New and Current Projects:
Upon receipt of instructions to proceed with this phased project, we met with our Clients to establish their design brief in detail.
We took photographs and conducted a selective Measured Survey, including a few spot ground levels
Although plans for the property and a separate, recently approved scheme drawn up by others are available for general reference, we cannot rely upon their accuracy and, indeed, we have found them to include some fundamental errors. Hence, the need to check all relevant principal dimensions ourselves!
We prepared Survey Drawings showing the existing views of the Garage and the Reception Wing.
The Ecologist who prepared a Bat Survey Report for the previous scheme by others supplied an Addendum in relation to Phase 1.
A Planning Application was submitted to Pembrokeshire County Council and Planning Permission was received without difficulty.
Now we're preparing a Building Notice Application for Phase 1 for submission soon.
Following meetings with our Clients, we've begun considering a design concept and met with the Ecologist on site for further discussions. In light of the time elapsed since the original bat survey, it looks like a further limited bat survey will be required to accompany a planning submission for Phase 2.
Our Clients wish to seek Pembrokeshire County Council Outline Planning Permission to allow them to place this plot on the market.
Our Clients accepted that a Pre-Application Planning Enquiry would be a wise first step.
Upon instructions to proceed we appointed a Land Surveyor to conduct a Topographic Site Survey.
Having obtained DCWW Sewer and Water Plans and summising that there may be difficulties in connecting to the main sewer, we submitted a Pre-Planning Application to DCWW in early July and we received a detailed written appraisal that is generally favourable, subject to further onsite investigations.
It has been determined that the access track is a recognised Public Right of Way.
We prepared an Existing Site Plan based upon the Topographic Survey, plus a Proposed Site Plan.
We attended a strategy meeting with our Clients, at which we agreed upon going ahead with the preparation and submission of a Pre-Application Planning Enquiry to Pembrokeshire CC and a written appraisal has been received.
An LDP policy conflict was identified, meaning that an open market dwelling will not be supported, but there is an opportunity for providing an affordable dwelling in accordance with the strict LDP policies and Supplementary Guidance.
However, our Clients are interested in the potential of submission of their plot as a Candidate Site under the initiation of the next LDP. Pembrokeshire CC Development Management have invited the submission of Additional Candidate Sites, the original window of submission having closed in 2018. But the Candidate Sites rules deem the minimum site area for an affordable homes development is 0.15 hectare, so at only 0.03 hectare this site is too small to qualify for affordable homes - something that the Pre-App Advice failed to notify.
We are now aware that an adjoining piece of land has already been submitted as a Candidate Site, so this could bouy our Clients' hopes. Should our Clients' site and the one adjacent be accepted under this regime, the settlement boundary would be realigned to include them.
We prepared and delivered an Additional Candidate Site Submission to the LDP Team at County Hall and we await receipt of a formal acknowledgement.
Upon receipt of emailed instructions to proceed on the project, we ordered Location and Block Plans from an online O.S. Map Agent and our regular Land Surveyor carried out a basic GPS Topographic Site Survey.
In advance of the survey, we sketched up an outline design for our Clients' perusal and, following discussion of the geometry of the roof, we completed formal drawings and submitted a planning application to the PCNPA before Christmas.
The application was validated and registered after a delay due to the festive holiday. A status report from the Planning Officer provided a positive response and Planning Permission has now been confirmed.
Upon receipt of further instructiomns from our Clients, we shall prepare a Building Notice Application for submission to PCC Building Control.
Our regular Structural Engineer has quoted for the evaluation of ground conditions, once trial holes have been dug but, due to the persistent wet conditions, this task will be undertaken later on toward determination of a suitable foundation design. He will also be asked for a fee quotation for structural calculations for elements of the build.
Projects under construction or pending:
Having resolved a workable scheme design, Planning Permission was received from Pembrokeshire County Council at least three weeks early!
We submitted a Building Notice Application to PCC Building Control, combined with the Garage project (see below), which was accepted and registered.
An accreditted Energy Performance Assessor was appointed to provide a SAP Report, which indicated that no mitigating works are necessary on the existing house. The report was submitted to Building Control and our regular Structural Engineer supplied structural design information.
However, some three months after submission, Building Control raised some concerns, upon which we received clarification that further information was required to verify wall stability, given the length of the structure.
A foundation scheme design has been received from a new Structural Engineer, which has been approved by Building Control.
Our Clients appointed a ground worker and a local builder and our Clients are in charge of project management.
A second project for our Clients near Rosemarket.
We carried out a feasibility study to determine whether a detached double garage might work satisfactorily in the chosen location and we conducted further surveying to enable us to create a new Existing Site Plan.
Following discussions on the most efficient layout, we agreed a satisfactory scheme, completed formal drawings and submitted a Planning Application, which was approved surprisingly early - just two days after the end of the consultation period!
We submitted a Building Notice Application to PCC Building Control to cover this project and the proposed Garden Room extension (above), which was accepted and registered.
A design for a raft foundation was supplied by a Structural Engineer, but the Building Control Officer did not feel that a raft foundation was necessary and the build began with shallow, conventional concrete strip foundations and floor slab. Work continues to progress slowly.
Having carried out a Measured Survey, including critical levels around the cottage, we determined that the external concrete paths are significantly higher than the inside ground floor level, partially explaining severe damp problems.
A Full Bat Survey was undertaken by our regular Ecologist, with two dusk emergence observations that showed bats leaving roosting sites in outbuildings and from the house roof near the chimney stack. The Ecologist provided her Report with mitigation recommendations prior to an application being made to Natural Resources Wales for a Development Licence.
A Planning Application was submitted to PCNPA that was validated without difficulty and Conditional Planning Permission was received requiring a photographic record of the existing house for deposit with Dyfed Archaeology (although it is not a listed building), plus confirmation of the final specification for the proposed green roofs to the outbuildings.
Given the existing unauthodox drainage arrangement at this location, our Clients have sought professional advice as to appropriate improvements, as is the case with their neighbours.
An air source heat pump was included on the Planning Drawings and a separate planning application will be considered at a later date in respect of PV solar panels on the south-facing front roof slope.
An Energy Performance Assessment has been received from our regular accredited Energy Assessor, which will be included with a Building Regulations Application in due course.
We've requested a fee quotation from our regular Structural Engineer for essential structural design details for steelwork, etc.
We have submitted an Application for Discharge of a Condition to PCNPA in respect of the necessary photographic record for deposit with Dyfed Archaeology, which has been formally acknowledged, though an eight week decision period has been notified (just for a few photographs and a Key Plan to be assessed!). We would hope to see an early approval of this of course!
Following a selective Measured Survey, aided by some previous plans, we created Survey Drawings.
We appointed our regular Ecologist to conduct a Bat Scoping Survey at an early stage and she confirmed that a Full Bat Survey would NOT be necessary for this project.
A Planning Application was approved by Pembrokeshire CC and copies of the project drawings were issued to builders for quoting.
As the gross area of external openings in the extension will greatly exceed 25% of its floor area, we appointed our regular accreditted Energy Assessor to provide SAP Calculations to satisfy Building Control. The Assessment shows that no additional mitigation measures are necessary in the existing house.
A Building Notice Application has been submitted to Building Control and duly acknowledged and we've asked our regular Structural Engineer for design details for a structural ridge beam and its end bearing supports.
Upon receipt of a written response from Pembrokeshire County Council to a self-submitted Pre-Application Planning Enquiry, our Clients instructed us to proceed with their project to seek formal planning consent for converting this agricultural storage building into two habitable units.
Our regular Ecologist conducted a Full Bat Survey, with dusk and dawn observations and produced her Draft Bat Survey Report.
Having conducted a Measured Survey of the building, we prepared a set of Survey Drawings to record the details of the building and site layout.
We met with our Clients to discuss the interior layout design concept in detail and resolved a workable scheme, followed by preparing formal planning drawings with which our Clients were delighted. We also agreed an external lighting scheme with our Clients, aided by advice from our Ecologist.
Having finalised a Design & Access Statement and received our Ecologist's Final Bat Survey Report, we submitted a Planning Application to Pembrokeshire County Council, also including a Structural Report. Upon expiry of the consultation period we requested a status report from the Planning Officer, who expressed concerns at a late stage that the scheme did not fit well with the policies of the PCC LDP and, after discussions with us, our Clients agreed it would be wise to withdraw the current Planning Application.
We believe there may be an opportunity for planning success but, in terms of the policies of the LDP. We have discussed the project with a local planning consultant toward resolving a reconfigured approach and our Clients have asked him to visit the site. Prior to attempting an application re-submission (within twelve months for a 'free go'), we shall seek an opinion from the Planning Officer and attempt to set up a meeting with her.
Following granting of Planning Permission and the start of building works, we were been asked to help with co-ordinating Planning, Building Regulations and Ecological matters, due to the project having been handled poorly by the previous agent.
The scheme design did not properly respect the structural requirements or the ecological recommendations for the proposals and, although a Full Plans Building Regulations Application had been submitted, copies of the approved drawings had not been issued to the Client's chosen builder and no structural engineer had been appointed.
As we are already working on other proposals at the property, we accepted the responsibility of liaising with the Project Ecologist, a Structural Engineer and the builder, on behalf of the Client.
Building Control helped us with accessing the drawings and we brought our regular Engineer in to resolve structural design requirements and we met on site to resolve demolition and construction methodology.
An amended Bat Development Licence has been approved by Natural Resources Wales.
The build is now progressing successfully, toward watertight stage.
A slow start to the year, probably for obvious political reasons !
Sorry, but we cannot accept commissions for commercial projects.
Enjoy your visit!
For further information on Planning matters outside the National Park.
Pembrokeshire County Council
For further information on Planning matters in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
For further information on Building Regulations matters across Pembrokshire.
Pembrokeshire County Council
For general information on Planning Policy across Wales, including Technical Advice Notes and Supplementary Planning Guidance from the
Welsh Assembly Government
For general information on Planning and Building Regulations matters in Wales.
Planning Portal - Wales
For inforrnation on applications for building over or near any drain designated as a Public Sewer.