Earth-shelter appeal rejected

The site of the proposed earth shelter in Beadnell.
The site of the proposed earth shelter in Beadnell.

An appeal against refused plans for an earth shelter on the north Northumberland coast has been dismissed.

As reported in the Gazette, a hearing took place over plans for a three-bedroom property on land north-west of 15 Harbour Road, Beadnell, on Wednesday, April 30.

Sukie and Richard Ranken applied in December 2011 to build the home on the site of a former air raid shelter to provide around 110 sq m of accommodation, comprising an east-facing glazed lounge, with the other rooms being set into the slope of the ground, with a continuation of the grassed landform continuing over the roof.

The scheme was eventually thrown out by Northumberland County Council’s north area planning committee in June last year, having attracted 75 objections from residents as well as from the parish council and the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership.

Planning Inspector Alison Partington agreed that the proposed development would harm the character and appearance of the AONB, the Heritage Coast and the surrounding area in her decision notice, issued yesterday.

It said: “Overall, while the proposal would not have an adverse impact on the AONB in relation to potential light pollution, the potential need for boundary treatment around the site, and its extension of the built development into what is currently open land, would have a detrimental impact on the character and appearance of the site and the surrounding area. The proposal would therefore not accord with the aims of conserving the natural beauty of the AONB and would have an adverse effect on the landscape of the Heritage Coast.”

The Save Beadnell Association, which has long fought against development on the seaward side of Harbour Road, welcomed the decision which ‘cements the security of our Heritage coastline and protects our AONB for the benefit of current and future generations to enjoy in its natural state’.

For more, see next Thursday’s Northumberland Gazette.