Having had our application for a new house refused on the grounds of policy not permitting any development in our village, we have been advised by our consultant to re-apply citing exceptional circumstances as we are hoping to build next to some friends who due to disability need care and we want to be on hand to help when professional carers are not there. I have tried 5 times now to get our Ward Councillor to discuss the case with us but he is ignoring my messages. Any suggestions? Surely he has an obligation as our representative to listen to us and put our case forward to the planning committee, even if he can’t/won’t support us? He has previously intimated that he would support us if the policy was different but now I cannot get any response from him.

  • Jeremy Murfitt


    This is one of the problems (as I see it) with the planning system. Applicants don"t have free access to their local member but any resident does. The elected members have to consider the application against relevant policies and during the process have to remain of "open mind". There are a lot of rules for them to follow, for example if you manage to speak to them they would have to declare that at any committee meeting. As a result elected members are very reluctant to engage with the applicant. One way to get round this is to ask for a meeting with them with the case officer in attendance. I think the issue you will have is whether the special circumstances of your case outweigh policy and are enough to sway the Council. I am sure an opposing view could be taken that you or your neighbour (or both) could at some stage move and the reason for granting of permission has been removed.

    Good luck


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