Agenda item

Winter Festival, Southbank Centre, Royal Festival Hall (Bishops) 16/04445/FUL, 16/04447/LB & 16/04446/ADV

Officers’ recommendations:

1.    To grant conditional permission subject to conditions;


2.    To grant listed building consent; and


3.    To grant advertisement consent


Case Nos. 16/04445/FUL, 16/04446/ADV and 16/04447/LB (agenda item six, page 143 of the agenda pack, page 13 of the addendum and page 19 of the second addendum).


The Planning Officer gave a presentation of the information included in the report and subsequent addenda that had been published on Friday 7 October 2016 and on the day of the meeting.  Members were advised that the second addendum proposed that condition 4 revert to the wording as detailed on page 166 of the published officer report.  This wording had been used in 2014 and 2015 and environmental health officers were satisfied with this.  An amendment to condition 15 was also being proposed to restrict the number of circus performers using the temporary caravan park to 37 and to require the submission of an updated accommodation management plan for approval prior to first opening of the Winter Festival. This updated accommodation management plan should detail measures to be put in place by the applicant to regulate and monitor occupancy levels of the temporary accommodation area (Zone 1) to ensure adherence to the maximum occupancy figure cited in the proposed condition. The Planning Officer explained that the Spiegeltent was being replaced with the NoFit State circus tent this year, that there would be a mobile ATM on site, that the number of market stalls would be reduced from 48 to 38, that there would be three licensed premises and that there would be a 2 metre high plain screening around the back-of-house and temporary accommodation/caravan area.


Representatives from the applicant then provided the following information in support of the application:

·         This would be the fourth time that the Winter Festival had been held in its current form.  It would be the last year of using the Hungerford Car Park.

·         The Festival would be managed by the Southbank Centre and a partner, with a dedicated team of project managers and site managers.  Facilities would be provided to the Southbank Centre’s usual standard.

·         The on-site accommodation was a new element that had been requested by the NoFit State circus.  The circus had an ethos of performers living and working together to establish a community.

·         The NoFit State circus was a world renowned contemporary circus that had been established for 30 years.  It provided a unique and immersive experience.


In response to questions from Members, officers and the applicants provided the following information:

·         The Festival would not be affected by the Garden Bridge proposal as construction of the Garden Bridge development would not begin before the temporary Winter Festival permission expired on 31 January 2017.

·         The number of market stalls on Queens Walk had been reduced to improve the flow of people along the South Bank and Queens Walk.  Transport officers were satisfied with the pedestrian comfort levels.

·         The precise number of gas canisters to be stored on site in the dedicated storage compounds was not confirmed yet, but a health and safety assessment had already been completed.  Gas canisters had been used in previous years without incident.  Southbank Centre staff would do health and safety and Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) checks during the event.

·         Approximately 75% of the Hungerford car park was Metropolitan Open Land (MOL).  Using this MOL for a temporary purpose would not compromise the aspirations of the Council to incorporate the car park into the neighbouring Jubilee Gardens and to promote the expansion of the arts and cultural activities of Waterloo.

·         Permitting the caravan site for performers would not set a precedent for future use of the site for gypsies or travellers or travelling showpeople.  Government guidance was clear in that travelling performers were not classified as gypsies or travellers.  The site was not suitable for permanent residential accommodation due to the flood risk, the noise levels in the area, heritage sensitivities and the MOL designation as detailed in paragraph 6.12 of the officer report.

·         An operational management plan and accommodation management plan had already been submitted, along with emails from the agent for the applicants.  These could be consolidated into one document as part of an updated accommodation management plan to be secured through an amendment to Condition 15. This updated condition could be accompanied by an informative to advise the applicant that the amended document should include details of gas, electricity and sewer connections as well as further details of site security.

·         The temporary accommodation would be connected to mains electricity and there would be three toilets on site – one male, one female and one for disabled users.

·         Security would ensure that only people with staff passes would be allowed into the back-of-house area.


It was MOVED by Councillor Wilcox, SECONDED by Councillor Haselden, and


RESOLVED, unanimously


To grant planning permission for application 16/04445/FUL subject to the conditions as outlined in the officer’s report, published addenda and the amendment proposed by officers to condition 15 to require an updated accommodation management plan as well as an accompanying informative.



It was MOVED by Councillor Wilcox, SECONDED by Councillor Clark, and


RESOLVED, unanimously


To grant advertisement consent for application 16/04446/ADV.



It was MOVED by Councillor Wilcox, SECONDED by Councillor Haselden, and


RESOLVED, unanimously


To grant Listed Building consent for application 16/04447/LB

Supporting documents: