Appeal lodged for gypsy site in Birdham

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The council’s refusal to allow a permanent gypsy site to be built in Birdham has been challenged.

An appeal has been made to the Secretary of State against Chichester District Council planners’ rejecting the application for a single pitch site and a utility building for settled gypsy accommodation together with existing stables.

The application is for land north west of Premier Business Park on Birdham Road, and two public planning inquiries will now be held before government planners.

The application (reference 15/01288/FUL) was turned down in June 2015.

In published reasons for refusal, Chichester District Council stated: “The proposed development would, by reason of its location within the designated Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, have a significant adverse visual impact on the character and appearance of this nationally important designation by reason of the provision of built form and topography of the physical landscape which comprises open, undeveloped agricultural land.

“The proposed development is considered to compromise the essential features of this nationally designated area of landscape.”

Birdham Parish Council and Birdham Village Residents’ Association are among the many to submit letters of objection.

The Parish Council said: “Birdham has one settled Gypsy site. There was no requirement in the Emerging Local Plan to provide further sites.”

The public inquiry for this case will be held on April 7 in Committee Room 1 in East Pallant House, and on April 8 at the city council’s Old Court Room in North Street, both at 10am.

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