Witchford mobile home set expansion refused by district council planners

PLANS to expand a mobile home park in Witchford have been rejected by East Cambs Council.

Agent Ronald Perrin appliedon behalf of owner Matthew Hall to extend the Cathedral View Mobile Home Park by up to 16 new homes, increasing the development by almost 50 per cent.

The council refused and said the development would encroach on the surrounding countryside.

Mr Perrin said the extra mobile homes, to add to the 33 already in place, would constitute low-cost affordable housing at a time when house building in the district was stagnant.

He said: “The performance for 2009/10, which admittedly was a difficult year for the economy generally, and house building in particular, shows that fewer dwellings have been coming forward and that the targets for affordable housing have not been achieved.

“In my opinion, this supports the present application, which will provide affordable accommodation, on previously developed land, at an effective density, in a manner which will not extend on to open land.”

The park lies on the site of former RAF buildings associated with the old Lancaster Way airfield, which neighbours the site.

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Giles Hughes, the council’s head of planning, said: “The site lies in the countryside outside the designated settlement boundary for Witchford where residential development is strictly controlled, subject to a number of exceptions, including affordable housing.

“The application provides no information about how the proposed housing is to be provided at a cost below market rates, or to remain at an affordable cost for future households.”

Mr Perrin will have six months to appeal the council’s decision.