DC Casebook: Leisure and entertainment - Driving range failed due to encroachment

The construction of a driving range at a golf club in the West Yorkshire green belt has been ruled objectionable because it would adversely encroach into the countryside.

A covered building from which players would hit golf balls onto the range was an integral component of the scheme. The inspector recognised that the individual stalls provided safety and shelter for players. He noted PPG2's advice that outdoor sport is appropriate in the green belt provided that openness is preserved. He observed that the building, while relatively long, would occupy only a small part of the site and the openness of the land would therefore be retained.

However, he was concerned that its position in a field separated from the main golf club would encroach into the countryside, contrary to green belt policy. He decided that this rendered the whole development inappropriate because safeguarding the land from encroachment was one of the underlying green belt policy requirements. The isolated location of the site, lack of access by means of transport other than cars and the adverse impact on the amenity and character of the green belt also counted towards his decision to dismiss the appeal.

DCS Number 100-058-461

Inspector Simon Berkeley; Hearing.

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