A new development of 46 homes in Fowey has been given outline planning permission despite concerns that it is on a greenfield site.
The homes could be built on a site off one of the main roads into the coastal town and half the properties would be affordable.
However the site sits in an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) and there had been a number of objections from local people and the unit which manages AONB sites in Cornwall.
The application was approved by Cornwall Council’s central sub-area planning committee when it met today.
A report to the committee stated that the development was considered to be “rounding-off” as there are homes to the south and homes across the road opposite the site.
AONB Unit staff had registered an objection to the plans on a number of grounds arguing that the development would harm the AONB, that the application was a major development and should be subject to more tests and that they did not consider it to be “rounding-off” as there was just a single property to the north.
Fowey Town Council had also objected saying the site was outside the established development boundary. It also said it was in the process of drawing up its neighbourhood plan which would be looking to have new homes built on brownfield sites.
Fowey resident Dan Mitchell said there were fears that if the site was developed it would allow land to the west of it to also be developed.
Justin Dodge, agent to the applicants, said the application had been revised following the comments from the AONB unit and had allowed for bungalow-style buildings at the highest point of the site to reduce the visual impact.
He said it was a “high quality development and is sensitive to the AONB” and that it would “deliver good quality affordable homes”.
Committee member John Fitter said the entire area in and around Fowey is an AONB and said: “Fowey has to be allowed to develop”.
Councillor Joanna Kenny said she did not consider the plans to be “rounding-off” and said that she supported the town council in using brownfield sites for housing.
She proposed that the application was refused but when put to the vote it lost by five votes to eight. Cllr Fitter proposed approval which was agreed 10 votes to four.
Posted on: October 29, 2018