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No. Item




Declarations of Interest


Pre-Application Briefing by the Developer - GB1 (Netherhall Gardens), Land north of Worts' Causeway, Cambridge.

The Proposal and site context

The pre application proposal is for the provision of up to 200 dwellings in this site located in the city’s south-eastern edge. The proposed development will be formed by three character areas to provide terraced, detached and semi-detached typologies, which range from 2 to 3 stories in height.


The Netherhall Farm Meadow protected Open Space and City and County Wildlife and Local Nature Reserve is located within the pre application site and adjacent to Netherhall Farm, a Building of Local interest. A Tree Protection Order Area also forms part of the site.


The site also falls within the Impact Risk Zone of Cherry Hinton Pit Site of Special Scientific Interest and mainly visible from those sites and from along Granham’s Road and eastwards along Worts’ Causeway. The development would fall within the immediate setting of the Netherhall Farm.

The site is at high risk of surface water, particularly in its southern portion along Worts’s Causeway.


Planning History and policy context

The site is identified as ‘GB1’ in the Cambridge Local Plan (2018) and has been released from the Green Belt to deliver housing. Along with ‘GB2’ (Newbury Farm, situated south of Worts’ Causeway opposite to GB1), both sites are to be developed to deliver up to 430 new dwellings.


Policy 27 identifies the sites as ‘Site specific development opportunities’ and sets out overall requirements subject to which any proposed development will be supported: (a) Any amelioration and mitigation needed to address issues of flooding and contamination; (b) Design considerations; (c) Satisfactory access and other infrastructure provision; and (d) Any other requirements, where applicable.


The Local Plan through Policy 27 also sets out specific requirements for both sites, among which that development assesses their potential for biodiversity enhancement and the creation of an ecological corridor between both sites; and the early establishment of a generous landscaped area to help create an appropriate buffer with the Green Belt. The Local Plan also requires through Policy 27 that the development of the GB1 site includes the retention of sufficient buffer areas around the Netherhall Farm Meadow Wildlife Site, to protect and enhance the ecological value of the meadow.


In terms of Highways, Policy 27 requires the provision of a single point of crossover between GB1 and GB2 and a single access on to Babraham Road; along with the retention of Worts’ Causeway country lane appearance and character, with limited car access.

Policy 27 also requires development of GB1 and GB2 to be subject to contributions being made towards community facilities and services in this part of the city.


A Screening Opinion was issued on 02 July 2019 concluding that an Environment Statement is required to accompany a planning application. A Scoping Opinion has been issued on 22 November 2019 and an outline application is expected to be submitted early February 2020. There is no further relevant planning history for the site.


A public presentation was held at Netherhall School on 03 July 2019.


Areas of focus

The key  ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

Councillor attendance

Whilst any subsequent planning application relating to this site will be determined by the Planning Committee, all Councillors are invited to attend and take part in this pre-application developer presentation.


Purpose of the meeting

These meetings allow developers an early opportunity to present proposals for future planning applications to elected members of the Council.


The process allows Councillors to feed into the process at an early stage and raise any questions or concerns that can then be addressed by the developer prior to a formal planning application being submitted.


Whilst the meetings will be held in public, they do not form part of the formal decision making process. All planning applications will be determined in line with formal processes as adopted by Cambridge City Council. 


Format of the Meeting

For each Briefing:


·  Introduction by the Head of Planning Services or a Senior Planning Officer – up to 10 minutes


·  Presentation by the developer of the proposal – up to 30 minutes


·  Opportunity for Members to ask questions, raise issues, seek clarification, comment on the apparent positive and less positive aspects of the proposal – up to 40 minutes


During this part of the meeting it is important that Councillors who may ultimately make the decision on any subsequent planning application do not feel unduly constrained by what they can ask or raise. However they should avoid expressing views that might give any appearance that they are approaching the proposal with a closed mind. The discussion should not be used for negotiations with the developer. These should take place with officers separately from the meeting. Members of the public must refrain from entering into the discussion at the meeting.


·  Summing up – up to 10 minutes


A Planning Department representative will take notes of the meeting, which will be a summary of the proceedings. Nothing said by Councillors at the meeting will in any way be binding on the Committee that subsequently determines the application. The notes will be uploaded to the City Council’s website upon completion.