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SoS gives green light to 400-home Lincolnshire development

Secretary of State (SoS) Eric Pickles has granted planning permission on appeal to Keystone Developments for the development of up to 400 homes on a 18 hectare greenfield site in Humberston.02 Dec 2013

North East Lincolnshire Council had refused the proposals in November last year. Its reasons for refusal included that the development of a greenfield site in advance of previously developed sites within the borough would discourage the future development of brownfield sites in the district's urban areas.

Pickles said in his decision letter (51-page / 483KB PDF) that he agreed with a planning inspector's conclusions that the local authority could not demonstrate a five year housing land supply and that the National Planning Policy Framework's presumption in favour of sustainable development therefore applied.

The SoS said he agreed with the inspector that the benefits of the proposed scheme included the contribution it would make to the Council's housing supply, including the provision of affordable and retirement homes.

Pickles acknowledged that the development would result in the loss of greenfield land, which would have a harmful effect on the character and appearance of the area. However, he agreed with the inspector's conclusion that the limited harm the loss of greenfield land would cause did not "significantly and demonstrably" outweigh the benefits of the scheme.

The SoS further agreed with the inspector that there was no "convincing evidence" to support the Council's assertion that there must be a connection between "the non-delivery of a large number of brownfield sites and the continued coming forward of greenfield sites".