You may recall an appeal about 81 houses, not far from Ridgeway Farm. The Inquiry began in late January and continued through many stop-starts until the end of February. I am pleased to say that the Inspector dismissed the Appeal.
To cut a tiring and rambling story short, the main issues were whether the site was a suitable location, given Wiltshire’s development plan; the effect on ecology; the effect on local character and visual amenity, with particular regard to the vicinity of Old Purton Road.
The Inspector clearly stated in his Decision that the proposed housing would not meet the housing needs of Purton. The developer asserted that the housing would more likely serve Swindon (own goal).
The Inspector also noted the existence of the Neighbourhood Plan which “… provides positively for the delivery of housing in the NP area…”
He further noted that:
- “…the allocations [in our Plan] are made to accommodate necessary growth in line with local aspirations for the village and to support a plan-led approach to development in recognition of the significant development pressures in the area”;
- “The community has gone to significant effort to plan positively for its neighbourhood area. The proposed development would deliver housing that is clearly not anticipated or sought by the NP.”; and
- “I conclude that the appeal site is not located in an area supported by the development plan”.
He sums up: “The proposal is clearly in conflict with the development plan ….which includes a carefully considered and positively prepared neighbourhood plan, is sufficient in itself to significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits identified…”
The Decision in full may be read here.