Local pan policy set a target for the number of homes to be delivered in the service villages of the district and the council stated that this number had already been exceeded. Highlighting the difference between permissions and delivery, the inspector found it unlikely that all of the permitted homes would be delivered and concluded the proposal would not materially exceed the planned level of housing and would accord with locational strategy for growth distribution.
The site, comprising a grassed field with a number of buildings associated with a farm shop and an area of caravan storage, lay on the edge of the village and in a green gap separating it from a nearby town. The council argued that the site comprised the last undeveloped gap separating the settlements but in the inspector’s view, this overstated the importance of the site. He saw existing development on the other side of the road and considered building on the appeal site, which contributed little by way of spaciousness to the area, would not worsen the separation or urbanise the site. He allowed the appeal.
Inspector: Martin Allen; Hearing