Local News

Council will not challenge gasworks decision

Monday 4 May 2020

The District Council have decided not to challenge the Planning Inspectorate's decision to allow 375 homes to be built on the former gaswiorks site in Marshgate Drive.

Planning permission for the development was refused by East Herts District Council (EHDC) last year due to poor design, overdevelopment and highway capacity issues.

The site is earmarked for around 200 homes in the recently adopted Local Plan. However, developer St.William proposed almost double that number in their planning application and subsequently appealed to the Planning Inspectorate, who overturned the council's decision. This came despite the Planning Inspectorate accepting the figure of 200 homes when the Local Plan was submitted for approval.

Councillors and planning officials had been dismayed at the Planning Inspectorate's decision to allow St.Williams proposals to go ahead and sought legal advice on challenging the decision. However, the council have now reluctantly dropped moves to seek a review.

In a statement, EHDC said: "The Council is extremely disappointed with the decision taken by the Planning Inspectorate to allow the planning appeal for 375 homes at land at Marshgate Drive, Hertford. The Council has taken legal advice and after serious consideration has decided not to challenge the decision. This decision is based on the legal advice received and the likelihood of success.

"Nevertheless, the Council has raised the matter of planning decisions on appeal going against recently adopted Local Plans with the Local Government Association and is lobbying the government. We are aware that we are not the only local planning authority in this situation and feel that such decisions undermine public confidence in Local Plans"

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