Planning hearing to consider impact of proposals on heritage assets with royal connection
On 18 January 2024, the Planning Inspectorate will hear a section 78 appeal arising from the decision of Babergh District Council’s planning committee to refuse planning permission for the conversion, repair and extension of existing agricultural buildings to form five dwellings, along with the demolition of existing metal clad barns. The Council defends four reasons for refusal concerning heritage harm, landscape harm, locational sustainability and policy conflict.
The main issues include the alleged impact of the proposals on two listed buildings, namely Grade II* Erwarton Hall and Grade I Erwarton Hall Gatehouse. The latter is an ornamental gatehouse constructed around 1549 and described as an “outstanding early example in England of Renaissance architecture applied to a gatehouse”. The Gatehouse is believed to have commemorated the death of Sir Philip Calthorpe, uncle to Anne Boleyn, and the Tudor Queen was a childhood visitor to the residence. The Gatehouse has subsequently been the subject of artistic representations by associates of John Constable and JMW Turner.
Other main issues include the effects of the proposals on the Suffolk Coasts and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the accessibility to services and facilities by sustainable transport. To date, various iterations of the proposed scheme have attracted local attention and numerous third-party objections: for example, see: EADT, Ipswich Star. For present purposes, the relevant application reference is DC/22/05131 and the appeal reference is 3324112.