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We have objected to a retrospective planning application for a high, galvanised-steel ‘gate’ at Turville, Bucks, on a hilltop in the heart of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Michael and Carol Clare of Turville Court, part of a 22 million-pound estate, erected a green metal structure, nearly three metres high and five metres long, without planning permission and have applied retrospectively for planning permission for a ‘field gate’.  The Open Spaces Society and the Bucks Ramblers have objected.

Says Kate Ashbrook, our general secretary: ‘The structure is not a field gate at all.  “Field gate” sounds nice and rustic, but in fact it is a metal wall, painted dark green, with a right-angle bend.  You cannot see through it.

‘It is adjacent to the well-used bridleway which runs from Turville village, over the hill to the woods and fields beyond.  It is highly visible from that route and blocks the lovely view to the south, across the valley to the wooded hillside beyond.  It is totally out of keeping in the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

‘Furthermore, in answer to a question on the application form: “Are there trees or hedges on the land adjacent to the proposed development site that might be important as part of the local landscape character?” the applicants have said no.  Yet this so-called gate is set in a hedgerow which the applicants’ immediate predecessors planted as a landscape feature.  They should of course have said yes in answer to that question.

‘We have urged Wycombe District Council to reject this application and to ensure that the ugly and unlawful “gate” is removed forthwith,’ Kate concludes.

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