Agenda and minutes

Planning Committee - Wednesday, 5th July, 2023 1.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Fenland Hall, County Road, March, PE15 8NQ

Contact: Jo Goodrum  Member Services and Governance Officer

No. Item


Land North of Wenny Estate, Chatteris
Erect 93 x dwellings (4 x 2-storey 5-bed, 25 x 2-storey 4-bed, 40 x 2-storey 3-bed, 20 x 2-storey 2-bed and 4 x 1-bed flats) with associated garages, parking and landscaping pdf icon PDF 13 MB

To determine the application.

Additional documents:


The Legal Officer made members aware that the Secretary of State has received a request to consider calling-in this planning application and they have asked the Planning Officer to let them know the outcome of the application after today’s meeting.


Richard Conroy presented the report to members and drew attention to the update report that had been circulated.


The committee had regard to its inspection of the site (as agreed in accordance with the Site Inspection Policy and Procedure (minute P19/04 refers)) during its deliberations.


Members received a presentation, in accordance with the public participation procedure, from Councillor Gowler on behalf of Chatteris Town Council. Councillor Gowler expressed the view that this is a highly controversial application which seeks to erect 93 dwellings on an area locally known and also referred to throughout the officer’s report as Wenny Meadows and the proposed development is part of the overall East Chatteris Broad Concept Plan (BCP). He stated that the Town Council is relieved that this application has finally reached this stage where it can be considered by the committee as it first considered this application as consultees two years ago in August 2021 and the Town Council has taken criticism from local residents, particularly on social media, and would hope this would not be the case on any future applications.


Councillor Gowler expressed the view that the Town Council has been used as an easy target for supporters of the campaign despite being one of many consultees on the application, which has been exasperated by no action being taken by the landowner to attempt to protect a considerable investment and allowing members of the public to continue to use what is privately owned land for recreational purposes and he feels it would have been very simple to erect signs around the site to either request the public keep out or at least make them aware that it is private land. He made the point that the application has attracted 551 objections and the Parish Poll held last year returned a result of 92% of people in favour of designating the area as protected local green space, hence, being against the proposed development.


Councillor Gowler expressed the opinion that it is without doubt very unpopular with the residents of Chatteris and whilst planning decisions are not made based on popularity the reasons and justification for why there is resistance to the application should be very carefully considered. He stated that despite the Town Council supporting the application on two/three occasions, the most recent amendment seeks to off-set biodiversity to another site in March, which is 8 miles away from the application site as it has been stated that there is no site closer to Chatteris which can be found and the Town Council deem this is not acceptable and effectively a “slap in the face” to the majority of residents in the town who are against the development anyway and whilst it might be an acceptable legal method of meeting biodiversity requirements  ...  view the full minutes text for item P25/23