Refusal confirmed for Muller in Sandbach

Muller Property Group’s hybrid application for retail, a care home and houses at Houndings Park in Sandbach have been refused, in line with officer recommendations.

The Alsager-based developer already has consent for a residential development of up to 200 homes and open space at the Fields Farm site, off Old Mill Road, but launched a consultation last year on a different scheme.

Full permission was sought for 7.1 acres, with elements including a 21,000 sq ft foodstore, a filling station with retail, expected to be operated by BP and M&S Simply Food respectively, two drive-thru units, a farm shop and two retail pods of around 1,400 sq ft, to be operated by a national bakery and national sandwich chain.

For the remaining 10.2 acres, Muller asked for outline permission for a 78-bed care home, 92 dwellings, including houses of two to four bedrooms and two apartment blocks, along with the conversion of existing barn and farmhouse buildings into two dwellings per building.

In the days leading up to the strategic planning board’s meeting yesterday, Muller asked to have the application deferred. The developer had instructed Lambert Smith Hampton to examine the retail impact assessment carried out for Cheshire Easy by WYG, questioning some of its conclusions. Matt Wedderburn, senior associate at Knights, spoke at committee, adding to the retail point Muller’s contention that it had received late responses on consultation.

However, the application found little favour among the planning committee. Among the councillors speaking against the proposals was Cllr Sam Corcoran, who presented a petition of more than 800 local residents opposed. The motion for refusal was backed by 11 votes.

Muller has been approached for comment.

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