Yoxford Court of Appeal Statement

 In January 2015 the High Court concluded that the Planning Inspector's reasoning to uphold a refusal of planning permission by SCDC was legally flawed and in conflict with the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

Lord Justice Lindblom concluded that SCDC and the Planning Inspectorate had 'neither interpreted correctly nor applied lawfully' the policy in paragraph 49 of the NPPF.

The NPPF policy states: "Housing applications should be considered in the context of the presumption in favour of sustainable development. Relevant policies for the supply of housing should not be considered up-to-date if the local planning authority cannot demonstrate a five-year supply of deliverable housing sites."

He added that "the government policy for housing development was both misinterpreted and misapplied in the decision on Hopkins Homes' appeal, and that the decision must therefore be quashed". He added SCDS's 'narrow' interpretation of housing supply policy 'is in our view, plainly wrong'.

Today's decision means that the proposal to deliver 26 new houses can be reconsidered at a fresh planning enquiry.

The site of the proposals was previously highlighted as a potentially suitable location for development within Yoxford by SCDC.

Simon Bryan, Development Director of Hopkins Homes, said: "This is a landmark decision and we are pleased that the Court of Appeal agrees with our position, and that of the High Court, that the Planning Inspectorate's decision was flawed. This means that our proposals can be heard again and judged fairly in line with national and local housing policy.

"We remain surprised and disappointed that the local authority chose to challenge the previous High Court decision and bear the costs associated with this.

"It is widely accepted that there is a housing shortage both nationally and locally, and we are committed to building high quality homes that enhance the existing communities in the region. Therefore all planning applications should be assessed and decisions made in line with the policy frameworks."