PLANS to build a pair of semi-detached, four bedroom homes in High Bradley have narrowly been given planning permission by Craven councillors.

Despite being told that refusal of the scheme for High Bradley Lane, would be difficult seeing that the principle of development had already been established at appeal, some at Craven District Council’s planning committee argued it ought to be rejected.

Ward member, Cllr Andy Brown (Green, Aire Valley with Lothersdale) moved refusal, against officer recommendation, saying that the original outline planning application, which was approved on appeal in 2018, was for three and not two houses, and of a smaller scale more needed in the village.

He said the development, to the South West Of Langroods Farm , was in open countryside and as such failed to meet any of the exemptions, such as a home for an agricultural worker, and was ‘materially different’ from the outline scheme.

Sam Deegan, agent for the applicants, RN Wooler and Co, said principle of the development had already been established at appeal, the application was for two and not three homes, there were no objections from the statutory consultees, and so there was no reason to refuse the plans.

But, Erica Ridehalgh, on behalf of objectors said the planned two parking spaces for each house was not enough for the single track lane, and that the new two and half storey houses would overlook the terrace opposite.

Cllr Richard Pringle (Ind, West Craven) seconded moves to refuse the scheme, adding that four parking spaces was not sufficient and should be added as a reason for refusal.

But Cllr Richard Welch (Con, Penyghent) said he did not agree that the site was in open countryside in that it was close to other houses. He added that it was not always true that larger houses were taken by ‘executives from outside the area’ but could also be bought by locals with growing families.

“I will support the application for the simple reason I cannot see any reasons to refuse it,” he said.

Planning manager, Neville Watson, reminded the committee that planning consent had already been achieved on appeal, and that he would have 'great difficulty' in fighting an appeal, if the applicants chose to take it to the Planning Inspectorate.

Cllr Brown’s attempt to refuse the application received five votes in favour, and five against, with the chairman, Cllr Linda Brockbank using her casting vote to make it six to five in favour of refusal being rejected.

A vote to approve the application then received five in favour, with one against, and five abstentions. Mr Watson agreed to accept a condition put forward by Cllr Brown to ensure more biodiversity in the scheme and to add as an informative assurances over water supply and disposal.