Thank you for your email in which you have asked the Council to provide information relating to documents held by the authority setting out the part played by Cllr Linda Golding in the preparation of the emerging Local Development Plan, specifically relating to West Horndon.
The Monitoring Officer confirms that he holds none. The Council does however hold the minutes of the Local Development Plan (LDP) Working Group of which Cllr Golding is a member. The Working Group is not a Committee of the Council and therefore its minutes are consequently not open for inspection pursuant to Section 100E of the Local Government Act 1972.
Despite this we have reviewed the relevant extracts of the LDP Working Group minutes, which relate to your request, and considered whether these can be released under your Freedom of Information request. As the requested extracts do not relate to commercially sensitive or confidential interests they can be released under the Freedom of Information Act.
Four LDP Member Working Group meetings took place to discuss the draft version of the emerging Draft Plan before it was taken to Ordinary Council on 10 July 2013. These meetings were held on 30 May, 11 June, 18 June, and 27 June 2013. At these meetings extracts of the emerging Draft Plan were discussed. Although areas of development were discussed, specific numbers (suggested Borough housing provision and individual sites) were not disclosed until the meeting of 27 June 2013. Cllr Linda Golding was not present at this meeting.
Meetings attended by Cllr Golding: 30 May 2013
11 June 2013
18 June 2013
LDP Member Working Group meetings that took place prior to the meeting on the 30 May 2013 did not consider the current iteration of the Local Plan taken forward to the Preferred Options consultation stage.
The information below has been supplied in response to your request and contains extracts from the LDP Member Working Group meetings attended by Cllr Golding that relate to policy in West Horndon, they are as follows:
30 May 2013
Core Policies: Jennifer Candler (Head of Planning) took Members through the Core Policies of the document and considered each one in turn. It was noted that throughout the document if there was an alternative approach available, this was stated in a grey box.
11 June 2013
Philip Drane (Senior Policy Planner) took Members through ‘Chapter 2: Spatial Strategy’, and considered the provision of employment land. In particular, the followings sites were considered:
• M25 Works Site (land at Codham Hall). M25 Junction 29
• Mountnessing Roundabout (former scrapyard), A12 Junction 12.
There was also potential in West Horndon, which would be considered later.
18 June 2013
Spatial Strategy: Jennifer Candler took Members through ‘Chapter 2 – Spatial Strategy’ which focused on managing change and shaping how the area develops in the future.
During consideration of S1: Spatial Strategy, Cllr Linda Golding noted West Horndon was listed as a ‘larger village’ and requested that this was changed, as it was not.
Jennifer Candler advised that S2 linked to S1 and, following a detailed study, the level of need was set out before Members. Jennifer Candler explained the figures fully to Members and advised that option 2 was not viable as it would have been found unsound. Members noted that the regional plan had now gone and the NPPF was the only plan/framework left. Questions were raised regarding the number of dwellings and it was noted that these would be staggered.
Core Polices – Housing Type and Mix: Philip Drane introduced the item to Members which considered five strategic sites, which were set out before Members under CP3: Strategic Sites.
CP4: West Horndon Opportunity Area, was considered and it was noted that the industrial area in the village was very outdated. Following this, Members also considered that the Wates Way industrial area in Brentwood North was not popular with residents.
Development Management Policies – Site specific polices and allocations & sustainable communities chapter: Jennifer Candler also took Members through the development management policies in relation to managing growth and economic prosperity.
Members considered each core policy in turn and no major issues were raised.