Residential in open countryside dismissed as outside settlement boundary

The secretary of state has dismissed a scheme for 60-65 dwellings in the open countryside in Staffordshire as the appeal site was outside a settlement boundary and therefore conflicted with existing and emerging development plan policy.

There was no argument between the parties that the council could demonstrate a five year supply of land for housing. The proposal would provide up to 65 dwellings of a mix of house types, including 30% affordable. In the context of a council with a five year land supply, the secretary of state agreed with an inspector that the benefits of housing provision, including affordable housing, should be given moderate weight; that financial contributions should be accorded no weight; that new areas of public open space and improved access should be accorded moderate weight; and that the construction phrase would have a positive economic impact on the local economy and was also attributed moderate weight.

The secretary of state had specific regard to both the desirability of preserving the setting of a wall to the estate of the Grade 1 listed property and the impact of the proposed development on conservation areas. He found that the proposed development could be implemented without impacting on the setting of the nearby heritage assets. There were no reasons for highways and drainage matters to count against the scheme.

Inspector: Louise Nurser; Written representations

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