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Airfield Battle Resolved

A long-running dispute between Stratford District Council and the owners of an airfield in south Warwickshire has been settled. The district council has persuaded the owners of Long Marston airfield to enter into a legal agreement to bring the activities at the site under control.

Under the terms of the agreement some activities at the airfield must now cease, whilst other uses are severely constrained. The site operators will also have to submit a schedule of all planned temporary uses in advance on a quarterly basis, for inspection by the district council.

"It has taken a long time, but I am pleased that we have reached an amicable agreement without having to go through the courts, which would have been more costly to the taxpayer,"

said Cllr Peter Barnes, the chairman of the District Council's Planning & Regulation Committee.

"The district council has been very patient in bringing the airfield activities under proper planning control and I must give credit to the council's director of planning, Sean O'Grady, who played a leading role in the negotiations to achieve this agreement.

"The site owners have co-operated with the district council on a long term 'Master Plan', so that future planned activities can operate within an overall context.

"The signing of the agreement also opens the way for the Sunday market to be properly sign-posted along major routes, which will hopefully dissuade traffic from rat-running through villages such as Welford-on-Avon."

The legal agreement is thought to be unique in that few, if any, other local councils have used such an agreement to resolve a planning enforcement case. The agreement is in response to the presence of several unauthorised activities on the site, continual breaches of planning control, and the lack of a coherent plan to control future development of the site. It has taken nearly three years to negotiate and was authorised by the council's Planning and Enforcement Sub-Committee, chaired by Cllr Linda Lisle.

Mark Lepkowski, Press Officer   01789 260104
Sean O'Grady, Director of Planning  01789 260300

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