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Travellers' pitches proposed at temporary Baughurst site thrown out

Travellers' pitch in Tadley conservation area approved

Jane Meredith

Reporter:

Jane Meredith

Contact:

01635 886637

Travellers park up in Thatcham

PROPOSALS for a temporary travellers’ site in Baughurst were overturned, but another in a Tadley conservation area was approved at a Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council planning meeting on Wednesday last week.

This was after planners revealed there would be a lack of travellers’ sites across the borough over the next five years.

It was standing room only at the meeting regarding proposals for a greenfield site at Violet Lane, Baughurst.

The application was for temporary consent to change of use from a paddock to four travellers’ pitches and associated works.

Chairman of Baughurst Parish Council, Martin Slatford, said the quiet Violet Lane, used by walkers, runners and horse riders, was outside the village settlement policy boundary.

He said: “There are only three houses within 500 metres. The proposed development would dominate this community.”

The lane had few passing places and the application allowed for eight caravans, which, Mr Slatford said, was likely to lead to collisions on the narrow road, with blind bends.

Access to schools, shops and a health centre would be difficult due to lack of street lights and a footpath along only half the lane.

A total 44 letters of objection had been received.

A Mr J James, who declined to reveal his first name to newburytoday, and the agent for applicant, Mr G Jones, pointed out the lack of land supply borough-wide for travellers’ pitches

“If the sites cannot be delivered in five years, this should be a significant – a significant – consideration in planning applications,” said Mr James.

Planning officers confirmed they were recommending temporary permission, due to the borough-wide lack of permanent pitches until larger sites became available in five years time. 

Borough councillor Marilyn Tucker (Con, Pamber and Silchester) said she doubted continuation of the permission would be refused at the end of any temporary period.

Councillors threw out the recommendation, after voting eight against and three in favour.

At the same meeting, proposals to site a third mobile home in a Tadley conservation area, situated east of Church Brook, New Road, were approved, in line with planners’ recommendations.

Brian Woods, the agent for applicant John Black, said the site housed a family of travellers under a 1960s licence transferred to Mr Black and covered an area containing two existing caravans and adjacent woodland. 

Proposals included the retention of hardstanding and a utility building and siting of one mobile home for residential use, and the erection of a utility building.

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