Allotment and potting shed incongruous in countryside

The creation of an allotment area and erection of a potting shed on agricultural land on the edge of a village in North Yorkshire was refused for harm to local landscape character, as well as harm to the appearance and character of the surrounding conservation area and setting of another conservation area along an adjoining railway.

The timber and corrugated iron potting shed was proposed to be 9.14 metres in length by 4.87 metres in width and 3.23 metres in height, with the allotment area proposed for growing fruit and vegetables for the appellant’s family. The inspector firstly concluded the proposal would constitute a change of use from agriculture under the 1947 Agriculture Act definition as the proposal was not part of an agricultural holding and the proposed development was not for trade or business purposes. 

In terms of harm to local landscape character the inspector considered that the substantial dimensions and bulk of the proposed building would appear highly incongruous within the site and the surrounding landscape as it would be readily visible and unduly prominent in views from surrounding land. The inspector also considered the establishment of raised beds and fruit trees would introduce a more domestic formality and appearance into the countryside location out of keeping with the less formally maintained pastoral character of the surroundings.

With respect to harm to the local village and railway line conservation areas the inspector considered the introduction of an orderly structure of such a considerable size within the site would be inharmonious with the much smaller stone and more informal timber structures nearby, and would intrude into the green buffer setting of the railway conservation area and the open rural landscape setting of the village, having detrimental impacts on their significance. In the heritage balance, the inspector opined any public benefits from the proposal would be limited and would not outweigh the harm to the conservation areas. 

Inspector: F Cullen; Written representations

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