A planning appeal for nine new houses near Oast House Lane in Upper Hale has been dismissed by a government planning inspector.

The appeal, initiated by Terence Lyons of Flavia Estates, contested Waverley Borough Council’s refusal of outline planning permission.

Inspector Stewart Glassar agreed the proposal would contribute to housing supply and bring some economic and social benefits.

But he added, with its suburban cul-de-sac layout and location outside of the town's settlement boundary as defined in the Farnham Neighbourhood Plan, the harm the development would cause to the area’s character and appearance outweighed these benefits.

Mr Glassar said: "The site is outside the defined settlement and within the open countryside. The need to protect the character and appearance of a local area, and the natural environment in particular, is perennial and in direct compliance with the National Planning Policy Framework.

"The harm I have identified in respect of the proposal would be both considerable and long lasting and unlikely to diminish over time. As a consequence, it is worthy of substantial weight."

Waverley also raised concerns regarding the effect of the development on protected species, including badgers and bats. However, the inspector ruled these concerns were effectively addressed through clarifications and conditions proposed by the appellant.

The harm to the environment were not, however, and the appeal was dismissed.

Read the appeal decision in full here.