Developer says Cornwall Council 'out of touch' as affordable homes plan in St Agnes rejected

The developers behind a new housing scheme in Cornwall have branded councillors as "out of touch" after its plans for affordable homes were thrown out.

Cornwall Council has refused planning permission for the 39-home development - which included 22 affordable homes - in St Agnes.

The council said it was concerned about a lack of local amenities and said the development would harm the natural environment.

The proposal was rejected after St Agnes Parish Council objected to the plan - saying the development was "not required".

But the Managing Director of developer West Country Land Justin Dodge said he will appeal the decision.

"I personally feel that the councillors that make the decisions on these planning committees are simply out of touch with the reality," he said.

"I definitely think the parish council have unduly influenced this decision.

"These people are missing the fundamental issue with these types of applications. We are talking about a scheme which includes 22 affordable homes for local people who already live in this community."

Why did the council reject the plans?

The proposal for 39 new homes in St Agnes has been rejected.

In a statement, Cornwall Council said its sub area planning committee voted unanimously to reject the proposals due to "various concerns".

It said this included "harm to the natural environment and the World Heritage Site and a lack of amenities".

"Affordable housing is needed around Cornwall, however each individual planning application is judged on its merits against adopted policies to ensure high-quality development," it added.

Meanwhile the parish council said 137 affordable homes have been built in the parish in the past decade with 45 more due to be built with permission already granted.

In a statement, it said the popularity of St Agnes means and the high market value of houses means providing affordable homes in the village is "extremely difficult".

It said other key concerns were around pressure on the village's "already congested" road system as well as a lack of local amenities including dentist and GP surgeries and schools.