Yesterday, and at the third attempt, East Devon District Council (EDDC) managed to serve a Breach of Condition Notice on Wainhomes for their blatant disregard of the planning condition, placed on them as part of the 2012 appeal decision allowing 50 homes on the site currently under construction at ‘Winchester Park’ in Feniton.
The condition requires installation of two attenuation tanks which are designed to capture the surface water runoff from the site to a level which would be 10% better than is currently seen (see https://susiebond.wordpress.com/2014/09/27/conditions-what-conditions/).
In other words, the tanks would mitigate the effects of concreting over a greenfield site and give a marginal improvement on the amount of surface water which comes down from the development into the rest of the village.
These conditions are not placed lightly on development.
In this case, given that Feniton has a long and well-documented history of flooding, this particular condition is crucial.
The very robust response by EDDC is to be applauded in the light of cynical indifference on the part of Wainhomes to the plight of the existing community in the village.
This is a reputational issue for both Wainhomes and EDDC. Wainhomes has no option but to comply within the timeframe … if they fail to do so the next step is prosecution. Wainhomes has no right to appeal against the Notice and thence drag the process beyond the 6 week limit. The Planning Enforcement Department will be keeping the pressure up on Wainhomes to force compliance by the end of November … and the village will be holding its breath as the first of the winter storms approaches.
The relevant paragraphs (paras 5 and 6) of the Breach of Condition Notice read:
5. WHAT YOU ARE REQUIRED TO DO
As the person responsible for the breach of the condition specified in paragraph 4 of this notice, you are required to secure compliance with the stated condition by taking the following steps:
(1) A series of 4 surface water attenuation pipes with a capacity of at least 365 cubic metres shall be laid beneath the areas marked “Allotments 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7” as shown on drawing No. DR/103 E. The pipes shall be laid at a depth below ground level to provide at least a 600 mm cover and shall have an internal diameter of 2100 mm. The pipes shall be positioned parallel to each other with a separation distance of 750 mm between them and shall be surrounded by a single size course aggregate bed in accordance with BS EN 13242; Clause 4.3.2. Grading 4/10, 6/14 or 10/20 compacted to a minimum proctor density of 95%. The pipes shall be laid at a gradient of 1:150 falling in a southerly direction and shall be connected to the surface water sewer between manholes S14 and S15 as shown on drawing No. DR/103 E, and
(2) A surface water attenuation tank shall be installed beneath the areas marked “play area” and “allotments 1 to 3” as shown on drawing No. DR/103 E. The tank shall have a capacity of at least 235 cubic metres and shall be positioned at a depth of at least 600 mm beneath ground level. The tank shall be graded and connected to manhole S15 via a surface water drain as shown on drawing No. DR/103 E, and
(3) Connect the surface water attenuation pipes to the surface water attenuation tank with 225mm pipework in accordance with the linkages shown on DR/103 E, and
(4) To connect any occupied buildings via the surface water sewer shown on plans DR/101 D, DR/102 D and DR/103 E into the surface water attenuation pipes installed pursuant to (3) above; and
(5) Join the entire surface water drainage network as set above to the surface water sewer requisition point already installed by South West Water in the south west corner of the site in accordance with the pipe diameters and linkages shown on plan DR/103 E, and
(6) Three swales (or collection trenches) shall be dug in a north–south direction along the full length of the eastern site boundaries. The swales shall be dug to a depth of 500 mm when measured from the highest side of the ditch with a width of 2000 mm at surface level and 300 mm at the base of the ditch. Each swale shall have a bund of 250 mm in height at its highest point and 1000 mm in width with a graded and grassed surface and shall be sited immediately to the west of the swale. All swales shall be set in 1 metre from the site boundary apart from the southernmost section which shall abutt the boundary. The above details are shown on Drawing DR/301 A (Overland Flood Route) 6 Feb 2013.
6. PERIOD FOR COMPLIANCE
All of the steps specified in paragraph 5 above shall be carried out within SIX (6) WEEKS beginning with the day on which this notice is served on you.