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Field set to be added to Churchstoke housing development to make gardens

A field behind these houses known as Roundton Place in Churchstoke could be split up to become gardens for the scheme.

PLANS to change the use of a field in Powys border village so that it can be turned into gardens for houses will be decided by councillors.

At a meeting of Powys County Council’s Planning committee on Thursday, January 11 councillors will receive a report on plans by Arwyn Davies of SWG Construction to change the use of land next to Hollydene, Hall Bank in Churchstoke.

A change of use application could see a field behind Roundton Place in Churchskole become gardens for the development (Pic: UK Grid Reference Fonder)

Mr Davies proposes that that the field becomes “domestic curtilage” so that it can be divided into four parts to “coincide” with the boundaries of each property.

In 2019 planning permission was given for four homes also at land next to Hollydene.

In 2021 SWG bought the site and building work started in 2022.

Now known as Roundton Place,   building work on all four homes was due to be completed last autumn and one house has already been sold.

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A statement to justify the field’s change of use points out the size of housing plots on both sides of Roundton Place.

Those to the east of the development average 900 square metres while those to the west average 687 square metres.

The extra land would bring the four plot sizes at Roundton Place up to, 661 square metres, 586 square metres, 600.5 square metres and 650 square metres.

Planning agent Charles Cowan said: “The proposal to enlarge the gardens will create plots of equivalent size to the surrounding properties without conflicting with any policies or prejudicing the surrounding area.

“The larger plots will also improve the wellbeing of the occupants and utilise land that has no agricultural use or value.”

The proposal has been “called in” to be decided by the committee by Powys County Councillor for Churchstoke, Danny Bebb.

Cllr Bebb believes the plan needs “further investigation.”

Cllr Bebb said: “My main worry is with extra land being added to the property, this could make room for such structures as a garden office room or similar which may cause disputes. ”

Churchstoke community council has also objected to the proposal and said:

“The land is outside the LDP (Local Development Plan) boundary and as such represents development in open countryside.”

Planning officer Richard Edwards said: “The proposed change of use relates to an area of agricultural land.

“The Welsh Government’s predictive agricultural land classification map indicates that the area of the application site is graded as three b which relates to moderate quality agricultural land.”

“It is therefore considered that this proposal is acceptable as it does not relate to land to be preserved.”

Due to this Mr Edwards will recommend that councillors approve the application and agree a number of conditions.

One of the conditions is to provide access points in the fencing between plots and the site boundary to allow hedgehogs and small mammals to move freely.