HC Deb 29 November 1995 vol 267 cc728-9W
Mr. Redmond

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what discussion his Department had with(a) English Heritage and (b) the Wiltshire county archaeologist about the proposal to build three houses inside the enclosure known as Vespasian's Camp in the Stonehenge world heritage site before planning permission was granted; what assessment he has made of the conformity of the permission with PPG15; what requests he has received to revoke it; and if he will make a statement. [2367]

Sir Paul Beresford

The Government office for the south-west received representations from English Heritage and the Wiltshire county archaeologist, as well as Salisbury district council and Chapman Warren, agents for the applicants. The planning permission was issued by Salisbury district council on 2 December 1994, including a condition which provides for archaeological investigation prior to development. On the same day, Wiltshire county council wrote to request call-in by the Secretary of State.

The land involved is not an scheduled ancient monument and in those circumstances the district council felt unable to refuse planning consent, which was consistent with the unchallenged housing provisions of the draft local plan, unless English Heritage gave an undertaking to meet the costs of any award against the council at appeal. No such undertaking was given and English Heritage did not press the Secretary of State to call in the application.

I have received no requests to revoke the planning permission.