Proposal to install newunits in rural Oxfordshire ( ), which was regularly featured in ITV crime series Midsomer Murders, has been dismissed.
According to a report, Councilor Jo Robb, chair ofDistrict Council, rejected a plan for five one-bedroom pods and a permanent apartment for a manager to be built in Grove Farm, Patemore Lane, Pishill.
Councilors cited the primary reason when rejecting the plans was the impact on, an area with outstanding beautiful natural beauty (AONB).
The arguments for the project included the benefits to localand the fact that anything constructed will be of a smaller size than the agricultural structures currently on the property.
They were then rebuked by the planning committee, with no votes to support the application and only two abstentions.
Perhaps it was not surprising considering Councilor Robb’s remarks, which seemed to conclude with her pausing to pull back from a final verbal volley.
“Anyone who knows this location, anyone who has been to the Stonor Valley, anyone who has any clue what this place is like could not in a million years imagine that we would potentially be approving fivepods and a permanent residence in the middle of it.”
“It is dark and peaceful. This is sacred ground.”
Robb also added that puttingpods on the location would be absolute sacrilege. It contradicts the NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework), the local plan policy, and the Countryside and Rights of Way Act.
“We would be introducing noise, large volumes of vehicle movement, light, and a totally different character to what is currently a peaceful, beautiful, very old-fashioned place where film crews are frequently seen taking in the surroundings.”
“You will see Midsomer Murders being filmed there, you name it, if you go for a bike ride there you will see just how spectacularly beautiful it is.”
Councillor Tim Bearder found the whole application a bit suspicious.
“You have a house, a permanent dwelling, for someone who is going to monitor a handful, a tiny number, of (pods on) a littlesite,” he said.
“It could easily be done by someone off-site. My suspicion is that they might be looking to get a permanent dwelling in an absolutely gorgeous place, do away with thepods later on and then extend the dwelling into something more substantial.”
“Bingo, you have a house in the middle of prime real estate on what was previously agricultural land.”
Planning Chair Councilor David Bretherton interjected, saying they cannot speculate about what may occur in the future, but that’s not the justification for the refusal.
“I sympathize with your speculation, but we cannot judge it on that.”