Shifnal demolition appeal thrown out by inspector
A planning appeal to demolish houses in Shifnal and create access to a field where homes could be built in the future has been thrown out.
The inspectorate said tearing down number 8 and number 10 in Admirals Way would "punch a gap in the street scene" and remove "two perfectly good homes" from the market.
The decision comes after Lichfield-based house builder Elford Homes submitted an application to remove the properties to serve possible future residential development of up to 100 dwellings on land between Admirals Farm housing estate and the M54.
The initial submission received dozens of objections, with key points relating to current traffic levels already being high and the premature application before development had been confirmed.
Appeal inspector Mark Dakeyne said: "The main issue is the effect of the loss of two dwellings on the existing housing stock.
"The demolition of the pair of semi-detached dwellings would facilitate the formation of a vehicular access to a large roughly rectangular field.
"The field is outside the development boundary of Shifnal, identified as safeguarded land between the built-up area and the green belt."
Mr Dakeyne added the two homes were in good condition and seemed to be occupied upon his inspection visit.
He said: "The existing dwellings on the appeal site are relatively modern. There is nothing to indicate that they are in any way substandard.
"Moreover, at the time of my site visit, they appeared to be occupied. A consequence of allowing the appeal would be that the dwellings could be demolished, and the houses would no longer be able to contribute to the housing stock and provide two perfectly good homes.
"In conclusion, currently the effect of the loss of two dwellings on the existing housing stock would be unacceptable."
Mr Dakeyne added: "The removal of the dwellings would also punch a gap in the street scene which would appear out of character on an estate where there is generally frontage development.
"I accept that the removal of the dwellings and replacement with a vehicular access may be acceptable in the future, should the land to the rear come forward for development. However, in the shorter term and without the benefits of new housing development to weigh against the loss, the demolition of the dwellings is not justified."