A PROPOSED housing development for a Moorlands village has been given the red light by community leaders. The Staffordshire Moorlands District Council's Planning Committee has refused an “outline application with means of access for residential development of up to 14 dwellings” for land at Caverswall Old Road in Forsbrook. The plans, which had been recommended for refusal by an SMDC planning officer, had come under fire from councillors from both Forsbrook Parish Council and Caverswall Parish Council. The district council also received a further 33 letters of objection for the proposals, as well as 11 letters of support.
In the decision notice, notifying the applicants of the refusal of the application by SMDC, a planning officer said: “This is a greenfield site situated within the Green Belt. The development of the site for housing represents inappropriate development in the Green Belt.
“Inappropriate development is harmful by definition.
“In the absence of a Drainage Strategy and details of the means for the disposal of surface water discharge it is not possible to assess the flood risk posed from the proposed development.
“The proposed development may present risks of flooding on–site or off-site if surface water run-off or other external flood risk is not effectively managed.”
They added: “Although it may be possible to create an access from Caverswall Old Road to serve a development on the application site, in order for such an access to be acceptable and safe and suitable for all users of the highway, the Local Highway Authority has confirmed that a number of improvements would be required.
“These would include firstly widening Caverswall Old Road which is currently of substandard width to accommodate two way traffic flow; secondly provision of adequate visibility on Caverswall Old Road and thirdly the improvement of the Caverswall Road/Caverswall Old Road junction which is geometrically substandard due to its insufficient width to accommodate vehicle movements and the entry radii being insufficient to accommodate the swept path of all vehicles.”
In conclusion the planning officer stated: “The Local Planning Authority (LPA), in reaching this decision, has followed the guidance in paragraph 38 of the National Planning Policy Framework.
“The Framework advises that the LPA should work proactively with applicants to secure developments that improve the economic, social and environmental conditions of the area.
“In this case the fundamental Green belt issue was not capable of resolution and thus no negotiations were entered into.
“The applicant was given the opportunity to address the drainage issue but declined to do so.”
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