July 25, 2022 1.00 pm

Historic industrial site denied plans to become scrapyard due to impact on neighbour’s house

The home is occupied by the site’s former owner who said it was ok – but councillors disagreed

Land with a history of industrial use, including a car repair garage, has had plans for a vehicle dismantling facility scuppered after a house previously part of the site was separated out.

V.W Breakers’ plans to change an existing haulage depot at The Old Smithy, Highgate Leverton, into an end-of-life dismantling facility, were refused on Monday after councillors and officers said the business had not presented enough evidence it wouldn’t impact on the home.

The house itself is owned by the site’s former owner who had reportedly given the plans the okay – however, councillors said policies also aimed to protect future occupiers without as much of a personal connection.

The site is already being used to store used car parts that had already been stripped, but the applicant wants to carry out the breakdown of vehicles on site in order to make the business more economically and sustainable.

Recommending refusal, officers said the site was “not well located to the market or source of wastes that is intended to serve”.

They added that there had been insufficient evidence that the impact of noise would be controlled, and that already existing fencing, storage containers and trailers on the boundary were “not appropriate”.

Tattershall Castle ward councillor Tom Ashton was familiar with the site and reeled off its history as a haulage depot and a British Leyland car dealership and repair garage.

“There is an extended history of industrial, garage and commercial use on this site,” he said, adding that it was “not unusual” in Lincolnshire to have commercial premises in the middle of nowhere.

The view of the site from Highgate. | Image: Lincolnshire County Council

However, he added: “It’s for the for the applicant to demonstrate that this kind of use would fit with the existing residential property that’s adjacent.

“I’m minded to support the recommendation [for refusal] but not without considerable sympathy for the sense that it appears to co-locate these parts of the business.

“I’m just not convinced in my mind that the case has been made that it would be able to carry on without undue effect on that neighbourhood amenity.”

The plans received objections from Leverton Parish and Boston Borough Councils and two local residents.

The applicant had asked for the decision to be deferred in order to provide more evidence and clarify information, however, officers felt this was not needed and that “sufficient evidence” was available to members.