Planning inspector refuses permission for eight new homes in Buxted High Street

A planning inspector has refused permission for eight homes to built on open land that forms a garden south of Buxted High Street.buxted_sign

The inspector, Neil Holdsworth, was appointed by the Secretary of State to consider plans submitted by Verizon Land and Development.

The company wanted to build in the garden of a property known as Moorings.

The inspector’s decision said the eight properties would have been laid out around a shared hardstanding.

Mr Holdsworth said: “Whilst these would be primarily detached buildings, they would face directly on to each other across a relatively narrow parking and access area, with small gaps between the properties.


“In consequence the density of development would be noticeably greater than existing development along this part of the High Street, which is primarily comprised of large structures with substantial garden areas.”

The inspector said the bulk, scale and mass of the build development proposed meant that the existing transitional quality of the site, found in its open, undeveloped appearance would be completely lost.

Furthermore the comparatively densely built development would sit close to woodland at the rear of the site in a manner unrepeated on the land to either of its sides.


“In this respect the development would appear as encroachment into the countryside surrounding the village.”

The inspector outlined advantages of the proposed development such as the potential to build it quickly, the homes being energy efficient and promoting electric vehicle use and the promotion of biodiversity on undeveloped parts of the site.

But Mr Holdsworth said the proposal would relate poorly to its surroundings and would also harm the living conditions of neighbouring residential occupants.


“It would therefore fail to achieve development that functions well, and adds to the overall quality of the area.”

The inspector said the development would conflict with an objective of achieving well-designed places and he attached substantial weight to the harm that would arise, in consequence.

He added: “Overall, even taking account of the significant shortfall in housing land supply, the adverse impacts of granting permission would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits.”

See the inspector’s full report on the Wealden Council website. This link will take you through to the relevant planning application (WD/2017/1500/O). Once there, click on View Documents, scroll down to Group: Appeal Documentation and finally Appeal Decision.

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