Independent Councillor
Ormesby Ward

Great Yarmouth Borough Council

I am so grateful to have been elected to serve the Ormesby Ward as their Borough Councillor. I hope that I can repay the trust that the majority of voters gave me and to serve everyone within the villages of Ormesby St. Margaret, Ormesby St. Michael and Scratby and California. If you have any queries or concerns then please feel free to contact me by clicking on the link below. 


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Open Letter – Ward Councillor Response on Decision to Defer on Application 06/20/0313/F

11th November 2020

Dear Development Control Committee and Planning Officers,

I have been informed that I will not be able to speak on this application at the Development Control Committee meeting today. To this end, I hope that the Committee will acknowledge the content of this letter and that the objection be added to the Public record.

At the planning meeting of October 14th, I spoke on the application for the Scratby development and explained that from my perspective, the Officer, Chris Green had made a sufficient case for the existing application to be refused. I did not think it prudent to take up too much time reiterating the points. I felt this was substantiated by members discussion around the often-raised issue of Grade 1 Agricultural Land. Indeed, this point formed part of the refusal for the Filby development at the last meeting.

In the absence of material changes to the Scratby application, and a request from the developer to take the application “on merit”, I was somewhat surprised that discussions weighted towards a County Council Highways issue and not ALL of the reasons that the officer made for a proposal to refuse. The deferral did give some time for approaches to Highways for clarification. However, I understand County do not support the notion to reduce the speed on this section of an A road. The developer has offered £25,000 as reserve for the Parish Council to make retrospective safety measures, proposing SAM2 cameras as a solution. It should not be the responsibility of a Parish Council to clean up after the developer has left and as discussed in the previous meeting £25,000 would not produce much materially.

It can be difficult for Committee Members to put aside their political differences, they may feel it is worthwhile promoting or sarcastically referring to the government’s mantra to “build, build, build”. I trust this Chair and Committee Members, and you are indeed publicly entrusted, to work constructively to ensure our neighbourhoods provide quality, affordable, and SAFE housing for our Borough. The Core Strategies, Local Plans and Officers’ reports should be sufficient to make sound and timely decisions.

Had this application been taken on merit, and ALL the Officer’s points of refusal acknowledged, then the matter would have been closed. The decision to defer, with the eye taken off the detail, has resulted in a fall out within the community, the embarrassment of the Parish Council and a waste of public resources. Notwithstanding that this would bring about financial loss and deter small to medium sized developers in making future applications. These deferrals and deviations from the matters in hand only set to bolster the argument to support the notion of fast-tracking applications and bypassing the expertise and knowledge of our officers.

I would respectfully ask that Committee Members add more detail to their motions and proposals to defer applications and to include which specific points within the officers report they wish to be addressed. In addition to the Highways issues of this application there were elements of the Officer’s report which I feel should have led to a refusal or at least been conditioned. On this application, with respect to the Officers and Committee, you must reject.

Steve Scott-Greenard
Ormesby Ward Councillor
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