Breeder fails in plan for building

PUBLISHED: 12:29 04 January 2008 | UPDATED: 08:18 02 June 2010

A FRUIT farmer and breeder of rare pigs, who has invested £30,000 in his Fenland enterprise, has been refused permission to build a massive storage hut in the centre of his smallholding. West Norfolk planners says they have seen little to justify the size

A FRUIT farmer and breeder of rare pigs, who has invested £30,000 in his Fenland enterprise, has been refused permission to build a massive storage hut in the centre of his smallholding.

West Norfolk planners says they have seen little to justify the size of the proposed building - 20 metres by 12 metres - and it would "create an adverse affect" on the countryside.

Planning officials say the site for the proposed building is an orchard south of School Road, Marshland St James, where Mark Anderson intends to breed rare pigs with a view to extending to breed rare sheep and goats.

The store would have housed animal food, 200 bales of hay and straw, apples, a tractor, trailer and hedge cutter and indoor livestock pens.

Mr Anderson had already ploughed £30,000 into the business and proposed spending a further £50,000, says a report by planning officers.

However, his application was rejected after officers claimed he had failed to prepare a business plan, had offered no background information of his livelihood or connection to farming, and gave insufficient details to justify allowing development in the countryside.

Council officers said in terms of sustainability, the site was considered remote from the nearby village of Marshland St James but more so from Upwell where Mr Anderson lives.

The council said their policies supported development which delivered diverse and sustainable farming enterprises, contributed towards rural economies, while conserving features of landscape.

"This application does not fulfil those requirements," said a council official. West Norfolk Borough Ciouncil had earlier rejected an application for an even larger store.

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