Whalley homes appeal begins

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AN appeal against Ribble Valley Borough Council’s decision not to allow the development of 80 houses in Whalley has begun.

Controversial plans to build the housing development on fields off Riddings Lane were thrown out in January after villagers raised concerns about over-development, limited school spaces, increased traffic and inadequate drainage for the new homes.

However, developers Cooperative Estates appealed against the Planning and Development Committee’s decision for refusal.

A two-day hearing began this morning (Thursday) at the Ribble Valley Borough Council chamber where Mr Paul Tucker, who is representing Cooperative Estates, argued there was no “proper base” for the refusal of this appeal.

He said: “Riddings Lane is a highly accessible location and the planning officers from Ribble Valley had originally recommended this application for approval.

“There is literally no impact on heritage and children will continue to be educated at local schools.”

However, Mr John Macholc, head of planning services for the borough council, expressed concerns over traffic and congestion in the village of Whalley.

He said: “The increased traffic will result in increase in congestion to the detriment of the amenity of the area.

“Congestion, traffic and the lack of parking in Whalley has always been a problem. This was identified in the Whalley Parish Plan 2004, where 63% of villagers highlighted problems with congestion and 23% aired their concerns about parking.”

The appeal continues.

• Keep logging onto the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times website for an update on the hearing.