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South Hams District Council has refused planning permission for the housing development at Alston Gate.
The development in Malborough previously had planning permission but the applicant, Freemantle Capital Partners, applied to remove the requirement for affordable housing on the site.
South Hams District Council has refused the application, saying that the proposal has “failed to demonstrate that the provision of the required 50 per cent affordable housing is not viable”.
Their refusal also states that “The removal of the affordable housing from the proposal would result in a development, which would fail to comply with the requirements of...the Plymouth and South West Devon Joint Local Plan, Malborough’s Neighbourhood Plan; the National Planning Policy Framework and South Devon AONB Management Plan.”
The applicants could appeal, but the fact that that council has quoted the Joint Local Plan and the Neighbourhood Plan gives them much more weight than before they were adopted and will hopefully stand up to appeal or scrutiny.
The changes to the section 106 agreement, which is what the developer wanted, was objected to by Malborough Parish Council, and almost unanimously by residents online.
Malborough Parish Council have now confirmed they will be objecting to the application.
Katharine Harrod, Malborough Parish Clerk, said when the application was submitted: "The site was approved including 50 percent affordable housing, this is an essential requirement in this area as the cost of housing is inflated due to the number of holiday properties and second homes in the area.
"This application, along with applications 1557/21/VAR and 1558/21/VAR, if permitted, would change the entire look of the estate - for example brick walls being replaced by cheaper options, the removal of garages and the amendment of the S106 agreement to remove affordable housing.
"None of this is in keeping with the original application and it is not what the people of the parish want or need.
"The parish council believes the variations change this estate so significantly it would barely be recognisable from the original approved plans. Due to the extent of the variations, along with the request to remove all affordable housing, all plans for this development should be withdrawn and resubmitted as a new planning application to be assessed accordingly by the SHDC planning department."
We have contacted the agent, Ms Rebecca Morgan, Stokes Morgan Planning Ltd, to see if she would like to comment and to ask if her client plans to appeal the process. We will update the story as soon as we get a response.
You can read the response from South Hams District Council in full HERE.
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