'Green Belt' Beauty Salon At Bidwell Refused on Appeal

An Inspector has declined on appeal an application for a beauty salon at Bidwell siting 'inappropriate development within the Green Belt '

The beauty salon would have been at the red shaded place in Bidwell
Link to this map

Can a planning application be turned down on planning grounds if it is surrounded by new housing and planned new housing?
Location: Highfield House, Bedford Road, Houghton Regis, Dunstable, LU5 6JP
Description: Erection of a detached building to be used as a beauty salon
Consultation Start Date: 16 / 11 / 2018
Application refused 11 January 2019

This application was refused by Central Bedfordshire Council and subsequently went to Appeal. The Inspector refused the application on Appeal, concluding that the "proposal would constitute inappropriate development within the Green Belt and would cause harm to the openness of the Green Belt. The scheme would also have a detrimental impact on the living conditions of neighbouring occupiers and highway safety. The scheme would therefore conflict with Policy BE8 of the SBLP, as well as the guidance in the Framework. I conclude that the appeal should be dismissed."

The idea of what constitutes 'Green Belt', especially in the light of other developments immediately around Bidwell, certainly raises ones eyebrows! This includes plans for:

  • 169 homes by Taylor Wimpey - Aylesbury Drive, Watervale, Gresingham etc -
  • 62 Homes at The Baulk
  • 24 homes to the east of the red shaded area i.e. the purple shaded area, known as Highfield Barns with an arguably unsafe entry/exit road onto Bedford Road.
  • 7 more homes on land to the north of the red shaded area
  • 48 homes on the land shaded orange

Below, read the Inspector's decision letter. Tap/click to enlarge.

If you have news for Houghton Regis, please send it in