B&NES Head of Planning and chief Enforcement Officer are to sit down with local residents and members of KRAK2 (Keynsham Residents Against K2) next month to explain the Council’s position over what are seen as persistent breaches of Taylor Wimpey’s planning consent for the K2 development. The meeting, planned for 12th June will attempt to address some of the many issues which have been reported in these pages in recent months regarding the movement of delivery lorries and site management. Some residents of Park Road and Dunster Road in particular feel angry the Council has seemingly failed take any enforcement action over reported breaches of planning conditions. Matters came to a head last month when it was understood B&NES was about to act. Taylor Wimpey, while denying it had breached any conditions, took a pre-emptive step in closing the site down for 24 hours while it reviewed its management procedures. Only last Monday, a lorry was spotted travelling in the opposite direction along Dunster Road at 8.35am, contrary to Taylor Wimpey’s designated route. It was forced to mount the pavement outside the entrance to Castle School.
Originally known as K2B, planning permission to build houses on the site was refused by B&NES Development Control Committee in Autumn 2010, but Taylor Wimpey managed to have that decision overturned following an appeal. In July 2011, Stephen Roscoe, the Government Inspector who heard the appeal, made the following comments in respect of construction traffic: “During the construction period, use of the access would be similar to that in connection with the existing industrial units, and construction traffic would use the designated HGV routes to and from the site. These would be for one way use, with the exception of articulated vehicles which would be able to use only one of the routes. For peak events, such as during spoil removal, use of the access by haulage vehicles would be restricted to outside peak hours. These events, by their very nature, would also be infrequent and would not result in any unacceptable living conditions.”
Residents will also be seeking an explanation from the B&NES officials as to why the site compound and storage area has been positioned almost adjacent to the rear gardens of houses in Dunster Road. According to Taylor Wimpey’s Phasing Plan which formed part of the original application, this was to be located on the southern extreme of the site, on what would actually be the last phase of the scheme to be built. Some have consequently been told that it is likely that the compound will be relocated to its proper position by the end of the year. Once again, Mr Roscoe made the following observation when granting Taylor Wimpey’s appeal in 2011. “The appellant’s Construction Management Plan (CMP) would regulate the locations of the site car park, compound and materials storage areas. This would protect the occupiers of properties which adjoin the northern boundary of the site from any unreasonable noise and disturbance.” The pre-amble to that Construction Management Plan referred to by the Government Inspector makes a very bold statement that Taylor Wimpey is “committed to behaving responsibly” and “controlling the impact of our activities on the surrounding community and environment.”