Shock as Government Planning Inspector rules in favour of building 70 new homes in Hoghton

A controversial development of 70 homes has been given the go-ahead after a Government Planning Inspector stepped in to settle a long-running row.

Saturday, 11th January 2020, 6:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 15th January 2020, 5:15 pm
The land earmarked for development, off Methuen Drive in Hoghton

South Ribble Council refused Galliford Try Partnership’s application for the development on land at Olive Farm and Methuen Drive, Hoghton in 2018, claiming:

- the layout “fails to respect the character and appearance of the area”

- There was no identified local need for the homes, with a residential development underway at Brindle Road

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- The development will overlook and cause a loss of privacy to two neighbouring residential properties.

Residents also objected over the density of homes, traffic problems and flooding risks.

But the developer took the decision to an appeal, and Inspector Patrick Hanna sided with them. He said the density of homes would not be noticeably different to the existing housing stock, the proposed two-storey dwellings “would not be out of keeping”, and that the privacy of neighbours would not be affected.

He added that the development would be “unlikely” to exacerbate surface water flooding, and “sees no evidence” that an increase in traffic would have an adverse effect on existing residents .

Local resident Andy Baker called the report “a whitewash”. He said: “This isn’t us saying we don’t want this in our back yards, it’s about being sensible. This will affect people’s lives and people’s businesses.”

Fellow nearby resident Paul Wignall said: “ Nobody in the street wants it. It’s building for building’s sake.”

The development is for 70 dwellings, including 18 affordable rent and shared ownership properties. Access will be off Hoghton Lane via Methuen Drive.

A spokesperson from Vistry Partnerships North West, which has taken over the development from Galliford Try, said: “We are pleased that following the Planning Inspectorate’s independent review of our scheme, the site has been granted planning approval. This new development will create much needed high quality family homes, with a good mix of sizes and tenures enabling people to get onto the property ladder, upsize or downsize.

“We have a proven track record in building attractive, modern homes across the North West, including within South Ribble and we look forward to delivering another successful scheme for the community.”