Oakmere scheme gains approval on appeal

Simon Donohue

Steven Abbott Associates has secured outline planning permission for a development of 148 dwellings on behalf of Oakmere Homes following an appeal inquiry.

The appeal site is located within a designated green gap between Kendal and Oxenholme, Cumbria.

Key issues in the case revolved around whether, in the absence of a five year supply of developable housing land, the proposal would be a sustainable form of development.

The inspector considered the provision of affordable housing, the effect on highway and transport infrastructure and the suitability of the site for housing development, in particular the effect on the green gap.

The inspector accepted the case presented by SAA and in particular that the pressing need for additional housing and the sustainable location of the site outweigh the policy objections to development within the green gap.

Whilst recognising the fact that the width of the green gap would be reduced, the inspector accepted the argument that the proposal would not result in the coalescence of Kendal and Oxenholme, and would not have significant adverse effects on wildlife and nature conservation.

The decision reflects the thrust of national planning policy to significantly boost the delivery of new homes.

Alastair Skelton, a partner at Steven Abbott Associates, said: "We are pleased the inspector recognised the significant benefits associated with this new housing development on the edge of Kendal.

"This appeal decision removes uncertainly regarding the future development of the site and will enable Oakmere Homes to promote and deliver a high quality development providing much needed market and affordable housing.

"We will move forward positively with South Lakeland District Council and other stakeholders to ensure that the detailed proposals are right for this key housing site."

In addition to SAA, the professional team associated with the development proposals also included Ian Ponter of Kings Chambers, Harrison Pitt Architects, Envirotech, PSA Design, DTZ, Expert QS, Weightmans, PDP Associates, and Oxford Archaeology North.

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