Gladman gives up in the Slad Valley
PUBLISHED: 10:33 23 February 2015 | UPDATED: 10:44 23 February 2015
You might remember an article in our February issue about planning in the Cotswolds, focusing in particular on the impact of land agents such as Gladman Developments on rural communities in the region. Now, local people in Stroud and Slad are celebrating a victory over the developers.
The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) Gloucestershire, which fought a long battle with developer Gladman over its plans to build over 100 houses on Baxter’s Field, Stroud, overlooking the renowned Slad Valley, is celebrating after the developer withdrew its challenge to Stroud District Council’s rejection of its development plans.
Despite the council and a planning inspector both rejecting Gladman’s planning application for the site in 2014, the developer sought a judicial review in a bid to get the decision reversed - but it withdrew the legal challenge last week before the judicial review went ahead.
CPRE Gloucestershire Vice Chair, Richard Lloyd, said: “This is great news for Stroud, and should give some hope to other threatened landscapes across the UK which have particular heritage value. When sound explanations and a reasoned defence are mounted against an unreasonable planning application, developers can see their plans defeated, however big their chest of fighting funds”
Gladman is well known for targeting greenfield sites for development. Baxter’s Field is part of a ‘green lung’ of agricultural land stretching out from the urban area of Stroud into the Slad Valley, which is within the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and is an integral part of the wider landscape.
Although small developments have been permitted over the years along Summer Street, a narrow country lane adjacent to Baxter’s Field, which would have provided access to the new site, major house building in the Valley has been consistently refused in 1995, 1973, 1969 and 1967.
For more about the charity Campaign to Protect Rural England, visit: www.cpre.org.uk