposed local plan consultation draft


Councillor Paul Arnott, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Colyton Parish Council.

Councillor Olly Davey, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Exmouth Town Council who may be impacted by the Local Plan.

Councillor Sarah Chamberlain, Affects Non-registerable Interest, acquaintance with land owners who may be impacted by the Local Plan.

Councillor Mike Howe, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Bishops Clyst Parish Council and owns a shop in Clyst St Mary.

Councillor Richard Lawrence, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Ward Member of Whimple and Rockbeare.

Councillor Dan Ledger, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Seaton Town Council and neighbouring resident to site Seaton 02.

Councillor Philip Skinner, Affects Non-registerable Interest, close friend owns land that is linked to the potential new town in the draft Local Plan.


Cllr Peter Faithfull, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Ottery St Mary Town Council.

Cllr Marianne Rixson, Affects Non-registerable Interest, Member of Sidmouth Town Council.




Matters of urgency

Information on matters of urgency is available online





Confidential/exempt item(s)

To agree any items to be dealt with after the public (including the Press) have been excluded. Thereare no itemswhich officersrecommendshould be dealtwithin thisway.





Validation of planning and related application - adoption of Local Requirements List pdf icon PDF 278 KB

This report seeks an agreement to re-adopt the requirements and guidance for the validation of planning and related applications.

Additional documents:


The Local Requirements List outlines the requirements for submitting all planning and related applications, based on the National Validation Requirements.  The List should be reviewed and adopted every two years.


Whilst that deadline has passed, a brief review has been made of the existing List, which was adopted in 2019, and determined that the stated requirements remain necessary and appropriate.  There is need to undertake a full review once the new local plan is in place, to include new policies under that plan as well as to fulfil new government requirements recently announced.  The full review will be undertaken in 2023.


The Committee were asked to recommend the List for re-adoption for immediate republication for Development Management purposes.


Discussion by the Committee and other Members included:

·         Revisit the costs for developers in putting forward a planning application; in response, the Service Lead - Planning Strategy & Development Management reminded Members of the existing options to developers, including the “permission in principle” two stage process brought in by government that was not heavily used; as well as application for outline permission;

·         Evidence from other stakeholders, such as South West Water, had to be taken at face value from the professionals with appropriate qualifications/body membership.  Stakeholders would also submit their requirements as part of the evidence for the plan;

·         Design and access requirements were included, but were also present under national requirements for property access;

·         Agreement that location plans would receive more scrutiny or be provided with supporting maps to make clear both the location and context of applications.


RECOMMENDED for Senior Officer Approval:

That the information and requirements in the document ‘Information Required with Planning and Associated Applications’ be re-adopted and re-published immediately for Development Management purposes.


The recommendation(s) was/were approved by a Senior Officer. The Senior Officer Decision Notice is listed above under Additional Documents.


East Devon Local Housing Needs Assessment 2022 - report by the consultants ORS pdf icon PDF 422 KB

This report advises of the East Devon Local Housing Needs Assessment September 2022 report by the consultants ORS into future housing needs in the district.

Additional documents:


The report set out the assessment report’s key findings, which covers quantifying and justifying the Local Housing Need (LHN) for the District, and identifying and quantifying the types of housing need, including the Affordable Housing Need (AHN).  It also justifies the extent of the Exeter Housing Market (HMA) within which East Devon lies.

Using the Government’s Standard Method, the assessed Local Housing Need for East Devon district was 918 dwellings per year (18,360 dwellings over the 20 year period 2020 to 2040), made up by:

·         12,885 dwellings to meet projected growth

·         1,100 dwellings to address pent-up demand

·         4,375 dwellings for extra inward migration

Affordable Housing Need (AFN) is forecast to be 401 households per year, equating to 8,011 households over the 20 year period, but the report concludes that only 3,500 of those are in AFN (177 per year) because of either unaffordability or inability to buy but with a prospect of access to an affordable homeownership product.  The report gave the breakdown of the types of affordable dwellings needed, with the highest percentage being social rent.

The report also included the need for older person housing schemes, and adapted housing to be taken into account.

Members discussed the needs they were aware of for local communities, including their ability to afford a house purchase, and the level of social housing required.  Debate covered policy for social housing at a higher percentage of builds, which needed to be balanced with the viability of a development.  Other ways to help boost social housing numbers were discussed, including building on the Council’s own land; lobbying for a change to the Right to Buy legislation to stop housing stock being diminished; and learning from other authorities who had delivered social housing (Tiverton was cited as an example).



RECOMMENDED for Senior Officer Approval:

1.    Endorsement of the East Devon Local Housing Needs Assessment September 2022 report for use as evidence for the purposes of the new Local Plan and other spatial plan making; for development management, and in support of achieving EDDC’s corporate objectives;

2.    The East Devon Local Housing Needs Assessment 2022 report be published on the Council’s website as part of the new Local Plan evidence base.


The recommendation(s) was/were approved by a Senior Officer. The Senior Officer Decision Notice is listed above under Additional Documents.


Consultation on the draft East Devon Local Plan - first draft of the proposed local plan consultation draft pdf icon PDF 317 KB

This report introduced, as appended, the first draft of the proposed East Devon Local Plan – consultation draft plan for autumn 2022.

Additional documents:


The first draft of the proposed East Devon Local Plan – consultation draft plan was before the Committee with a recommendation that the committee agree to endorse this version of the plan for public consultation, subject to refinement to the plan to come before the Committee at their scheduled meeting on 1 November 2022.  The consultation would run from the 7 November to the 21 December 2022.  The committee had already undertaken significant work on the draft in late 2021; as well as more recent meetings in September and October 2022.


Whilst there were still elements of evidence awaited on allocation of land for development of a new town and development generally on the western side of the District, the report sought to focus attention on what elements of the extensive plan should be highlighted as part of the consultation.


Explanation was given as to how the consultation would be presented through consultation software, ‘Commonplace’.


A number of sites had come forward through the “call for sites” at Feniton and Whimple; as a result there was the potential for substantial build in that area, but the Committee were specifically asked to make a recommendation for the scale of housing development that they felt was appropriate.  The committee had already heard from Councillor Bruce on the excessive scale of growth that could come forward from the sites.


The committee had, at previous meetings, received presentations for a number of sites; it was recommended that the committee should also invite presentations for second choice sites not in Tier 4 classification.  These were planned to be delivered at the scheduled meeting on 1 November 2022.


General discussion by Members before considering the draft consultation plan by chapter, included compulsory purchase options to deliver more social homes.  Difficulties in following this option were debated.  Some Members felt that, due to the outstanding work still to include in it, they could not support the document at that time; others felt the document still presented a weak plan for consultation.


Comments were invited, chapter by chapter; followed by a straw poll for agreement to progress the chapter forward.


Chapter 1: Introduction, evidence and policies

·      Suggestion to include a reference to explain why compulsory purchase was not referenced due to its difficulties.  Whilst the comment was noted, it was not felt appropriate to include that in the document.


Chapter 2: Vision and objectives

·      General support for the chapter, including reference to “protect and enhance” villages.


Chapter 3: The spatial strategy

·      Consider asking for views under this section, for allocation at Whimple and Feniton to give opportunity to those communities to put across their views; as well as for Upottery for more growth. As per debate under minute 43 Public Speaking, the Tier classification had been previously discussed by the committee at previous meetings, and making any changes now impacted on the rest of the plan significantly.  The Committee could still request additional consultation next year on those communities discussed; it was re-iterated that the plan must be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 49.