Local planning inspectors- not doing their bit to save the world

A Wilmslow man who wants to build an “excellent” eco home has had planning permission denied a second time because it wouldn’t look enough like the buildings surrounding it. The design called for lightweight concrete for the walls, reconstituted timber for the frame, recycled rubber for the flat roof, and solar panels to generate electricity and had impressed Macclesfield council’s design officer, the Wilmslow Trust, and Cheshire Wildlife, who all supported the proposal. However the council planning sub-committee rejected the scheme because of the views of a planning inspector who had said the new house would be so different from any other in the locality in terms of shape, style, and design and materials that it would fail to reflect any aspect of the local character, making it unacceptable in the countryside.

I can see the reasons for wanting to retain local character and not knocking down historically significant buildings, but planning inspectors seem so damn inconsistent. They’ll let butt ugly modern builds go through if they’re “traditional” looking cookie cutter designs, but have hissy fits over bespoke low energy houses designed around their location. It makes me despair.

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