Emery Planning has secured planning permission at appeal for a complex enforcement case relating to a residential development on Hough Lane, Alderley Edge within the designated Green Belt. Planning permission had originally been granted in 2016 for a residential development, which included barn conversions, and a subsequent breach of planning control meant that the planning consent granted was void. Unauthorised construction work was thereafter carried out on the site.
Cheshire East Council refused planning permission for the extension of the Farmhouse and the erection of 3 no. dwellings in 2018 and the Council subsequently served an Enforcement Notice on one of the plot owners requiring the demolition of their partially built dwelling house on the basis of harm to the designated Green Belt.
Emery Planning was instructed to progress a co-joined Section 78 and Enforcement appeal with the Planning Inspectorate. The appeal was heard by way of a 3-day virtual Public Inquiry in January 2021 led by David Manley QC.
It was common ground at appeal that the proposed development for the extension of the Farmhouse and the erection of 3 no. dwellings comprised inappropriate development within the Green Belt and that there would be harm to the openness of the Green Belt. However, the Inspector agreed that very special circumstances had been demonstrated necessary to outweigh the harm and justify the grant of planning permission. In particular, the proposed development would make a strong positive contribution to the local distinctiveness of the wider landscape through the reinstatement of a cluster of ‘farmstead’ buildings. Barnes Walker, landscape architects, also gave evidence at the Inquiry alongside Emery Planning in relation to landscape impact and the openness of the Green Belt.
With planning permission now granted and the unauthorised works regularised, construction work can now recommence on the completion of the approved development.