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Friday 12 December 2014

Council Leader hails victory in planning appeal


Cheshire East Council’s Leader has welcomed a planning inspector’s decision to block plans for a housing development at a historic farm.

Councillor Michael Jones said the decision showed that the Council had been right to refuse planning permission on heritage grounds.

The estate of a previous owner of the property appealed against the Council’s refusal of planning permission to alter the Grade II listed, timber-framed Dingle Farmhouse on Dingle Lane, Sandbach.

The applicants wanted to convert a barn into a home and build another 11 dwellings with garages, car parking and landscaping. A later application reduced the number of new homes to six.

After a three-day inquiry in November, inspector David Prentis concluded that the changes to the farmhouse, which dates from the 17th century, would harm its special interest as a listed building and he also rejected the appeal against refusal of permission for the new homes.

Mr Prentis added: “My overall assessment… is that the public benefits would be insufficient to outweigh the loss of significance that would be caused to the designated heritage assets.

“The proposals would be harmful to the special interest of Dingle Farmhouse and would fail to preserve its setting.”

The applicants asked the inspector to order the Council to pay some of their costs but he refused, saying the Council’s actions had not led directly to any unnecessary expense.

Councillor Jones said: “I am pleased that the inspector has backed our decision to refuse planning permission. It shows that we are continuing to oppose inappropriate development and to make every effort to preserve Cheshire East’s heritage.”

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