D Day Looms for Milverton
120 villagers attended a public meeting in Milverton last night to hear the latest situation on the development of Creedwell Orchard.
Parish Council Chairman, Jenny Hoyle, explained that, following informal meetings with Taunton Deane Borough Council and the Parish Council, S Notaro of Bridgwater intended to bring forward a planning application for houses on this contentious site. As a result the Parish Council wanted to know the feeling in the village towards a housing development in this location and therefore had called two public meetings.
This first meeting was to outline the current situation and answer questions. The second has been called for next Tuesday, the 25th October, at 7.30pm in the Victoria Rooms when the Parish Council will receive the views of the village.
Recognising that not everybody will be able to attend the meetings or be comfortable speaking in public, the Parish Council is also happy to receive views and representations by phone letter or email to the Clerk, Gwilym Wren.
Mrs Hoyle said “It was tremendous to see so many people here tonight and I hope they discuss this with their friend and neighbours. This is a really crucial time for our village and it is essential that everyone who has an opinion on a housing development at Creedwell, whether for or against, contributes to the debate.”
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Notes for Editors
The History of the Dispute
In July 1981 trenches were dug a field adjacent to Creedwell Orchard, Milverton ostensibly to start a housing development before the consent expired. Taunton Deane officials examined the site and concluded that the works did not match the approved plans and informed the developer that the planning permission expired on 7th August.
In November 2006 Bach Homes of Swindon applied to Taunton Deane for a Certificate of Lawfulness that the development at Creedwell Orchard had been started before planning permission expired. They, however, omitted to submit evidence from the Taunton Deane files about the siting and expiry of the permission.
Following several months of deliberation Taunton Deane’s Senior Solicitor concluded that on ‘the balance of probabilities a sufficient “start” was made to the development………to have kept the permission alive’.
Members of the Save Milverton Action Group carried out an extensive search of the Taunton Deane files and uncovered documentary proof that both the works carried out in 1981 and the application for the Certificate to legalise the works were based on a plan that had not received planning consent. Correspondence was also uncovered that proved Taunton Deane had informed the applicant in 1981 that his planning consent had expired.
This correspondence was submitted to Taunton Deane as new evidence and the Council agreed to review the Certificate.
In May 2009 Taunton Deane completed the review and concluded that despite that fact that the wrong map had been used and the trenches did not match the planning consent that these were not grounds to revoke the certificate.
A judicial review process was initiated by the Action Group but concluded that Taunton Deane was within its rights to exercise its 'discretion' not to revoke.
Further examination of the development plans revealed that the trenches were further away from the permitted location than had been initially realised. This information was submitted to Taunton Deane. However, the Deane solicitor again exercised her 'discretion' and declined to revoke the Certificate.
Bach Homes no longer has an interest in the site and it has reverted to the landowners, S Notaro.
For further information or details please contact the Clerk to Milverton Parish Council, Gwilym Wren, Haven House, Fore Street, Milverton, Tel 01823 400657. Mobile 07876 146110. Email firstname.lastname@example.org