Non-compliance with demolition condition tantamount to green belt dwelling

The retention of a dwelling in the Warwickshire green belt, in non-compliance with a replacement dwelling condition, was refused for harm to the green belt through inappropriateness and loss of openness.

The dwelling had been conditioned to be removed as part of a permission for a replacement dwelling on the same site in accordance with a development in the green belt exceptions policy in the adopted local plan. The replacement dwelling had been erected and now the appellants were asking to retain the original dwelling on the grounds that it could be considered as infilling and resulted in no further loss of openness.

The inspector considered these arguments but felt the appeal site was too removed from the village proper for the existing house to be regarded as infill and therefore constitute an exception in green belt development terms. He also held that when comparing the development without the condition in place to that with the condition there would be a spatial impact on openness greater than that allowed for in the replacement dwelling permission. He discounted the appellant’s argument that the replacement building and existing dwelling were smaller in square meterage terms than a theoretical limit for the replacement dwelling set by the council at the time of the application. Although the council had a shortfall in housing land supply, the inspector concluded this was not sufficient reason to overcome the harm from the inappropriate development arising through what was effectivey a new dwelling in the green belt.

Inspector: Andrew Owen; Written representations

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