Tuesday 25 February 2014

New Ridley: Appeal


On 17th July last year we celebrated the rejection of the planning application in New Ridley. The deadline for the developers to appeal was this month and it seems that Esh have, indeed, submitted an appeal against the planning decision.
Since July the following planning applications have been approved which will doubtless be giving the developers some succour:

  1. The recent approval of affordable housing on the green belt in Hexham (opposite Arnold Clark)
  2. An affordable housing development on the green belt in Mickley (despite objections of local businesses on the grounds of lost parking amenity).
  3. 14 affordable housing units in  Chollerford. This one is particularly interesting as the site has no amenities but it was judged that the adjacent Humshaugh provides sufficient and necessary amenities.
Bear in mind also that the NCC planning officer recommended a conditional approval of the New Ridley application and that it was rejected on the unanimous decision of the county councillors.

Doubtless NCC will be writing to all those concerned in due course. 
If you want to read more on the planning appeals process that pertains to this case, you can download a helpful guide here. 

Despite the recent planning decisions above the original grounds on which the application was refused seem pretty strong and as there has been no change in the legislation since last July it would seem that the developer is going to have to come up with some other compelling reason to have the decision overturned.

Revised plans

In addition to appealing the decision, the developer is submitting a revised application, this time with 16 rather than 22 housing units (because of the 6 affordable houses that SCATA are in the process of building in Stocksfield). They are also proposing to reduce the number of dwellings at the site front to address concerns about parking on the main road. There are some other changes to the boundary to match that of the Grove together with potential provision to include a play area. When these plans become available to view we will be in a better decision to judge them and decide how best to respond.

Further erosion of the green belt

It is worth bearing in mind that only last month Allendale Estates came to the Parish Council with an outline proposal to develop 250-300 houses on the green belt land in the middle of Stocksfield opposite the school. The current administration at NCC is proposing significant deletion of the green belt around the county to allow for the construction of the thousands of homes they think will be needed to meet the demand of their projected 12% population growth figures (despite all other surveys putting the estimate at nearer to 4%). 

Doubtless the enthusiasm of the current administration to build over our green belt will be boosting developers' confidence and the New Ridley proposal looks like positively small beer in the light of Allendale Estates' ambitions for us.

We will need to be especially watchful over the next few weeks and months.

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