I feel this is important because it is a case of a legitimate business being punished to extinction by what is in effect retrospective legislation. If we had know this was coming we would not have risked all our reserves on what we were happy to consider a good and acceptable scheme.
The Government very recently altered the definition of gardens under PPS3 from brownfield land to greenfield. This appears to have been done to placate the NIMBYs of middle England. Many of those who object to such schemes thenselves live on land that was once gardens or recreational areas. It seems that the consequences of such a change were not thought through by those who created the change. My company has spent £50000 on a three year application for a small scheme of 5 houses in a garden. We satisfied all the planner's requests throughout to make the scheme acceptable. The LPA recommended approval. The local counsellors were unduly influenced by the neighbours and refused it. They would not give a reason and asked the planners to insert one in the decision notice. We were in the middle of the appeal process with a high chance of success (because our application at the date of submission "ticked all the planning boxes") when the ministerial decision was announced out of the blue. Now there is no chance of the appeal succeeding as this legislation by Ministerial statement appears to be retrospective. Why could it not have excluded those applications already in the pipeline? Because of this my small company will have to be liquidated, I and my family will have no income from the business, the young couple who owned the garden will not be able to improve their lot and move, and the men who were going to build the houses will not now have a job. Were such consequences for those on the receiving end ever considered? It was announced by Ministerial statement. Please immediately repeal it by the same method. It does more harm than good. It appears to be unnecessarily unfair.