Outline permission granted for homes at Guide Dogs HQ near Leamington
APPROVAL has been granted for former guide dog breeding units in Bishops Tachbrook to be turned into houses - despite objections from residents and farmers who deemed the area totally unsuitable for the build.
Members of Warwick District Council’s planning committee granted outline approval for Tollgate House and The Bungalow on Banbury Road to be demolished to make way for six new houses.
The buildings have previously used as headquarters for the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association and have sat empty since the organisation moved to new premises on nearby land.
Dan Drayton, speaking on behalf of GDBA, said as the proposed houses would be set back from the road, there should be no impact on the existing countryside and that the build would include two affordable units.
But the application received a number of objections from the parish council and owners of a neighbouring turkey farm who argued noise from dog breeding centres and the birds would make life impossible for homeowners.
Parish councillor Bullen said “There are policies in place to control noise over development in rural areas but this does not meet those requirements.
“There’s no access to amenities here and people will be living outside of the parish in isolation.”
Charles Hammond, who runs the turkey breeding, Tollgate Farm, told members of the planning committee that it was simply not suitable to allow residential homes at such an intense farming and breeding location.
“I have farmed there since 1976 and am a neighbour to the guide dogs,” he said. “Both out businesses have expanded and there have been no problems from that.
“The problem is when you have intensive livestock next to residential areas like this.”
Peter Byrd said public transport was insufficient and feared the move would set a precedent for building on the adjacent and currently empty field.
Councillor Ann Blacklock said given the site history it would be “perverse” for the council to refuse the application.
“Hopefully there won’t be a problem with any new residents and the farm,” she said.
“But anyone going to view these properties would see there was a working farm not that far away so it should not be an issue.”
Members approved the outline application with just two objecting to the application.
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Tuesday 21 May 2013
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