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Anger over housing plans
Friday 20th June 2014 @ 09:47 by Lisa B

Angry action groups are saying local feelings count for nothing after the Planning Inspectorate gave the go-ahead for around 250 new homes in Glossop.

High Peak Borough Council alongside hundreds of Glossopdale people, had soundly rejected applications for 150 homes at North Road. Plus a further 93 at Dinting Road.

FLASHBACK: Going back to last year when neighbours first started their 'No building on North Road' campaign.

FLASHBACK: Going back to last year when neighbours first started their ‘No building on North Road’ campaign.

Objections included the affect on wildlife, and hundreds more cars on already congested roads.

But the applicants slapped in an appeal, public inquiries were held, and late last week the news came through that the Planning Inspectorate had come down on the side of the developers.

It means the equivalent of a small village will be built in Glossop, with all the road turmoil which it will bring.

Borough council executive Godfrey Claff said: “We are disappointed by the result.

“The council put up a strong case to defend the decision of the development control committee.”

Answering a Chronicle question on how much the decision would cost ratepayers, he said: “The council did incur costs as a result of the appeal, but this is a normal part of the planning process and it is important that the council uses its resources to defend the legitimate concerns of councillors and the local community.

“At this stage we have not calculated the cost of each appeal.”

Friends of the Peak District have ‘condemned’ the decision saying it is  evidence that localism is dead – that a planning inspector decided the need for new homes outweighed people’s concerns.

The Friends’ Andrew Wood said: “We see the coalition Government’s promise to give local people more control over the planning decisions affecting them was completely hollow.

“House builders now know that whenever a local authority refuses a planning application, they just have to appeal and they’ll probably get their way. So much for localism.”

He added: “Not only have these appeal decisions pre-empted the Local Plan, they have also strengthened the hand of house builders who persuaded Government that building on green field sites will fix our housing crisis.”

Liz Strek of the North Road Action Group said: “We are extremely disappointed.

“We had hoped that some common sense would prevail, considering the height of the site, lack of public transport and distance from the town centre.

“The proposed growth in this part of the town will put great strain on the infrastructure of Glossop which is already frequently at breaking point, causing increasing delays and frustration for those of us who live here.”

Roger Hargreaves, speaking for the Dinting Road objectors, said: “While the Government is determined to build as many houses as possible, as quickly as possible and wherever possible, there is very little that local residents can do.”

He said to allow homes on land not included in the Local Plan made a nonsense of all the ‘plan’  consultation and meetings of the last three years and a mockery of  the planning process.

Roger added: “However, it does give us strong grounds to argue, when the draft plan goes to a public inquiry in the autumn, that the allocated housing sites to the east of the railway below Dinting Road should now be excluded from the plan in order to prevent a continuous line of houses from the centre of Hadfield to the centre of Glossop.”

by David Jones