Homes be­side an­cient wood­land ap­proved

Neigh­bours ‘gut­ted’ by de­ci­sion to ap­prove four large homes on plot

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

De­spite a long run­ning bat­tle with South Bucks District Coun­cil (SBDC), the plan­ning com­mit­tee ap­proved the pro­pos­als for Green Lane at a meet­ing ear­lier this month.

Ac­cord­ing to doc­u­ments seen by the Ad­ver­tiser/ Ex­am­iner the con­tro­ver­sial plot of land – which was granted out­line per­mis­sion last year – has been bought by Unifruit Lim­ited for £1.5m.

The de­vel­op­ment will see the ex­ist­ing house knocked down to be re­placed by four de­tached houses with garages and gar­dens

Neigh­bours only re­cently had a small amount of suc­cess after SBDC, as­sess­ing mat­ters of scale, land­scap­ing and ap­pear­ance, re­jected plans at a meet­ing in June.

But the de­vel­op­ers re­turned with a num­ber of con­ces­sions, in­clud­ing that a pri­vate rub­bish col­lec­tion ser­vice be used and that no win­dow can be in­serted in any roof slope or front gables of the houses, and the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion was sub­se­quently granted.

John Hol­land, neigh­bour, said: “I’m gut­ted. We’re dev­as­tated be­cause we think they haven’t lis­tened to any of the ob­jec­tions.”

Peo­ple are against the de­vel­op­ment as they say the site is next to an­cient wood­land which houses a wide va­ri­ety of pro­tected trees and wildlife, and state that coun­cil­lors have not taken this into con­sid­er­a­tion.

Added to this, neigh­bours also ob­ject to the size and lay­out of the houses and ar­gue that rub­bish col­lec­tion has not been thought out due to the nar­row en­trance road along which a num­ber of houses sit.

Mr Hol­lands feel he is at a loss as to what he can do and said: “They will just cut down the trees, they will just block off the houses, there will be no badgers. [The wood­land] is not go­ing to ex­ist.

“It’s against all the rec­om­men­da­tions by the Wood­land Trust, Forestry Com­mis­sion and Nat­u­ral Eng­land.

“It’s a bit glum but we don’t know what’s go­ing to hap­pen. “We’re re­ally fed up.” A South Bucks District Coun­cil spokesper­son said: “All ap­pli­ca­tions along with any ob­jec­tions sub­mit­ted are care­fully con­sid­ered by the plan­ning com­mit­tee.

“Per­mis­sion was granted for this de­vel­op­ment in ac­cor­dance with the de­vel­op­ment plan. In this in­stance there were no ma­te­rial plan­ning grounds to refuse the ap­pli­ca­tion.

“The con­tin­ued ob­jec­tion to the scheme on grounds of im­pact on the an­cient wood­land and loss of trees are mat­ters that were dealt with un­der the pre­vi­ous re­served mat­ters ap­pli­ca­tion.

“It should be noted that the pro­posal has the full sup­port of Bucks County Coun­cil ecol­o­gist and the coun­cil’s ar­bori­cul­tur­ist and land­scape of­fi­cer in this re­gard.”

Jack Tay­lor, Wood­land Trust cam­paigner, said: “Nat­u­ral Eng­land’s stand­ing ad­vice in­cludes prece­dent that sets a min­i­mum buf­fer of at least 15 me­tres be­tween an­cient wood­land and any de­vel­op­ment bound­ary.

“Sadly the rec­om­men­da­tion has been ig­nored in this case and will not be fol­lowed by the coun­cil or ap­pli­cants, an­other ex­am­ple of en­vi­ron­men­tal dis­re­gard we are see­ing across the coun­try.

SBDC will soon be con­sult­ing on sites for fu­ture de­vel­op­ment in the lo­cal area and we would urge any­one who cares about the en­vi­ron­ment to get in­volved and make sure an­cient wood­land is given due con­sid­er­a­tion.”

Four four-bed­room homes have been ap­proved for the site in Green Lane

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