Plan is backed for 300 houses

Midweek Visiter - - News - BY JAMIE LOPEZ jamie.lopez@reach­plc.com @jamie_lopez1

CON­TRO­VER­SIAL plans to build more than 300 homes in Formby were ap­proved by Sefton Coun­cil, de­spite con­cerns over flood­ing and road safety.

The coun­cil’s plan­ning com­mit­tee ap­proved the pro­posal at a busy pub­lic meet­ing in Boo­tle, and de­vel­op­ers Bar­ratt Homes and David Wil­son Homes can now build land near the Formby By­pass and Liver­pool Road North.

The de­vel­op­ment has caused a bit­ter row be­tween Labour and Con­ser­va­tive coun­cil­lors.

Con­ser­va­tive coun­cil­lor Denise Dut­ton was highly critical of the de­ci­sion to ap­prove the plans, ar­gu­ing many ques­tions still need to be an­swered.

The Har­ring­ton ward coun­cil­lor said: “I said from day one this is not a good ap­pli­ca­tion. You’ve got 304 houses palnned for that land. The site floods, it al­ways has done.

“Although they’re plan­ning on putting in ex­tra drainage, I can’t see if beng suf­fi­cient.

“They’ve also got 304 houses planned there but only one ac­cess point. How is that go­ing to work? “You’ve got var­i­ous devel­op­ments sites and no-one is pro­vid­ing any ex­tra money for school­ing, why?”

Cllr Dut­ton was also critical of the loss of Green Belt land for the de­vel­op­ment and dis­missed sug­ges­tions the plan­ning com­mit­tee had no choice but to ap­prove the ap­pli­ca­tion.

Labour coun­cil­lor Nina Killen had ear­lier said that Government guide­lines had limited the com­mit­tee’s pow­ers to ob­ject to the ap­pli­caion.

Cllr Killen had also raised con­cerns over the sim­i­lar is­sues, but said com­mit­tee mem­bers were left with lit­tle choice.

She said: “If Liver­pool Road had been re­fused the de­vel­op­ers would have ap­pealed di­rectly to the Government and would have been granted per­mis­sion by them, tak­ing all the pow­ers away from the coun­cil with re­gards to the con­di­tions that could be placed on the de­vel­op­ment, such as road widen­ing at the by­pass and safety im­prove­ments such as a new puf­fin cross­ing to re­place the ze­bra cross­ing on Liver­pool Road.

“I was also pleased to see that the play area will not only be re­tained but en­hanced.

“This site will de­liver 89 homes that are for so­cial rent or part-rent, part­buy, which is very wel­come in Formby where house prices are so high.

“It is also im­por­tant to note that there are sur­plus places pre­dicted for Formby schools in the next five years due to fewer chil­dren be­ing born here.”

WHAT do you think? Email us at: sefton­com­mu­ni­ties@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

An im­age of the area set to be de­vel­oped along­side Formby by­pass

Cllr Denise Dut­ton Cllr Nina Killen

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