Killian Garvey, acting on behalf of Kettering Borough Council, assisted in securing the dismissal of an appeal for 245 dwellings in Desborough.
The appeal was pursued by Gladman Developments Limited. In dismissing the appeal, the Inspector sided with the Council on the following points:
- The Council had a 5 year supply of housing;
- The Council’s development plan was up to date;
- There would be moderate landscape and visual impacts from the proposal; and
- The tilted balance within paragraph 11(d) of the NPPF was not engaged
One interesting feature about the case was the extent to which a single development plan policy being out of date could engage the tilted balance within paragraph 11(d)(ii) of the National Planning Policy Framework.
In accordance with recent case law, in order to determine whether the tilted balance was engaged, both parties had to:
- Identify the basket of the most important policies for determining the application;
- Decide whether those policies when viewed as a whole were out of date
The parties agreed that there were 4 ‘most important policies’: 3 that were up to date and 1 older policy that the parties disagreed with about whether it was up to date.
The Appellant argued that the 1 older policy was sufficient to engage the tilted balance, on the basis that this was the most important policy within the basket. The Inspector disagreed with this approach:
- I deal with how these most important policies affect the outcome of the planning balance in due course. However, it is worth noting here that the suggestion made at the inquiry that one of the most important policies (Policy 7) should be regarded as the most, most important, is not something with which I agree. Were that the case then the pre-eminent (most, most important) policy would logically be the single most important policy.
A copy of the decision is available to view here.