Council throws out plans for 85 homes - but appeal lies on the horizon
PUBLISHED: 13:21 16 May 2017 | UPDATED: 15:58 23 May 2017
Opponents to an 85-home development on the edge of Saffron Walden are breathing a sigh of relief after district councillors rejected its latest plans.
The application, submitted by Gladman Developments, was refused by Uttlesford District Council on the grounds that it would impact the environment and landscape, as well as local infrastructure.
Speaking at the meeting of the planning committee on May 10, Councillor Arthur Coote said: “We have had no infrastructure at all and we’ve lost five shops, three pubs, three churches, residents’ parking.
“We’ve lost a whole school. With 85 houses being proposed, where are those children going to go? We’ve lost a whole surgery of doctors. The infrastructure is not there to sustain this development.”
He added: “We’ve seen 700 houses built down there and there’s been very little opposition from us. There comes a point where you have to say ‘Hold on, we’ve done our bit’.”
According to council documents, Gladman Developments hoped plans would bring district-wide benefits and contribute to the housing supply.
But this is the second time the development, off Little Walden Road, has been refused with Uttlesford District Council first rejecting plans in December.
It is understood, however, that an appeal hearing will go ahead following the first refusal this July.
Nevertheless, John McLaughlin, from Residents Against Unsustainable Development, said opponents see the latest decision “a victory for common sense”.
He added: “We are pleased that the committee has refused this second application, enabling proper consideration of the very serious issues at stake in the upcoming appeal hearing.
“All seem to have accepted new, constructed, self-serving evidence from the developer without question and we look forward to challenging that in the appeal.
“None of us can believe, for example, that the Highways Authority accepts evidence which states that a development of 85 houses, probably 200 residents, and at least 120 cars, would only put an additional 11 cars on Church Street in the morning rush hour.
“We fight on, but for now we would like to thank the planning committee for their logical decision, and everyone else who has supported us since we started this fight last year.”