Howzat? Cricket club loses appeal

By Sharon AsplinA CONTROVERSIAL scheme to build a new cricket ground on the outskirts of a village has been thrown out on appeal.Abberton and District Cricket Club, along with Prowting Homes, applied last year for permission to build houses on the club's existing pitch.

By Sharon Asplin

A CONTROVERSIAL scheme to build a new cricket ground on the outskirts of a village has been thrown out on appeal.

Abberton and District Cricket Club, along with Prowting Homes, applied last year for permission to build houses on the club's existing pitch.

They also wanted to create a new pitch on nearby agricultural land just outside Abberton's boundary along with a pavilion and indoor nets.


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But Colchester Borough Council's planning committee rejected the scheme on the grounds it would intrude into the countryside and neither new housing nor cricket facilities were necessary.

Councillors had also received 22 letters from residents expressing their unhappiness with the proposal, along with objections from the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England and Abberton and Langenhoe Parish Council.

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Now a planning inspector has backed the councils and the residents. A report said: "The new cricket ground proposed would spoil the character of the countryside beyond the village.

"The limited deficiencies of the existing cricket ground are not significant enough to warrant a move to such a countryside location."

The report also pointed out the new cricket ground, if granted, would "lie amongst a sylvan landscape of fields and farmland" within a "countryside conservation area".

The planning inquiry, held at Colchester Town Hall in February, was told by the cricket club and the developers, now called Westbury Homes, that their plan would not affect the rural nature of Abberton.

They also argued the new cricket field and buildings would potentially benefit not only Abberton and Langenhoe, but the wider community.

No-one from the cricket club was available for comment yesterday.

sharon.asplin@eadt.co.uk

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