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  • FIRST POST
    • izzzzythedog
    • By izzzzythedog 5th Jan 18, 12:00 AM
    • 252Posts
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    izzzzythedog
    Planning permission , head scratcher.
    • #1
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:00 AM
    Planning permission , head scratcher. 5th Jan 18 at 12:00 AM
    We are looking to buy a piece of land
    Last edited by izzzzythedog; 29-05-2018 at 10:33 PM.
Page 1
    • EachPenny
    • By EachPenny 5th Jan 18, 12:25 AM
    • 5,151 Posts
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    EachPenny
    • #2
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:25 AM
    • #2
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:25 AM
    The area of land is a carbon copy of next door that has a bungalow on it already that was built perhaps 10 years or so ago where a bungalow already exsisted .
    The land is within a line of houses so would squeeze between a house and a pub ( with plenty of room mind ) , its assumed its not greenfield as it has been stated its been used for gardens ... not gardens of the pub as they have a car park it butressess up against.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Many councils used to encourage infill development, but this has become less popular since it led to people selling off their gardens for development. In some villages I know, it ended up with houses being built in the gardens of properties built in the gardens of other properties.

    This kind of density of development changes the character of villages and is often unsustainable.

    Locally theres a shed load of housing being built ( 1600+) as the area has been chosen as over spill housing under the governments directive and local council area of choise for housing .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    ...and this is the more up to date approach. The level of new homes required needs whole new towns and villages, so rather than destroying the character of existing settlements, councils are planning on a more strategic approach.

    A development of 1600+ houses is likely to sustain other new facilities like shops, schools etc, which infill development never could.

    The local council have been approached to ask for provisional planning permission , this has been rejected . This was prior to the concept of the 1600 housing being built but still they have been approached and rejected the idea . I do not know why and cant think of a single reason for them not to grant this.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Most likely because the proposal does not accord with the local plan... which at a guess says that development will be concentrated into the new 1600+ site and other locations will be looked at case by case with a presumption against building on gardens.

    Also if i were to buy it , bung a caravan on it , sit back and fight it what would i expect in the future and how likely are people whom are prepared to be extremely stubborn to get it finalised even if it takes a few years .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    You will probably need to get planning consent to site a caravan on the land if you intend to live in it. If you don't get consent, the council will take enforcement action against you (very expensive for you).

    However stubborn you are, the Council can be more stubborn. They have the law and the courts to rely on if you attempt to buck the system.

    The only thing that will make a difference is if you were able to win an appeal against the council's refusal (you will need professional advice how to do this) or if the council change their development plan and include new policies which favour development on this piece of land.

    If you can name the council involved it might help to identify the policy they have which is causing the issue.
    "In the future, everyone will be rich for 15 minutes"
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 5th Jan 18, 3:02 AM
    • 25,274 Posts
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    Davesnave
    • #3
    • 5th Jan 18, 3:02 AM
    • #3
    • 5th Jan 18, 3:02 AM
    I own a bungalow in a hamlet between two villages. My garden land has good existing private access and would easily accommodate two more low-rise homes.

    Nevertheless, I would not expect to obtain PP on my garden, because this would be regarded as unwelcome ribbon-type development in the countryside. The properties that make up the hamlet are mostly connected to outmoded farming practices, so there is no need for them in modern times.There's no justification for more development on the site, since both of the nearby settlements have land earmarked for building, supported by basic services. Indeed, 90 new houses are currently under construction in one of them.

    In places where piecemeal self-build development has been allowed in the recent past, such as parts of Wales, the result has been long ribbons of property and settlements with no definite centre to them. This has allowed people their dream, but at a cost to the predominantly rural landscape.

    As an aside, until a few years ago there were people living in caravans on a plot of land just outside the village boundary. Our council, being more tolerant than most, negotiated with the owners for roughly 10 years, but eventually took clearance action. The costs involved were substantial, so the land was seized to offset some of the public expenditure.

    The council in your case must surely have a published development plan which you could consult.
    Last edited by Davesnave; 05-01-2018 at 7:13 AM. Reason: bad English
    'It's a terrible thing to wait until you're ready…..Generally speaking, now is as good a time as any.' Hugh Lawrie.
    • Tom99
    • By Tom99 5th Jan 18, 3:22 AM
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    Tom99
    • #4
    • 5th Jan 18, 3:22 AM
    • #4
    • 5th Jan 18, 3:22 AM
    Are you buying it at garden value or at a value which reflects the potential for permission to develop?
    • eddddy
    • By eddddy 5th Jan 18, 6:56 AM
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    eddddy
    • #5
    • 5th Jan 18, 6:56 AM
    • #5
    • 5th Jan 18, 6:56 AM
    The local council have been approached to ask for provisional planning permission , this has been rejected .
    ...
    I do not know why and cant think of a single reason for them not to grant this .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Do you mean that an application for outline planning consent was submitted - but rejected by the council?

    If so, you should be able to find the submission and reasons for rejection (the Officer's Report) online, via the local council's website.
    • GrumpyDil
    • By GrumpyDil 5th Jan 18, 7:17 AM
    • 167 Posts
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    GrumpyDil
    • #6
    • 5th Jan 18, 7:17 AM
    • #6
    • 5th Jan 18, 7:17 AM
    Agreed that if pp was previously applied for you need to check the decision notice to see the original grounds for refusal. Note that may only give an indication as the local plan/ planning policies may have been reviewed and updated since the original application.

    Also if the council has indicated PP would be refused have they not given you an indication of the reason they would be likely to refuse. I only ask as the planning dept I used to work in would certainly have said e.g. we'd be likely to refuse because the proposed application would breach policy X or y in the local plan, even on an initial pre-application discussion.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 5th Jan 18, 7:58 AM
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    AdrianC
    • #7
    • 5th Jan 18, 7:58 AM
    • #7
    • 5th Jan 18, 7:58 AM
    The local council have been approached to ask for provisional planning permission , this has been rejected
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Did you actually apply for PP (I presume by "provisional", you mean "outline"), or did you just ask for pre-app advice?

    If you applied, it's unlikely they really gave no reason at all on the rejection - care to share the link?
    If advice, they'd probably have said "It's unlikely, for these reasons".
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 5th Jan 18, 8:17 AM
    • 25,162 Posts
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    Doozergirl
    • #8
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:17 AM
    • #8
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:17 AM
    Everything as above, but one thing that hasn!!!8217;t been mentioned is that garden IS treated as greenfield now and has been for several years. It is not brownfield which is actually now called !!!8220;Previously Developed Land!!!8221; for what I assume is clarity. Your overgrown garden area will look more like one than the other - I can guess which!

    I think you!!!8217;re crazy putting in an offer saying there's no real reason planning shouldn!!!8217;t be approved when
    a) you haven!!!8217;t seen the Decision Notice for the rejection
    b) you haven!!!8217;t read the Local Plan. Yes, it is a large document but they are sectioned and the vast majority can be eliminated by reading the headings and having a bit of a scan. The refusal wording on the Decision Notice will also help you find relevant part of the plan etc.

    In my view, you should be employing a Planning Consultant to take a proper look at the chances of success. Why are people selling without PP when it makes the difference between land of very low value and land of great value? I!!!8217;d say it!!!8217;s because they are aware that they are going to fail continually.

    It took us a long time to get planning permission for our house but the land cost us nothing and would have been worth 10% of what it is worth now with planning permission. I felt in my gut that developing the land was the right thing to do as ours was already previously developed. Our argument was about whether it was garden or previously developed. I did all the work for our successful application myself.

    All the things that you think are relevant are actually irrelevant. You need to find reasons why the development is acceptable - that is within the Local Plan and NPPF. It all needs to relate directly to the plot and not to be full of !!!8220;but they!!!8217;re allowed to build!!!8221; unless there are some really relatable developments on the street. Unlikely, if we!!!8217;re talking about a hamlet.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • pinklady21
    • By pinklady21 5th Jan 18, 2:10 PM
    • 601 Posts
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    pinklady21
    • #9
    • 5th Jan 18, 2:10 PM
    • #9
    • 5th Jan 18, 2:10 PM
    Unless there has previously been a house or other suitable development on the land, you are probably buying a garden / corner of a field that is unlikely ever to achieve the planning permission that will allow it to be developed.
    Even if the owner did sell it to you, if there is a whiff of a chance that you might get planning permission in future (which would of course greatly increase the value of the land), any sensible seller would slap on an "uplift" clause. ie if planning permission were ever to be granted, then a payment of X% of the increase in value would be due to be paid to the current seller. These uplift clauses can last for decades.
    If you are dead set on buying it, then insert a clause in your offer that it is subject to you getting planning permission.
    Otherwise, look forward to growing a few flowers and vegetables in your garden!
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 5th Jan 18, 3:11 PM
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    ProDave
    It depends where you are and what your local plan says.

    Up here it would almost certainly get planning, but not where I used to live.

    Do what I did when we bought the plot we are currently building on. Make an offer to buy it subject to getting planning permission. Then apply for outline permission and appeal if necessary.

    Is it actually for sale or are you (like we did) making an offer direct to the owner when it is not even on the market?

    If it's for sale without PP that probably means it won't get it as anyone with half a brain cell would try for planning before putting it on the market.
    • EachPenny
    • By EachPenny 5th Jan 18, 4:19 PM
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    EachPenny
    The areas a hamlet rather than a village . It is between 2 villages and the local housing is spread along the road frontage as is this piece of land . The village to the north ( 1/2 a mile ) is having as you say infill.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    I would say this is the most likely reason why planning consent wouldn't be granted - Councils are far more concerned about sustainable development than they used to be, and concentrating development into hubs is considered more sustainable than ribbon development.

    Even in rural areas consideration will be given to things like bus services and shops. Ribbon development usually means car dependency, and doesn't facilitate the strengthening of communities.

    That is partly why previous restrictions on developing greenfield land have been lifted, and new restrictions are being applied to infill-type development. It makes more sense to build on greenfield adjacent to a village with a shop and a bus route than it does to build in the garden of a house in the middle of nowhere.

    The area locally has applications that will double a village 2 miles away in size and encompassses a massive amount of greenbelt . Every parcel of potential land is to be built on regardless of its status . Small developments are dotted throughout the local area , HS2 is also scuttling past within a mile . There is massive amounts of proposals for housing and industry locally . There simply isnt a clear concept of the future here and all this has kicked off after the planning was approached previously ( not by us ).
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    As above, there is a concept, it is to concentrate development together, even if that means building on greenfield sites. It is just unfortunate for you that the site you are interested in isn't one that currently is seen as a priority to develop.
    "In the future, everyone will be rich for 15 minutes"
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 14th Jan 18, 4:15 PM
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    lincroft1710
    It often appears that logic goes out of the window when granting or not granting PP. As you know a refusal of PP can be appealed and even then allowing the appeal can sometimes not seem logical.

    If the council are indicating refusal of PP, are you willing to risk buying the land and take your chances with an appeal?
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 26th May 18, 5:02 PM
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    ProDave
    Has this actually been the subject of a formal planning application? or just some informal, non binding, pre application advice?

    If the former, you need to see the exact wording of why it was refused, and either alter the proposal to overcome the objections, or appeal the decision.

    If the latter, then a formal planning application is your next step, possibly as advised by employing a planning consultant.
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 26th May 18, 5:15 PM
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    ProDave
    If you are considering buying the plot there are 2 ways to proceed.

    One is make an offer to buy it subject to getting planning permission, then submit an application for outline permission to build a house. This is exactly what we did when buying our plot. You don't need to own the land to submit a planning application but you must notify the owner you are doing that.

    The alternative is to buy it at a cheaper price, but that will usually come with an uplift clause, so when you eventually get permission you will have to pay the vendor a percentage of the uplift in value before you can build on the plot.

    Head on over to buildhub.org.uk for a self build forum.
    • Aylesbury Duck
    • By Aylesbury Duck 26th May 18, 5:16 PM
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    Aylesbury Duck
    We have also noticed the house next door has nibbled a few foot off this land so we will be knocking on the door and pointing out our intentions to ignore this if they were to welcome our PP application.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Not a sensible thing to do, for a number of reasons.
    Please forgive the deliberate omission of apostrophes on some posts whilst I await MSE to do something about the daft codes that appear in their place when typing on certain devices.
    • the_r_sole
    • By the_r_sole 26th May 18, 9:42 PM
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    the_r_sole
    Thats helpfull , rammed full of infomation , thank you .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    You need professional advice, just as you did five months ago, you should not be buying a bit of greenbelt expecting to change its designation in the local development plan without having explored the risks involved with a suitable professional. I would suggest (based on your posts) that you have no experience of gaining planning permission or changing local plans, but yet you seem confident you will just buy this bit of land and it will fall into place.
    • EachPenny
    • By EachPenny 27th May 18, 11:23 AM
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    EachPenny
    I remain unsure why they would define this small strip of land this way given it brings nothing to the area whatsoever and is not intrinsic to the idea of greenfield/belt and certaintly is not part of any border . It does not fit into the concept of the reasons for greenbelt and its clearly a building plot waiting to happen.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    This is not really a good place to start your planning journey. If you don't understand the reasons then you have little chance of making the right arguments to change the status of the land.

    What would concern me is you've gone ahead with the purchase of the land before understanding the feasibility of getting consent. And it sounds like many people (perhaps with a lot more experience and knowledge than yourselves) have been trying and failing.

    So our plan of action is firstly to get a change of classification on the land away from greenbelt/field to residentual . We fully understand we will need to fight the good fight with the council to get this and we are simply going through the motions until the appeal process s the council will reject any and all proposals we offer.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    To avoid wasting thousands of pounds you really need to learn about the planning system urgently. The 'appeal process' relates to specific applications, not to the policies and land use classification in the Planning Authority's Local Plan. If the council refuse permission for sound reasons based on the Local Plan policies (e.g. 'garden grabbing', transport impact, overdevelopment) then the planning inspector will not simply agree with you just because you really, really want to develop this piece of land.

    Planning appeals are normally won where it can be shown the authority has misapplied planning policies, not because the policies themselves are wrong.

    We will of course approach the council prior to make it fully known how we intend to offer evidence in the reasons why it should be granted PP and explain that we will be taking it as far as is needed so hope they can see the wood from the trees and not force us to aim for the appeal process.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    I am sure the planning officer you speak to will be most grateful for the information you intend to provide them with. I suggest you first ask them to stop eating their biscuits and/or drinking their coffee to minimise the risk of them choking as they ROTFL.

    Seriously, if you adopt that approach then you will more or less ensure you will not get the planning consent you are hoping for. Treat your planning officer as if they were a god, not someone who you consider to be beneath your superior knowledge of the planning system.

    We will also been popping round to our local MP`s surgury to try to get him on board plus petitioning our local councillers.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Planning is a statutory process and there are strict rules on how the decisions are made. Neither MP's nor Councillors are allowed to lobby on behalf of an applicant. The best you will achieve by approaching them will be advice on how to make a planning application.

    We apparently could avoid alot of this if we seek to create an eco house as it turns out they will automatically grant PP if its got a tiny carbon footprint . Once again a chat with planning could allow us to walk this path if needed.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    This is not how it works in reality. Otherwise I would be putting in planning applications to build some rather nice eco houses with excellent close-up views of Stonehenge. All a 'chat' will do is to obtain advice on the probability of getting consent and what you might need to change in your plans to achieve it. If the site itself is not considered suitable for development then the type of development ('eco' or otherwise) is irrelevant.

    If this fails we have already been informed we can place stabling on it . This will increase the worth of the land if we then decide to offload or we can then apply for a change of use to housing!
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Who informed you of this? There are still rules on planning, even if all you want to put up are stables. You will probably need to get planning consent for a stable block in this particular situation.

    An application for change of use to housing would still need to comply with the relevant policies. If you cannot obtain consent for residential now, you won't be able to obtain consent for change of use. The planning system is not stupid.... it is aware of and therefore prevents people doing that kind of thing.

    It is a round about way of doing things but its plan B. It turns out if livestock is kept on the land then builds are allowed to be erected to cater for the workers on this land . It turns out there are more than 1 way of doing things , i dont like the idea of this as it seems underhand but its an option.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Again, who told you this? If it seems underhand do you not think other people have thought of the idea before and found it doesn't work in reality? Otherwise farmers up and down the country would be having houses built on agricultural land to 'cater for the workers on this land'.

    In the event the council allowing just a stable then so be it . We will clear the land of the trees ( self seeded without a pres order ) , landscape it and use it as we see fit or maybe sell back out .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Selling the land on may be the only option you end up having. Bear in mind that it might take a very long time to sell, and there is a high risk of you getting less for the land than you paid for it, especially if you have kindly explored all the planning options for the next purchaser and still come up with a blank.

    Nothing formal has ever been presented based on what the planning officer told me over the phone . Just a quick chat to anyone whom enquired most likely over the phone . He seems a nice approachable chap.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    I've never met a planning officer who wasn't a 'nice approachable chap' (or chapess). It is part of the job to be nice and polite to people (customers) making use of the planning service, and feedback on telephone manner (amongst other things) will be used as part of their performance review.

    There is however a difference between being nice and polite when communicating, and using their professional judgement when considering a planning application. If personality and telephone manner was a true indicator of whether or not planning consent would be given, then nobody would ever be refused anything.

    We were thinking of taking a few little steps ourselves and then as you say seeking a planning consultant whom knows the councils planning office . By little steps an example is i was going to give the planning officer a call and ask if theres a company whom they prefer to work with given my intention . I figure there must be some they wont have time for and some they consider to be fair and therefore more likely to give a smooth transition . Every little helps in this mindfield .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Unfortunately (for you) you figure wrong.

    Planning officers have to deal with whoever they have to deal with, and have a professional duty to do so impartially. There are of course companies that experienced planning officers will know are more unpleasant to deal with than others, but the chances of them telling you which ones are very close to zero. If the planning officer were to make a recommendation about which company to use, and then granted consent for an application made by that company on your behalf, they would leave themselves wide open to allegations of corruption. (no doubt you would highlight in making your appeal that you used the company personally recommended by the planning officer )

    Simply asking the planning officer for a personal recommendation of who they would like to work with would immediately ring alarm bells in their head that this case may result in them having to defend themselves in a disciplinary hearing and thus ensuring from that point on everything is done absolutely by the book. Far from 'every little helps' it could be one of the biggest blunders you make.

    It really seems you don't understand the first thing about this 'minefield' you are walking into, and are relying on hearsay to inform your judgement of the risks attached to an investment of a very large amount of money. Please, for your sake stop and think. If it really was as easy as you think it is, why do you think others (with a lot more experience and money) have not already bought the land and built houses on it?
    "In the future, everyone will be rich for 15 minutes"
    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 27th May 18, 11:50 AM
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    sevenhills
    We are led to believe the land is either greenfield or greenbelt . I remain unsure why they would define this small strip of land this way given it brings nothing to the area whatsoever and is not intrinsic to the idea of greenfield/belt and certaintly is not part of any border . It does not fit into the concept of the reasons for greenbelt and its clearly a building plot waiting to happen .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog

    The chances of new development on Green belt is subject to its aspects of its design quality. So, getting Greenbelt Planning Permission relies on your design. The National Planning policy framework outlines that a development can be permitted if it is of high architectural value and quality.

    • the_r_sole
    • By the_r_sole 27th May 18, 2:03 PM
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    the_r_sole
    Wow , thank you for taking the time .

    I will agree we are nieve in this and hence the thread to open our eyes , find out what we are in for and seek to ask kindly of others experience in how we can make this happen as painlessly as possible .
    Can i ask how you would recommend we go forward . We are buying the land and will seek permission regardless of the hurdles in place .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    How much time and money have you go to throw at this?!
    It's abundantly clear that you literally have no idea of the process, there is no painless way to change the designation on a piece of land in the local development plan and if you are thinking of a para 55 house - copying the next door neighbours bungalow is miles away from complying with this policy.
    You are about to waste all kinds of money on this bit of land, it's absolutely stunning that you haven't bothered to engage professionals to devise a planning strategy before spending money on a bit of land that's impossible to develop, if you've not figured that out in five months....

    You need to get real with this - I know you'll probably report this post too because seemingly the truth is nothing you want to hear about, you've said if plan a doesn't work you've got a plan b and plan c - but in reality there is no realisation of a viable plan a,b or c
    Last edited by the_r_sole; 27-05-2018 at 2:12 PM.
    • EachPenny
    • By EachPenny 27th May 18, 2:33 PM
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    EachPenny
    I will agree we are nieve in this and hence the thread to open our eyes , find out what we are in for and seek to ask kindly of others experience in how we can make this happen as painlessly as possible .
    Can i ask how you would recommend we go forward . We are buying the land and will seek permission regardless of the hurdles in place .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    Then aside from the advice already given, the next best advice is to wait for either the next door bungalow or pub to be sold, buy that as well, combine the two plots into one, and then sell the lot as a whole.

    That is about the only way you will ever see a significant return on the value of your investment, unless the Council has a significant change of policy at the Local Plan level (typically this might happen once every 10 years or so).

    Thats what we have also read . A person put a bid in for the land ( at 50% more than we are paying ) with the intent to create an underground `eco` house . The land has a mild slope but you cant help but notice the stream that creates the boundry of the property so i suspect it would be inappropriate.
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    If someone else put in a bid 50% more than you are paying then why is the land being sold to you? This should tell you something (either the Estate Agent is lying to you about the bid, or else the bidders discovered there was no way of getting planning consent, even for an 'eco' house).

    We were not seeking to create anything thats `defining` . We are hoping to simply create the same as next door , a simple small bungalow . I suspect if we stated we wanted to build this with geothermic extraction , solar panels , a composting toilet and a well we would be more than likely given carte blanche to do as we please .
    Originally posted by izzzzythedog
    You are making a huge and unjustified assumption. 'Eco' does not give you carte blanche. Before anything else you would need to show the site is suitable for the development you propose, and there are no alternative sites you could develop. The planning rules are not simply torn up because someone promises to build a composting toilet.

    Development on green belt land (which it doesn't sound like this is) is sometimes allowed if an overriding need for that development in that location can be demonstrated.

    It would be a requirement of a development in such a case that the design has "high architectural value and quality". But the reverse is not true, a "high architectural value and quality" development cannot be built just anywhere simply because it is high quality.
    "In the future, everyone will be rich for 15 minutes"
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