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February planning applications

Farm development provokes wave of complaints

A planning application for Ticklepenny Farm in the Bolham Valley has provoked a wave of adverse comments from neighbours. The plan is for “the retention of mixed use building comprising farm workshop, storage, water reservoir, smokery, cold store and food processing area, farm office, welfare facilities, kennels and stables”

Leading the objections is Lisa Turner, AONB Planning Officer, who  wrote to Mid Devon District Council with a wide ranging list of objections. The issue is one of three planning applications to be discussed by Clayhidon Parish Council at its meeting on 19 February.

 “The proposed building is sited in a sensitive location in terms of landscape character, sitting at the break between the plateau and the steep upper scarp slope,” she said. “Edge of plateau locations such as this are particularly sensitive, with the potential for development to be highly visible prominent features across a wide area.

 “Although nearby SSSIs are referenced in the application, it does not appear to have had regard to other sites of wildlife (and landscape) importance.  The entire holding except for the application field appears to form part of a larger County Wildlife Site, and the holding abuts an area of Ancient Woodland (see Devon County Council’s Environment Viewer map service).

“We are concerned that the construction of the building, the creation of hardstanding, access and parking area, with associated paraphernalia, light spill, together with the intensification of use and the associated noise, activities and comings and goings would have a detrimental impact on the character of the local area, tranquillity of the surroundings and would be bound to generate a number of vehicle-based journeys. 

 ”It seems that there is a fundamental conflict between the management and farming practice proposed to justify a viable business here, and managing the land in a way that conserves and enhances the natural beauty of the AONB, in view of the site constraints, topography, habitats and protected site areas, remoteness and poor access.”

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