AN ‘INAPPROPRIATE’ plan for a new motorway service area by a Buckinghamshire village on the M25 has been rejected.

Blueprints for the rest area proposed a site of 36 hectares near Chalfont St Peter between junctions 16 and 17 of London’s orbital motorway.

But the plan was refused by a majority of nine councillors, with two abstentions during a five-hour meeting of Buckinghamshire Council’s Conservative-majority Strategic Sites Committee this week.

Committee members rejected Extra MSA Group’s plan for the services after poring over more than 900 pages of planning documents submitted to the meeting.

A report by planning officer Rachel Marber read: “The proposed motorway service area development would constitute inappropriate development which by definition is harmful to the green belt and would result in significant spatial and visual harm to the openness of the green belt.”

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It added: “There would be considerable harm to the character of the landscape and visual impacts including the Colne Valley Regional Park.”

The report also found that the development would result in a “limited loss” of agricultural land and would fail a flood risk test.

The proposal for the services included a two-floor facilities/amenity building with a food court, retail area, business lounge, meetings rooms, toilets, washing facilities and staff areas.

There would also be an 18-pump petrol station and a car park with 759 spaces including 38 disabled spots.

Parking would have also included 38 staff spaces, 142 for HGVs, spaces, 19 for coaches, 23 for caravans, 23 for motorcycles and up to 120 electric vehicle charging spots.

The proposal for this services is separate to a previous application for a similar site that was refused in 2021 on landscape and green belt harm grounds.

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Speaking about the new proposal, Councillor Linda Smith told the Committee: “There are no special circumstances to outweigh the harm this development will cause to this green belt land.”

Another local councillor, Jonathan Rush, also told the Committee of his fears that a new services at Chalfont St Peter could endanger nearby low-flying light aircraft taking off and landing at nearby aerodromes.

He said: “Theoretical exercises to quantity risk are rendered irrelevant when one considers the consequences of just one crash to passengers and people on the ground.”

Despite the councillor’s concerns, the officer’s report found that a new services “would not pose a significant risk” to aviation safety.

He also raised concerns that local skylark and roe deer populations would be adversely affected by the new services.

However, the officer’s report noted that there would be an overall biodiversity net gain in the area, which is also home to badgers, bats, great crested newts and a variety of birds.

During the same meeting, the Committee approved a plan for a new services on the M25 between junctions 15 and 16 at Iver Heath.