Society is unimpressed

CHANGES to accommodation plans in an area of Ponteland have failed to win over a group of residents.

Following a series of meetings with planning officers and some of the local views about its initial proposal to develop seven luxury homes on the Mill House site off the A696 West Road, Galliford Try is now looking to create 18 apartments.

An open evening was held in the Memorial Hall to showcase the revisions, but the Ponteland Civic Society is still unimpressed, describing the plans as going ‘from bad to worse’.

In its latest newsletter, Chairman Philip Ham said: “The flat industrial-style roof would reach up to the very top of the roof ridges of the houses opposite and, with the decimation of the trees which has already taken place, the massive multi-coloured and unsympathetic facade would wreck the otherwise gentle and tree-lined vista leading to the village centre.

“The balconied front of the building faces Ponteland Park and would utterly dominate the western end of it.

“There are many other issues too, as car parking (occupying the ground floor) would not appear to satisfy county-council standards and the cars themselves would be at risk from infrequent but predictable flooding events.

“The building footprint lies too close to the river and the safety and convenience of pedestrians going up and down the steep entry road would not be improved – particularly in winter. There is little doubt that we shall have to make our voice heard loud and clear to get anything half-sensible built on this site.”

A new planning application is being worked on and if it is approved later in the year, work could begin early next year.