The Chairman introduced application number 143301, change of use of agricultural land to dog exercising park on land to the West of Reepham Village Hall, Hawthorn Road, Reepham. It was explained that this application had been deferred from the previous meeting in order to seek additional information regarding hours of use and maximum numbers of users. This had been clarified with the applicant and the proposed conditions had been updated to reflect the additional information.
The Chairman advised there was one registered speaker, Mr Gary Brader, who had submitted a statement to be read on his behalf. The Democratic and Civic Officer read aloud the following statement.
I strongly object to this application as I can see no reason for a dog exercise area at this location. There are lots of public footpaths available and areas away from the roads including the very near by old airfield with public access. Where many dog owners already go! I can see only one reason for this application, it is so the land owner can change the land use from agricultural to leisure and then in a years time or whatever an application for building planning will be submitted. They are going in through the back door on this one very devious indeed. If this planning is granted it will result in more traffic on an already very busy road and also spoil the view of the houses opposite not to mention reduce future property value particularly for those opposite. This is a this stupid and not needed planning request! I would very much like to hear the applicant’s reasons for this idea and an honest answer would be nice! I look forward to your reply.
Thank you for your time with my email. Very sorry and disappointed I am unable to attend this meeting.”
The Chairman thanked the Democratic Services Officer and invited any comments from the Senior Development Management Officer. He clarified that the application was for change of use from agricultural to a dog exercising park and any future changes would be assessed at that time.
On opening discussions for the Committee, there were concerns raised from Members regarding the number of parking spaces at the site in relation to the maximum numbers of dogs permitted. It was noted that users of the site may park on Hawthorn Road, which, as a busy road, could cause safety concerns. It was highlighted that there had been no objections to the application from the Highways Agency.
In response to a query as to whether the land would be returned to agricultural use should the proposed dog exercise site not be successful, Members were directed to condition eight which stated the land must be returned to agricultural use within six months of the exercise park closing.
Members reiterated previous concerns regarding the need for such a venture as well as potential noise issues with numbers of dogs. The Legal Adviser highlighted that there were other statutory regimes to deal with ... view the full minutes text for item 84