Refusal has been recommended for a plan for up to 750 homes at Thurrock Airfield.

Grasslands’ application for the 31.2-hectare Green Belt site which include a medical hub, retail and commercial units, go before Thurrock Council’s planning committee on Tuesday (July 9).

The airfield, which is still in use, is on land at Kings Farm in Parkers Farm Road, Orsett.

But, among a host of reasons for refusal, officers say the scheme would cause harm to the Green Belt.

Other concerns are that the scheme is in a remote and unsustainable location, lacks cycling facilities and causes harm to the ‘openness and permanence’ of the Green Belt.

The officers’ report concludes that no case exists for the required very special circumstances to justify the scheme.

It stated: “The factors in favour of the development taken together do not clearly outweigh the potential harm to the Green Belt by reason of inappropriateness and the other harm identified.”

A total of 85 objections were submitted and the council’s own highways department, objected, stating: “The plans fail to incorporate appropriate measures to facilitate the movement of pedestrians and cyclists.

“Severe concerns remain with the lack of facilities for cyclists and pedestrians both in the vicinity of the site, along the A128 and in terms of linking the site to the nearby villages of Bulphan and Orsett.

“Therefore, it is clear that there will be a heavy reliance on motor vehicles for the residents of this development.”

Image: (Covid-19_22 Exercise) Thurrock Airfield by Glyn Baker, CC BY-SA 2.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

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