Appeal dismissed and 200 homes will not be built in Chapel

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After months of uncertainty a controversial appeal to build more than 200 new homes in Chapel-en-le-Frith has been rejected.

The planning proposal was turned down by High Peak Borough Council in September last year, however the applicant Bank Hall Drive Developments appealed this decision and a public inquiry by the Planning Inspectorate took place which was dismissed on Monday.

The development was going to be situated off Long Lane, to the south of Chapel-en-le-Frith High School and the council received more than 60 letters of objection as well as a 420 signature petition.

Chairman of Chapel-en-le-Frith Parish Council John Brooks said: “The parish council is overjoyed that the appeal has not gone through.

“Housing will be built in Chapel but in areas laid out in the local plan and non-designated areas, like the land off Long Lane will be protected.

“I am so pleased the right decision was made.”
A local plan sets out local planning policies and identifies how land is used, determining what will be built where.

A letter of objection from Chapel High School regarding the development said: “Safe use of the school site would be impossible.”

The reasons for this is that the access road would join Long Lane at a very congested point and safety of pupils entering and leaving the site would be compromised due to restricted sight, while the access road would remove part of the schools car park.

David Rose, inspector for the appeal said: “I find nothing of sufficient materiality to change my conclusion to dismiss the appeal.”

There were four main issues raised during the inquiry which were discussed and rejected; would the proposal be in conflict with the housing policies in the High Peak Local Plan and the Chapel-en-le-Frith Parish Neighbourhood Development Plan; what the effect of the proposal was on the setting of heritage assets; the likelihood of securing a suitable access to the site; and the balance to be struck between any identified harm and the benefits arising from the scheme.

Agent Knights is working on behalf of the applicant and Alan Corinaldi-Knott, senior planner, said: “The appeal was dismissed by the Inspector because in his view, he thought there was no need to release the site now because the council has a new Local Plan in place, which was adopted while the appeal hearing was taking place, and the Inspector believed that the LPA could identify a 5-year housing land supply.”