All information has been supplied by Nicholas Mason. Parish Council – Upper Rissington. See Contacts.
Please note that there will be an Open Meeting with the developers next Monday, 14 March, to discuss the development. You may already be aware of this given that notices have been displayed on notice boards and at the Co-Op.
At the meeting Simon Cocks of Gladedale will update us on where matters stand regarding the development and the current timescale (which is now somewhat different to what was discussed at the last meeting on 23 August 2010). He will also be taking us through a number of planning documents relative to compliance with conditions imposed by the planning permission granted last year.
These cover a variety of matters, including:
(a) the new access, junction/roundabout on the Barrington Road,
(b) demolition of existing buildings,
(c) road layout,
(d) landscaping, ecological and arboricultural matters and
(e) energy issues/strategy.
There will, of course, be the opportunity to ask questions.
The meeting is at the Village Hall at 7.30pm.
UPPER RISSINGTON DEVELOPMENT
Summary of position at 1 March 2011 (in anticipation of Open Meeting on 14 March 2011)
The timetable has slipped considerably since the meeting on 23 August 2010.
Notably, there have been delays with utility issues (delays on the part of utility companies), also planning delays (preparation of further planning applications have taken much longer than anticipated).
This has affected the date for the commencement of infrastructure works, roundabout and access, commencement of Phase 1 of residential development and the building of the school.
Gladedale will need to set out the revised timetable at the meeting on 14 March.
The first planning application is in an advanced stage of preparation – for roundabout, access and demolition of exiting buildings.
Draft documents have been sent to Cotswold DC (CDC) and to Upper Rissington Parish Council (URPC) for consideration and comment prior to submission of the planning application
These comprise (a) contamination remediation strategy, (b) landscaping plan, (c) phasing (for the whole development), (d) energy and sustainabilty strategy, (e) new access, roundabout and road junction plans and (f) “arboricultural implications assessment and arboricultural method statement for the enabling works”.
URPC are currently considering the documents.
It is anticpated that the planning application will be submitted shortly.
Plans for water & sewerage remained unchanged, ie implementation for not only the new houses but also existing houses prior to commencement of development.
Since the meeting on 23 August 2010 there have been numerous discussions between URPC & Gladedale concerning energy issues, particularly regarding gas and the possibility of bringing mains gas to Upper Rissington (UR).
Initial quotation for mains gas was obtained from Wales & West – who are “the incumbent gas supplier”, meaning that they are the company which has to do the offsite work (effectively, there is a monopoly situation as regards this work). The quotation was considerably higher than the initial indicative cost on which Gladedale had relied.
Gladedale obtained quotations for the works on site from British Gas, Energetics & Connect. They were comparable to that part of the Wales & West quotation.
Gladedale have also employed a Quantity Surveyor to check quotations – labour and materials. In the light of his advice they consider that the quotations are reasonable.
The position is therefore that the initial indicative cost proved to be optimistic.
Surprise was expressed to Gladedale that their original costings were so wide of the mark, also that it was disappointing that Gladedale had relied on erroneous information in indicating to residents the likelihood that mains gas would be available as part of the new development – and therefore also for any existing residents who may wish to swap to mains gas.
The obligation under the s106 Agreement is to use reasonable endeavours to provide mains gas to existing houses by the time of occupation of the 200th house. That obligation remains. However, Gladedale feel that they have exhausted all current possibilities for bringing mains gas to UR and they will now look at this at a later stage.
Whilst cost is one of the issues to be taken into account in determining whether Gladedale have complied with their “reasonable endeavours” obligation, it is only one of the issues. SC has emphasised that Gladedale had not given up on mains gas, it had merely been rescheduled until later in the development project.
In the absence of mains gas Gladedale currently propose that new houses will initially have LPG from the exisiting supply. However, it remained their wish, irrespective of the contractual situation, to be able to offer mains gas in the longer term in the interests of marketing the properties.
Comments have been made (from outside UR) that the pressure in Bourton was poor and would not permit extension of the supply to UR. SC has said that improvement was proposed to the supply in the region of Five Mile Drive (part of the A44 between Stow & Broadway).
5. Energy (other)
Gladedale have informed URPC that they have satisfied their obligations with regard to sustainable energy notwithstanding the absence of a biomass energy supply as previously discussed. Obligations will be met by satisfying relevant criteria on boiler efficiency, solar heating, insulation. Energy strategy is included in the planning documents supplied to URPC.
SC has reported to URPC that Gladedale are in discussion with Loop Scorpio. This is for the installation of ducting and SC states that this does not result in any commitment to Loop Scoprio to provide Broadband to UR.
The timing of the building is goverend by the need for the school to be completed is July – in order to be handed over to the Education Authority in time for opening in September. Building is scheduled to take 12 months so that means starting building in July in the year before the school will open.
Further, the requirement of the s106 Agreement that the school is to be completed by the time that the 100th house is ready for occupation means that it has to be open in the September before that stage is reached in the development.
Timing on the building programme has slipped (by about 6 months). Accordingly, Gladedale are now contemplating that the school will open in September 2013, so starting to build in July 2012 – rather than a year earlier as previously discussed. There is now no way that building will commence in July 2011.
It is understood that initially the school will be a satellite of Great Rissington School until numbers are established in Upper Rissington.
URPC have discussed this further with Gladedale; this follows a request at PC Meetings that land should be made available at an early stage. SC has stated that land for allotments is identified in the landscaping strategy/plan and the intention is that the land should be made available at the 1st stage of the residential development. The landscape plan is part of the planning documents received by URPC. This requires further discussion with a view to seeing if the land can be made available at an earlier stage.
9. Tennis Courts
This matter has been also raised at PC Meetings – request for land to be made available at an early stage. SC has stated that similar position to allotments – land for tennis courts to be identified in the landscaping strategy and made available at the 1st stage of the residential development.
There has also been a request to get existing courts into better shape so that they can be used – which has been raised with Gladedale.
It is believed that tennis courts may be relocated rather than remaining in their present position, as previosuly proposed.
This also requires further discussion.
10. Recreation: Other
• Open Spaces: This has been discussed with Gladedale who have advised that these will be offered initially to URPC (as required under the s106 Agreement). If URPC does not wish to take on responsibility for the communal areas then they have to be offered to Cotswold DC. SC doubts that CDC would be interested. If neither URPC nor CDC are prepared to take on the communal areas then a management company would be formed. Gladedale are anticipating that URPC will take responsibility for the communal areas.
• Consultation: Gladedale have confirmed that they would consult regarding recreational facilities, including also a skate park in addition to other matters previously mentioned (tennis courts – which may remain in their present position or may be relocated.
There has been discussion about the need to have a common policy for tree planting and landscaping for both the existing settlement (where URPC are currently looking at tree planting and the long term management of its trees) and the new development site.
12. Website: This is currently under consideration by URPC with a view to URPC putting a proposal plus costing to Gladedale for consideration.
Clerk to Upper Rissington Parish Council
1 March 2011