Gate “would be detrimental to highway safety”, planners say

PUBLISHED: 09:56 22 July 2020 | UPDATED: 09:56 22 July 2020

East Cambs Planners have refused a retrospective planning application for gates at the entrance to a building site in Main Street, Coveney. Pictures: Submitted to East Cambs District Council Planning Portal

East Cambs Planners have refused a retrospective planning application for gates at the entrance to a building site in Main Street, Coveney. Pictures: Submitted to East Cambs District Council Planning Portal

Submitted to East Cambs District Council Planning Portal

A gate which was built to keep a building site in Coveney secure will have to be removed.

Google Street View images from 2011 were submitted to show that there were gates on the site. Images: Google Street View submitted to East Cambs Planning Portal.Google Street View images from 2011 were submitted to show that there were gates on the site. Images: Google Street View submitted to East Cambs Planning Portal.

The wooden gate was set up at the entrance of a project to build two homes in Main Street without the appropriate planning permission.

While permission had been granted for the building work, planners at East Cambridgeshire District Council refused a retrospective application specifically for the gate as it “would be detrimental to highway safety”.

A report compiled alongside their decision said: “The proposed gates [to the project] would be serving a shared access, meaning an individual owner would have no control over the gate being left open to maintain access.

“Therefore, as the proposed gates would be located adjacent to the back edge of the public highway, this would be detrimental to highway safety and other vehicles as residents of the properties would need to stop vehicles on the public highway in order to open and close the gates.

It added: “This would be on the carriageway which would obstruct the free flow of traffic.”

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The retrospective application for the gate was submitted by Julian Palmer in May.

Before the decision to refuse the application was granted, his agent Jamie Palmer contacted the East Cambs planners to explain that historically there had been a set of gates present when the site was a working farmyard.

He included images taken in 2011 from Google Street View to support his claims.

His email to planners said: “If anything, the use of this access and these gates would be less onerous for these two dwellings than it would have been for traffic associated with the previous farmyard use.

“There is also increased visibility provided by the current scheme by virtue of the fact that the conifer tree hedge and building immediately on the back of the highway have subsequently been removed.”

He added these reasons justify why the application should be approved.

County Council Highways disagreed and also said the gates would restrict access to the communal turning areas.

“The proposal would therefore be contrary to the aims and objectives of Policy COM7 of the Local Plan 2015 which seeks proposals to ensure that access to the public highway is safe and convenient,” the report from planners said.


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