Plans to convert an agricultural building into three houses in Tean has been thrown out after the application was described as “bizarre”.
Members of Staffordshire Moorlands District Council’s planning applications committee voted unanimously to refused the application on land at the North Plantation in Tenford Lane when they met at the district council headquarters at Moorlands House in Stockwell Street, Leek, on Thursday, March 2.
The planning application was put forward by district councillor Colin Pearce.
Cheadle councillor and chairman of the planning committee Stephen Ellis said: “This is the most bizarre application brought before the committee.
“The structure is in the middle of nowhere. We had to go through a dirt track to get to it.
“It is a cow shed. I do not think people would live there.
“The Class Q planning policy is aimed to bring back to life redundant barns, not cow sheds. It is bizarre.”
Speaking to the planning committee, planning officer Arne Swithenbank, said: “There are two tests. Is this agricultural use and it has to be capable of conversion to dwellings.
“This is where we say it comes unstuck.
“There is open side and concrete slab boarding.
“This is not a building readily converted.
“A lot of construction would be needed to make it modern insulated buildings.
“The location and siting is on a farm track through a field.
“It is a modern agricultural shed and would struggle to fit in the design guide.
“There is also not sufficient parking and the curtilage is to small.”
The applicant’s agent, Rob Duncan, said the proposal was a conversion not a rebuild.
He said: “This plans seeks to convert an agricultural building to form three dwellings.
“A structural survey sates loading can be taken.
“It is a conversion not a rebuild.”
A report to councillors said: “The application relates to a portal framed modern agricultural building with a corrugated sheet roof.
“The side and rear walls are finished with a combination of concrete panels and Yorkshire Boarding.
“The front elevation is partly open and partly enclosed with roller shutter doors.
“The building is in an isolated position, surrounded by open countryside. It is currently in agricultural use.”
The highways authority raised no objection subject to conditions including the proposed development shall be used solely for residential purposes only, and not be used in any way for commercial purposes associated with the development.