Torbay Council welcomes the decision that there will be no Public Inquiry into Taylor Wimpey’s proposal for residential development on the Car Boot sale site in Collaton St Mary.

Taylor Wimpey has withdrawn its appeal and the Public Inquiry, scheduled to start on 30 September, has been cancelled.

In May 2013 Taylor Wimpey submitted an outline application for up to 175 new houses on the site. That application was refused by the Council in August last year, mainly because of the impact the development on an area of high landscape value. The Council also argued that the development would be piecemeal and would not integrate with the village of Collaton St Mary. There were also concerns about drainage, flood alleviation and impact on bats.

Since that decision, the Council has submitted the new Local Plan to Government. The new Local Plan identifies Collaton St Mary as a location for growth. The new Local Plan makes it clear that growth needs to be in line with a masterplan, respect sensitive landscape, deal with drainage and highway issues, and – in particular – requires that future development improves the village. The Council, working closely with the community and landowners, is producing a masterplan to show what new development could look like and the value it could bring to Collaton St Mary. The masterplan proposal will be complete and ready to be consulted on in September.

David Thomas, Deputy Mayor and Executive Lead for Spatial Planning, said “This is a victory for common sense. The Council has made huge progress with the Local Plan and the masterplan, which define the quality and quantity of development in Collaton St Mary, the timing of that development and the benefits to the village. This will stop the sort of speculative development we’ve seen in Collaton St Mary. I think Taylor Wimpey understand that and know a Public Inquiry is not the best way forward – it sets people against each other; developers against communities. We need to concentrate on completing the masterplan and adopting the new Local Plan, then take it from there.”

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