Appeal is ‘last straw’ in new housing battle

Residents in Wrea Green have erected signs demonstrating against housing developments in the village
Residents in Wrea Green have erected signs demonstrating against housing developments in the village
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Residents in Wrea Green have described the latest appeal by a housing developer as the “last straw” in their fight against new homes being built in the

Poster boards have been erected around the village in an “anti-development” campaign in response to Story Homes appealing a decision by Fylde Council to reject plans for 49 new homes off Willow Drive.

So far, 25 poster boards have been erected outside homes with more now set to be ordered.

John Rowson, chairman of the Community Association to Protect Wrea Green (CAPOW), which is heading the campaign, says he has been inundated with requests for poster boards.

CAPOW want to raise awareness of the village becoming swamped with applications by housing developers.

Mr Rowson said: “This development would seriously affect five or six people on Willow Drive with one house being pulled down and another house having headlights pointed at it all the time.

“There is a feeling that residents have had enough, people feel developers are harassing us with development after 
development.”

Story Homes has had successive planning applications turned down by Fylde Council for the site to the rear of Willow Drive.

Last September, it proposed to build 100 properties. This was unanimously rejected by 14 councillors.

A second bid adjusted to 49 homes was subsequently rejected.

At the time, Wrea Green Coun Frank Andrews said the application would be “viewed with horror” by residents.

A council planning inspector said the village could take on 100 new homes before it would start to put pressure on existing infrastructure in Wrea Green.

Since then, 91 new homes have been approved, leaving the village just nine homes under the level waned of.

Concerns have been raised about the size and suitability of the plan and the impact the homes would have on drainage.

Story Homes believe that the site is suitable for new housing, and have lodged appeals against both planning decisions.

The Planning Inspectorate has confirmed both appeals will follow the inquiry procedure and will be linked.

David Hayward, development planner for Story Homes said: “We have taken the decision to appeal both of these decisions as we continue to believe this is a sustainable site for new homes in a district that needs them.

“We were disappointed both applications were refused as we believed our designs to be sympathetic to the village and of a suitable scale for the site.

“Our development would also have had a positive impact on the local economy by providing local contractors with opportunities to tender for work, and benefits for local supply chains.”