Council trying to block plans for a gypsy and traveller site

Barnsley Council is seeking a judicial review to overturn the planning inspector’s decision to grant temporary planning permission for a single pitch gypsy/traveller site in Worsborough.

By Danielle Andrews, Local Democracy Reporter
Wednesday, 28th July 2021, 11:05 am

The planning inspector granted temporary permission for the site, on land north of Worsbrough Road, in June 2021.

The permission is valid for three years, but Joe Jenkinson, head of planning at Barnsley Council says that he planning inspector agreed that it was an “unacceptable site”.

Councillor David Greenhough added that the decision would set a “dangerous precedent” if it is not overturned.

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Town Hall.

The council refused permission for the site, which is home to one family, in March 2020, on the grounds that it would be an “inappropriate development that is harmful to the openness and visual amenities of the Green Belt and conflicts with the purposes of including land within in it.

The refusal documents state that the scheme would also be “harmful to the character and appearance of the conservation area and neighbouring Grade II listed Worsbrough Hall and Worsbrough Hall flats.”

Mr Jenkinson, told a meeting of Barnsley Council’s planning board yesterday (July 27) that the site is a “deliberate unauthorised development”, adding: “we’re all really disappointed in the decision.”

A planning inspectorate report by inspector Roy Merrett states there is “no evidence” to suggest that the development would harm “the living conditions of the settled community, because of increases in antisocial or criminal behaviour, or leading to an increased risk of flooding on the highway.”

“Furthermore I am not persuaded that the nature and limited scale of development proposed would result in harm to the living conditions of local residents by way of noise or unacceptable traffic congestion in the village.

“I have considered the argument that the grant of planning permission wouldset a precedent for similar developments.

“However each application and appeal must be determined on its own individual merits and a generalised concern of this nature would not, in itself, justify withholding planning permission in this case. I have not been provided with evidence of private covenants restricting the use of the land,” added the report.