The Open Spaces Society, Britain’s oldest national conservation body, is concerned that Powys County Council’s principal planning officer has recommended approval of an outline planning application for 12 dwellings and associated works in the village of Glasbury on the River Wye in Powys.
The application will be determined by the Planning, Taxi Licensing and Rights of Way Committee on Thursday 15 March. The planner, Gemma Bufton, recommends that the application be approved subject to a legal agreement (under section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990) to secure the provision of recreational and outdoor space. The Open Spaces Society has objected to the development because it would be on land which has customarily been enjoyed by the public for informal recreation and would also affect public paths. Gwernyfed Community Council, Powys County Council highways department and former councillor Geraint Hopkins have also objected, and there have been 55 other representations.
Says Kate Ashbrook, the society’s general secretary: ‘We oppose this development which would destroy the former Glasbury School playing-fields; these have long been enjoyed by local people for recreation. It is not acceptable merely to offer other open space, this is the historic land for the community, where people have walked and children have played for decades.
‘While the recommended consent would specify that the public footpath must remain open at all times, we know that the development would also interfere with other well-used paths which have not yet been recorded on the official map.
‘We believe that the community will suffer if this development goes ahead; people’s rights of access and recreation will be diminished and the beauty of this lovely area irrevocably damaged.
‘We urge Powys County Council to override the planning officer’s recommendation and to reject this obnoxious proposal,’ Kate concludes.
For more information please visit: www.oss.org.uk