Plan for training centre for heavy machinery operatives on Aylesbury Vale farm rejected

Councillors voted unanimously against the proposals to train drivers for major infrastructure projects on rural farmland

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 11:19 am

Residents of an Aylesbury Vale village are celebrating after a much-opposed planning application was quashed.

Councillors voted unanimously to reject the ‘change of use’ application for Red Furlong Farm, on Twyford Road, Poundon.

There were more than 250 public objections to the planning application, submitted by Patrick Flannery, of Flannery Plant Hire, for the "temporary seven-year conversion of 8.39 hectares of agricultural land for the establishment of an operator skills hub for training operatives in relation to the development of major infrastructure projects".

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The site at Poundon

The plans also mentioned a caravan park, the erection of temporary buildings for accommodation, amenity block, offices, canteen and training rooms, and the demolition of an existing barn.

Around 74 parking spaces were to be provided.

A planning statement said the scheme would “create a training facility for those learning to use plant machinery” for major infrastructure projects in Buckinghamshire, including HS2 and East West Rail.

The application was unanimously rejected at a meeting of the North Buckinghamshire Area Planning Committee yesterday, Wednesday, January 12.

Following the decision, Poundon resident Elaine Witteridge said: "We are absolutely delighted with this decision, the residents of Poundon and Twyford have pulled together to fight this application.

"We are so lucky to have so many proactive, talented and determined people in our and surrounding communities and it shows what can be achieved."