A government inspector has quashed plans to create a pet burial ground in Arnold due to fears it could cause major traffic problems on the busy A60.
Applicant Stuart Mills has been battling with Gedling Borough Council to create a natural pet burial ground in Ramper Covert Wood in Mansfield Road since September 2020.
The council said the burial ground had to be accessed from the A60, which carries an average of 18,500 vehicles.
Outline planning permission was refused for the change of use of the land.
The council said it would result in the “likelihood of vehicles parking in the entrance to the site” and the possibility of “vehicles reversing onto the A60” if they are unable to enter the facility.
It would therefore cause a “likely source of unacceptable danger to other users of the highway, particularly because of the heavy volumes of traffic using A60 Mansfield Road.”
There were also concerns about what would happen to some of the protected trees on the site.
Mr Mills decided to appeal against the council’s decision, but a planning inspector also felt the proposal was unacceptable.
Planning Inspector Hannah Ellison said in her report on February 4 that high volumes of motorists use the road and that even if a nearby layby was available to park at the time of a pre-arranged burial or visit there is no “defined footpath along this stretch.”
She said: “Visitors would therefore have to traverse over uneven and, at times, overgrown and sodden grass. This would pose a risk for pedestrians.”
She concluded: “Although the proposal would provide jobs and may encourage some local spending, the nature of these benefits would be limited given the small scale of the proposed development. Accordingly, they would attract only limited weight.
“The proposal would result in harm to highway safety, harm which would lead to conflict with the development plan and to which I afford substantial weight.”
The Local Democracy Service tried to contact Mr Mills about the application. He was not available at the time, but he did submit a detailed re-submission of the application to the council in April 2021.
He said: “Pet ownership in the UK has always run at high levels, but even more so since the beginning of the Covid 19 pandemic in March 2020.
“When a pet’s life ends there is great demand for a suitable, respectable, and considerate way to deal with their remains. Green human burial is on the increase as people are more environmentally aware, and the same thing is occurring in the pet world.”
He said he would limit pet burial times to avoid increased traffic using the A60 and no trees would be felled.
He said: “This proposal poses the absolute minimal amount of impact on this beautiful setting which is perfect for use as a natural burial ground for pets.”
Gedling Borough Council’s planning committee is set to note the inspector’s report on Wednesday, 23 February.