Robert Hitchins Ltd
Up to 230 dwellings and a local centre
Key Project Information
Permission was granted at appeal for up to 230 dwellings, a local centre and associated works.
Pegasus Group prepared an Environmental Statement, Design and Access Statement, Planning Statement, Concept Masterplan and Parameters Plan and addressed the responses of many statutory consultees in support of the planning application.
Our planning, heritage and economics areas of expertise were then instructed to represent the applicant at the appeal on planning, heritage and housing land supply matters.
Pegasus Group prepared many of the documents submitted in support of this planning application including the:
- Environmental Statement which drew upon expertise across Pegasus Group including on economics and heritage.
- Design and Access Statement, Concept Masterplan and Parameters Plan prepared by the design area of expertise.
- Planning Statement prepared by the planning area of expertise.
Following the failure of the Council to determine the planning application in the statutory period, a s78 appeal was lodged. The Council resolved that they would have refused planning permission if they remained the determining authority identifying 3 reasons for refusal on planning and landscape grounds and the absence of an agreed s106.
Pegasus Group were instructed to represent the appellant at appeal on planning, heritage, educational and housing land supply matters.
Our heritage area of expertise presented evidence which articulated and explained the harm to designated and non-designated heritage assets.
Having agreed with the Council that a five-year land supply was unable to be demonstrated, our economics area of expertise presented evidence to demonstrate that the shortfall was significant on the basis of either party’s position and that the shortfall would not be remedied while the adopted Development Plan remained in place.
In the context of these findings, the Inspector found that the public benefits were more than sufficient to outweigh the less than substantial harm to heritage assets. The Inspector then proceeded to consider the other harms and found that the harms to the character and appearance of the area which was afforded considerable weight, the less than substantial harm to heritage assets which was afforded moderate weight and the in principle policy harm which was afforded limited weight did not significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits including the provision of housing to address the housing land supply shortfall which was afforded substantial weight. Accordingly, the appeal was allowed.
The need for contributions towards education
In support of the planning application, the Council requested contributions totalling £2.75M towards additional school places comprising £473k towards early years places, £1.22M towards primary school places and £1.06M towards secondary school places.
Pegasus Group responded identifying that there was no evidence of a need for additional early years places and that in fact the number of 0-4 year olds locally had and was forecast to continue to reduce, and that furthermore the Council had introduced a new formulaic approach outside of the plan-making process which is explicitly precluded by national guidance. On this basis, the Council accepted that there was no need for contributions towards early years places.
Similarly, Pegasus Group identified that once primary school capacity was assessed across the relevant primary school planning area as required by national guidance rather than just in more local schools, there was already more than sufficient capacity to accommodate the proposed development. In light of this the Council accepted that there was no need for contributions towards primary school places.
This left a remaining request for £1.06M towards additional secondary school places which was secured through a s106 agreement.