Village expansion plan is thrown out

Land off Sandy Gate Lane in Broughton
Land off Sandy Gate Lane in Broughton
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Controversial plans to build 97 new homes on the edge of Broughton have been thrown out by Preston Council.

Hollins Strategic Land LLP wanted to build the development on 6.59 hectares of greenfield land off Sandy Gate Lane, 20m south of Moorcroft and 30m south of the rear access to Broughton High School, claiming it was “a logical extension of Broughton”.

It added the development would cause “no harmful reduction in the separation of Broughton and Preston” and sought to redirect part of the Guild Wheel cycle route through the new estate.

Residents and Broughton Parish Council launched objections, raising concerns over road safety and separation of the semi-rural village and Preston.

Planning bosses refused the application. They said the proposed development went against focused growth and investment in urban and brownfield sites, and would “lead to an unplanned and inappropriate expansion of a rural village”.

They also argued the development would have low accessibility to local employment areas, shops and services and therefore would not be sustainable.

Councillor Pat Hastings, chair of Broughton Parish Council, said: “Overall, we’re delighted. We’re glad the councillors supported us and were positive about our neighbourhood plan.

“This is a beautiful area of countryside and our area of separation, that is needed to help maintain the integrity of our village.”

Tim Brown, technical advisor to Broughton’s Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group and former local authority chief planner, said he was delighted at the decision, but disappointed that the grounds for refusal were confined to the principle of further substantial expansion of a village that is not well served in terms of local facilities.

He said: “The Councils grounds of refusal ignore the impact of this proposed development on the character, identity and rural setting of the village, considerations that Broughton’s residents have made clear in consultation on the Neighbourhood Plan are key to their future quality of life.

“That quality has been blighted for many years by the traffic congestion, noise and fumes on the A6. Just as residents can look forward to a considerably improved local environment post bypass, the spectre of substantial speculative housing schemes threatens to destroy the things about living in Broughton that they hold most dear.”

Hollis Strategic Land LLP declined to comment on the refusal.