With the Oxford garden centre sitting in the Green Belt, DHA faced the hardy perennial of the local authority focused on preventing development that could increase pressure on the local transport network. However, working with Notcutts’ transport consultants, DHA persuaded the highways authority that the centre’s proposed new restaurant would only increase traffic in off-peak hours when existing traffic is quieter.
As a result, DHA secured permission to increase the garden centre by 50 per cent to 3,669m2, plus approval for three residential units to replace existing smaller houses elsewhere on the site.
On the outskirts of Tunbridge Wells, and also in the Green Belt, Notcutts was seeking permission to further extend a recently redeveloped garden centre and also retain the use of a car park built originally to cater for the workers redeveloping the nearby Pembury Hospital.
With car parking at a premium, DHA successfully persuaded the local council and county’s highways authority to retain it for the use of customers, as well as granting permission for the enlarged store.