Agenda and minutes

Extraordinary, Environment and Sustainability Committee - Thursday, 29 February 2024 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, Knowle Green, Staines-upon-Thames TW18 1XB

Contact: Christeen Abee  Email:


No. Item


Disclosures of Interest

To receive any disclosures of interest from councillors in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct for members.


Councillor L. Nichols declared he was a member of Knowle Green Estates board.


Local Plan - Resumption of Examination pdf icon PDF 898 KB

To consider an option for subject areas (Green Belt sites, flood risk sites and Staines Development Framework) related to the Local Plan to propose to the Inspector in order to progress the Local Plan back to Examination.

Additional documents:


The Committee considered a report with options for modifications on Green Belt allocations, Flood Risk sites, and the Staines Development Framework to propose to the Inspector to resume the Local Plan Examination.


Councillor Beecher proposed and Councillor Sexton seconded that the recommendations regarding flood risk be amended to read as follows:


1.     Keep all proposed flood risk sites in the draft Local Plan subject to no resolute objection from the Environment Agency.

2.     Keep all proposed flood risk sites except for those at high risk of flooding subject to no resolute objection from the Environment Agency.

3.     Keep all proposed flood risk sites but remove those at high risk of flooding and move some higher risk sites to later in the Plan period (11-15 years) to allow for the River Thames Scheme to be implemented and the design code to be completed and subject to no resolute objection from the Environment Agency.


The Committee resolved to agree the additional wording for the flood risk options.


The Service Lead of Strategic Planning and Enterprise explained the background to the current position on the Local Plan. The options presented in the report were the result of several meetings with administration group leaders. The Council could seek modifications before the Inspector resumed the examination hearings, however it would be the Inspector’s decision to accept the modifications.


The Local Plans Manager reported that the Flooding Consultants advised that the Environment Agency had confirmed which modelling outputs should be used in the Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (including the tributary of the River Ash), and updates would continue to be completed.


Catriona Riddell, Critical Friend from Catriona Riddell Associates, highlighted  the changes to the National Planning Policy Framework announced in December 2023. However, these changes did not have an impact on Spelthorne’s Local Plan as it had already been submitted for consultation, and could not be withdrawn, so any changes had to be managed through main modifications.


Councillor Burrell proposed and Councillor Beatty seconded that an additional option should be considered regarding Green Belt sites: “To keep the eight ‘weak’ performing Green Belt areas, Gypsy, Traveller and Travelling Showpeople sites, and remove ‘moderate’ and ‘strong’ performing Green Belt sites.”


The Committee noted that requesting a change to the Green Belt allocation would present a risk in terms of speculative development on Green Belt land. The Inspector could also request that more Green Belt sites be released. The Committee established which Green Belt sites would be retained if the additional option were agreed.


Councillor Burrell withdrew his motion for the additional option regarding the Green Belt sites.


The Committee noted that developers would have to comply with the 50% affordable housing mandated for the Green Belt sites as it was currently set out in the Local Plan. The Committee also noted that there was a strong case for retaining the Gypsy, Traveler, and Travelling Showpeople sites as allocations from Green Belt as the Council had to fulfil an obligation. Other Committee members felt there was no strong  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23/24