RESIDENTS are relieved after a housing appeal for more than 200 new homes on the outskirts of Taunton was dismissed by a planning inspector.

Gladman Developments took Taunton Deane Borough Council to appeal after the authority rejected its application for 200 homes off Langaller Road in Creech St Michael.

TDBC rejected the plans in April 2018, citing concerns over highway safety, pressures on local services and fears that it could cause the village to merge with the nearby Monkton Heathfield developments.

Disagreeing with this decision, land developer Gladman took the application to appeal, following a successful legal battle against the Deane last year for more than 200 homes in Rockwell Green, Wellington.

But this time the council’s decision held firm, as planning inspector Mark Dakeyne dismissed Gladman’s attempts to reverse the rejection.

Mr Dakeyne stated myriad reasons why the appeal has been dismissed, including changing the landscape and character of the area.

Mostly importantly, he noted the land is not an area allocated for development from TDBC.

Hundreds of residents in the area campaigned against the development from the offset. Members of the action group said the decision has made their efforts ‘worth while’.

Lynn Gates, action group organiser, said: “I am absolutely delighted the Inspector has found in favour of Taunton Deane’s original refusal of the Gladman planning application. It demonstrates the efforts of the action group and local residents has all been worthwhile and I thank everyone involved for their help in fending off this development."

Cllr Richard Parrish, executive councillor for planning policy and transportation, said the decision recognises the authority's planning policies are 'up to date'.

He added: “The council welcomes the Inspector’s decision to uphold the refusal of planning permission for this highly visible site on edge of Creech St Michael.

"This appeal decision is recognition housing in the borough is being delivered at well above required levels.

"The inspector highlighted decisions about the location of new housing should be made through the planning policy process and involve the community rather than through speculative appeals like this.”