Casebook: Appeal cases - Householder Development - Firing ranges held harmful to historic landscape

Two firing ranges, two timber sheds and earth mounding at a cottage in Shropshire have been refused planning permission after an inspector held that their scale and location harmed the quality of the local landscape and the amenities of local people and visitors.

The cottage was one of a small number of properties in open countryside in or alongside a grade I registered historic park, which was in part open to the public. The inspector opined that the quality of the local landscape depended directly on the historical continuity of the parkland, notably a wooded ridge that ran out from the planned landscape, and its relationship to farmed countryside without urban influence.

He noted that the two ranges were of a scale, size and form that necessitated extensive earthworks eating into the wooded ridge. He acknowledged the concerns expressed by local residents, landowners and farmers about the impact of noise. While times of use could be satisfactorily governed by condition, he commented, it would be less easy to control noise levels or intensity of use.

Even if such controls were enforceable, he added, the potential conflict with farming activities, tourists, walkers, riders, cyclists and inhabitants suggested that the proposed activities would not be a good neighbour.

This impact on amenity confirmed his conclusion that permission should not be given.

DCS No: 48094569; Inspector: Keith Durrant; Written representations.

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