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Updated Jun 7, 2022

165 homes permitted within a strategic development location

Planning permission was granted by an inspector from Chichester District Council after an appeal by the developers and landowners, for a housing development of up to 165 homes within a strategic development location (SDL).

Initially, the proposal for a development near the Goodwood Motor Circuit was refused as the local plan policy allocated 500 homes to the SDL, splitting the development into two areas and the planning inspector noted that the appeal site did not fall within either location and the homes allocated for the SDL were delivered, therefore the new site would conflict with local policy and the wider planning for the SDL.

Although the site in the scope of the appeal was open agricultural land separating Chichester and the Goodwood Motor Circuit, it was placed near the edge of Chichester and the village of Westhampnett. Near the site there were retails sites present that serve the development in the area.

The inspector noted certain concerns, particularly from the Goodwood Motor Circuit, however he decided that the existence of that circuit would be known to any potential purchasers and that would be taken into account when purchasing the property on that site. The inspector attached substantial positive weight to meeting the acute demand for affordable housing in the area and the deficit in housing land is only likely to be rectified through granting permission on sites not identified in the local plan such as the appeal site.

Also, a biodiversity net gain of 83% for general habitat and 300 per cent for hedgerow habitat would be achieved, beyond the scope of the Environment Act 2021, which points to a future requirement for a biodiversity net gain of 10% minimum.

After engaging the "tilted balance", the inspector said the development's adverse impacts would not significantly and demonstrably outweigh its benefits, in particular the provision of housing and the significant biodiversity net gain. The appeal, therefore, has been allowed.