Neighbourhood Forum




Landscape and Visual Impact


The original document on the Torbay Council website.

The Landscape and Visual Impact assessment states:

"The potential residual effects to landscape and visual amenity have been a key consideration within the design of the proposed development."

However, the report makes many "it'll be ok" conclusions:

"The Proposed Development has given consideration to mitigation measures by wildflower meadow grass mixes within the site and around its boundaries, to add to local biodiversity."

Mitigation for what, precisely?

"The construction phase would incur significant effects on the landscape fabric locally and also in relation to visual amenity for local residential receptors to the south and west of the proposed development site. The effects would be temporary and intermittent of a short term duration."

What are those "significant effects" and what is a "short term duration"?

Note: "residential receptors" is taken to mean: "people looking at it".

"The site, with its strong tree, scrub and hedgerows to the northern, western and southern boundaries and a more open aspect to the eastern boundary would undergo a change in character with the introduction of a retail unit, car parking and access road creating a manmade appearance."

It most certainly would!

"There would be no significant effects in relation to landscape character and the landscape designations of the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Oldway Mansion and Princess Gardens and Royal Terrace Gardens Grade II Listed Parks and Gardens, Conservation Areas, Scheduled Ancient Monuments, Listed Buildings, Ancient Woodlands, Country Parks, Countryside Areas, SSSIs, LNRs or Protected Sites."

Again, we see the phrase "no significant effects", without outlining what those effects are and how the meaning of the word "significant" is determined.

"In relation to visual effects, it is considered that there would be no significant effects from local residential receptors in Torquay, Marldon, Hollicombe, Stoke Gabriel, Coombe Fishacre, Compton, Ayerville, Berry Pomeroy, North Whilborough. The majority of residential receptors within Paignton will experience no significant effects although there will be a small number, directly adjacent to the site."


"It is considered that the visual effects experienced by the users of the highways, the South West Coast Path National Trail, the John Musgrave Heritage Trail Long Distance Footpath and local PRoW will not be significant. There will be no visual effects on Public Rights of Way within the study area over the majority of the proposed development site."

So, in the over-use of the term "no significant effects" we see that the use of the term (in planning-law speak) leads to the "don't worry, it'll be ok" presumption.


Last Updated: Saturday 18 December 2021