Villagers raise fears over new homes bid

Some of the residents in Longhorsley who are opposing plans for up to five dwellings on land west of Church View. Picture by Jane Coltman.
Some of the residents in Longhorsley who are opposing plans for up to five dwellings on land west of Church View. Picture by Jane Coltman.

Residents have come together to say enough is enough when it comes to housing developments in their village.

Longhorsley Village Hall was packed last week for a meeting to discuss outline plans for up to five dwellings on land west of Church View.

Those living on the street are concerned that other applications for new homes on another site nearby will come forward if this bid is approved.

Objections have been submitted to Northumberland County Council and a petition has been set up – organisers will be going round the village to knock on doors over the next few weeks.

Church View resident Robert Primrose said: “There was a lot of useful discussion and many residents had valid planning reasons for objecting to the proposed development.

“The over-riding worry is that there are already 94 new homes approved for Longhorsley, an increase of 32 per cent on what we have at the moment, and if this scheme is passed, it could open the floodgates to more housing on adjacent land, leading to a gross over-development of our village.

“The time has come to say enough is enough as further housing would have a major impact on our infrastructure and landscape.

“More than 50 people have signed the petition and hopefully many more in the village will support our efforts.”

A planning statement on behalf of the applicant, Mr P Brotherton, says the scheme can accommodate up to five dwellings of a suitable scale while providing an appropriate element of private amenity space and respecting separation distances and amenity spaces from adjoining properties.

Longhorsley’s county councillor Glen Sanderson has yet to put forward his opinion as the matter may be determined by the planning committee that he sits on, but he has made a successful request for the application to go forward to a committee of councillors.

The planning reasons he gave included the site being outside the settlement envelope and considered as unsuitable during the authority’s Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) process.

Those who have objected to the bid so far say the access to the site is inadequate and could pose a danger to pedestrians, particularly during the building phase, there would be a negative impact on the area’s wildlife and it would have implications for flood risk in the locality.

The planning statement says advice has been provided by an independent highways consultant to demonstrate that a suitable form of access can be provided and the environmental impact of the proposal is ‘likely to be low or neutral in the overall balance’.