Plans to add 48 homes to Walton-le-Dale estate set for green light next week

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Plans to build 48 houses on land once earmarked for a new school have been recommended for approval.

South Ribble Council’s planning committee will make a final decision on Thursday evening over Eccleston Homes’ proposal for the 1.42 hectare site in the centre of the Holland House Estate, Walton-le-Dale.

Original plans for the estate reserved the site for a new 150 pupil school. Redrow built the development but, after the land was transferred to Lancashire County Council for a school to serve the hundreds of homes, the project was dropped by County Hall and a new school was eventually built elsewhere.

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The land was transferred back to Redrow and re-allocated in the current Local Plan as Green Infrastructure. Redrow had an application for 48 houses accepted in 2014, but because of conditions attached to the project it wasn't built.

The plot of land in question. Image from Google.The plot of land in question. Image from Google.
The plot of land in question. Image from Google.

Eccleston Homes’ proposal is for a mix of two, three and four bedroom houses - 14 of them affordable homes. Access to the site would be via two new access points off Hampshire Road (north).

Thirteen letters of objection have been submitted, with concerns over an increase in traffic, density, lack of visual amenity, and loss of a recreation area.

Council planning officers recommend committee members approve the plans.

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In a report, office Janice Crook said: "Members are asked to consider the value of this, green but low amenity value private land against the implications and benefits of developing the site for residential purposes."

She added: "It has been demonstrated that the site is not required to satisfy a recreational need in the local area due to the findings of the Central Lancashire Open Space Study 2012, the site being located immediately adjacent to an existing children’s play area, and the site being in private ownership with no public access rights.

"Secondly it has been demonstrated that the proposed development would not detrimentally affect the amenity value and the nature conservation value of the site due to the site in its existing form not being of high amenity value, and that the Council can ensure a well-designed development using high quality materials and effective landscaping along the site frontage with Hampshire Road which would offer no less visual amenity than the existing site."

She added that the sites previous permissions for housing development also carry significant weight.