Council loses appeal against Hamble development

Lowford protest

Protestors at the enquiry earlier this month

A Bursledon Parish Councillor has called for the Planning Inspectorate to be scrapped and planning decisions left to local authorities after a planning inspector allowed permission for 150 new homes to be built west of Hamble Lane.

Builder Taylor Wimpey appealed to the inspectorate after the borough council refused planning permission for a development that local groups said would erode the strategic gap and cause traffic congestion in what is already an air quality management area.

But the planning inspector has ruled that building can go ahead because, he said, the council’s claim to have a five-year housing of 3447 supply was “unduly optimistic” and that the emerging local plan – yet to be adopted – did not ‘carry weight’.

The inspector also said he thought that a developer contribution of over half-million pounds toward improvements to the Tesco Windhover roundabout would help reduce queuing times.

The application was allowed subject to conditions to mitigate environmental impacts.

Bursledon Parish Councillor Jane Rich who had campaigned against the development said in a statement:

“Unaccountable government inspectors should not be able to over-ride the decisions of elected councillors who have be called to account at the ballot box.

“Every local council on the Hamble peninsula objected to housing at Hamble Lane, as did Eastleigh Borough Council.

“We were badly let-down by Hampshire County Council that once again refused to object to Hamble Lane’s traffic.   That’s just what happened when they backed turning Hamble Airfield into a gravel pit for 15 years.”

The inspector did not award costs against Eastleigh Borough Council.

Inspector’s decision is here

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