A home and garden center has submitted revised plans for a nursery to South Lakeland District Council after a previous application was rejected.
Charnley’s Home and Garden Center in Dalton submitted plans for the nursery on a plot off the A596 in Kirkby to supply the garden center with plants in 2021, which were rejected in March 2022.
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Reasons for rejection were given by SLDC as follows: “The proposal for an open landscape nursery development has provided insufficient evidence to show that there is a substantial need for development at the site.
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The denial statement also states: “Due to its scale, industrial design and location on open agricultural land, the proposed horticultural nursery development would result in a prominent, highly visible and unsympathetic addition to the open landscape that would cause unacceptable damage to the land.” Landscape character from short and wide views that could not be sufficiently mitigated by landscaping.”
To address these issues, the revised plans state: “The proposal has been revised; with a reduction in the number of buildings, a reduced building height and a changed arrangement of buildings.
“The delegated report of the original application referred to the buildings with ‘outstanding industrial appearance’ but of course the buildings are agricultural/horticultural buildings (including a greenhouse and polytunnel).
“The horticultural buildings are of course designed for a specific purpose, to grow plants, they are not tall buildings and they are not industrial buildings.
“The proposal is not an ‘unsympathetic addition to the open countryside’ but a set of buildings that are normal and expected in the rural scene.
“As indicated in the submitted landscape statement, the proposal will not affect the landscape character in an acceptable manner.”
The planning statement addresses the need for locally grown plants, as Brexit has made the supply chain for garden centers “unreliable” and has often relied on imported plants from the Netherlands.
The location of the nursery next to the garden center and the presence of Mr Charnley on site are vital to the ongoing care of the plants.
It also states that this is vital due to the growing interest in gardening across South Cumbria: “Gardening is part of the leisure industry and as such visits to the garden center fall under farm tourism and entertainment so one actually has access to the knowledgeable grower , even if this is only due to the range of plants available and the information provided.”