Chairman has casting vote on Moss Road housing plan

Members of the Northern Planning Committee were divided over plans to demolish a detached house and replace it with two properties with the decision determined by the Chairman's casting vote.

Mr & Mrs Hirst were seeking permission to demolish a large detached two storey dwelling, which lies within the Green Belt, on Moss Road and construct a pair of detached houses.

The Planning Officer recommended the scheme for approval, concluding it would not be inappropriate development within the Green Belt, that it would not appear incongruous in the context of a varied street scene and the relationship with surrounding neighbours would be acceptable.

However, Councillor Mike Dudley-Jones disagreed and spoke against the application at the planning meeting.

He said "Already the property next door to No.8 - at No.6 has submitted planning documents to mirror this current application so the decision taken today will already have wide reaching implications for the residents of Moss Road well into the future. If both applications are eventually approved, four new houses will have been built inside the Green Belt making a mockery of Alderley Edge Neighbourhood Plan AE2 Policy which is at Regulation 16.

"In an area like Alderley Edge, surrounded by Green Belt, the building of two new 5 bedroomed homes crammed into a space previously occupied by one at No.8, inside the Green Belt, will leave the AENP carrying almost no weight for the future."

Cllr Dudley-Jones added "A refusal of this application makes much more sense for the many people who live happily in Moss Road and who have done for years - rather than an approval pleasing just one. But building just one house at No.8 would have changed all this.

'Surely, in the interests of common sense and in the interests of the people who trust all of us in this meeting today to look after their best interests and in the interests of protecting our Green Belt - this application should be rejected by you."

Members were split with six votes cast against and six for so it came down to the Chairman Councillor Craig Browne who voted to refuse planning permission.

The reasons for refusal were the impact of the proposed development on the character of the area, contrary to policies SE1 and SD2 of the Cheshire East Local Plan Strategy (CELPS); and inappropriate development within the Green Belt, contrary to police PG3 of CELPS.

Councillor Craig Browne said "Having called the application in to committee in the first place, I would have preferred not to have been put in the position of having to use my casting vote (as Chair of Northern Planning Committee); however, defence of the green belt is incredibly important and on this occasion I feel that the correct decision has been made."

Moss Road, Planning Applications


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Jon Williams
Saturday 5th December 2020 at 9:24 am
But yet on nearby Moss Lane the let build three townhouses in place of one house !
David Carey
Monday 7th December 2020 at 4:58 pm
Here we go again attempting to build more houses on green belt land. Cllr Dudley-Jones is completely correct it would have made a mockery of the AENP and set a precedent for further applications. What I don't get is why the Planning Officer concluded it would not be inappropriate? It suggests any application for future planning within green belt land would be potentailly passed, surely that is not right at all!
And yes we all voted our councillors in to help protect green belt land, so Cllr Brown is completely justified in using his casting vote.