Saturday, 24 June 2017

Appeal to convert farmland dismissed

AN appeal lodged over the refusal to change redundant agricultural land in Henley into a domestic garden has been refused.

Russell Smith submitted the appeal after South Oxfordshire District Council, failed to make a decision on his application within a certain time frame.

But inspector Robert Parker dismissed the appeal and said planning permission for the change of use at the site in Rotherfield Road was refused.

He said: “The appeal site was formerly an agricultural field. Its boundaries with the field have been defined by black wrought iron estate fencing. The side bordering on to the existing garden is unfenced.

“This has had the effect of incorporating the land into the residential curtilage. I have therefore determined the appeal on the basis that planning permission is being sought retrospectively.”

Mr Parker said the main issue was the effect of the development on the character and appearance of the area.

Although clearly now part of the garden, the use of the site, he said, was currently low-key. The grass was mown but there were no structures or objects on the land and no other signs of domestication.

But he added: “If this appeal is allowed, there would be no reliable mechanism in place to control the future use of the land and prevent harm to the character and appearance of the area.”

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