Shaftesbury Town Council says they’ll object to Persimmon’s proposed estate in the strongest terms.
The developer wants to build 135 homes, industrial starter units and a hotel or care home on land south of A30. These fields have been repeatedly earmarked for businesses that offer employment. “We don’t want to see anything other than employment use in one form or another,” said Cllr John Lewer.
Persimmon claims a lack of interest in the 7-hectares of commercial land, a suggestion refuted by Cllr Phil Proctor, who says he called Persimmon’s agent and didn’t hear back from them.
Cllr Alex Chase isn’t convinced by Persimmon’s offer to include a primary school as part of their development. He says there is no ‘demonstrable need for one’ and the site is inappropriate, as pupils would need to cross the A30.
The application will now go to a hearing. Persimmon appealed to the Planning Inspectorate because Dorset Council failed to make a planning decision within the required time.
Correspondence between Persimmon and the local authority indicates that the developer lost patience with the council’s delays and deadline extensions. Dorset Council may be asked to compensate Persimmon and pay their costs if the Planning Inspector finds in their favour.