Housing shortfall attracts substantial weight

Planning permission for 26 dwellings on the edge of a settlement in north Yorkshire was granted after an inspector agreed that the council was unable to demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land, to which he attributed substantial weight.

In dealing with a raft of objections raised by the council, the inspector rejected the claim that granting permission would be premature pending the adoption of a site allocations plan. It would provide less than 0.1% of the housing required as part of an adopted core strategy and would not prejudice the plan-making process. Nor, in the inspector’s view, did the scheme conflict with the spatial strategy for the area which required some housing to be built within villages.

The land had for many years been safeguarded from development unless there was a requirement to release it for other uses. In the inspector’s opinion, in the absence of a five-year supply of sites, this policy was restrictive in nature and therefore had to be judged out-of-date. Nor were there any policies in an adopted neighbourhood plan which precluded development on the appeal site. The site was reasonably accessible to a range of facilities in the village and by car and bus and consequently was suitable for housing development.

Inspector: Matthew Nunn; Inquiry

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