Wiltshire Council fails the town yet again - this time at Boreham Crossroads site(June 03, 2014)
THE NUTTERS at County Hall have struck twice in two days as they agree housing development on one of the last gaps between Warminster and Bishopstrow on land at Boreham Crossroads.
Councillor Steve Dancey, said: "Their recommendation for approval means this site will now be developed even if councillors at the planning committee vote no - appeals tend to go with officers' recommendation, especially in the current free-for-all conditions.
"It is a sad day for Warminster and marks the start of a period in time when the town's unique heritage and setting will, piece by piece, be severely compromised as Wiltshire planners hide in their bunkers or silos - or whatever they call them these days, too scared to confront businesses (other than very small ones).
"I'm deeply saddened but not shocked," adds Steve.
Planners have tried to excuse their poor judgement and this is the whimpering conclusion to their report to the Western Area Planning committee.
'In planning policy terms, the site lies beyond the Warminster limits of development. However it is extremely well related to the town and represents a sustainable location for development,' claims the plaaning officers.
'Furthermore it is visually well contained and its development would have no wider landscape impact. The site has previously been subjected to landfill and serves no beneficial agricultural use. '
'The proposed development would provide 30% affordable housing and increase diversity in housing supply through provision of plots for custom built housing in a sustainable location.
'The proposed custom build approach is in line with up to date government thinking and would offer local house buyers much greater choice and diversity and would act as an alternative to housing development being delivered by volume house builders.
'Officers submit that developing the site would not harm the character and appearance of the wider countryside or harm the setting of Bishopstrow Conservation Area or nearby heritage assets. Neither would it lead to the coalescence of Warminster and Bishopstrow.
'There are no highway objections. The majority of the site is outside the floodplain and there would be no exacerbation of flood risk.
'Furthermore, there would be no likely significant effects on the SAC and the proposal has a lot of potential for enhancing biodiversity. The applicant is agreeable to a wide ranging s106 agreement incorporating all the Council’s requirements.
'On the basis of the above, officers consider that this proposal is an appropriate form of development. It is therefore recommended that planning permission be granted, subject to an appropriate s106 legal agreement and conditions,' claims the planning department.
* You still have until Friday June 6th to comment or comment again if you have already done so having read this.