East Hants District Council refused Southcotts planning application on Downhouse Road following the progression of the Allocation Plan. This was followed by an appeal being lodged by Southcott Homes, the same developer who was refused permission on Lovedean Lane which also fell at appeal. On Tuesday this week we recieved notification the developers appeal had been dismissed.
This is a great result for EHDC and all the hard work that has taken place over the past 18 months in achieving a five year plan and also identifying the Allocation sites throughout the District.
The Planning Inquiry for 26 dwellings at this site (application 25288/01 Land at 102 – 120 Downhouse Road)was heard in Petersfield on July 8th and 9th.
25288/001 – Land at 102 – 120 Downhouse Road,Catherington
Importantly, The Inspector acknowledged that EHDC has a robust five year plan including an adequate five percent buffer, an argument which the developer tried very hard to disprove. He has also supported the use of the Local Gap Policy saying that Southcotts had not proved that these additional homes could not be built within the Settlement Policy Boundary – if they were required.
The Inspector concluded that the building dwellings at this location would cause harm to the character and appearance of the area which could not all be mitigated by planning conditions.
The Inspector has not identified specific conflict with JCS Policies CP1, CP2 or CP10 but concludes “that there is overall conflict with the development plan which is not outweighed by the general support for housing development in the Framework.”
The Inspector also said that interested parties had raised a number of significant concerns about the safety of road users, proving that public support and well written letters with valid reasons are taken into account, as indeed they were in the Lovedean Inquiry.
This is a fantastic result that goes a long way to protect our valuable countryside and I would like to record my thanks to the team from EHDC and Cllr Elaine Tickell who defended our case so well.
Cllr Sara Schillemore