Planning chiefs set to discuss controversial new homes plan for Ribble Valley village

The application for new properties on land to the south of Chatburn Old Road, have been criticised by local residents and parish councillors.
The application for new properties on land to the south of Chatburn Old Road, have been criticised by local residents and parish councillors.
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An application for up to nine new homes in Chatburn has been recommended for “permission in principle” by local planning chiefs.

However, the plans, which will be discussed tomorrow evening by members of Ribble Valley Borough Council’s planning committee, for the new properties on land to the south of Chatburn Old Road, have been criticised by local residents and parish councillors.

Members of Chatburn Parish Council argue that the village is already at “crisis point” and that the target for building new houses in Chatburn, as identified in the planning authority’s Core Strategy, has already been reached.

They also argue that the proposed site is outside the village settlement boundary in open countryside and is a natural barrier between the village and the large industrial quarry. A parish council spokesman said the proposals would also increase traffic congestion in the village.

The “permission in principle” consent route is an alternative way of obtaining planning permission for housing-led development which separates matters of principle for proposed development from the technical detail of the development.

The scope of “permission in principle” is limited to location, land use and the amount of development. The detailed design of the scheme will be considered at the technical detail stage.

The current application is a re-submission of earlier plans which were refused last September on the basis that approval would lead to the creation of new dwellings in the open countryside without sufficient justification.

In a planning officer's report which will be discussed at the meeting, it states: "The applicant has submitted a Statement of Common Ground which sets out an agreement that the ‘technical details’ application would be submitted within six months of a favourable decision and states that the properties would be marketed to Ribble Valley residents only for the first six months and the housing mix submitted at technical details stage would comprise 20% bungalows suitable for over 55s."

He added: "Notwithstanding the above, there is no means for planning obligations to be secured against permission in principle. Should consent be granted, council officers would work with the applicant at technical details stage in an attempt to ensure that the mix of housing proposed is acceptable to the local planning authority and to seek to secure any affordable/over 55s housing or local occupancy requirements by legal agreement at that stage."