Object to the Shipyard Application before it is too late.

The battle over the innovation-come-restaurant-come-unclear use building is still being fought. The building has been refused twice at committee stage, but with a slight change to the windows, a fourth incarnation of this building is winding its way through the planning system.

I have read the comment on Facebook and I am heartened to see so many comments that are supporting refusal. However, by commenting on Facebook will not stop this application from being approved. As people need to let planners and councillors on the planning committee this proposal is not wanted.

For this application to stand a chance of being refused, please take the 5 or 10 minutes to make you comment via the planning system by either online, email or in good old-fashioned letter form. Not just post on Facebook and think you have done your part. Ironically, it probably took longer to post on FB than it would via the official means. You could even cut and paste your comments from FB into an email etc.

The online way is via HERE or email planning@cornwall.gov.uk using the planning reference number in the header – PA18/06813

I have seen a few comments to ask how to object on planning terms. These three simple reasons are valid for any objection:

  • The proposed development is not in harmony in terms of shape, scale, massing, bulk and proportions with the existing character and appearance of the area;
  • The proposed development does not protect or enhance the character and appearance of the area;
  • The proposed design does not respond positively to the Porthleven Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Strategy.

These points have formed the strong reasons for refusal(s) at the committee.

I ask you what would you prefer, take 5-10 minutes to make your objection known or having to look at the building for the next 50 plus years and wish it was never there. Once it is there, you cannot undo it. I know what I would rather do than see something that will result in harm to our much-loved Porthleven.

For a more in-depth objection you could use these reasons as follows:

The proposed development would, due to its scale, bulk and form, result in an imposing building which would fail to preserve and enhance the character and appearance of the Conservation Area and wider appreciation of Porthleven within the AONB landscape and harm the setting and appearance of non-designated heritage assets namely St Bartholomew Church and the stone boundary wall fronting Methleigh Bottoms.

The less than substantial harm identified would outweigh the benefits of the proposal and the development would be contrary to the aims of Policies 1, 2, 12, 23 and 24 of the Cornwall Local Plan Strategic Policies 2010-2030, paragraphs 7, 14, 17, 56, 57, 58,115, 126, 127, 131 and 135 of the National Planning Policy Framework 2012, guidance within the Porthleven Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Strategy and Cornwall AONB Management Plan 2016-2021 and Section 72 of the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Area) Act 1990.

(Of course for those supporting this application are able to give supporting comments too).

Porthleven Shipyard building turned down for the second time.

For the last two-years Trevor Osborne has tried to build in the Porthleven Shipyard. The first application to be submitted, was rightly refused by the West Planning Committee last October for a variety of reasons.

Fast forward six-plus-months and the latest incarnation of the building was on the agenda for a decision at the same Committee. The footprint of the building is smaller, as is the bulk. The entrance that was proposed along Methleigh Bottoms has also been removed.

However, the same fundamental reasons the town council and myself have objected to is:

  • The proposed development is not in harmony in terms of shape, scale, massing, bulk and proportions with the existing character and appearance of the area;
  • The proposed development does not protect or enhance the character and appearance of the area;
  • The proposed design does not respond positively to the Porthleven
    Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Strategy.

A further point is the buildings use. Whilst the aim is for some sort of innovation hub, details are not clear of the functions of such a building, especially when many hubs have to diversify to make them financially viable.

To be clear myself or the Town Council are not anti-development. But any development has to be more beneficial to a community than harmful. On balance, this buildings is more the latter.

After a robust debate, two councillors (Councillors Graham Coad and Mike Thomas) proposed approval. However, all was not lost, and a series of Councillors spoke against the applications.

A vote was taken for approval, but it was lost 7-8. Therefore, the motion for approval was lost. The next motion was for refusal put forward by Cllr Joyce Duffin. This motion was carried by 8-7. Which means the application was refused.

The applicant has the right of appeal, but this has to be done within six-months of the decision notice. The previous decision from October has passed the the six-months window, and therefore, my understanding is this application cannot be appealed.

Porthleven Cemetery and its current condition

There is a lot of concern and heartache over the state of Porthleven Cemetery, especially around the issue of it being overgrown and the gravesides looking unkept. I share those concerns as this is not good enough.

In response to those concerns, I have written to the Head of Service to highlight how people feel. Yes, many people who are buried there as long dead, but families who are still in the area (or further afield) expect a certain level of dignity for their departed relatives. More so with recently bereaved families.

I have had a response from the Head of Service who has assured me the area will be cut early next week as a priority. I was also informed this area was cut four-weeks ago. Though from looking at the length of grass, this has grown very quickly!

In days gone by, there was someone who maintained this area, but this hasn’t happen for over a decade – if not longer. Cornwall Council has assured me this area is cut three times a year. Yes, that might not be frequent enough and have asked for more cuts to take place, but I have also asked if Cornwall Council would allow community cuts to take place. This is where a group of volunteers help keep this area more tidy. This is not ideal, but might help solve some of the heartache families are feeling.

There was a group called Pride in Porthleven, but this was superseded by the Porthleven Environmental Group. I will be asking this group to see if they will be willing to take on this project.

Porthleven TC wants to hear your views on parking in Porthleven

Parking especially on-street parking is a problem in Porthleven. There is no one reason for the issues, but the causes include Porthleven wasn’t designed with the motorcar in mind, More car ownership, Porthleven is a popular destination for visitors and people’s bad and inconsiderate parking.

There is no magic bullet to solve all of the issues; and in some cases there will be no solution. However, Porthleven TC is holding a drop in session at the public hall on the 30th June between 10am and 5:30pm. This is so views can be given on where the problems are – yes many are well known – and ideas to solve those problems.

After the session, the Town Council will talk to Cornwall Council about which ideas are possible and can be taken forward.

Hopefully, as many of you will be able to come.

Council Election for two positions on Porthleven Town Council

There will be a Election for two position on Porthleven Town Council. The date of the election is Thursday 19th July.

More details can be found below.

If there are two or less candidates, then there will be no polling day, as those nominated persons will be elected unopposed. If three or more, there will be a poll and the two with the most votes will be elected.

Good luck to all.

Coronation Park transferred to South Kerrier Alliance

The official transfer of Helston’s Coronation Park to South Kerrier Alliance (SKA) has finally happened. I started this project near five-years ago when I felt this area would be better if it was run and managed more locally. It has been a bumpy road, but one that has been worth it.

SKA will take on a 99-year lease of the park from Cornwall Council with the Council contributing £109,000 towards capital works improvements.

This is not the only money has received as the SKA is also be supported by funding from the Helston Downsland Charity and grant monies of £81,447 from West Cornwall Local Action Group through the LEADER programme. With additional money pledged directly by SKA, this will create a £300,000 investment fund for the Park.

 

This £300,000 will be spent on improving the boating lake, paths, play park and general repairs as well as making a significant contribution towards a new skate park. Additional funds will be needed to fully replace the Park’s skate equipment but the SKA team is confident that with help from the community a new skate park could be up and running before the end of 2018.

The Gang who have all made it possible – Maxine Hardy (Cornwall Council), Me, Vicki Mathews (SKA) Tim Grattan-Kane (Downsland Trust), David Turnball (SKA) and Julian Rand (WLAG Leader).

I am very happy SKA will be running this site from now on. They have some exciting plans for this area that will make this area the jewel is deserves to be. We all know the areas is in need of refurbishment and with the SKA in control, there are more funding opportunities open to them than if it was a Cornwall Council asset.

I have to finish by saying thank you to everyone who has made this happen. It has been a long road from start to finish, but I am glad we are finally here with the official hand-over to SKA.

Public Meeting with Derek Thomas MP

On Saturday, the Derek Thomas MP held a public meeting at Out of the Blue. I was invited as Mayor and Cornwall Councillor.

This was an open meeting with any subject up for grabs. However, the vast majority of the meetings was about parking and traffic in Porthleven. To be clear, there is no silver bullet that will solve all the issues or meet with everyone’s expectation. But some sort of solution needs to be found. And any solution will not happen overnight either.

Any solution has to be holistic; as there is no point in just addressing one or two streets as this just pushes the problem onto another street. Furthermore, it is no good just putting yellow lines down without proper enforcement. As people will soon ignore any restriction like they currently do.

Finally no amount of lines will address people’s inconsiderate attitude of ‘who cares where I park’. In truth many of Porthleven’s parking and traffic problems will be solved by people being more considerate and actually thinking of where and how they park, rather than abandoning their car like they are a get-away-driver.

Moving this issue(s) forward, I will be organising along with my fellow Town Councillors a drop in session at the Public Hall where people can give their views on what they would like to be done, including adding/removal of yellow lines, other parking restrictions and looking into the cost of employing a dedicated parking enforcement officer to name but a few areas. This meeting will take place before the 1st week of July subject to room availability.

From this the views will be collated and the town council will invite officers from Cornwall Council’s Highway Dept to see which options can be taken forward and included in a Traffic Regulation Order.

I would like to thank Derek for his time on Saturday as he has offered all the help he can do in solving these issues. Thanks also to my fellow town Councillors for attending (and the mountain of work this will entail) and for the 25 or so residents who took the time to attend this meeting.

Details on this meeting including the location will be published once they are finalised.

Ducks take to the water in the annual Porthleven Duck Race

The Porthleven Duck Race now in its 4th year is firmly in the calendar of events that takes place in Porthleven. The aim is to have lots of fun seeing homemade ducks take to the water in both children and adult races and raise a little money for a worthy cause.

It starts a week before the race where people come to the public hall to make their ducks. There is one rule, the duck has to be homemade. The rest is up to a persons imagination and artistic skill.

From construction it is off to the races the following week.

Not only are there prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the children’s and adults races, but for the best dressed duck. The latter is always hard as being Mayor too, you have to pick one out of so many!

As a reward for this, and by tradition, the Mayor gets their own personal duck to race. A highlight in your term of office.

This year’s charity for the event was Cornwall Air Ambulance. The event is free to enter, but people can also buy a little plastic duck for the charity race as well as bid in an auction for a couple of specially made ducks for the event. This year a whopping £220 was raised for the Air Ambulance.

Well done to all who took part. Huge thanks to the Porthleven Community Group for organising this event.

Parking enforcement set to be introduced by Harbour and Dock on land behind Commercial Rd and land near the Moors

A letter has been sent to the Town Council informing of a private enforcement company being employed to enforce certain areas in Porthleven.

The land in question is the area between Costcutters and the Moors; and the land behind Commercial Rd.

As follows:

A landowner is well with their rights to take action on land they own or is in their control. However, both areas have some interesting points to them.

Firstly, the land behind Commercial Rd is not wholly in the ownership of H&D; as St Austell Brewery own parts (as I have seen these documents) and therefore, enforcing on land not within your control is not possible unless permission has been granted.

The other land in question is owned by H&D, but restricting use brings in the issue of fishermen having rights to use this land ‘for the drying of nets’ etc. and storage which I believe includes boats.

I am sure there will be some interesting dialogue in the next week or so on both practical and legal points of enforcement.

As it say’s in the letter, I am making people aware.

And I am sure it is a typo where it says ‘Penalties for Authorised Parking’. Or I hope it is…

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