National Highways has applied to build a depot on a Herefordshire industrial estate to service the county’s main A49 route.

The move comes after no business or industrial employer could be found for the undeveloped one-hectare plot in Leominster Enterprise Park, to the south of the town.

This is despite it having been available with outline planning permission for such use since 2005.

The depot would occupy two of the 29 indicative plots which make up the 12-hectare enterprise park. Each has outline planning consent for business, general industrial, warehousing and distribution uses, but permission must be sought for any change to other uses.


Herefordshire Council had previously told National Highways that an application would need to prove that no other taker for the plots could be found, given they are protected for employment uses under county planning policy.

The planning application explained: “Whilst the proposed development is not an employment use, the site has been marketed since 2005 for employment uses without success.”

Meanwhile, a search for alternative sites for the depot demonstrated there none other in the area are suitable, it said.

It added: “National Highways will endeavour to employ staff who are local to the area (i.e. within the Lugg catchment) to ensure that the development would not increase phosphate load on the local river system.”

Nor would the proposal negatively impact on the area’s amenity, flood risk, highway safety, ecology or heritage, it said.

The development would be made up of an office, garage and “salt barn”, along with staff car and cycle parking spaces, refuse areas, a fuel station and vehicle wash area.

Sustainability features would include sustainable drainage, electric vehicle charging points, solar panels, an air source heat pump and a rainwater harvesting tank.

Comments on the application, planning reference 221249, can be made until 20 May.