Developer defeated in housing inquiry for 50 homes by Congresbury group
PUBLISHED: 09:00 03 July 2017
A village action group says it has ‘dealt a blow’ to a developer after winning a housing inquiry over an application to build 50 homes.
Congresbury residents are celebrating victory after the Planning Inspectorate refused to allow Gladman Developments to build in Wrington Lane.
Inspector Anne Jordan, who led the inquiry at Weston Town Hall in April, ruled this week the ‘harm’ of Gladman’s proposed scheme ‘would significantly outweigh’ the benefits.
The developer wanted outline permission to build up to 50 homes, but villagers’ concerns over the potential impact on highways and the character of the village resonated with Ms Jordan.
She said: “When assessed without any assurances that affordable housing can be delivered on site, the harm arising from this scheme would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the identified benefits.
“The proposal must therefore be considered to fail to comply with the presumption in favour of sustainable development and the appeal is dismissed.”
John Mills, of Congresbury Residents’ Action Group (CRAG), said: “We’re delighted with the outcome, and I think we’re entitled to a small celebratory drink.
“Many people gave time, effort and financial contributions to the campaign – none more so than Peter Walton who did a magnificent job as CRAG’s representative at the five-day hearing.”
A CRAG statement added: “Although this isn’t the end of the matter, by turning down Gladman’s appeal the inspector has dealt the land agent a blow where it hurts – in their substantial pockets.”
But 50 homes could still be built on the site, as permission was granted for a duplicate application earlier this year.
The appeal was held after North Somerset Council did not make a decision in the allotted timeframe.
The developer submitted the duplicate application in 2016 with different conditions, including for affordable housing, which was approved in March.
But Gladman continued with the appeal because it is believed original application was more favourable and would increase the land value.
The Times contacted Gladman Developments to comment on the result of the inquiry and how it will proceed, but did not receive a reply at the time of going to press.
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