Second threat of new homes at cricket club site

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Barratt’s latest application is for 520 houses

The anger which erupted after developer Barratt Homes revealed a ‘takeover’ of Longridge Cricket Club and the surrounding area for 105 houses last month looks set to rise again.

The company has now submitted its application for up to 520 homes including affordable housing and housing for the elderly on the same Higgin Brook site on land east of Chipping Lane.

This follows the unanimous refusal last month by Ribble Valley Borough planners for a first application for the 105 houses on the site.

The committee’s five reasons for refusal then included proximity to the cricket club, noise disturbance and possible injury or damage from cricket balls, the adverse effect on the character and appearance of the area contrary to the National Planning Policy and Core Strategy, possible impact on European protected species, the highway safety of pedestrians and vehicles not being demonstrated, and noise disturbance and overlooking of properties.

The current application is for the relocation of the cricket club to provide a new cricket ground, pavilion, car park and associated facilities, a new primary school, vehicular and pedestrian access, landscaping and public open space, with all matters reserved except for access.

The company plans local neighbourhood parkland and play areas with ‘naturalised parkland,’ the cricket club replaced by an ‘entirely new, high quality facility to English Cricket Board standards’ and a single-entry primary school ‘for the needs of the proposed residential development and wider needs of Longridge.’

The Save Longridge campaigners said they feel the application tries to combat all the rejections on the first application, the main ones being the effect on the cricket club and the provision of a primary school.

If proposals go ahead “they need to be aware that it would take at least five years for a cricket pitch to establish and be suitable for play.” Campaigners said they were also disappointed the club seemed to be ‘looking to feather its own nest with no regard for the effect that development will have on our ommunity.’