Phase 2 of S.278 ‘Highway Works at Brislands Lane…’, Four Marks

Hampshire County Council did not have the information requested.

Stephen Whiteside

Dear Hampshire County Council,

Previous EIR request to HCC [Your Ref: EIR 12031]

My request of 3 March 2017, ‘Medstead Farm, Four Marks - Authority's provision of emergency fire access from Brislands Lane.’, was for “copies of any DETAILS submitted and approved pursuant to Schedule 2 [1.1] of the s.278 Agreement “. The Council’s response was to send me [only] a copy of drawing FMW0125-SPA08.

On 24 May 2017 however, HCC’s Economy, Transport and Environment Department ‘DMT Support Team’ confirmed that in fact, drawing FMW0125-SPA08 had been “..submitted … on 12th January 2012 for consideration by the Highway Authority at the outline planning stage. This drawing was not, therefore, submitted pursuant to Schedule 2 [1.1] of the s.278 Agreement dated 20 January 2014.” The Team further confirmed “…no further information relevant to the issue you raise was received either before, on or since 3rd March 2017.”

It was clear then that at that time, NO relevant details had been submitted. Full details of that earlier request can be found at the following address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

The Herald [16 November 2017] - ‘Road repair delays still dragging on’

I now note that the above report includes the following quote from your executive member for environment and transport, Rob Humby:
”The works associated with the Medstead Farm scheme are being delivered in two phases. The first phase was completed in 2014 and the second phase, which includes the verge and carriageway reinstatement works, and minor junction alterations, is due to be carried out in the near future. …
… these works need to be coordinated with work being carried out by SSEN to put in electricity cables for the new development …”

A Persimmon Homes South Coast spokesman adds that: “Persimmon Homes remains committed to completing highway improvements in Brislands Lane.… We have reached agreement with Hampshire County Council as to the final extent of the works and our contractor is in the process of booking road space to enable the works to be undertaken. …”

Presumably then, ALL the relevant details have now been submitted AND agreed in writing, as required by Schedule 2 [1.1] of the S.278 Agreement.

Information requested

Please provide copies of all information regarding the agreement now reached with the Developer as to the ‘final’ extent of the highway improvements in Brislands Lane. This should include, but not be restricted to the following:
--- the DETAILED contract drawings required by Schedule 2 [1.1] of the s.278 Agreement for Phase 2 of the Works and the “… creation of an emergency access… on Brislands Lane … as shown in principle on Drawing 212433/118 dated October 2013.”, and
--- record of any consultation/negotiation regarding the above, including that with East Hampshire District Council, the fire service, Building Regulations, SSEN, local councillors and/or the Developer [or Developer’s Approved Inspector, Premier Guarantee Surveyors].

Yours faithfully,

Stephen Whiteside

ETE DMT Support, Hampshire County Council

Dear Mr Whiteside,

 

Thank you for your request dated 4 December 2017 in which you are seeking
the following information:

 

Brislands Lane

Please provide copies of all information regarding the agreement now
reached with the Developer as to the ‘final’ extent of the highway
improvements in Brislands Lane.  This should include, but not be
restricted to the following:

---· the DETAILED contract drawings required by Schedule 2 [1.1] of the
s.278 Agreement for Phase 2 of the Works and the “… creation of an
emergency access… on Brislands Lane … as shown in principle on Drawing
212433/118 dated October 2013.”, and ---· record of any
consultation/negotiation regarding the above, including that with East
Hampshire District Council, the fire service, Building Regulations, SSEN,
local councillors and/or the Developer [or Developer’s Approved Inspector,
Premier Guarantee Surveyors].

 

Your request is now being considered and we endeavour to respond to your
request as soon as possible or at least within 20 working days.

 

If you have any queries about this request do not hesitate to contact me.
Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future
communications.

 

Yours sincerely

 

DMT Support Team

 

 

Environment FOI, Hampshire County Council

3 Attachments

Dear Mr Whiteside,

 

Please find attached our response to your recent request for information.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Marie MacBrayne

Business Support Officer

DMT Support

Economy, Transport and Environment Department

EII Court West 1^st floor

Winchester

SO23 8UD

 

Copyright Hampshire County Council 2004 [1]Disclaimer    [2]Privacy
Statement

 

 

 

References

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2. http://www3.hants.gov.uk/privacy

Stephen Whiteside

Dear Hampshire County Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Hampshire County Council's handling of my FOI request 'Phase 2 of S.278 ‘Highway Works at Brislands Lane…’, Four Marks'.

You have provided copies of the “… two (all) items of information …” that you consider relevant to my request.
+++ A ‘marked up’ copy [of an amended form] of drawing 212433/110 Rev D [originally dated October 2013]. ‘Properties’ show that the document was created in April 2017.
+++ Correspondence [2 emails] from May 2017 between the Developer [Karl Endersby, Technical Director] and the Council [David O’Shea/Gemma McCart], the subject of which is restricted to the re-surfacing of the carriageway to Brislands Lane.

Your disclosure is accompanied by the following statements:
+++ “… neither the submission of the plan nor the acceptance of the proposal have been submitted or processed pursuant to Schedule 2 1 [1.1] of the s278 agreement. The approval is already in place and these items simply confirm the scope of works and document minor amendments previously agreed on site. …”, and
+++ "… all contract drawings submitted to meet the requirements of the Schedule, and the Council’s subsequent approval, were previously supplied to you on 10 May 2017 (Ref EIR 12163). It is unclear, therefore, how you reach the conclusion that “NO relevant details have been submitted”. …”

BY WAY OF CLARIFICATION …

My request “Medstead Farm, Four Marks - Authority's provision of emergency fire access from Brislands Lane” - [Your Ref: EIR 12031]

+++ By my email of 6 March 2017, I requested “…copies of any DETAILS submitted and approved pursuant to Schedule 2 [1.1] of the s.278 Agreement, …”
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

+++ By your letter of 24 May 2017, YOU [i.e. the ‘DMT Support Team’] confirmed “… that no … information relevant to the issue … was received either before, on or since 3rd March 2017. …”
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/3...

SO … I reached the conclusion that “NO relevant details have been submitted”, BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT YOU TOLD ME, at that time!

My request “Brislands Lane, Four Marks. - Combined Design Check Report [25 October 2013]” – [Your Ref: EIR 12163]

+++ The drawings supplied on 10 May 2017 (Ref EIR 12163) were IN FACT those ‘… considered
by the Council when undertaking the Design Check and issuing ‘technical approval’ to these S278 Works in October 2013.”, or at least that’s what I had requested. These drawings were clearly NOT submitted PURSUANT TO Schedule 2 [1.1] of the s.278 Agreement, which would only be signed 3 months later. For the Council to suggest this is ridiculous!

In the event, ONLY THREE of the drawings provided on 10 May 2017, are included within the SUBSEQUENT s278 Agreement [20 January 2014]:
212433/114 Rev D - Section 278 Works Highway Construction Details
212433/117 - Phase 1 Section 278 Works
212433/118 - Phase 2 Section 278 Works

The Agreement makes clear that these drawings are agreed only ‘IN PRINCIPLE’.
+++ According to the Schedule 1 of the Agreement, Phase 2 of the s278 Works SHOULD “… comprise the provision of … an emergency access/pedestrian/cycle access on Brislands Lane … as shown in principle on Drawing 212433/118 dated October 2013.”
+++ According to Schedule 2 [1.1] “The Works shall not be commenced until … Detailed contract drawings and traffic management measures have been prepared by the Developer and approved by the County Council in writing. …”

Provision of Emergency Access from Brislands Lane - Published correspondence

+++ Between February and Novemeber 2016, the Developer [Karl Endersby] was in correspondence with the Council [David O’Shea/Gemma McCart] with regard to the implementation of Phase 2 of the s278 Works, including the introduction of ‘removable pedestrian barriers’.
[NOTE: There is NO MENTION of emergency access requirements in this correspondence]

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/3...

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/3...

+++ In January 2017, the Developer [David Buczynskyj, Development Planner] confirmed to EHDC [Nick Upton] their intention to construct a “3.0 width of surfacing … for a fire appliance to access the site should it ever be required, otherwise the access is purely for pedestrians and cycles ….”

https://planningpublicaccess.easthants.g...

+++ In August 2017, Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service [Sailesh Parmar] advised EHDC [Nick Upton] that the proposed surfacing should be “… able to take the weight of the fire appliance (12.5 tonnes)” and that “This emergency path should be kept clear for emergency access at all times. …”

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/4...

INFORMATION THAT I BELIEVE SHOULD BE AVAILABLE [and now be PROVIDED].

+++ Record of consultation with Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service [HFRS] regarding their requirements, including the type of appliance that should be catered for,
+++ Updated tracking drawing[s], showing the extent of ‘hardstanding’ required to provide safe, fire vehicle access,
+++ Construction details showing that the ‘hardstanding’ is able to safely take the weight of an appliance of [at least] 12.5 tonnes.
+++ Details of how vehicular access will be appropriately restricted to emergency vehicles only,
+++ Details of measures to keep the access TO the site CLEAR AT ALL TIMES.
+++ The Council’s WRITTEN APPROVAL, referencing specific, detailed drawings including [but not restricted to] the matters listed above.

+++ Details of coordination with the “… work being carried out by SSEN to put in electricity cables for the new development …” as per the update from Cllr Rob Humby, reported in The Herald of 16 November 2017.

I have been informed by the ‘building consultation team’ at HFRS, that where Building Regulations guidance relevant to fire vehicle access [Approved Document B5] is not achieved, the Service [as fire safety enforcing authority] would likely advise a building control body that additional measures should be put in place. Otherwise [or in addition], they would advise that occupiers should “inform their insurance company that the fire service may have a delayed response in fighting the fire or carrying out a rescue due to the departure [from] the Building Regulation - B5 guidance.”

Currently, with regard to emergency fire access, those resident on this large development appear totally reliant on routes through the adjoining estate, which are understood to be a recognised ‘risk’ due to the amount of on-street parking.

Surely, it is now time that the Council clearly demonstrate, that they DO intend to ensure a safe, reliable and [Building Regulations] compliant emergency fire access from Brislands Lane, at least UP TO the Site boundary, as required by the relevant planning permissions and set out in the s278. In the alternative, they should confirm that they do NOT intend to provide this particular safety facility and provide a full explanation of why that is.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p...

Yours faithfully,

Stephen Whiteside

Freedom of Information, Hampshire County Council

Dear Mr Whiteside,

I can confirm receipt of your email requesting an Internal Review into the recent response to your Environmental Information Regulations request (ref 13194).

This review will be undertaken within this team and I will endeavour to provide you with a response within 20 working days.

Yours sincerely,

Jenny

Jenny Holden-Warren

Senior Information Governance Officer
Corporate Services - Governance
Hampshire County Council
The Castle
Winchester
Hampshire
SO23 8UJ
Tel 01962 667958
www.hants.gov.uk
This email, and any attachments, is strictly confidential and may be legally privileged.  It is intended only for the addressee. If you are not the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution or other use of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this message in error, please contact the sender. Any request for disclosure of this document under the Data Protection Act 1998 or Freedom of Information Act 2000 should be referred to the sender.

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Freedom of Information, Hampshire County Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Whiteside,

 

Please find attached the response to your recent Internal Review. Please
accept my apologies for the delay in providing you with this response.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Jenny

 

Jenny Holden-Warren

 

Senior Information Governance Officer

Corporate Services - Governance
Hampshire County Council
The Castle
Winchester
Hampshire
SO23 8UJ

Tel 01962 667958

[1]www.hants.gov.uk

This email, and any attachments, is strictly confidential and may be
legally privileged.  It is intended only for the addressee. If you are not
the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution or other use
of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this
message in error, please contact the sender. Any request for disclosure of
this document under the Data Protection Act 1998 or Freedom of Information
Act 2000 should be referred to the sender.

 

References

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Stephen Whiteside left an annotation ()

In its letter of 6 February 2018, HCC indicates that I have received all the information it holds regarding this matter and thereby confirm that NO DETAILED INFORMATION has been submitted [or approved by them in writing] regarding the CONSTRUCTION of the emergency access to the site from Brislands Lane. Instead, HCC are apparently relying solely on the ‘in principle’ drawing 212433/118, which was given “technical approval” as part of the authority’s ‘Combined Design Check Report’ on 25 October 2013, almost 3 months PRIOR [rather than pursuant] to the signing of the S278 Agreement.

The letter claims that “… the information supplied by the developer (including information provided at the planning stage, such as the tracking drawing) was deemed sufficient to allow the authority’s engineers to assess the scheme. …”. Drawing 1311-PS-01 Rev E, which was provided and approved as part of the ‘reserved matters’ planning application [52501/002], shows fire engine tracking along the length of the alternative emergency access from Brislands Lane. The drawing illustrates how fire appliances would NOT be able to access the Site unhindered, without additional hardstanding to each side of the 3m ‘bitmac’ path.

The ‘swept path’ indicates that the WHEELS of a fire appliance would likely deviate from the 3m path (which is both inclined and curving in nature), or at least travel very close or onto its unsubstantial and inappropriate edgings. Meanwhile, the ‘swept path’ of the BODY of a fire appliance would encroach on fencing, banked mud and/or planting to the sides of that path, in particular at its junction with Brislands Lane and as it joins the main estate road at Maple Place, where it appears to ‘sweep’ across/onto private land’.

Such information that HCC has provided, indicates that a 3m wide path entering Brislands Lane, via a dropped kerb, IS presently being constructed. In light of the information available to it, it is unclear how HCC could assess that such a 3m path, without the additional hardstanding, is adequate. Furthermore, in the absence of detailed engineering drawings and on the basis of the information it says it holds, it is difficult to understand whether and how HCC has satisfied itself that the access already constructed [on Site] and under construction [s278 Works] would be capable of safely supporting the substantial weight of a fire appliance.

The path constitutes ‘highway’ (being available for public use on foot or cycle)and it is my understanding that HCC has a responsibility to assure the safety of ALL highway users i.e. pedestrians, cyclists AND emergency workers. It is therefore concerning that no agency appears willing to provide a clear and evidence based assessment of the as-built emergency access and that HCC appear to have NO DETAILS of the ‘off-site’ part of the access still to be constructed. Here are some interesting, if concerning, facts:

THE DEVELOPER: Asked that the Council approve removal of the additional hardstanding resulting in an unaugmented 3m path which the developer asserted was “… more than adequate for a fire appliance to access the site”.

LOCAL AUTHORITY (EHDC): Assert that an emergency access has been built [at least to the Site boundary] and that this is in a form acceptable to HCC and HFRS.

HAMPSHIRE FIRE AND RESCUE SERVICE (HFRS): Recommended to the Building Control Body [2014] that an emergency access be constructed and subsequently advised EHDC [2017] that the access should bear an appliance of 12.5 tonnes and be kept clear at all times. [HFRS has subsequently indicated to the Local Authority that it is content that the additional hardstanding be removed from the design. Since this conflicts with the tracking drawing (as explained above), I am pursuing the matter with HFRS to understand the basis of their assessment.]

BUILDING CONTROL BODY [BCB] (Premier Guarantee Surveyors - Approved Inspector): Indicate that they do not consider an emergency access as necessary and have therefore made no assessment of compliance with Building Regulations for this aspect of the development. The reason I have been given, being that an internal assessment undertaken by the BCB concluded “… there is main road access for the Fire brigade who are “about 5 minutes away””. Clearly, this does not fully address accessibility to the site from the road network! It does however, reflect the BCB’s view that as they do not consider the access as necessary, they have no responsibility for making an assessment, irrespective of what the developer [their client] intends the path to be used for.

The as-built emergency access does NOT accord with Building Regulations [as set out in Volume 1: Part B5, Section 11, para 11.4 and Volume 2: B5 Section 16, paras 16.8 to 16.11]. If an assessment was made by the BCB, they would almost certainly need to refer the matter to the Local Authority Building Control for this reason. [Presently, EHDC Building Control indicate that they have no grounds to intervene].

After extensive enquiries of multiple agencies over many months I can find no authority taking accountability for explicitly assessing the ‘fitness for purpose’ of this particular emergency access. Such ‘assurances’ that have been provided, are ambiguous or in conflict with the information that is presently available and I remain seriously concerned for the safety of those who could be affected by this omission in the future.

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