SO HERE we go again. Another planning decision we were, in the main, perfectly happy with our elected representatives making on our behalf has been undermined by a Government planning inspector.
As has been pointed out in a lengthy letter on this subject on page eight the inspector is instructed to follow a policy set down by the same Government that has told us local authorities will be given more power to shape their own community.
Countless meetings have been arranged, petitions have been gathered together, campaigns have been fought, all with a common goal of protecting what people believed were the best interests of Ashbourne.
Fortunately for us, our elected representatives followed up their promise of listening to the strong opinions and held up their hands when invited to vote against applications that many argue should never have arrived on their desks in the first place.
But unfortunately for us there seems to be little hesitation in overturning the democratic process and, once again, we find ourselves in the position of picking up the pieces of what is becoming a futile planning process that does little more than waste time and money.
If the Government really does want to give power to the communities when identifying land for future housing then more thought should be given to the process that has run its course before it reached the appeal stage.
Something needs to be done at a central level to protect Ashbourne and other towns in similar positions.
The next application that landed on a desk in Bristol is for an even bigger housing development equally opposed by residents at nearby Hillside Farm and all eyes will now be on the outcome.
No doubt everyone who fought against this site will be hoping for better news.