Housing development plan is turned down by committee

PUBLISHED: 07:46 02 October 2019 | UPDATED: 07:46 02 October 2019

Th Uttlesford District Council offices in Saffron Walden.

Th Uttlesford District Council offices in Saffron Walden.

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An application for permission to demolish buildings in Newport to make way for 20 new homes was rejected by councillors.

The proposed development, off London Road, would have seen 20 homes, with eight affordable, but was turned down by Uttlesford District Council's planning committee on September 18.

Council officers had recommended conditional planning approval. Permission for 11 homes - including two affordable - had previously been granted in November 2016.

Councillor Judy Emanuel, from Newport Parish Council, said the density and visual amenity of the proposed developments were inappropriate for Newport.

She said: "These aspects are suited to an urban environment, not a rural village," adding that they would set an 'unacceptable precedent'.

Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) councillor for Newport, Neil Hargreaves, agreed with the objections.

Cllr Anthony Gerard also spoke against the developments and said new homes, including affordable, were not needed in Newport. He was positive towards the initial proposal of 11 houses but found the new proposals unsustainable.

Peter Stocking, managing director of Enterprise Residential Developments, which proposed the plan, said: "We proposed an alternative scheme which ensures more units are appropriate for the site, the market and village. It has 20 units but comprises two and three-bedroom homes, including a bungalow. The actual area built form has increased by only 25 per cent. Of the nine additional units proposed, six will be affordable.

"This increase of the affordable units hopefully dispel suggestions that our motives are about increased profit. Uttlesford Housing confirmed that the affordable units have acceptable size and tenure and there remains a need for them here."

Cllr Janice Loughlin, a Liberal Democrat, said: "There haven't been objections and I think if this goes to appeal it would win. We don't have affordable homes and whatever our opinions may be, I cannot find reasons to refuse this. I am worried about the air quality because it's close to the motorway and the B1383 but the Environmental Health don't seem to be."

Fellow Lib Dem, Cllr Melvin Caton said: "There are some social benefits. Newport may not require more affordable housing, but I am sure the people of Uttlesford would."

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