Development Management - Proposed Submission

Ended on the 29 April 2011

Section 6 - Environmental Management

Policy DM15 – Environmental Protection

6.1 The Borough Council seeks to ensure that no development will give rise to any unacceptable pollution and land instability risks that could impact on human health, property and the wider environment. The Borough Council will ensure that consideration will be given to adopting environmental best practice measures in all cases.


6.2 Development in the Borough will inevitably be on previously developed land, including industrial and other sites that may be affected by contamination. Contaminated land can potentially have health implications and also detrimentally impact upon the natural environment and water quality. Reusing this land provides the opportunity to deal with contamination so that threats posed to health and the environment may be tackled. It is important that any land that is known or suspected of being contaminated is dealt with before development occurs.

6.3 It is necessary that when development is proposed on or near a site that is known to be, or there is good reason to believe may be, contaminated that the developer carries out a site assessment to establish the nature and extent of contamination. The assessment of land affected by contamination is a complex subject and as such it is intended that each site will be judged separately and on its merits and taking into account guidance set out within ‘Land affected by Contamination – Technical Guidance for Applicants and Developers, Second Edition’ (December 2007). This document provides an informative guide to developers, advising them how to deal with land contamination and to inform them of what information is required with a planning application submission for the development of land that could potentially be contaminated. The guidance within this document does not replace the DEFRA & the Environment Agency’s Model Procedures for the Management of Land Contamination (CLR11) and PPS23. The Borough Council considers it essential that a Contaminated Land Assessment be carried out by or under the direction of a suitably qualified competent person and in accordance with BS10175 (2001) Code of Practice for the Investigation of Potentially Contaminated Sites.

Land Instability

6.4 The Borough Council will ensure that no development will be at risk from land instability or increase this risk to the site or other areas.

6.5 The Thames Estuary frontage of the Borough is backed by cliffs from the western boundary to Marine Parade in the east. The cliffs are often steeper than the natural stable gradient for the material(s) of which they are composed. As such there has been an on-going history of movement of the cliffs ranging from small scale slumping to major rotational and transitional movements, such as that seen below the Southend Bandstand in 2002. The cliffs, if not maintained, over a significant period of time, would naturally degrade to a stable profile which would continue to slump and move northwards. However, such a situation does not accord with the built environment of the Borough and measures would need to be introduced to prevent and or reduce the movement or accommodate it. Before any significant works are to be undertaken it will be essential to monitor existing movement to identify the nature and extent of the problems that the cliffs present.

6.6 It is important to ensure that the full implications of building on unstable land are taken into account at an early stage in the development process. The stability of the ground so far as it affects land use is a material consideration that will be taken into account when deciding a planning application. All appropriate mitigation measures will need to be agreed with the appropriate authorities prior to a planning application submission.

Policy DM15 – Environmental Protection
  1. Development on or near land that is known to be contaminated or which may be affected by contamination will only be permitted where:
  1. An appropriate Contaminated Land Assessment has been carried out as part of the application to identify any risks to human health, the natural environment or water quality; and
  2. Where contamination is found which would pose an unacceptable risk to people’s health, the natural environment or water quality, the Council will impose a condition to ensure the applicant undertake appropriate remedial measures to ensure that the site is suitable for the proposed use and that the development can safely proceed.
  3. Remediation works will be carried out before the occupation of any new development.
  1. Planning applications for development in areas where the Council may suspect land instability are required to include an assessment of land stability that analyses the issues relevant to ground instability and indicates how they would be overcome. Development that is at risk from land instability or is likely to increase this risk to the site or surrounding areas will be not acceptable. Development will only be considered acceptable where:
  1. It has been demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Council that the development of unstable or potentially unstable land will be constructed and used safely without adding to the instability of site and surrounding land; and
  2. It can be demonstrated that mitigation measures to stabilise land are environmentally acceptable and will not adversely impact upon neighbouring uses.
Core Strategy Linkage:  
Objectives Policies
Strategic Objective 12 Policy KP2: Development Principles
Strategic Objective 14 Policy CP4: The Environment and Urban Renaissance
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