300 residents force refusal of plan to increase village size by 25 per cent

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Housing plans which would have increased the size of a Northamptonshire village by more than a quarter have been thrown out by councillors by the planning authority.

South Northamptonshire Council’s Development Control Committee agreed unanimously with a planning officer’s recommendation to refuse permission for 195 homes off Sanders Lane in Potterspury.

Potterspury Parish Council (PPC) was joined by more than 300 village residents in registering objections to the plans.

They argued that the proposal was outside the village confines and that demand for housing in the village was much lower than the number of homes proposed.

Others pointed out that that the would-be entrance to the site floods regularly and that it will add further traffic congestion to already busy junctions with the A5.

Councillor Steve Parkin, chairman of parish council, said if approved the number of homes in the village would have increased by 40 per cent since 2009.

He added: “This is a speculative, opportunistic, and ill-conceived proposal that is full of material errors and rides roughshod over the concepts of localism and sustainability.

“It will increase the burden on local services and facilities. This application will increase car use, increase traffic flows and increase our village’s carbon footprint.”

Planning officers said SNC can demonstrate a five year supply of new homes and the need for that amount of housing in the village could not be justified.

In their reasons for recommending the refusal officers said: “Its scale and location which would adversely impact upon the rural setting of the village and rural tranquillity of the area which is a valuable and well-used leisure resource for the village.

“Furthermore the proposal relates poorly with the village by being outside of the existing well-defined village boundary and therefore would appear detached from the village and fails to create a strong alternative village boundary.”

Councillor Rebecca Breese, SNC’s portfolio holder for planning an environment said the decision showed the importance the local authority places on appropriate and well-planned estates.

She said: “The development was not appropriate for many reasons and SNC will be robust in seeking to protect our villages and beautiful countryside.

“Having a Joint Core Strategy in place and a five year supply of deliverable building land are key to SNC being able to achieve this.”