Developer Graeme McGaffney had wanted to build 30 care bungalows and 61 extra care retirement apartments on land off Carr Lane in Hoylake.
JDA Architects designed the scheme, which was to also have communal facilities like a bistro and hobby rooms. Grimster Planning also worked on the project.
The eight-acre site in question largely consisted of Green Belt land, which was the chief reason for the refusal by planning inspector Patrick Hanna.
McGaffney initially submitted his planning application to Wirral Council in October 2020. According to an appellant statement produced by Grimster Planning, the council had not reached a decision on the application by its target determination date of 31 December. That lack of decision led McGaffney to file an appeal against non-determination.
The council stated in its appeal form that it had not been able to reach a verdict on the application within the timeframe because the council’s offices were closed, officers had higher caseloads and there was a coronavirus-related disruption. Wirral Council wrote that if it had made a decision, however, the council would have refused the application because of its Green Belt location. Wirral Council also argued that the scheme would not “constitute sustainable development by reason of its location, indicate siting, design and layout.”
Planning inspector Hanna said in his report that he had no reason to disagree with the council’s position.