Plan to replace century-old greenbelt farmhouse

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PLANS have been submitted for the demolition of a century-old green belt farmhouse in Croft, Warrington – and the construction of a new dwelling on the same site.

Benefice Farm in Mill Lane is a nine acre farm that has been run by the Monks family for over 100 years. But the farm is now in a deteriorated and uninhabitable state, planning chiefs have said. The entire site is within the green belt.

Planners were told the family wanted to return Beneficte Farm to a family home and small farming operation. They want to live on the site and operate it as an agricultural business, restoring hedgerows and trees to create wildlife habitat.
They have a great sentimental attachment to the existing farm, but due to its condition they can see merit in replacing it with a more durable, yet sympathetic form that will allow the family to care for the farm for generations. .

It is believed that the existing truss lacks proper foundations and moisture-proof courtyards. The existing building is in such disrepair that it is unsafe to survey it from the inside without costly repairs and shoring. The property is not habitable.
An earlier similar proposal was submitted in 2020 but was refused on the grounds that the new building would be significantly larger than the original and as such would impact the opening of the green belt.

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