Planning inspector refuses new development in East Sussex village near A27

Plans for a housing development in Berwick have been refused at appeal.
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In a decision notice published on Wednesday (April 19), a planning inspector has dismissed proposals to build a terrace of three three-bedroom homes on land associated with a property known as Gatehampton in Station Road.

The scheme, which was initially refused by Wealden District Council back in February 2021, would have involved the demolition of a disused garage and summer house to make way for the construction.

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Refusing the scheme, Wealden planning officers argued the houses would have been too large, too close to the existing property and at odds with the existing pattern of development in the area.

Proposed new homesProposed new homes
Proposed new homes

The developer disputed these concerns (while also pointing to the district’s housing shortage when comparing government targets), but the inspector ultimately agreed with council.

In their decision notice, the inspector wrote: “In broad terms the village is a sustainable location, development could thus be acceptable in principle.

“However, on the environmental front, with this scheme, I am in no doubt that the erosion of the character of the locality and impact upon residential amenity would ensue.

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“The scheme of three homes and in this pattern would represent harmful overdevelopment.”

This harm, the inspector said, would “significantly and demonstrably” outweigh any benefits of the scheme.

In a separate decision, the planning inspector also refused an appeal for costs, finding that the council had not acted unreasonably in its handling of the application.

For further information see application reference WD/2021/0440/F on the Wealden District Council website.