A HOUSING developer has lodged an appeal against a decision to reject plans for 300 new homes in Blackwood.

Persimmon Homes were refused planning permission by Caerphilly to build on six fields north of the Grove Park estate last November.

The housebuilder said the development was a £30 million investment in the area, creating 127 jobs and potentially generating more than £800,000 a year through council tax and planning charges.

But Caerphilly council’s planning committee said the development was outside of agreed settlement boundaries and would have a negative impact on local roads and services like schools and doctors surgeries.

With the appeal now submitted to the Planning Inspectorate, Blackwood councillor Kevin Etheridge said it would be contested “with vigour”.

Before refusing the planning application, councillors were told to expect Persimmon to appeal and that the housebuilder would have a strong case.


This was confirmed in a letter written by the Persimmon’s managing director, Martin Smith,

to the council’s leader, Councillor David Poole, last year.

“I do not want to appeal but the strength of our case is significant and plain for all to see,” said Mr Smith.

“I hope this can be avoided but it if cannot, I will be required to pursue an appeal alongside any associated costs that may be justified.”

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Each of the concerns raised by the committee, which included a loss of greenfield land, were made without “reasonable evidence” and against officer advice, added Mr Smith.

The council’s development control manager, Tim Stephens, had warned councillors in November that the authority would be “vulnerable to very high costs” if the application was refused on highway grounds.

He added: “It’s not a threat as such, it’s a reality.”

Persimmon’s plans to build on 9.72-hectares of open land were met with huge public opposition, with three petitions signed by more than 500 people.

The appeal will be considered by a Welsh Government-appointed planning inspector in the coming months.