The Secretary of State’s appointed Inspector has allowed an appeal and granted planning permission for a 117-bed purpose built student accommodation building in Falmouth, on the site of a former hotel. Stephen Whale of Landmark Chambers successfully represented the developer throughout the appeal process and at the hearing. The appeal was resisted by Cornwall Council, “Save Our Falmouth,” the Town Council and hundreds of local residents.
The Inspector also ordered Cornwall Council to pay the developer’s appeal costs in full. He found that it had acted unreasonably in the way it determined the application, that it provided no substantive evidence to back up its reason for refusal relating to noise and disturbance and that it persisted with a prematurity argument despite another adverse decision. The Inspector said an officer email referring to “political sensitivities” could very well explain the Council’s about turn from an initial position of support to one of refusal.
Falmouth and neighbouring Penryn host thousands of students of Falmouth University and the University of Exeter. This planning permission is consistent with the Local Plan support for the provision of specialised student accommodation and with the growth strategies of the two universities.