To consider the application to divert part of Public Footpath No.11 in the parish of Basford
The Committee considered a report which detailed an application from Mr C Hadjivassilious of THDA Consulting Engineers (agent) on behalf of Mr P Heslop of Goodman Real Estates (UK) Ltd Nelson House, Blythe Valley Park, Shirley, Solihull, West Midlands B90 8BG requesting the Council to make an Order under Section 257 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to divert part of Public Footpath No.11 in the parish of Basford.
In accordance with Section 257 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 the Borough Council, as Planning Authority, can make an Order diverting a public footpath if it was satisfied that it was necessary to do so to enable development to be carried out in accordance with a planning permission which had been applied for or granted.
Planning permission had been granted for the construction of a commercial development for general industry, storage and distribution business on 18 July 2014 - planning reference 14/0378N. A reserved matters application relating to landscaping had been approved on 3 January 2018 – planning reference 17/3374N. Two further applications were being progressed with an expectation that permission would be granted by the end of April 2018 – planning references 18/0377N and 18/0475N.
The land over which the existing alignment of the footpath section proposed for diversion would be obstructed by the proposed commercial development and a diversion was required to preserve the right of way for the public between Jack Mills Way and Weston Road. The proposed new route would take users through a landscaped area that would be developed outside the western and southern perimeters of the site. Although the route was longer it was considered that it would be more scenic and easier to negotiate than any alternative that weaved between the buildings of the new commercial development. The new route would be 2 metres wide, free of footpath furniture and would have a grass surface.
Mr Ian Pritchard from Goodman spoke in support of the application to divert Public Footpath No.11 Basford as it would allow for the commercial development to be constructed, which would secure locally based business and jobs already committed to the development.
The Committee noted that the proposal was being presented prior to the completion of the informal consultation period, which would run for a further four weeks following the meeting.
To date comments had been received from the Ward Councillors, all of whom had registered support. Councillor Marren had commented that the proposal were logical and sensible; Councillor Hammond supported and trusted that the proposed route would be well maintained. Councillor Edgar saw no problems with the proposed route.
The Committee noted that the Open Spaces Society had verbally raised concerns relating to the alignment of the route running parallel to Jack Mills Way and had queried the merits of an alternative alignment to the east of the site running parallel to the railway. These points would be further discussed with the developer during the remainder of the consultation period. The Committee expressed strong concerns about this alternative route given it would be located to the rear of the development, between the development and railway.
The Committee unanimously
1 the decision to make the Order be delegated to the Head of Rural and Cultural Economy or his nominated delegatee who, in consultation with the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Public Rights of Way Committee, consider the proposals together with all consultee comments received during the consultation following its completion on Tuesday 10 April 2018.
2 If an Order is made, Public Notice of the making of the Order be given and in the event of there being no objections with the period specified, the Order be confirmed in the exercise of the powers conferred on the Council by the said Acts.
3 In the event of objections to the Order being received and not resolved, Cheshire East Borough Council be responsible for the conduct of any hearing or public inquiry.