Plan for staff accommodation at Woodbury farm given go ahead

A planning application for extra staff acommodation at Rydon Farm, Woodbury, has been given the go-a

A planning application for extra staff acommodation at Rydon Farm, Woodbury, has been given the go-ahead. - Credit: Archant

A family dynasty, which has farmed in Woodbury for more than 200 years, has won permission to build a third home on the site.

The Glanvill family took on the tenancy of Rydon Farm, in Woodbury, 202 years ago and has farmed the site ever since.

Plans were submitted for a third agricultural workers’ home for the head herdsman and his family, who is a partner in the business and works full time at Rydon Farm.

The application had been recommended for refusal by planning officers on the grounds of the footprint and size exceeding the requirements of the agricultural enterprise; there were also concerns it would result in harm to the setting of Rydon Farm house.

However, East Devon District Council’s development management committee meeting almost unanimously backed the plans, which were approved by 12 votes to one.

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Planning officer Chris Rose said officers were satisfied there was a need for the dwelling, but had concern about the size and scale of the development.

Councillor Ben Ingham proposed the application should be approved, adding: “Any working farm of this size should be made as economically sustainable as possible. Enabling a three-decade plus future does that.

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“It is refreshing to see a farming business attempt to commit to farming instead of anything else.

“Too many farms are throwing in the towel which damages all strands of sustainability.”

Mr Ingham also said: “I don’t think there’s a high risk of this being sold on – 202 years of history says otherwise.

“I suspect they need a few more bedrooms and don’t think it is our place to tell them how many bedrooms they need.

“There would be no detriment to the farm at all and this should be approved.”

Cllr David Key said: “I am disgraced at the way farmers are not allowed to have a decent residence.

“If this house was being built in the village, no one would question it at all.

“It is for a growing family to a partner of a big business and it provides essential facilities that are needed; and in farming experience, this is not an extravagant sized house and will be acceptable for the family.”

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