Popular Linslade car boot sale gets permission to continue

Linslade Car Boot Sale
Linslade Car Boot Sale

An “extremely popular” car boot sale has been given permission to continue operating in the Green Belt for a further two years.

The activity is organised on eight acres in an agricultural field on the corner of Stoke Road and Old Linslade Road at Linslade.

Car boot sales can be held 14 times a year under permitted development, a meeting of Central Bedfordshire Council’s development management committee heard.

Councillors needed to consider the planning application as the event at Linslade is scheduled for 15 Sundays a year.

Planning officer Stuart Kemp described it as “renewing an application for temporary use” of the site until September 2021 for one extra weekend annually than is permissible.

Leighton-Linslade Town Council objected to the proposals because of concerns about the access and highways safety issues.

But the town council did not object to the same car boot sale operation when it was previously considered, said Mr Kemp.

The site has been used for car boot sales since April 2017, according to a report to councillors. But the “field access is kerbed and hard surfaced for a reasonable length”,  said the report.

The speed limit of Stoke Road is set at 50mph.

“While there have been a number of accidents along this section of Stoke Road, there are not any in the location of the access subject to the application site,” added the report.

Independent Linslade councillor Victoria Harvey labelled it “an extremely popular event” and said: “It’s a good idea and well attended.

“People walk up from the town through the water meadows. My only concern, which isn’t really a planning matter, is that road has a lot of footpaths crossing it and is quite fast. The speed limit should be reviewed in the future, but I don’t think it’s specific to this application.

“All I can say is I think it’s an added amenity for the town of Leighton Buzzard.”

The council’s highways engineer Dave Ager told the meeting: “In highways terms, there isn’t any reason to refuse it or control it.

“The junction itself is quite well formed, so I don’t perceive how we could control it.

“I think it would be counterproductive if we reduce the speed limit any further.”

Councillors approved granting a further two-year temporary permission for the car boots sales, with nine votes in favour, none against and one abstention.

The impact the events have on the nearby roads will be monitored.