This is one of the longest threads I seen for a while on here! Lets add
a bit more eh!
It is the role of the applicant/developer is to check whether:
o The land is already affected by contamination using pollution
linkages and conceptual models
o The proposed development will create new pollution linkages
o What actions are required to break those pollution linkages and
avoid new ones, deal with any unacceptable risks and enable safe
development and future occupancy of the site and neighbouring
If the applicant or developer can't demonstrate all of the above then
the application should not be validated and passed back until such
information is available, and particularly in the case of new sensitive
end use developments. In other words the Planning Authority don't
actually have to refuse it which could then lead to appeals. Developers
and applicants should be encouraged to go for more screening opinions
from the planners so they will have a much better idea of what is
All planning departments must consider contamination in line with PPS23.
The easiest way to do this is to go over a speak to the planners and set
up some form of system that is PPS23 compliant, as we have attempted
here a Bury. Yes, there have been a few little hiccups and work load
has increased (but just think about all those sites you won't need to
deal with under Part IIA) but overall the system has been a success and
will be improved upon as we go. It is also important that we
inform/educate developers and consultants what we require via the
planning process. The earlier we do this, the easier it will get.
If they have a decent stab at the above, and we feel confident that they
can achieve safe development then we then accept the application and
usually place conditions dependant of the information available.
Environmental Protection Officer
tel: 0161 253 6392
fax: 0161 253 5563
email: [log in to unmask]
Environmental Services, Textile Hall, Manchester Road, Bury BL9 0DG
From: Contaminated Land Management Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of
Sent: 21 October 2005 08:49
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: PPS23 and Residential Developments
For what its worth (not much I know!); here is my two-penneth!
I must admit to being in agreement with Nick and Chris; we are told how
to assess things in Policy and Guidance. As Nick said if this isn't
what the Government wanted then they would have said something
I also thing that the most important thing that has been overlooked is
the liability issues! At the end of the day we are only advisors to DC
and have no influence with them; as is attested by many CLO's across
the Country!!! However do not think that your friendly Planner will be
the first to try and pass the buck onto someone else if it goes wrong;
that someone else being the CLO!!!
As a more pragmatic approach I assess the Planning week each list; and
taken into account site use, previous site use and underlying
soil/geology, I advise Planning what I think is required. If they
choose to ignore this then it's not my problem; the likelihood is that
there is no issue's with the site; however who wants to be the CLO who
missed something when it all blows up because they decided to not follow
UK Planning Policy and use an arbitrary approach to determining which
sites do or don't need planning conditions or advice notes?! Which is
the reason I document everything I say to Planning and save every email
I send; because i'm not being blamed for their mistakes!!
Yes, we need to educate not only our Planners, but also our Upper
Echelons of the Council as well as Members; I don't want to have to do
it all after something has gone wrong and people's dreams/lives/life has
been destroyed because I decided to not follow the Policy we have been
Lets put it another way; when doing a DQRA and you need the tox data for
a substance; who doesn't follow the Policy as outlined in CLR9? So why
treat this any different? The Policy is there to protect not only the
people who live in the end development, but also us from potential
Anyway; as far as I am concerned the Policy and Guidance are there to be
followed; and follow them I will. Maybe it lacks creative thought and
thinking; but then I don't actually see that as being a necessary part
of advising Planning!!
I know us CLO's in Lancashire have had a discussion regarding
extensions/conservatories, and this is a difficult issue that needs to
be addressed; I mean nothing was done to the houses to protect them from
contamination when originally built and there has been no issue's since,
so why bother with an extension? But then disturbing the ground with an
excavation/construction, however small, could introduce that pathway
that leads to dire consequences?
To me Land Contamination is thinking the worse and then proving its not
there; but then maybe that is because I am a pessimist! This is how I
work and base my decision's; as I'm buggered if I want to be the one
standing up in Court defending my pragmatic approach when there is a
Policy context out there to follow; when someone's got skin lesions from
Arsenic exposure from their garden after a conservatory was built that
disturbed the ground! Because I know it wouldn't last two minutes and I
would be the one who got blamed!
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