The Barn, Broadlands Fruit Farm, Box Road, Bathford
Broadlands Fruit Farm is a commercial site situated within the Bath Green Belt, Cotswolds AONB, and the indicative landscape setting of the World Heritage Site. It is situated outside of the Housing Development Boundaries for both Bathford and Batheaston.
Whilst the D&A Statement indicates a viability statement has been submitted, this is not present on the planning portal. The Trust therefore cannot see adequate justification on grounds of viability for the conversion of the unit from A1/A3 to C3 use. The D&A Statement goes on to explain that the commercial unit closed in March 2020 due to Covid-19 and has not consequently reopened. However, we do not feel this is an adequate justification for the loss of what constitutes a local community facility and service as a shop servicing Bath’s rural environs, with the current pandemic and associated regulations constituting a temporary situation with a blanket effect across all small and local businesses in Bath.
We therefore strongly recommend that an assessment of Broadland Fruit Farm’s pre-Covid viability is made and submitted to the LPA for assessment, before the proposed principle of change of use can be considered.