Conservative councillors have welcomed the news that an application to turn Greenbelt land near Stanton Wick into a large travellers’ site has been rejected.
The planning application was rejected unanimously by councillors at a meeting of B&NES Council’s Development Control Committee last Wednesday, 31st July.
The application, which would have seen the land developed for up to 12 traveller pitches, was rejected on the grounds of inappropriate development in the Greenbelt and concerns over access to the site, amongst other issues.
The application’s rejection comes despite the fact the site was still being promoted by the Liberal Democrat-run Council as a preferred location for an authorised gypsy and traveller site just a year ago. The authority eventually decided not to press ahead with earmarking the land as an authorised gypsy and traveller site last September.
Local Conservative councillors, who have backed residents campaigning against the plans, have hailed the decision as a ‘victory community action’.
Neighbouring ward councillor Vic Pritchard (Cons, Chew Valley South), who attended the meeting, said:
“This is fantastic news for local residents in the area, who have been blighted by the threat of this application for so long.
“This outcome is particularly welcome when you consider the fact that only a year ago B&NES was still promoting this site as one of its’ preferred locations to become an authorised traveller site. It’s good to see community action and common sense win the day, and all the local residents who fought tirelessly for this result should be congratulated.
“What we need now is for B&NES to get on with the job of finding more suitable locations for authorised traveller sites to ensure it has a robust case in defending against unauthorised sites.”