Update: Kier to appeal refusal of 300 homes in Saffron Walden next week
PUBLISHED: 18:17 11 March 2015 | UPDATED: 18:17 11 March 2015
The date for a controversial appeal over an application to build up to 300 homes on the east of Saffron Walden has now been set.
The public inquiry into Kier Homes’ refused planning application of up to 300 homes on land south and north of Thaxted Road was due to take place in December last year, but had to be adjourned.
The appeal, likely to last four days, is now due to go ahead next week, starting on Tuesday, March 17.
Saffron Walden Town Council will be fighting the appeal and splitting the legal costs with the campaigning group WeAreResidents.org.
“We are confident we can stop the appeal because we believe that’s in the best interest of the town,” Councillor Ben Balliger, an appeal working group member, told the Reporter.
“No one can say for certain what the tribunal will decide on the day, but we are as confident as we can be.”
WeAreResidents.org chairman Dan Starr added: “Our lawyers have advised us that our likelihood of winning is even stronger since the refusal of the Local Plan.
“We are disappointed that UDC has decided not to defend their planning refusal.
“Instead we are spending £25,000 of residents’ money, so we would like to thank residents of Saffron Walden and the surrounding villages for their donations.”
Uttlesford’s planning committee refused permission for the application – which includes land for a primary school, a £5m sports hub and an extension to the skate park – in April 2014. But the authority has since decided not to fight the developers appeal, on the basis that the land had been earmarked as one of its sites on the Local Plan.
A spokesman for Kier said: “Our scheme, if permitted, will deliver 300 new homes for the town, of which 120 will be affordable dwellings available for those that cannot afford to buy a property on the open market.
“In addition, we will be delivering land for new leisure/sports facilities and funds to kick start their delivery.”
Tuesday’s appeal starts at 10am at the district council’s offices on London Road, in Saffron Walden.