Hun­dreds fight against plan for new homes

Fury at scheme to build on farm­land

Midweek Visiter - - Front Page - BY CHANTELLE HEEDS chantelle.heeds@reach­plc.com @chantelle­heeds

HUN­DREDS of res­i­dents are cam­paign­ing against plans to build more than 300 homes on farm­land in South­port.

Wain­homes North West has sub­mit­ted an ap­pli­ca­tion to build 327 homes on land off Bank­field Lane, Church­town.

Al­most 450 peo­ple have now signed a pe­ti­tion op­pos­ing the de­vel­op­ment.

The pe­ti­tion raised sev­eral is­sues, ar­gu­ing that it would place too much strain on the Vic­to­ri­an­built sewage sys­tem and on ameni­ties such as the al­ready busy lo­cal schools and doc­tors’ surg­eries, and that Bank­field Lane al­ready strug­gles to cope with the amount of traf­fic and parked cars.

Res­i­dents are also con­cerned that the planned en­try for the huge new estate – on to Blun­dells Lane, turn­ing on to Bank­field Lane – would cause huge traf­fic prob­lems, while they also fear that the de­vel­op­ment could ex­ac­er­bate prob­lems with flood­ing in the area.

Lo­cal Lib­eral Demo­crat coun­cil­lors John Dodd, Nigel Law­son and Daniel Lewis are call­ing on peo­ple to show their op­po­si­tion and have con­tacted res­i­dents to share their con­cerns.

They said: “The ap­pli­ca­tion may go to the plan­ning com­mit­tee as early as June 6 at South­port Town Hall.

“I hope lo­cal res­i­dents will come to­gether and at­tend the meet­ing to show their sup­port for our gar­dens and park­ing, with an area of com­mu­nal gar­den space pro­vided to the front of the flats.

The land Wain­homes is hop­ing to build upon was pre­vi­ously clas­si­fied as Green Belt, but was ear­marked for hous­ing when the new Sefton Lo­cal Plan was set out.

The ap­pli­ca­tion states: “The pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would pro­vide much needed houses in Sefton.

“This would as­sist the coun­cil in terms of its fiveyear sup­ply of hous­ing and the re­quire­ment set out in the newly adopted Lo­cal Plan.

“The loss of this rel­a­tively small area of agri­cul­tural land can­not out­weigh the sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fits the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would de­liver.”

Con­ser­va­tive and Labour coun­cil­lors in Sefton have been ap­proached for com­ment.

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cam­paign and to show Sefton Coun­cil and its coun­cil­lors that the res­i­dents are against this pro­posed de­vel­op­ment.

“Let’s get our in­fras­truc­ture re­built first and come out of the Vic­to­rian age.”

South­port Con­ser­va­tive MP Damien Moore raised his con­cerns dur­ing a speech in Par­lia­ment ear­lier this month over build­ing large hous­ing de­vel­op­ments with­out first mak­ing sure lo­cal ameni­ties can cope.

His warn­ing came as the num­ber of house­holds in England was ex­pected to grow from 22.7 mil­lion in 2014 to 28 mil­lion in 2039.

Mr Moore said: “When con­cern is ex­pressed about the way in which the de­vel­op­ments will af­fect lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties’ qual­ity of life and the strain that they will place on lo­cal ser­vices, ac­tion must be taken to en­sure that those prob­lems are reme­died.

“More con­sid­er­a­tion needs to be given to the pro­vi­sion of ser­vices such as schools and doc­tors’ surg­eries, and to en­sur­ing that homes are not built where flood­ing oc­curs, and al­ready con­gested roads are not made worse by ad­di­tional ve­hi­cles.”

The plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion is for 121 homes in the first stage, call­ing for out­line per­mis­sion to build about 200 more in the second phase.

If ap­proved, the de­vel­op­ment would fea­ture a mix­ture of one, two, three, four and five bed­room prop­er­ties in a va­ri­ety of de­tached, semi-de­tached and ter­raced houses, along with a block of flats.

Each of the homes in phase one would have pri­vate

More than 300 homes are planned for farm­land in Church­town; right, Cllr Daniel Lewis

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