Permission in Principle Granted for New Family Home

McLoughlin Planning are overjoyed to have helped a landowner secure permission in principle for the development of a new family home near Thornbury, South Gloucestershire.

The landowner tried to secure planning permission for a new home on the outskirts of Thornbury. Unfortunately, planning permission was refused by South Gloucestershire Council because the proposal site is outside a defined settlement boundary where local planning policies prevented development of new homes.

The landowner approached us to discuss submitting a planning appeal against the decision on their behalf. Whilst we believed the site could be considered sustainable, we advised against submitting a planning appeal because the proposal did not fully comply with the requirements of Local Plan policy. However, the Local Plan was over 5 years old and we believed key planning policies were not consistent with the Framework.

Therefore, to evidence this position, we advised awaiting the outcome of a large development planning appeal in Thornbury, as this would advise us further on the weight and relevance of the planning policies which were considered in this case.

Upon determination of the planning appeal in Thornbury in December 2022, it was found that the Council did not have a 5-year housing land supply. Furthermore, it was found that key strategic Local Plan policies were no longer consistent with the National Planning Policy Framework. As these key policies formed part of the previous reason for refusal issued to the landowner, this change in position offered an opportunity for the site to be re-considered for development.

To act on this, we advised the landowner to submit a Permission in Principle, which would allow the principle of developing a new home to be tested without the need for full detailed plans or supporting information.  This offers both the benefits of saving both initial time and financial resource whilst applicants test the principle of development before progressing with a later technical matters planning application.

We prepared a case setting out the sustainability of the proposal site, benefits of the proposal and the weight applied to relevant planning policies as part of the decision-making process. The case officer agreed with our assessment, and we welcomed their support in ensuring the case could be determined favourably as a delegated decision, despite objection from the local Town Council.

The proposal offers a useful case study on how a change in the Local Plan’s weight and the outcome of important planning appeal decisions can influence the outcome of planning applications. In this instance, we are excited to have after many years of waiting helped this landowner secure the principle of development for their new family home.

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Chris Moore,

01242 895008