Planning battle success
The Parish Council is pleased to report success in the planning compliance saga that has run ever since a large un-permitted access trench appeared at the western end of The Street in January 2017, disfiguring the bank of the sunken lane at the gateway to the historic centre of Thakeham. In September 2017 HDC supported the PC by issuing an enforcement notice for reinstatement of the bank. This was appealed, but after a hearing last week, that appeal has been dismissed (subject to allowing 8 months to complete works to reinstate the bank). Key aspects of this are firstly that the appeal inspector disagreed the appellants’ legal arguments relating to ‘permitted development’ rules for the creation of new vehicle access points, which amounted to a free-for-all, regardless of the physical features and landscape sensitivity of the location. Secondly, the inspector gave considerable weight to the policies within the Thakeham Neighbourhood Plan as they relate to The Street as a Conservation Area, and sunken lanes as characteristic local landscape features. While this case remains something that should never have happened, this is a heartening outcome. It sends a clear signal that attempts to manipulate the planning system can and will backfire, with very significant legal and engineering costs reverting to those responsible. The PC will be closely monitoring compliance with the appeal case decision.
Village Hall AGM Monday 4 June 7.30pm
Just a reminder that residents are invited to attend the upcoming open public meeting of the Thakeham Village Hall Trust. Amongst items on the agenda is the issue of the Trust being allowed to dispose of the present village hall, as part of transition to the new Village Hall over coming months.
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