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Hook Norton housing scheme won on appeal

Published: Thursday, 10th December 2015

Gladman Developments has won an appeal determined by Communities Secretary Greg Clark for a 54-home scheme at Hook Norton, Oxfordshire refused by the local planning authority Cherwell District Council

The proposals, in outline, were to a limited extent in conflict with the neighbourhood plan for the area.

The appeal site involved 2.7-hectares of agricultural land located to the north of Hook Norton, on the east side of Sibford Road. The site lay outside but immediately adjacent to the development boundary of Hook Norton as defined in the 1996 Cherwell District Local Plan.

The inspector who held the recovered appeal recommended the scheme should go-ahead. Clark agreed even though he acknowledged the residents of the homes faced possible smells from an adjoining farm and possibly problems from insects.

In his decision letter Clark acknowledged that the local authority could demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land. However Clark insisted that the proposals would boost local housing supply, including the fact that some 35 per cent of the housing would be as affordable dwellings. This factor weighed heavily in favour of the appeal, argued the Communities Secretary.

“Overall” stated the letter, “the SoS considers that the benefits of this sustainable development would clearly outweigh the harm in terms of the limited conflict with the Hook Norton Neighbourhood Plan and the slight adverse effect on future occupiers as a result of odours generated by the adjacent Redlands Dairy Farm.”

View the decision letter and inspectors report

Roger Milne