Grantham farm plans opposed
The developer of controversial plans for 11 bungalows aimed at over 55s has been told to come back with with a complete scheme for Spittlegate Farm and make provision for affordable housing.
David Goodridge, who lives near the Gorse Lane site, already has planning permission to convert five barns on the farm site.
However, he told members of South Kesteven District Council’s development management committee that with current land values, the barn conversion scheme alone “won’t make economic sense.”
So, to proceed he said he needs approval for 11 ‘freehold’ bungalows, which would also include an on-site manager and a minibus service into Grantham.
Recommending refusal, planning officers argued the site was ‘unsustainable’ and in ‘open countryside’.
However, Mr Goodridge, plus several councillors, questioned this, noting Spittlegate Farm is close to a Volvo dealership and other businesses, a caravan park, and more houses down Gorse Lane.
Furthermore, plans have been approved for a shopping village nearby and related housing, with Mr Goodridge also saying 350 homes have been mooted for a field over the road.
Committee chairman Martin Wilks said it was debatable the farm was in open countryside but the scheme lacked affordable housing provision. It also appeared to ‘clash’ with the barn conversion plan elsewhere on the farm.
Mr Goodridge told the meeting he would make a Section 106 agreement, but officers said he should have included this in his application, noting such provision has been council policy since 2010. Before all the committee rejected bungalows application, Coun Judy Setevens said: “I think this particular developer must be aware of our policies. I have seen him here several times.”
After the meeting, Mr Goodridge contacted the Journal to say he made offers to sign a Section 106 agreements in the ‘Design & Access Statement’ supplied to SKDC in January and in a ‘briefing note’ responding to the officer’s recommendation to refuse the scheme, both of which have been seen by the Journal.
He said: “We are exceedingly disappointed about the decision, we have provided written confirmation to the council that we will provide affordable housing and enter into a Section 106. It is a great shame that this was overlooked by the committee. I can confirm a new application will be submitted within days.”