Plans for a one million sq ft plus logistics warehouse scheme opposite the Mountpark Bardon 2 site in Leicestershire, have been rejected despite the promise of some 1,500 jobs.
The application was rejected by councillors on the grounds that it would ‘[create]industrial incursion into the countryside, which is also part of the National Forest and Charnwood Forest, and would have an adverse impact on the intrinsic value, beauty, open character and landscape character of this rural location’.
However prior to the decision a council document published ahead of the planning meeting said that despite the fact that the “development would result in harm to the character of this rural location…this is weighed against the significant economic benefits of the development. The economic benefits are considered to outweigh this acknowledged harm to the countryside”.
The refusal can be challenged and it is thought that the applicant, private company Wood Farm Holdings, is likely to pursue this course of action.
It submitted a hybrid proposal for the demolition and redevelopment of farm buildings at Wood Farm and the development of three units totalling 1.22 million sq ft on fields adjoining the farmstead.
The main 80.55 acre site where the three logistics buildings are proposed, is strategically located close to Junction 22 of the M1, with the Mountpark Bardon1, Bardon2 and Interlink Park employment area providing a backdrop to the main site’s potential as a strategic location for industrial and distribution uses.
The design statement noted: “The market demand for industrial and distribution use development in this area is high and this is evidenced by the construction of the first unit at the Bardon2 site, to the north east of Wood Farm, and occupation of the three units at Bardon1.”