We have sought the advice of B&NES Planning Policy Team, Councillor Sally Davis, and Parish Council Chairman Martin Carter to get the facts, and the conclusion is that it will not affect the number of houses that can be built. A full explanation of the ins and outs of the planning policy that surround this is available on our website, but in summary:
- The shop will have no effect on ‘infill’ or ‘windfall’ housing applications, i.e. those for between 1 and 9 houses.
- Since we already have planning approval for 50 dwellings, whether the village is classified as RA1 or RA2 is irrelevant – we have met the RA1 target of 50 houses already. While having the shop will affect the village classification, it cannot justify further development any more than having a school, community meeting place, or daily bus service; the other facilities that would count towards making Farmborough an RA1 village.
- The Green Belt surrounds Farmborough, assuming the planning rules are followed and unless the rules are changed in future (e.g. by a change in government policy), then further development is constrained to areas within the housing development boundary.