In July 2015 the Gypsy, Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Site Search Study was published. This Study included a site put forward by the landowner next to Gretton View in Alderton.
The site was rejected for the following reason:
"This site is in a sensitive location and is considered to be an unsuitable for development, which would be particularly prominent in this locally elevated and exposed position. The type of development would also be uncharacteristic of the village and would adversely affect its setting, particularly when viewed from the eastern approach and sections of the B4077 to the south. It would also adversely affect the setting of the AONB and has therefore been rejected."
Although this site was rejected as a suitable site for the gypsy/traveller community residents of Alderton should be concerned at the lack of awareness of the submission of the site and the absence of any local debate.
Alderton residents should be concerned about the lack of awareness of the submission of this site and the appropriateness of it as a site for the gypsy/traveller community. The site has already had two appeals for development dismissed by the Planning Inspector and it seems that the landowner is determined to develop the site in any way possible.
For more information and the full report showing the submission please click here.
We've received a note from our friends over at SaveDumbleton.com updating us on the status of their appeal against the Bank Farm application - and it's good news!
Tewkesbury Borough Council have posted the decision of the appeal on their website: http://publicaccess.tewkesbury.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=documents&keyVal=NEZCOEQDGN000
The decision is that the appeal has been dismissed. Furthermore, there are some rather crucial statements made by the Planning Inspector that could be used in objections to any future development proposals. Some of these are:
- I conclude on this issue that the proposal would cause significant harm to the character and appearance of the area by reason of its detrimental impact on the Dumbleton Conservation Area, the rural setting of the village, the setting of listed buildings and other buildings of historic character, and the intrinsic beauty of this part of the countryside. It would, therefore, be contrary to the objectives of national policy6, local plan policies HEN2 and LND2, and policies SD5, SD8 and SD9 of the emerging joint core strategy which collectively seek to ensure a high standard of design and that development preserves or enhances local distinctiveness, heritage assets and landscape character.
- Whilst opportunities to maximise sustainable transport solutions differ between urban and rural areas, given the relatively poor public transport links and limited local facilties, I am not persuaded that the village is a sutainable location for a development of the scale proposed. Nor is there any specific evidence to indicate that allowing the proposal would lead to more local facilities being provided or improvements to public transport services.
- It may be the case that there are limited opportunities to develop in and around Dumbleton, and that other potential development sites are within the AONB and the conservation area. However, whilst clearly there is a need for a greater level of housing development in the borough, there is no particular requirement that I have been made aware of for this to be provided in Dumbleton. I do not, therefore, accept that the proposal can be justified on the basis that it is the “least worse” option for development in or around the village.
Thank you very much for all of your support and contributions over these last few months; hopefully there will not be cause to rally the troops again in the near future, but you never know.
Mixed news from the latest appeals. Banner Homes application to build 24 houses east of Willow Bank Road has been allowed on appeal but Edward Ware Homes application for 53 houses has been dismissed.
You can read more from Keith Page on Gloucestershire Echo's website:
Banner Homes - Land East of Willow Bank Road, Alderton
Result: LOST - Appeal allowed, permission granted for 24 houses
Edward Ware Homes - Land to the West of Willow Bank Road, Alderton
Result: WON - Appeal dismissed, permission refused for 53 houses
Just a bit of an update and many thanks all that supported us on Tuesday & Wednesday at the appeals:
Tuesday Edward Ware (53)west of Willow Bank Rd Wednesday Banner (24) east of Willow Bank Rd
Both days were very long, 10 am until 8pm, when the inspector left the village after his site visits. I'm not sure if Becky & Mike would agree but these two appeals (by Hearing) seemed to be more draining (if that’s possible). I think, maybe, 4 days of evidence into 1 does not help, but it seemed that these were much more Alderton versus the developer, with a little bit of support from TBC side. I hope this means that we have gained credibility & our arguments are the ones that count!!! As to which way it will go only the inspector will decide, but he did say he hoped to have the decision made in July.
Many thanks to Becky & Mike who took the lead on each of the 2 days. They also took the lead in the preparation of evidence beforehand. However I'm sure they will join me in thanking the many contributors to that preparation, as well as those that were able to come along on both days to support us. Paul Smith (Planning Consultant employed to present Tewkesbury BC case) particularly asked me to convey his thanks to the villagers who came to support, as he thinks that it may be pivotal to the case in that it is a physical demonstration of social cohesion.
Many thanks also go to Tamsin, our clerk, who I know has done many more hours than she is paid for, not just dealing with the paper mountain also the electronic megabyte mountain range, but also keeping us to the various deadlines etc. Thanks also to our Borough & County councillors who attended, I would like to note we have found no evidence of the promised support of our MP!
Although I have tried to include as many people as I can, please forward this message to anyone I may have missed and anyone who may be interested..
Chairman of Alderton Parish Council
An application has been submitted for a 27 acre solar farm between Lower Stanley Farm, Gretton and Alderton. The project is proposed to be sited on a Tewkesbury Borough Council designated Special Land Area (LND2) and is afforded similar status and restrictions for planning as an AONB (LND1). It has been designated because of its position and importance as foreground to the Dumbleton and Dixton AONB.
If the solar farm goes ahead it would ruin the visual integrity from and to the AONBs. It could also be the first of more schemes by the same land owner once the solar farm infrastructure is in place, amounting to 100 acres. This is not about whether solar is a good idea or not, or whether Tewkesbury Borough Council is meeting its targets; neither is about finding funding for projects around the Parish that aren’t funded; it’s about the destruction of your local designated sites of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
You may also be interested to know the Finance partners brought in by Green Hedge (the project managers) to run the community share scheme have backed out believing the venture to be unviable.
Click on the link, go into Comments and Make a Comment. Say Objection.
In the meantime any comments that parishioners previously sent to the Borough Council regarding these applications will be forwarded to the Planning Inspectorate. However, any additional or modified comments you may wish to make must be sent directly to the Planning Inspectorate, 3/05, 2 The Square, Temple Quay House, Bristol, BS1 6PN or via firstname.lastname@example.org quoting the following reference numbers:
For Edward Ware - APP/G1630/W/15/3003278. Deadline for comments: 5th May 2015.
For Banner Homes - APP/G1630/W/14/3001584. Deadline for comments: 15th May 2015.
Both Appeals will be dealt with by way of a hearing, usually held over one day, and the dates for these have just been confirmed as: 16th June for Edward Ware and 17th June for Banner Homes. Both hearings will be held at the Borough Council offices and will commence at 10am.
Thank you Alderton - 69 visitors attended the ANDP workshop in the Village Hall on 28 March 2015. We debated our proposed NDP policies and other issues and to do with land identified in the draft TBC Local Plan, potential development sites, infill options and green spaces and important views.
All feedback collected will be gone through in the next few weeks and then our draft plan and policies will be submitted for screening by TBC. This will be followed by an SEA (Strategic Environment Assessment) before moving onto the final phases including further consultation, inspection and referendum.
It might feel endless... And that we have already gone through lots of hoops... But there are still more to jump over!
If sometimes it feels like we are covering similar ground, we have to - the advice is that our process has to be so squeaky clean if we are to pass formal inspection and stand up to those developers who may wish to belittle our efforts by suggesting we are 'a bunch of amateurs' who are not experts in their own community. So by crossing every 't' and dotting every 'i', as well as demonstrating our commitment, we can confound them, just like we did over the recent Appeal.
The Planning Consultant helping us with the next steps of our NDP was so impressed by the high level of community interest in Alderton. She is currently working with approx. 50 communities across the country on their NDPs, and Alderton stands out - but we already knew that didn't we!
So, we have to stick with it.
Thank you for your continuing support. - ANDP group.
Here's some good news. The Freeman Homes development planned for St Margarets Drive has been rejected by the Planning Inspector. His conclusions are shown below and you can read the full report below that.
Great news! Well done to everyone who helped with and supported, either in person or mentally, the appeal! There's more to come but this is a great boost to our efforts and will save Alderton from some significant harm.
Summary of Inspectors conclusions
The planning balance and conclusion
51. I have found that in the absence of a five year supply of deliverable housing land, the Framework gives support for the scheme to which I attach significant weight. However, against this must be balanced the harm that the development would cause.
52. I have found harm in terms of the effects of the proposed development on the character and appearance of the area as it would lead to the extension of the built-up part of the settlement into the adjoining countryside and affect the setting of the AONB. This would conflict with the aims of Policy LND2 of the Local Plan and the Framework. This is an adverse impact to which I attach considerable weight.
53. I also found that that the proposed development would have a disproportionate effect on the village in terms of the cumulative impact of development and also on the social wellbeing of the community. I attach significant weight to the harm that would arise.
54. The totality of the harm I have identified is not clearly outweighed by the social or economic benefits of the development, including the supply of new housing, both market and affordable.
55. In the context of the Framework taken as a whole, the adverse impacts of the proposed development significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits of the scheme. Accordingly, the proposal would not represent sustainable development for which a presumption in favour should apply.
56. For the reasons given above and having had regard to all matters that have been raised, including all the decisions elsewhere referred to by the parties, I conclude that the appeal should be dismissed.
Download the appeal decision
You can download the full Appeal Decision document by clicking below:
The Parish Council encourages you to attend these important events that are both highly relevant to the current planning situation in Alderton.
Draft Tewkesbury Borough Plan Public Consultation, Alderton Village Hall, Thurs 5th March, 3pm to 7.30pm
This is your opportunity to ask questions about the Borough Council’s draft policies and rural site options. The Borough Council has approved a draft version of the Tewkesbury Borough Plan for public consultation from 27th February to 13th April 2015. Once adopted this document will form a key part of the development plan for Tewkesbury Borough up to 2031 and alongside the Joint Core Strategy (plus, in Alderton, our Neighbourhood Development Plan) will be used to guide decision making on planning applications. This Plan fills in the detail for smaller communities and invites comments on a number of rural site options being considered for each Rural Service Centre and Service Village identified in the Joint Core Strategy (Alderton has been classified as a Service Village). In the first instance, it has allocated a total of 46 new houses for Alderton village, a figure that, as we know, is already met through the Charles Church development.
More details :- www.tewkesbury.gov.uk/boroughplan
The deadline for responses to the Draft Tewkesbury Borough Plan is on Monday 13th April 2015 at 5pm.
Alderton Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP) update, Alderton Village Hall, Sat 28th March, 10am to 12pm
Alderton's Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP) is a key part of our response to the unprecedented number of planning applications for housing currently around the village.
The progress of our NDP is crucial if we are to seek to take back some control of the land use in our Parish. Using guidelines from the present government, the Parish Council has argued that a local community should be allowed ‘to shape where development should and should not go’. Our NDP should be our development blueprint for the next 20 years.
The NDP Group has recognised the need for professional support to help us with the next stage of work. We have appointed a firm of experienced planners to assist us. The first task we have instructed them to undertake is to prepare proposals for, and facilitate, a workshop for the Alderton NDP Group. A key objective for the workshop is to consider development opportunities within the Parish (housing, other infrastructure, local green spaces etc). These proposals will be presented and every resident is invited to come along – your comments will be translated into policies which will make up our NDP. Please continue to support your NDP, so that your views on development can be included.
Well done Alderton, over 100 of you turned up at some stage to the Freeman Developers appeal at Tewkersbury Council Offices. All in all the Parish was well represented throughout the hearing. The Cheltenham Liberal Democrat MP came and spoke to a number of us, it was a shame that our own MP could not attend and support us. The village was praised most highly by the Inspector for the professionalism of their statements and for the way we conducted ourselves. A number of villagers also spoke and gave passionate statements which I'm sure left the inspector in no doubt about the strength of the village community. We had to win our case against "in favour of sustainable development" by showing the harm this development would cause Alderton. Alderton's case was strong with good arguments, a better emerging local plan with sites of less impact and a local plan that demonstrated proportionally that Alderton had its fair share of allocated housing and most importantly would impact the beautiful scenery and way Alderton is viewed. Finally we argued that it would significantly impact our social cohesion. We put the case for the above strongly- so again Well Done Alderton we could have done no more.
So what next? We have to prepare our case for the next appeal. We all have to help develop further the Neighbourhood Plan and the Borough Local Plan. We should also look to our MP to review our case and remind all of our MP's of the following from the planning Minister Nick Boles who in March 2014 stated in his written ministerial statement;
(on the topic of local planning) that:
“the coalition government is committed to reforming the planning system to make it simpler, clearer and easier for people to use, allowing local communities to shape where development should and should not go. Planning should not be the exclusive preserve of lawyers, developers or town hall officials.
For more information on the appeal case including the opening and closing statements from Alderton please click here.