Monthly Archives: October 2018

Fire away






In a previous blog, Flame test, we reported an appeal case in which an inspector was not satisfied that a sprinkler system would provide adequate mitigation against fire safety risk at a site for four flats which would be inaccessible to fire appliances. In another appeal concerning the erection of one dwelling in Greater Manchester, on the other hand, an inspector decided that sprinklers would overcome the problem.

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Behind the wheel






The conventional planning view has been that low levels of car ownership can be expected amongst elderly people, and accordingly, parking requirements at retirement housing need only be minimal. Perhaps this view is becoming a little outdated, as an inspector determining an appeal against the refusal of planning permission for sheltered retirement apartments in Essex points out (DCS Number 400-019-603):

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Inspector gadget






We all have to keep up with the times, including inspectors.

An inspector determining an appeal relating to a 49-storey mixed use building in east London (DCS Number 200-007-957) has reported that “At the site visit, virtual reality goggles allowed me to ‘see’ the proposed building in its future surroundings.”

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Supply and demand






An inspector determining an appeal against the refusal of outline planning permission for four dwellings in rural Hampshire has distinguished between housing demand and housing need (DCS Number 200-007-965).

Local plan policy allowed for small scale residential proposals of a scale and type that met a locally agreed need, the inspector recorded. The appellants argued that ‘demand’ for housing is synonymous with ‘need’.

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Rub-a-dub-dub






Hot tubs do not require planning permission, a reporter determining a case in southeast Scotland has ruled (DCS Number 400-019-975).

The reporter identified the key factors he needed to assess in relation to whether the eleven hot tubs, sited at park lodges, required planning permission were their size, permanence and degree of physical attachment to the land (Cardiff Rating Authority v Guest Keen Baldwin Iron & Steel Co Ltd [1949] and Skerritts of Nottingham Ltd v SSETR & Harrow LBC [2000]).

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Brexit woes






In Oxfordshire some allowance has been made for the unsettling impact of Brexit, where an inspector has extended permission for the retention of eight staff caravans at an hotel beyond April 2019, allowing the business time to arrange alternative staff accommodation following the country’s departure from the EU (DCS Number 400-019-891).

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An axed annexe






An inspector has granted permission for independent use of a granny annexe in the Devon countryside in line with a revision to the NPPF (DCS Number 400-019-912).

Planning permission had been granted in 2003 for the reconstruction of a dwelling with granny annexe. The permission was subject to a condition that the annexe should not be used as an independent unit of residential accommodation separate from the house, in accordance with the development plan which sought to protect the countryside.

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