Ashford Borough Council lodges legal challengePublished: 12/05/2022
Ashford Borough Council has lodged a legal challenge following the Planning Inspectorate’s ruling at a recent appeal to allow development of land between Woodchurch Road and Appledore Road, Tenterden.
The legal challenge against the Planning Inspectorate reiterates the Council’s long-standing opposition to the scheme. The Council rejected the site during the last Local Plan process, its officers recommended against the application and the application was subsequently rejected at its Planning Committee.
Cllr Neil Bell, Portfolio Holder for Planning said:
“The Council opposed the appeal and was very disappointed by the Inspector’s decision to allow the development to go ahead.
“We continue to feel strongly that this is not a good development for Tenterden, adversely impacting the landscape and character of this part of the town and as such felt we needed to lodge this legal challenge to overturn the appeal decision.
“Whilst the Inspector himself agreed that the scheme would be contrary to parts of the Local Plan, which was adopted as recently as 2019, it seems as though in arriving at his decision to grant permission he has placed significant weight on the wider housing land supply position in the borough, which as we know, has been affected by the situation at Stodmarsh Lakes in Canterbury and the resultant constraints on the Council being able to grant permissions for new housing development in the eastern half of the borough for the last 18 months.
“Consequently, the Council will be writing to Ministers to seek their support for both a solution to the Stodmarsh issue and an explicit recognition that it should not be used as a reason to allow housing developments that are not sustainable or compliant with the Local Plan to be permitted on appeal. In the meantime, we shall continue to resist fundamentally unacceptable schemes and defend them robustly should appeals be lodged.”