Appeal Allowed : Chevening House
27th February 2023
Chevening House, Chevening Road, Chevening, SEVENOAKS, TN14 6HG
The appeal was made under section 78 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 against a refusal to grant planning permission.
1. The appeal is allowed and planning permission is granted for Chevening Estate
Parkland enhancement, including construction of landscaped mounds, new
planting, surface water drainage and public access at Chevening House
Chevening Road, SEVENOAKS, TN14 6HG in accordance with the terms of the
application, Ref 20/03660/FUL, dated 11 December 2020,
Please see attached decision for information with commentary from the case officer below;
The District Council refused this proposal as it was considered to be inappropriate development within the Green Belt. The Inspector concluded that the proposed development did not constitute as inappropriate development with the Green Belt and that it complements its purposes by serving to enhance the beneficial use of the area by providing greater access to recreation and biodiversity. Other issues raised by third parties in terms of impacts upon Heritage, AONB, Highway Safety, Ecology, loss of agricultural land, residential amenity and use of imported material were either outweighed by the benefits of the proposal or accords with development plan policies. The Inspector allowed the appeal in consideration of the completed s106 and subject to conditions.
Badgers Mount Parish Council had objected strongly to this appeal on the grounds of increased HGV activity on the A224, vehicular pollution, air quality amongst other items.
However, this was the response to those objections:
22. Concerns have been raised about the presence and management of Heavy
Goods Vehicles (HGVs) travelling to and from the site over the 5-year
construction period. If the appeal succeeds the implementation of the HGV
Management Strategy would be secured via a planning obligation. This
Strategy identifies the prescribed routes to the site for vehicles arriving from
both the M25 Junction 4 and from more local sources. The former would use
the A224 through Badgers Mount. Subject to conditions controlling the timing
and volume of traffic along this route, there is no evidence before me to
indicate that this route would not have the capacity or is unsuitable for HGV
traffic. Furthermore, assessments of the impact on air quality have
demonstrated that the use of the HGV Management Strategy to control HGV
movement through air quality management areas would mean that there would
be no significant adverse impacts. Similarly, the evidence before me indicates
that there would be no significant noise implications.
23. The HGV Management Strategy would permit access to the site from Morants
Court Road/London Road for more local sources of construction arisings. Local
concerns relating to congestion during peak hours, and specifically outside the
primary school at Dunton Green, would be addressed by restricting the use of
this section of the highway to a maximum of 40 two-way movements per day.
Access would also be limited by condition to specific times of the day, avoiding
school drop off/pick up times.
24. Access to the site itself would involve use of the section of the B2211 to the
east of Turvins Farm, avoiding the sharp bend further west. Access to the
main part of the site would then be provided by plant crossing facilities which
would cross the B2211 further south. There is no evidence that this
arrangement would lead to any highway safety concerns. The addition of a
new footpath link providing a connection between existing footpaths SR174,
SR173 and SR172, thereby avoiding the need for pedestrians to use a short
section of the B2211, would improve road safety.
25. Whilst the B2211 is used regularly by cyclists, the evidence before me indicates
that such usage tends to be by experienced road cyclists, often travelling in
visible groups, who are experienced at cycling in traffic. Also such use is
mainly in the evening and at weekends, outside the access times for
construction traffic. For these reasons my view is that the proposal would not
have an unacceptable impact on highway safety for cyclists.
26. More generally, in managing the environmental impact of HGV traffic, the
hauliers transporting arisings from construction sites must be approved by the
appellant (Rural Arisings Limited) and be willing to adhere to the company’s