Council to refuse homes proposal?
PUBLISHED: 10:00 22 June 2015
PLANNING staff within North Somerset Council are 'mindful to refuse' an application for a housing development in Congresbury, although a formal decision has not yet been made.
Developer Strongvox Homes submitted an application to the council for 14 homes to be built off Venus Street earlier this year.
It was recommended for refusal by Congresbury Parish Council and has stirred up more than 90 online objections.
According to Congresbury’s Green Party councillor Tom Leimdorfer, the application is set to be refused by officers before it reaches the committee stage.
Cllr Leimdorfer said: “It is my understanding that the Venus Street application will not appear before the council’s planning committee.
“This is because the planning officer working on the case is mindful to refuse the application. The developers are aware of this.”
However, a council spokesman said: “The final decision regarding this development has not yet been made and we are still in contact with the developers.”
Despite the uncertainty surrounding the project’s prospects, the suggestion that the council is ‘mindful to refuse’ the application was welcomed by housing group Congresbury Residents’ Action Group (CRAG).
Chairman Mary Short said: “It is a victory for common sense.
“Apart from the site being outside the village boundary, Venus Street is too narrow for cars and pedestrians at present, without another 14 houses adding to the problem.
“So well done North Somerset Council’s planners for seeing through the developers’ glitzy presentation.”
A further statement from CRAG added: “Of course, the company (Strongvox) may lodge an appeal, but it is likely they will be guided by the outcome of the Barratt appeal which is due to take place in Weston on October 6.”
The appeal in question concerns a Barratt Homes application for more than 80 homes off Brinsea Road.
Councillors refused the initial application back in March; however, the developer has since appealed that decision.
Ms Short added: “The date of the Barratt appeal needs widespread publicity. Residents need to make a date in their diaries for October 6 and travel to Weston on the day.
“The planning inspector needs to know the strength of feeling against these proposals.
“We need to turn up in force on the day the appeal starts and continue to make our presence felt until it finishes – which is likely to be several days later.”