Ecology Surveys for Places for Everyone Allocations

Susan Sollazzi made this Freedom of Information request to Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council Automatic anti-spam measures are in place for this older request. Please let us know if a further response is expected or if you are having trouble responding.

The request was refused by Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council.

Dear Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council,

Please provide a list of ecological surveys undertaken since 2016 (showing the date of the survey) for each of the Places for Everyone Allocations, together with the associated reports received and any logs/reports that show how the data set out in the ecological reports impacted or revised the proposed Allocation. Please also provide any associated correspondence relating to consideration of these specific sites, particularly in relation to consideration of their status as Priority Habitats.

Yours faithfully,

Susan Sollazzi

Information Management Team, Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

Ref: EIR 18902

Good afternoon,

We acknowledge with thanks your application for information, which has been considered as a request under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004.

As such, this may take up to 20 working days to be processed and has been passed on to an appropriate officer.

Also please be aware that in certain circumstances an exemption may apply to the information that you have requested. This also includes the possible requirement of the statutory period to supply a response, being extended in accordance with the Act.

Should you have any queries, please contact:  [email address]

Kind regards

Information Management Team
Oldham Council
Civic Centre
West Street
Oldham  
OL1 1UL
[email address]

Please note: for satellite navigation purposes the postcode is OL1 1NL. Visiting the Civic Centre by Metrolink? The nearest stop is Oldham King Street (2-3 minutes’ walk)

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Strategic Planning and Information, Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Susan,

 

I am writing in response to your request for information on:

 1. ecological surveys undertaken since 2016 (showing the date of the
survey) for each of the Places for Everyone Allocations, together with
the associated reports received and any logs/reports that show how the
data set out in the ecological reports impacted or revised the
proposed Allocation; and
 2. any associated correspondence relating to consideration of these
specific sites, particularly in relation to consideration of their
status as Priority Habitats.

 

These are taken in turn below.

 

Regarding part 1, please see the Supporting and Background Evidence
Documents 2021, [1]Supporting Documents 2021 - Greater Manchester Combined
Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk) in particular the documents
relating to the site allocations, document references 10.01 to 10.10 and
evidence published on the examination website: [2]GMCA – Places For
Everyone Joint DPD | Helen Wilson Consultancy Limited (hwa.uk.com).

 

Regarding part 2, this part of your request is too broad and we are unable
to fully and clearly identify the specific information you have
requested.  In order for us to consider your request further, please can
you provide further details to assist us in identifying, locating and
providing you with the information that you have requested.  You could do
this by narrowing down your request, perhaps by clarifying which
organisations the correspondence would be between, and being more specific
in relation to what matters the correspondence on the specific sites would
consider.

 

If you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request, you have the
right to ask for an internal review.

 

Internal review requests should be submitted within two months of the date
of receipt of your original response and should be forwarded to:

 

Email: [3][email address]

Legal Services

OMBC, PO Box 33,

Civic Centre, West Street,

Oldham

OL1 1UL

 

Should you have any queries regarding the above, please contact Strategic
Planning at [4][email address] or on 0161 770 4105.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Liz

 

Elizabeth Dryden-Stuart

Team Leader

[5][email address]

 

Oldham Council

Civic Centre

West Street

OL1 1UH

T. 0161 770 1672

 

 

 

 

 

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Dear Strategic Planning and Information,

Thank you for your response to my FoI request dated regarding ecological surveys undertaken since 2016 for each of the Places for Everyone Allocations. I provide the following to assist you and hope you will now reply in full.

Re part 1 of the question, I did not request the PfE ecological appraisals, but rather a list detailing the survey work undertaken at these sites and the resulting reports—regardless of whether they formed part of the PfE evidence base. I would point out that Oldham Council informed Save Derker's Greenbelt at a meeting in July that the GMEU has recently visited the Beal Valley/Broadbent Moss sites, so we would like a copy of the survey reports from these visits, and any others since 2016.

Re part 2 of the question, I will limit the scope to communications between Oldham Council and the GMCA/GMEU relating to correspondence regarding the ecology/ecological appraisals for the Oldham sites in Places for Everyone.

Yours sincerely,

Susan Sollazzi

Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

Representations on the Places for Everyone Joint Development Plan Document
– Proposed Modifications Consultation need to be submitted to the Greater
Manchester Combined Authority.

Representations can be made by completing the online response form at:
[1]www.gmconsult.org.

Alternatively, please visit the GMCA website [2]Modifications - Greater
Manchester Combined Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk) for additional
ways to respond and further information.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.gmconsult.org/
2. https://www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk/...

Dear Strategic Planning and Information,

Thank you for your response to my FoI request dated regarding ecological surveys undertaken since 2016 for each of the Places for Everyone Allocations. I provide the following to assist you and hope you will now reply in full.

Re part 1 of the question, I did not request the PfE ecological appraisals, but rather a list detailing the survey work undertaken at these sites and the resulting reports – regardless of whether they formed part of the PfE evidence base. We are aware of site visits by the GMEU and others, so we would like a copy of the survey reports from these visits since 2016.

Re part 2 of the question, I will limit the scope to communications between the Local Planning Authority and the GMCA/GMEU relating to correspondence regarding the ecology/ecological appraisals for the sites within your area in Places for Everyone.

Yours sincerely,

Susan Sollazzi

Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

Representations on the Places for Everyone Joint Development Plan Document
– Proposed Modifications Consultation need to be submitted to the Greater
Manchester Combined Authority.

Representations can be made by completing the online response form at:
[1]www.gmconsult.org.

Alternatively, please visit the GMCA website [2]Modifications - Greater
Manchester Combined Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk) for additional
ways to respond and further information.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.gmconsult.org/
2. https://www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk/...

Strategic Planning and Information, Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Susan,

Thank you for your follow-up email to your request for information
regarding ecological surveys undertaken since 2016 for each of the Places
for Everyone Allocations.

A response is provided below to each of your points of clarification. 

Under the Environmental Information Regulations (2004) Oldham Council has
a duty to supply any information on request, unless there is an exception
that applies. It is our policy to only apply the exemptions where there is
a genuine belief of risk of harm or prejudice occurring. In these cases,
we will still provide information; where possible, if it is in the public
interest to do so.

        1).     Regarding part 1 of the question, I did not request the
PfE ecological appraisals, but rather a list detailing the survey work
undertaken at these sites and the resulting reports – regardless of
whether they formed part of the PfE evidence base. We are           
        aware of site visits by the GMEU and others, so we would like a
copy of the survey reports from these visits since 2016.

Oldham Council only holds and/or has access or records of ecological
appraisals, survey work and resultant reports in relation to Places to
Everyone (PfE) or those submitted as part of submitted planning
applications. The former are contained in the Supporting and Background
Evidence Documents 2021, Supporting Documents 2021 - Greater Manchester
Combined Authority  (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk)  in particular the
documents relating to the site allocations, document references 10.01 to
10.10 and evidence published on the examination website: GMCA – Places For
Everyone Joint DPD | Helen Wilson Consultancy Limited (hwa.uk.com). The
latter are publicly available via the Council’s planning application
webpages.

A list can be produced from this information.

Further information regarding this matter may be available from the
Greater Manchester Ecology Unit (GMEU).

        2).     Regarding part 2 of the question, I will limit the scope
to communications between the Local Planning Authority and the GMCA/GMEU
relating to correspondence regarding the ecology/ecological appraisals for
the sites within your area in Places for                   Everyone.

Having carefully considered the matter, Oldham Council has determined that
the request for ‘communications between the Local Planning Authority and
the GMCA/ GMEU’ is exempt under section 12(4)(e) of the Environmental
Information Regulations relating to the disclosure of internal
communications.

In coming to this conclusion, consideration has been given to what is
known as “the public interest test”. In relation to that, it is recognised
that the disclosure of the requested information promotes openness and
transparency, thereby improving the confidence of the public that they are
involved in the plan-making process. However, it is also recognised that a
public authority needs a safe space to develop ideas, debate live issues,
and reach decisions, particularly as part of the process of formulating
and developing policy. The need for public authorities to have a “thinking
space” for policy development still in the course of completion is
important and it protects the integrity of the formal decision-making
process and public consultation which follows. On balance, it is therefore
considered that the public interest in maintaining the exception outweighs
the public interest in disclosure.

If you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request, you have the
right to ask for an internal review.

Internal review requests should be submitted within two months of the date
of receipt of your original response and should be forwarded to:

Email: [email address]
Legal Services
OMBC, PO Box 33,
Civic Centre, West Street,
Oldham
OL1 1UL

If you still disagree with the decision following your appeal then you may
wish to contact the Office of the Information Commissioner:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

[1]https://ico.org.uk/make-a-complaint/
Tel: 0303 123 1113

Should you have any queries, please contact Strategic Planning and
Information at [email address] or on 0161 770 4105.

Yours sincerely,

Elizabeth

Elizabeth Dryden-Stuart
Team Leader
[email address]

Oldham Council
Civic Centre
West Street
OL1 1UH
T. 0161 770 1672

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