Bid for extra housing at village site

Concerns have been raised following an application for further homes on the former Ponteland Care Village site.

A development to support people with learning disabilities was constructed on North Road in the 1980s.

In 2010, CARE Ponteland (now operating as Hft) announced it was looking to have much of this area re-developed as housing, so it could invest in new off-site options for the people it supports following a change in policy and enable a specialist dementia care unit to be built on site.

Full planning permission was granted by Northumberland County Council for the unit and 38 dwellings in 2012 and 2013 respectively.

Demolition of the existing structures on the site has taken place and construction of the residential element of the scheme put together by Bellway Homes, which includes seven affordable properties, has commenced.

Bellway has now submitted an application for an additional nine homes on the south eastern corner of the site. In its planning statement, the firm revealed that Hft has reviewed its priorities and service delivery strategies and it has decided not to proceed with the dementia care unit, so the dwellings would help to fund its alternative options.

Ponteland Civic Society is unhappy with the small amount of affordable homes, none are proposed in the latest bid, and it believes the whole of the site that had been earmarked for the unit should be given over to the provision of affordable dwellings.

It also said in its response: ‘It was suggested that the developer submit a detailed landscape survey for the initial proposal, but no such survey was undertaken and the landscaping within the site has been largely cleared away in order to accommodate an orthodox residential layout.’