This month's items first, then in road name order. Updated 21 May 2007

833/2001 - land adjoining Swanley Bar Farmhouse, Swanley Bar Lane, Little Heath - change to residential use. Green belt land. Similar plans were refused in 1995 and nothing has changed since then. The District Plan says the housing needs can be met without building on the Green Belt. We have objected in August 2001. Permission refused by the Council in Feb 2002

1064/2001 - Lower Farm, Bell Lane, Bell Bar - boundary wall & new porch - we consider the wall will reduce the openness of the countryside - there is currently a picket fence - and have objected. The ancient barn is being rebuilt. Welwyn Hatfield Council says the farmhouse is a Listed Building, but not the barn. Since the barn is being restored to its original appearance no planning permission is required. See 'actions 2002' for an update on this.

841/2001 - North Mymms Pumping Station, Warrengate Rd, Water End - 30m high telecomms mast etc - we ask if this mast is needed since there are masts at the Sovereign Garage, Warrengate Rd, and two masts approved/built close to Brookmans Park railway station.We have objected in August 2001. Approved by the Council in Feb 2002

1401/2001 - Folly Arch, Hawkshead Rod, Little Heath - swimming pool and plant room - we objected on the grounds that it was in the Green Belt and would be highly visible from Gobions Wood and the public footpath from the Arch to the wood. However on 10 Dec 2001 the Council gave its approval.

1200/2001 - Tanum Farm, Hawkshead Rd, Little Heath - new barn & replacement stables - the owner has built a side access gate onto Welwyn Hatfield owned land. We have queried this with the council, particularly as the farm house is for sale but not the rear land with the barn etc. In December 2001 the Council approved this application. In 2002 the Parish Council has taken legal steps regarding the access over Welwyn Hatfield owner land at the side, the land being leased to the Parish Council.

1203/2001 - Barn & Coach House, Lysley Place, Shepherds Way - tennis courts etc - we consider that this will reduce the openness of the countryside so we have objected. In December 2001 the Council approved this application.

58 & 59 /2001 - Barn & Coach House, Lysley Place, Shepherds Way - - building over swimming pool - We objected. They should have thought of this when they applied for permission for a pool only last year. Also this building plus the approved extension is too large an increase on the original building which was only built last year. Refused by Council 14 May 2001. UPDATE 17/9/2001 - applicant has appealed against this refusa, and we have re-affirmed our objections. update 7.12.2001 - appeal dismissed. Total enlargement by 50% on original area is less that the 54% approved for another house on this estate. Also building will be only 1m higher than adjacent 3m. boundary wall so no reduction in openness of countryside)

1588 & 1589/2000 - Lysley Place, Shepherds Way, Brookmans Park - A new single storey building is proposed over the swimming pool and a first floor extension at the Barn & Coach House. This estate was approved in 1997, being the part conversion, part replacement of the house and buildings of what was the 'Home Farm'. Other houses on this estate have had extensions approved but not to the first floor, or to this extent. We consider that it is an overdevelopment. The Council have approved the extension.

Marshmoor Lane, Welham Green - the 'Willows'

In our investigations concerning the caravan at Bell Lane Stables (see below), we discovered that another mobile home, two large sheds and a touring caravan have been sited on the fenced off area on Marshmoor Lane. Also the fenced off area appears to be much larger than the previously fenced off area. In 1998 the owner lost an appeal against an enforcement order requiring the removal of the previous mobile home which was eventually removed. We have also alerted the County Council of the apparent encroachment onto the verge which is Highways land. Update 7.12.2001 - The Council took the owner to Court and won its case fining the owner 1,000 plus costs and requiring removal of the caravan.

40 & 41/2001 - Firs Stables, Woodside Lane- We have objected to the two planning applications - S6/40/FP to change the use of the buildings to riding stables, and S6/41/FP for the caravan to be retained for equestrian use. Update 11 June 2001 - we understand that the applications have been withdrawn and that the Council is taking action on the unauthorised residential use.

The 'change of use' application is very vague and does not say which buildings, nor how many stables exist and how many more are being asked for. No manure has been removed from the stables for months, and there is now a very large heap of it. More horses means more........

People are living in the caravan, without planning permission. The stables are in the Green Belt, so we need to ensure that the Human Rights Act does not confer a residential status through the elapse of time. See our 'appeals' page for how this Act might overturn Green Belt policies. In 1998 & 1999 two youths lived at these stables without planning permission, and they successfully appealed against an Enforcement Order due to faulty wording of the Order. However they moved when threatened with another Order. Update 7 July 2001 - application to retain the caravan refused by the Council and legal action will be started for its removal. the application for a cert. of lawfulness has been withdrawn. Update 17 August 2001 - we understand the enforcement notice has been served but they are still there. Update 17 Sept 2001 - an appeal has been lodged against this refusal of planning permission. The caravan has been removed. Update 21 Nov 2001 - appeal dismissed - residential accommodation not necessary at the stables and there are no very special circumstances to justify it.

114/2001 Leggatts park, Gt North Rd, Little Heath - demolish all dwellings & erect 6 new ones -The residential floor area is slightly less than that approved for 5 houses, so that is OK. Our concern is the vagueness about how the whole 180 acre estate will be managed, and silence on the two public footpaths that cross the estate. The Government is keen to preserve the Right to Roam UPDATE 17/9/2001 - application approved subject to a Section 106 agreement or referral to the Sec. of State. We have queried with the Council about the footpaths and estate management. Update 7/12/2001 - WHDC gave permission subject to S106 agreement to (i) define the residential curtilages and (ii) prepare a landscape management scheme covering the area identified in the application. This does not include the footpaths on land that remains in the ownership of another division of the Michael Shanly group. A landscape management plan for land outside the private garden areas to be managed in the long term by a management company set up by Michael Shanly. (New application 1530/2001 merely shifts one house through 90 degrees so we will not object.)

846-2001 - White Lodge Farm, Bulls Lane, Brookmans Park - convert slaughterhouse to residential annexe in conjuction with occupancy of White Lodge farmhouse, and construction of lake for fish breeding and recreational fishing. - We objected in August 2001. Green Belt land. Similar application withdrawn in 1999. Why do they want to convert the slaughterhouse into residential accommodation? To act as a hotel for the fishers? Recreational fishing is a commercial activity, which is inappropriate on Green Belt land, and the fish breeding must be for the recreational fishing, and not an agricultural activity. Update 1/11/01 - application approved by Council on 24/9/01, but only for the conversion of the slaughterhouse. The owner withdrew the other parts of the application.Update 7/12/2001 - Building activity on site is now visible with the leaf fall, and appears to be more extensive than the approved work . We have checked plans and written to WHDC, also questioning the mobile home on the site.

727/2001 - Home Farm buildings, North Mymms Park - convert Model Farm complex to 8 dwellings. Green Belt land. The District Plan says the housing needs can be met without building on the Green Belt. Approval of these 8 dwellings would double the number of houses in this rural area which, by road, is remote from other habitation. We objected in August 2001. Approved by the Council in October 2001

1333/2001 - Brookmans Park Transmitting Station - 18.3m (61 feet) dish - we have objected on grounds of size. The Action Committee opposing further development at this site intends to hold another public meeting early in 2002. We wrote to the Radiocommunications Agency who conduct audits of such sites. In their November 2001 reply they deny responsibility for health & Safety, which is National Radiological Protection Board work. We have now asked NRPB for information regarding the actual emissions from this site, the maximum allowed, how they learn of increases in the number of satellite dishes etc, and what warnings if any should be posted along the public footpaths crossing or going round this site.

844/2001 - Brookmans Park Transmitting Station - change one approved 6.1m satellite dish for a 9.2m dish and a 3.8m dish - we consider that the site is being overdeveloped. We objected in August 2001. UPDATE 17/9/2001 - application withdrawn

286/2001 - Brookmans Park Transmitting Station, Gt North Road, - 6 satellite dishes & 379/2001 - 2 microwave antennas - See our separate section for details .

771/2001 - Osborne House farm - retro application for triple garage - on green belt land so we objected to this residential type of use. Approved by the Council subject to a S106 agreement or referral to the Secretary of State. New application in Nov 2001, using the same number,which we have also objected to.

158/2001 - land at rear of 63 & 65 Pine Grove, Brookmans Park - erect one new dwelling. Although the new proposal is smaller that the rejecetd plans (one less bedroom and reduction from 235 sqm to 291 sqm), it is still backland development. The house has been moved nearer the pavement reducing the privacy of the residents particularly at school opening and closing times. We have objected on these grounds. Refused by Council 14 May 2001

132/2001 - land at 64 Holloways Lane, Welham Green - erect one new dwelling. We have objected being backland development with a shared access, which will not be permitted of the proposed changes to the District Paln are passed. Also a bedroom window will be level with the pavement on Dixons Hill Road, so there will be no privacy. Approved by Council 14 May 2001

43/2001 - Brookmans Park Railway Station - 15m mobile phone mast - One2One Communications have submitted a planning application for a 15m monopole mast with3 antenna. The site is between Station Road pavement and the railway, opposite the end of Green Close, We objected because they should be able to share the nearby 45m mast with another operator. In was approved by time default. We received a WHDC File Note that contained some curious information which we have queried with WHDC. We have written again quoting PPG8 Update 17 August - plans approved by the Council who said they had no option since a mast had already previously been approved on this site.

You can read, or order a copy of, the Stewart Report on Mobile Phones on (short for Independent Expert Group on Mobile Phones). Section 6 discusses 'base stations', and the 'current planning procedures for telecommunications development'. It recommends mast sharing. Also click here for a summary of the August 2001 update of planning guidance

22 Holloways Lane, Welham Green -This house, on a large plot of land, was rumoured to have been sold to a builder for demolition and replacement by 5 new ones. This type of development is becoming more common as developers seek land to build and cannot build on Green Belt land. Update 24 July 2001 - We are very pleased to report that local resident Patrick Sawczyszyn has exchanged contracts and will complete his purchase of this property on 31 July 2001.

Osborne Road, Little Heath - back garden development

Plans have been submitted to put 3 detached houses and a double garage on the back gardens of 45 & 47 Osborne Road, with access off Heath Close. We have joined with neighbours in objecting to what we all think is a cramped over-development with a potentially dangerous access point, right on the bend of Heath Close. The applicant has appealed because the Council did not decide on the application within 8 weeks. The Planning Inspector visited the site early in June and a decision is imminent. Appeal allowed by Planning Inspector who granted detailed planning permission in July 2001, subject to conditions on landscaping etc.

Brookmans Park Transmission Station, (known locally as the BBC site), Great North Road, Bell Bar, Hatfield - see our new section on this topic

The BPTS Action Committee held its second public meeting at the Diutch Nursery on 30 July. We have joined in some of their committee meetings, given them some financial assistance, obtained legal advice and written to the Health & Safety Executive asking for information on how the HSE control the developments at this site. We are also asking Welwyn Hatfield Council for a meeting to discuss how the Council is to carry out its public consultation on updating the Master Plan for this site.

At the public meeting we advised everyone of these activities. The Action Committee gave the results of its local survey which showed that many households suffer from interference from the radio stations, and the Action Committee will take this further with the Council.

About 100 local residents attended the first public meeting at the Dutch Nursery on 14 May 2001 to hear about, and discuss, the two recent planning applications for 6 more satellite dishes (up to 16m diameter) and more mobile phone antennae on the 45m lattice mast. This Society explained the background to the siting of these dishes etc on the BBC site, and the planning position. The Society also offered to obtain legal advice on how best to oppose these, and future, applications. As a result of the meeting, many residents are to object to the applications, as is this Society.

Our solicitor confirmed that the question of satellite dishes is of immense interest to Council and residents. There is at present a challenge in the High Court to a decision by Hounslow Council to approve a telecomms mast. Decisions seem to be swayed by the vociferousness of residents in their objections. Does the mast cause people to move away, or not to purchase a property. It is people's perception of harm that is important even if no harm is actually proved, that seems to count.

Regarding the satellite transmitter dishes we are advised that the 'Archbishop's Committee' has now met and decided that there is at present no apparent harm to human health. We will provide more details once they are known.

See our LGBC Notes Feb 2001 page, our appeals page, and our actions 2001 page for the latest on planning applications for mobile phone masts. It seems that opposition can succeed if there is sufficient local concern expressed about health grounds, and also about the openness of the green belt suffering (if it is in the green belt). See website

Bradmore Way, North Mymms

Although Welwyn Hatfield Council remove the fly-tipped rubbish regularly it seems that the more they clear it, the more rubbish gets tipped. The problem is the Landfill Tax imposed on commercial tipping. We have written to Herts CC asking for measures to be taken such as width restriction posts. The Parish Council have asked for similar steps to be taken.

Caravans at various stables

Swan Stables - Woodside Lane, Bell Bar - an appeal was lodged against the enforcement order for the removal of the mobile home at these stables. We wrote supporting the Council. Enforcement Order, but the order was over-ruled by the Sec of State in May 2001. The appellant persuaded the SoS that he was not storing a caravan but using it for purposes ancillary to the stable use. This did not need planning permission.

Marshmoor Stables, Marshmoor Lane, Welham Green - The appeal to retain a caravan at Bell Lane /Bulls Lane stables brought to light this caravan. To ensure equal treatment, we have elerted the Council to this unauthorised siting of a caravan. The Court has upheld the Enforcement Order - see above.

Bulls Lane stables, next to railway bridge - Same as Marshmoor Stables except no action apparent.

Bell Lane / Bulls Lane, Bell Bar stables

The owner has appealed against an Enforcement Order requiring the removal of a caravan stored (next to a large manure heap!) on the paddock on this corner site. We have written in support of this Enforcement Order. Update 11 June 2001 - appeal dismissed by Planning Inspector. This was a change of use and storage of a caravan had no connection with the use of the stables. It detracted from the openness of the countryside.

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