Country lane house plan rejected for South Ribble village

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Plans to build a single new property within a row of existing homes in rural South Ribble have been rejected.

The proposal would have seen a detached house erected on Marsh Lane in Longton - a development which the applicant claimed would be “entirely appropriate" for the locality.

Marsh Lane in Longton (image: Google Streetview)

Marsh Lane in Longton (image: Google Streetview)

But planning officers at South Ribble Borough Borough Council have ruled that the “very special circumstances” required to permit building in the green belt had not been proved.

The application sought to secure “permission in principle” for the extra property on a grassed area on the countryside lane - with details of its design to be determined later.

A supporting statement prepared by chartered planners De Pol Associates claimed that the proposal should be judged on whether the location was within a village and if could be considered “limited infilling” between established properties - combined criteria that can act as an exemption to national rules which usually prohibit development in the green belt.

The plot is not within the official settlement boundary of Longton, but the report argued that recent permission had been granted for new homes on Hall Lane in the area - which is further away still from the village centre.

The Marsh Lane plot is “considered to represent a gap in an otherwise developed frontage” and “there is no reason why a scheme could not be designed...which would reflect the character and appearance of the local area”, the statement added.

But planning officers ruled that Marsh Lane could only be judged to have a built-up frontage on the section running closer to the village - noting that there was only one further property between the proposed plot and open farmland.

An objection was also received from a member of the public who claimed that permitting the development would create a precedent for others on similar patches of land in the area.