New housing estate plan is rejected

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Controversial plans to build a housing estate on land in rural Preston have been unanimously thrown out.

Wainhomes North West Ltd submitted an outline application for up to 45 homes in countryside off Garstang Road in Barton.

The potential benefits of the proposal, including the provision of affordable housing and open space provision have been taken into account but are insufficient to outweigh the principal objections on sustainability and traffic/safety grounds

Principal planning officer

Officers at Preston Council recommended the plans for refusal, saying they would lead to an “unplanned and inappropriate expansion of a rural village”.

And councillors agreed with officers, voting to reject the application.

Chairman of the planning committee, Coun Brian Rollo, said: “This is not of benefit to Barton village at all.

“It’s outside the boundary and I see no real justification for building this on this particular site.

“The highways issues we’ve got are not particularly good.

“Adding more housing to the north of the area will not improve things at all, in fact it’s likely to make it worse.

“I can’t see any reason to support this – it’s outside policy, it’s out of character with Barton and I will not support this.”

Coun Tom Davies said there had been accidents on the A6, and said: “It is a very dangerous road to have a big site coming straight out onto and I don’t think we should pass it.”

Coun John Browne added: “Police have done their best to reduce the speed of traffic going through Barton and the A6 and people are a lot better behaved thanks to the speed cameras than they were.

“But I’m still not trying to say it’s a good idea to build these houses, quite the reverse.”

Phil Cousins, principal planning officer, told the committee meeting the proposed development was “outside the settlement boundary”, and said: “It would represent an inappropriate and disproportionate expansion of the village.”

He said visibility was “inadequate” for drivers exiting the site, and said County Highways advised it provided “inadequate accessibility” for cyclists and pedestrians.

A report to councillors said: “The potential benefits of the proposal, including the provision of affordable housing and open space provision have been taken into account but are insufficient to outweigh the principal objections on sustainability and traffic/safety grounds.”

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