I’m taking a clear view on Dunfield Terrace plans

Councillor Gerard Diver gave an excellent interview last week on the planning decision to allow new homes to be built at Dunfield Terrace. Councillor Diver gave a clear account of his own and others’ strenuous efforts over many years to resist the Dunfield application. I’m paraphrasing Mr Diver, but he also he explained that at present the final say rests within the planning system and objectors to particular applications don’t have a right of appeal to a third party. There will be a big change next year when the new ‘Super Councils’ go live and they will assume a far more significant role in dealing with planning applications. Councillor Diver said he was looking forward to taking on the new responsibility but appreciated that decisions would have to be taken objectively in line with planning policy. It was reassuring to hear the Councillor take a balanced and carefully considered view. We need to recognise that there is a major difference between urban and rural areas. In urban areas there is a presumption in favour of development which isn’t the case in the countryside. And, land owners are entitled to have their applications dealt with in line with consistent criteria. On the specific issue of Dunfield Terrace, I think it’s a great shame to lose the magnificent view over the city. The word “iconic” is over-used these days but the view from Dunfield is iconic. Individual objectors to planning applications don’t have a right to a view but surely there should be such a thing as a collective or public right, even if that doesn’t exist at present.