A Planning Inspector has dismissed an appeal by Gladman Developments Ltd against the refusal by Herefordshire Council to discharge a Grampian condition attached to a permission for a large housing development. The condition related to the impact of the development on sewerage infrastructure, and the consequential effect on water quality and nearby Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Special Areas of Conservation (SAC). The application to discharge the condition had been opposed by Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water (DCWW), the sewerage undertaker for the area.
The housing development had originally been granted permission on appeal by an Inspector in 2016. At this previous inquiry, the issues of the necessity for mitigation works to the sewerage infrastructure and who should fund any mitigation works, were hotly contested between the Council, DCWW and Gladman. The previous Inspector made key findings on the relationship between the right of a developer to connect to a public sewer and the ability of a sewerage undertaker to decide where to spend their funds, and importantly imposed the Grampian condition preventing the development taking place until further wastewater assessments and any necessary works to the sewerage infrastructure were carried out.
These assessments were subsequently carried out. In the recent appeal Gladman argued that these showed that no mitigation works were required, and thus the condition could be discharged and development could begin without further works needing to be funded. However, the Inspector agreed with the Council and DCWW that mitigation works were needed to avoid an unacceptable risk of harm to water quality, and to the nature conservation interests of the SSSIs/SAC, and thus refused to discharge the condition.
Anjoli Foster acted for Herefordshire Council and Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water in the recent appeal.