Plans to build seven houses in the Herefordshire countryside have been given the go-ahead, despite local opposition.

The bid by local developer LTF Properties, originally put forward in 2019, was for five three-bedroom and two four-bedroom homes, each with its own garage.

These would be around a courtyard on a one-hectare greenfield site immediately north of Monksbury Court, midway between Hereford, Ledbury and Bromyard, and would be sold at market rate.

Though detached from the village of Monkhide to the west, the farm is within the defined village boundary, according to its neighbourhood development plan – making it acceptable for development under the county plan.

Existing agricultural buildings at the farm, accessible up a private track, have already recently been converted to homes.


With individual designs and a mix of materials, the new homes would “sympathetically reflect the agricultural traits of the barns, while adapting them to suit modern design principles”, the application said.

Against officers’ advice, Herefordshire councillors unanimously rejected the plans in November 2020, claiming it was “incongruous” in the countryside, would be car-dependent, and would increase flood risk.

It was also opposed by the local Yarkhill Parish Council, which had particular concerns about the raised flood risk and a proposed attenuation pond by the site, and by ten residents.

The developer appealed, and now Government planning inspector Tamsin Law has sided with it, saying the design of the houses “would ensure that the well-contained site did not present itself as a nondescript suburban addition to the landscape”.

Planning conditions could ensure that the development “provides effective surface water measures to protect existing and future residents”, she added.

Suitable conditions could also ensure on-site treatment of sewerage “before being allowed to soakaway, along with surface water, into land under the appellant’s control and eventually into the wider catchment” – to which Natural England raised no objection.

Given this, she was “satisfied that the proposal would not have significant adverse effects” on the River Wye Special Area of Conservation (SAC) – an obstacle which has held up many proposed developments in the area.

In all, she proposed 21 conditions on the development, which the developer has agreed to.