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Foxt couple get approval to build home at equestrian centre after 10 year battle

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: August 20, 2014


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WEALTHY Middle East businessmen are expected to generate more income for firms across the Staffordshire Moorlands after an equestrian centre was given approval to build a large house on part of its site.

Provence Equestrian, based in Foxt, has built, with planning approval, an equestrian centre on land east of New Cottages.

The owners, Pam and Patrick Stimpson, wanted to build a large bungalow next to the stable to manage the businesses and for additional security for the Arab horses they breed and sell mainly for export to the Middle East.

The planning saga has been on-going for 10 years – but at a meeting of Staffordshire Moorlands District Council's planning applications committee, members gave approval for the dwelling. The building will comprise of a two-storey detached house with four bedrooms, all with en-suite, a bathroom, entrance hall, lounge/dining room, kitchen, office, staff canteen, clients facilities room, two WCs and a separate WC for staff

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The provision of the proposed facilities at the site will now enable the applicant to provide overnight accommodation, which will allow customers to visit more businesses in the area, especially those associated with the industry such as trailer manufacturers.

The applicant's agent John Wren said: "The applicants have invested in 24 stables and now need a dwelling for the family and for business people coming from abroad.

"The planning inspector said the building should be two storeys and well designed. This is what we have done.

"The parish council does not object and there are no technical reason why it should not be permitted.

"I ask the committee to bring an end to this long running saga."

Councillor Mike Worthington said : "This has been before us 13 times.

"I was more in favour of a bungalow as it fitted in better in the bankside.

"I agree with planning officers to end this saga and let the family get on with running the business."

Councillor Linda Malyon said: "This is a well established equestrian centre which has won many awards."

In report to councillors planning officer Wayne Johnson said: "It was recognised by the inspector that the applicant currently operates from the family home in the village and that the business is established and successful in the breeding of valuable horses.

"As part of the previous appeal, the inspector also visited the stable and storage building next to the application site and acknowledged that in the absence of any permanent presence on the site, the stables are not currently used for accommodating the horses due to security issues.

"The inspector was in no doubt that the creation of a dwelling with ancillary facilities on the appeal site would overcome this constraint and enable the company to increase the number of horses that could be bred and stabled."

Councillors voted by seven votes to two to approve the application with one abstention.

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