The site formed part of a wider area of open land mostly surrounded by built development. Under the proposal, some open space would be provided next to a main road fronting the site. This position, coupled with the dominance of built development in the area and the site’s width, persuaded the inspector that the development would not be visually harmful. The rural feel of parts of the site was already diluted by existing development and some views of it would be screened by existing trees, he remarked.
The inspector noted that much of the appeal site was probably associated with one of two grade II listed 17th century farmhouses. He found that the appeal scheme would mean that the farmstead would become more divorced from any agricultural connection, giving rise to some harm to its setting. The encroachment of new housing would also make it more difficult to appreciate its agricultural origins, he held. However, since intervisibility with the other farmhouse had already been diminished by residential development, he found that the appeal proposal’s impact on its setting would be less than substantial.
Inspector: Clive Hughes; Inquiry