Agenda and minutes

Countryside and Rights of Way Panel
Friday, 19th October, 2018 10.00 am

Venue: Dining Room, County Buildings

Contact: Jonathan Lindop  Email: jonathan.lindop@staffordshire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

60.

Declaration of Interest in accordance with Standing Order 16.2

Minutes:

Nil

61.

Minutes of meeting held on 10 August 2018 pdf icon PDF 123 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 10 August 2018 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman.

62.

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 - Alleged Public Footpath between Public Bridleway No. 8, Branston Parish and Shobnall Road, Burton-upon-Trent pdf icon PDF 19 MB

Report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change

Minutes:

The Panel considered a report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change regarding an application by Mr. G.J. Payne for a Modification Order under Section 53 of the Wildlife and Countryside act 1981 to add a Right of Way between Public Bridleway No. 8 Branston Parish and Shobnall Road, Burton upon Trent to the County Council’s Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way.

 

The report was presented verbally to take Members through the various legal, documentary and historical evidence relevant to the application. The Director also made reference to case law which dealt with the weight to be given to that evidence and gave guidance on the legal tests which they should apply. In applying these tests, Members were made aware that they should examine the evidence in its totality.

 

The Panel had regard to the appendices attached to the report including:- (i) a plan of the claimed route of the path; (ii) a copy of the application and associated letters and documents; (iii) a summary of the evidence which had been discovered; (iv) a copy of a plan indicating the effect of a Public Path Diversion Order; (v) a copy of the response received from the landowner; (vi) a copy of the response received from Shobnall Parish Council to the application.

 

Following their detailed consideration of the application, the Panel decided that from the available evidence, it failed to meet the ‘Balance of Probabilities’ test owing to (i) only four user evidence forms having been submitted to support a period of 20 years continuous use and; (ii) the absence of any other conclusive evidence indicating the existence of a Public Right of Way. However, when they applied the lesser test of ‘Reasonable Allegation’ they decided that it was satisfied owing to the absence of any contrary evidence indicating the Right of Way did not exist and therefore an Order should be made and tested by the statutory process set out in the Act.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That the evidence submitted by the applicant and that discovered by the County Council is sufficient to conclude that a Public Footpath which is not shown on the Definitive Map and Statement is reasonably alleged to subsist along the route marked A – B on the plan attached at Appendix A to the report and should therefore be added to the Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way as such

 

(c) That an Order be made to add the alleged right of way shown on the plan attached at Appendix A and marked A – B to the Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way for the District of East Staffordshire as a Public Footpath with a width of 1.5 metres.             

 

63.

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 - Alleged Public Footpath between Public Footpaths Nos. 5 and 6 Shobnall Parish, Burton-upon-Trent pdf icon PDF 7 MB

Report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change

Minutes:

The Panel considered a report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change regarding an application by G.J. Payne for a Modification Order under section 53 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to add a Right of Way between Public Footpath No. 6 Shobnall Parish and Public Footpath No. 5 Shobnall Parish, Burton-on-Trent to the County Council’s Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way.

 

The report was presented verbally to take Members through the various legal, documentary and historical evidence relevant to the application. The Director also made reference to case law which dealt with the weight to be given to that evidence and gave guidance on the legal tests which they should apply. In applying these tests, Members were made aware that they should examine the evidence in its totality.

 

Members had regard to the appendices attached to the report including:- (i) a copy of a plan of the claimed route; (ii) a copy of the application and associated submitted letters and documents; (iii) a summary of the user evidence forms submitted; (iv) a copy of the response received from the Landowner; (iv) a copy of the response received from a statutory consultee.

 

Following their detailed consideration of the application, the Panel decided that from the available evidence, it failed to meet the ‘Balance of Probabilities’ test owing to (i) only two user evidence forms having been submitted to support a period of 20 years continuous use and; (ii) the absence of any other conclusive evidence indicating the existence of a Public Right of Way. However, when they applied the lesser test of ‘Reasonable Allegation’ they decided that it was satisfied owing to the absence of any contrary evidence indicating the Right of Way did not exist and therefore an Order should be made and tested by the statutory process set out in the Act.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That the evidence submitted by the applicant and that discovered by the County Council is sufficient to conclude that a Public Footpath which is not shown on the definitive Map and Statement is reasonably alleged to subsist along the route shown marked A – B on the plan attached at Appendix A to the report and should be added to the Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way as such.

 

(c) That an Order be made to add the alleged right of way shown on the plan attached at Appendix A to the report and marked A – B to the Definitive Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way for the District of East Staffordshire as a Public Footpath with a width of 1.5 metres. 

 

64.

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 - Alleged Public Footpath between Cheadle Road and Public Footpath No. 39, Cheddleton Parish pdf icon PDF 317 KB

Report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Panel considered a report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change regarding an application by Mr. M. Reay for a Modification Order under Section 53 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to add a Right of Way running from Cheadle Road to Public Footpath No. 39 Woodlands Hall, Cheddleton Parish to the County Council’s Map and Statement of Public Rights of Way.

 

The report was presented verbally to take Members through the various legal, documentary and historical evidence relevant to the application. The Director also made reference to case law which dealt with the weight to be given to that evidence and gave guidance on the legal tests which they should apply. In applying these tests, Members were made aware that they should examine the evidence in its totality.

 

During their consideration of the application, Members had regard to the appendices attached to the report including:- (i) a copy of the application and associated submitted letters and documents; (ii) a copy of the plan of the claimed route; (iii) a copy the Quarter Session Order dated 23 March 1807 submitted by the applicant; (iv) a copy of Smith’s 1807 map submitted by the applicant; (v) a copy of Yates 1775 map submitted by the applicant; (vi) copies of various Ordnance Survey Maps submitted by the applicant; (vii) a copy of the Quarter Session Order dated 23 March 1807 discovered by the County Council; (viii) a copy of the Quarter Session Order annexed map dated 23 March 1807; (ix) copies of letters to the County Council from Mr. Haigh dated 14 November and 2 December 1999; (x) a copy of the previous landowner questionnaire received from Mr. Haigh dated 2 November 1999; (xi) a copy of the previous landowner questionnaire from Mr. K. Castle dated 16 November 1999; (xii) a copy of the current landowner questionnaire from Mr. Pointon dated 14 May 2018; (xiii) a copy of an annotated map showing the new and old routes; (xiv) a copy of Messrs Knights response to the report; (xv) a copy of the applicants’ response to the report.

 

In presenting the report the Director referred to the further investigations which he had undertaken into the measurements of the claimed route since their meeting on 10 August 2018 at which the application had first been considered. This was in response to comments received on the report from the legal representatives of the landowners and a subsequent reply received from the applicant. He informed the Panel that following the use of georeferencing tools, the claimed route was found to be 54 feet short of Public Footpath 39 Cheddleton Parish and therefore the available evidence was insufficient to show that the alleged right of way either terminated or commenced at a Public Highway.

 

Following detailed re-consideration of the application, the Panel decided that from the available evidence, in particular the Quarter Session Order dated 23 March 1807 and the absence of any contrary Orders or other legal events to challenge  ...  view the full minutes text for item 64.

65.

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 - Alleged Public Footpath between Town End Road Foxt to Public Footpath No. 47, Ipstones Parish pdf icon PDF 240 KB

Report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Panel considered a report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change regarding an application by Mr and Mrs. Cope for a Modification Order under Section 53 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to add a Right of Way between Town End Road Foxt and Public Footpath No. 47 Ipstones Parish to the County Council’s Definitive Map and Statement.

 

 

Prior to the presentation of the report the Director informed them that the landowner’s legal representative had recently requested the Panel defer consideration of the application on the grounds that the landowner required more time to prepare his case. In response, the Director informed the legal representative that he could only recommend a deferral in circumstances where they could give an undertaking that additional evidence was to be made available. However, whilst the landowner’s legal representative was unable to give this assurance, he had requested the Panel make an inspection of the site to satisfy themselves the route could not have been used in the manner claimed by the applicant, prior to reaching a decision.

 

The Director then circulated additional photographic evidence of the alleged route to the Panel which had been submitted by the landowner showing the line of the path being obstructed by mature vegetation including trees. He informed them that he was unable to corroborate the accuracy of the photos as he had not inspected the alleged path himself. Therefore, he sought Members’ views as to whether they would wish to undertake an inspection of the site also having regard to the request referred to above.

 

During the discussion which ensued Members expressed their support for the Panel undertaking an inspection of the site prior to reaching a decision on the application.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That determination of the application be deferred pending an inspection of the line of the alleged Right of Way by the Panel on a date and time to be arranged.

 

66.

Application for Town or Village Green on land known as College Fields, Rolleston on Dove pdf icon PDF 211 KB

Report of the Director of Strategy Governance and Change

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Panel considered a report by the Director of Strategy Governance and Change regarding an application for a Town or Village Green on land known as College Fields, Rolleston-on-Dove.

 

The County Council’s current policy was that applications for Town or Village Greens were dealt with in order of receipt. However, owing to omissions by the County Council in dealing with the application referred to above when it was originally received in 2013, ie that they (i) failed to advertise the application in the local press; (ii) failed to notify the relevant landowners of its existence and; (iii) failed to erect notices on site, the Director sought authority from the Panel to process the application out of chronological order and  before those applications which had been received on an earlier date.

 

In the discussion which ensued Members noted that Bellway Homes (the current owner) had recently been granted planning permission for 100 houses on the site by East Staffordshire Borough Council. Whilst the existence of an application for Town or Village Green was not a material planning consideration nor was the permission material to the determination of the application for Town or Village Green, and should the developer proceed any development could later be adjudged unlawful and may have to be removed. In addition, they noted that the County Council had already undertaken remedial action to partially rectify the situation by advertising the application in the local press on 3 October 2018.

 

During the discussion which ensued Members expressed their support for the recommendations contained in the report owing to the circumstances which had arisen.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That the Director of Strategy Governance and Change be authorised to process the application for Town or Village Green on the land known as College Field, Rolleston-on-Dove and more properly described and shown on application Form No. 44 so as to allow the matter to be determined by the Panel in advance of applications lodged prior to this application being received.

 

(c) That the authorisation set out in (b) above only applies to this application and all other applications continue to be determined according to the County Council’s current policy ie in chronological order of receipt.        

 

         

67.

HS2 Rail Link - Update

Oral report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities

Minutes:

The Director for Strategy Governance and Change informed them that whilst no update on HS2 was available at the meeting, the Director of Economy Infrastructure and Skills had undertaken to provide a report on the matter to their next meeting having regard to the Panel’s Terms of Reference.  

 

68.

Exclusion of the Public

The Chairman to move:-

 

“That the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business which involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of the Local Government Act 1972, indicated below.”

 

 

PART TWO

(All reports in the section are exempt)

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the public be excluded for the following items of business which involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as described in the paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of the Local Government Act 1972, indicated below.

 

 

PART TWO

  

69.

Exempt minutes of the meeting held on 10 August 2018

(exemption paragraphs 2 and 3)

Minutes:

The exempt minutes were confirmed by the Panel and signed by the Chairman.