The Bulbery Field Planning Application — A Message from Abbotts Ann Action

A planning application has been submitted for the construction of 70 dwellings on land adjoining Duck Street and adjoining the southern outskirts of Abbotts Ann.

Details of the application can be seen on-line:

  • Google: TVBC Planning Applications
  • Click on View planning applications – Test Valley Borough Council
  • At View Applications Online enter 15/01634 in the search box
  • Click the Documents tab.

We suggest that you look particularly at the following documents:

  • Proposed Indicative Master Plan in Context
  • Planning Statement

The proposed development is contrary to the Borough Local Plan because it is outside the settlement boundaries of the village. This is part of the Development Plan for Test Valley and we rely on it more than anything else to prevent undesirable development and the loss of Abbotts Ann’s very special identity.

Whatever you may think of the details of these proposals therefore Abbotts Ann Action urges residents and the Parish Council to object to the application on the grounds that it is contrary to the Local Plan

We encourage you to criticise or express concern about particular aspects of the proposal such as its size, traffic generation etc. or call for collateral improvements in the road network or other contributions to the infrastructure. If you do so, make it clear that your comments do not alter the fact that you object in principle to a development that contravenes the Local Plan.

We explain below in more detail why the local plan is so important.

What is a Local Plan?

It is the most important part of the development plan for a planning authority area.

The development plan is a set of documents that sets out the local planning authority’s policies and proposals for the development and use of land in their area. It guides day-to-day decisions as to whether or not planning permission should be granted .

The law [1] requires that decisions on planning applications be made in accordance with the development plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise.

We refer to it in this article as the Local Plan.

How does the Test Valley Borough Local Plan protect Abbotts Ann?

It defines a settlement boundary outside which Countryside policies apply and development is permitted only in very specific circumstances.

It designates the Little Park area a Local Gap in which development is even more restricted than in the Countryside.

What is the status of the Test Valley Borough Local Plan?

The adopted Local Plan expired in 2011 and is due to be replaced by the Revised Local Plan 2011 – 2029 (“RLP”). The RLP has recently been the subject of examination by a government inspector whose report is expected in the Autumn this year. Until it has been recommended for adoption, TVBC has no valid forward plan for the supply of housing development land. This is considered a “material consideration” in deciding on a planning application and, for that reason, TVBC has recently lost appeals against refusal of such development even though it was contrary to the Local Plan. Despite that, we need to encourage TVBC to continue to refuse such applications in the hope that the RLP will be adopted in the near future.

[1] Section 38(6) of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004