Posts By: dcplatest

Health and safety gone mad?

Some 650 metres of quayside railing at a grade II* listed maritime harbour has been approved on appeal at Ramsgate Royal Harbour (DCS Number 400-026-547).

What do you think, is this health and safety gone mad, or is this a prudent undertaking by a responsible local authority? There are no doubt all kinds of rules and regulations concerning public safety, of which planning bloggers might well be unaware, but it seems to us here that the railings will significantly diminish the visual understanding of the operation and historic function of the harbour.

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Whose side are you on?

How would you decide which planning approval notice was the authorised version if there were two different versions in existence, both appearing to be legitimate?

This was the question facing an inspector in a recent appeal against the refusal of a certificate of lawfulness for the occupation of a staff dwelling at a caravan park on Dartmoor without complying with a condition restricting occupancy (DCS Number 200-009-504).

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Tight site and the council is demanding bike storage? Have a look at this appeal case (DCS Number 400-026-507).

The case concerns a planning condition which required secure cycle parking for a minimum of two cycles for each flat at a site in south London. The council’s concerns, the inspector reported, related to the accessibility of the cycle storage at first floor, which would require the transport of bicycles up a flight of stairs, the type of storage, and that it would require vertical lifting of the bicycle into the unit.

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Unnecessarily bureaucratic

There have been reports in the press that the Prime Minister’s Chief Adviser, Dominic Cummings, has pledged to overhaul the nation’s ‘appalling’ planning system. Well, the man might lack a lot of things but he certainly doesn’t lack chutzpah. And, ….we are saying this very quietly…., the system could do with looking at. Even planning inspectors recognize it; note the inspector’s remark in the following paragraph, taken from a recent appeal against the refusal of a certificate of lawfulness for a summerhouse at a house in Dorset (DCS Number 400-026-441).

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A mirror image

Lack of adequate visibility at a site entrance will sometimes give rise to the suggestion that a convex mirror would address the shortcoming. However, this view is rarely reflected by a highway authority; highway engineers really really don’t like them. In addition, they are almost never sanctioned at appeal. Here is why (taken from DCS Number 400-026-333):

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