Gravityscan Badge Cotswold AONB housing scheme dismissed « Alrewas Neighbourhood Plan

Cotswold AONB housing scheme dismissed

On April 9, 2015, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles dismissed an appeal over proposals for a residential scheme involving 146 homes on farmland at Stow-on-the-Wold in the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

Developer Bovis Homes had applied to Cotswold District Council for outline planning permission for the scheme earmarked for farmland on the eastern flank of the town.It lodged an appeal after the planning authority failed to determine the project within the prescribed period. The planning inspector who held the recovered appeal recommended the scheme should be blocked.

The Secretary of State agreed that the appeal scheme constituted major development within an AONB where, according to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) “planning permission should be refused for major development except in exceptional circumstances and where it can be demonstrated that it is in the public interest”.

He also acknowledged that the scheme would make a significant contribution to housing land supply in a district where the level of supply fell significantly short of the five-year requirement set out in the NPPF.

In addition the Secretary of State agreed that it seemed likely that some development would have to take place within the AONB at Stow if future housing needs are to be met and that some of this growth will be on greenfield land at the periphery of the settlement.But Pickles’ decision letter made it clear that the Secretary of State attached “great weight to the harm which the scheme would cause to the AONB”.

He considered that the appeal site was “highly sensitive” and there was scope for meeting Stow’s housing requirements through smaller-scale alternatives with the potential to cause “less harm to the character and appearance of the AONB and the setting of Stow”.

Overall, the Secretary of State concluded that “the benefits of the proposal would be far outweighed by the environmental harm that it would cause”.

He insisted the exceptional circumstances required to justify the development did not exist. Allowing the scheme would not be in the public interest, Pickles said.


via Cotswold AONB housing scheme dismissed | Planning Portal Director.

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