5 March 2019
Sent by email
Dear Cllr Page
I am writing on behalf of the Bishop’s Stortford Civic Federation to you in your capacity as chairman of the Development Management Committee and also as a Bishop’s Stortford Councillor about the amended planning application for Bishop’s Stortford South.
The original application generated an unparalleled number of objections, and the amended application does little if anything to address the range of issues that have been raised. On previous occasions when a major application has been made to develop a part of Bishop’s Stortford – the Station Goods Yard and Bishop’s Stortford North – the Committee has agreed to hold a special meeting in Bishop’s Stortford and allow a much longer period than the normal three minutes for members of the public to address it. This application, if approved, would lead to development and impacts on the town of a similar scale to the two developments I have referred to above. To treat this a routine item of business when the amended application has paid little regard to the objections that have been made would undermine the confidence of the town’s residents in the consultation process and imply that it was a mere formality. The Civic Federation therefore believe that this application too should be the subject of a special meeting of the Committee to be held in the town with an extended period for members of the public (and the applicant) to address the Committee.
We hope that you agree and I look forward to hearing from you.
Reply from Cllr. Tim Page
To: John Rhodes
7 March 2019
Dear Mr. Rhodes,
Thank you for your email, on behalf of Bishop’s Stortford Civic Federation, requesting that the next meeting of the Development Management Committee scheduled for 20th March is held in Bishop’s Stortford, and that extra time is provided for members of the public to speak.
Unfortunately I will have to disappoint you. I passed on your request to officers to explore the availability of suitable premises but none could be found at such short notice. Time constraints also prevent us from extending the time made available for members of the public to speak because this would have needed prior approval at the previous Development Management meeting, i.e. the one held on 13th February. No official request was made.
There will be the usual three minute slot for public speakers, and for a Town Council presentation. Local district councillor ward members can present to the committee for any length of time, subject to the discretion of the chairman. Additionally, members of the public can email committee members with their observations before the meeting, preferably up to, say 4pm on the day, to allow for members’ travelling time.
I am aware of the substantial public interest and can assure you that written representations have been included in the case file which is accessible through the Council’s planning portal.
Chairman, Development Management Committee