Residents’ anger at new homes site disruption

Milton Avenue residents, from left to right, Margaret Jackson, Gladys Baines, Margaret Rigby, John Haworth, and Alison Knight holding daughter Martha.
Milton Avenue residents, from left to right, Margaret Jackson, Gladys Baines, Margaret Rigby, John Haworth, and Alison Knight holding daughter Martha.
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Residents say the development of a new homes site – the only access to which is via their formerly quiet Clitheroe residential street – is ruining and endangering lives.

Contractors have been on site for around six weeks laying the foundations for 42 new homes on land off Milton Avenue with aggregate and heavy machinery driven in daily.

The building site off Milton Avenue.

The building site off Milton Avenue.

But the disruption, noise and dirt emanating from the site which is being developed by Morris Homes is making people’s lives a misery angry residents say.

“This road is just not built for heavy traffic,” said one of the residents Alison Knight (37), who is a teacher at Edisford Primary School in Clitheroe. “The noise is awful and with all the heavy machinery and traffic it’s not safe.

“I feel that it’s ruining people’s lives. We’ve already lost a beautiful green field as well as our view to the development and now we’ve got to put up with all this.”

She added that the contractors are on site from 7-30am until 4pm and then a road sweeper comes daily to clean the road adding more noise and disruption.

The damaged caused to Milton Avenue.

The damaged caused to Milton Avenue.

“Some of the residents have lived on here for 30 to 40 years and we’ve spent a lot of time and money working to buy a nice home in a nice area which is now being turned into a horrible, busy street,” added Alison, who is mum to 10-month-old Martha.

She added that residents cannot believe Milton Avenue is being used as the main access point to the development when they believe that Morris Homes has been given permission to build more homes on an adjacent field to which there is access off Waddington Road.

"There has been no common sense behind this decision,” said Alison, who added that she feels unsafe taking her daughter Martha out of the house.

Alison added that residents were also being asked on a regular basis to move their cars so that there is room for heavy machinery and lorries to access the site.

Resident Margaret Rigby agreed with her neighbour’s concerns.

“The main concern is that the access to and from the new estate, estimating 60 cars from 42 houses, is solely along Milton Avenue.

“Milton Avenue is not wide enough for this. The exit onto Waddington Road is dangerous. Cars are parked either side so restricting sight, the road is a busy one with cars shooting over the brow of the hill from Waddington, there is traffic entering from Eastham Street, from Moorland school and another housing estate.”

She added that a traffic census was undertaken during half term.

Since work began on the site, deep crevices have developed in the road, which is left covered in dirt on a daily basis.

“The council is now sending a road cleaner, but with little effect,” she said. “The road surface is now much more cracked.”

Milton Avenue residents are so frustrated by the situation that they have erected sad face emoji posters on the windows of their homes.

The application for outline planning permission, which is permission in principle, for a residential development of up to 50 houses on land off Milton Avenue, Clitheroe, was refused by Ribble Valley Borough Council’s planning committee in July 2012. However, an appeal by the applicant, The Huntroyde Estate, against this decision was allowed by The Planning Inspectorate and outline planning permission granted.

A spokesman for Morris Homes said: “The Manor Place development off Milton Avenue is being developed in accordance with the planning permission granted by the Ribble Valley Borough Council. We continue to make every effort to limit disruption at the site but it is inevitable, particularly in the early stages of a development, that there will be some inconvenience and for this we apologise.”