CASEBOOK: Appeal cases - Agricultural Development - Arena held to harm top-quality agricultural land

A proposed all-weather arena on land in north Kent used for the grazing of horses has been rejected because it would harm the long-term supply of grade 1 agricultural land and undermine countryside character.

The inspector found that the present use did not detract from the rural appearance of the site or rule out the possibility of a return to agriculture.

However, he considered that the appeal use would introduce a surface finish that was more akin to an urban area than the countryside. He also found that the proposal would damage land and soil quality and that any future reinstatement works would be expensive, with a distinct likelihood that they would not be viable.

DCS No: 33605459; Inspector: John Papworth; Written representations.

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