Following a positive pre-application response, GSP was instructed to submit a planning application for the change of use of some of the client’s land to allow for the siting of 18 No. holiday lodges.

Despite a high volume of objections from residents, no technical consultee objected and Council officers consistently supported the proposal, recommending to their members at the planning committee meeting that permission be granted. The permission was granted, but neighbouring residents then challenged the Council’s decision at the High Court. As a result of one of the claimant’s four grounds for the challenge being upheld, the decision was quashed and the Council were tasked with re-determining the application, where again it was granted permission following a committee meeting.

The same resident threatened and later withdrew a second challenge and yet, at the same time, submitted their own application for the same use of their own land. GSP’s clients asked them to submit representations focussing on the lack of technical documentation that GSP’s clients were required to provide in connection with their application. GSP’s comments resulted in the neighbour’s application being made invalid. Once valid again several months later, the Council granted permission.

Following permission for GSP’s clients, a number of conditions of that permission have been discharged and varied, although one (in connection with the on-site provision of renewable energy sources) remains the subject of an appeal.

The clients also instructed GSP to submit the site as a potential allocated site in Maidstone’s forthcoming local plan, as part of a call for sites for gypsy, traveller and travelling showpeople.

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