Houses to be built after lane ruled safe for increase in cars

Zena Simmons and Helen Kerr-Wilbur were delighted with the council vote.

Zena Simmons and Helen Kerr-Wilbur were delighted with the council vote. - Credit: Zena Simmons

Devastated villagers are stunned an unpopular housing plan has been given the go ahead.

Oakwood New Homes was refused planning permission by North Somerset Council to build nine new homes, in Ladymead Lane, earlier this year.

It has successfully appealed that decision.

Residents raised issues of surface water flooding, character of the area and road safety of the narrow lane if more homes were built.

Zena Simmons, who protested against the homes being built, said this issue has been going on for over a year and a half.

She said: "It has been emotional.

"We hadn't dreamt that the developer would get this passed because it's not safe and the inspector who came, must have come in the night when it's not busy.

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"When I presented videos showing the road and children walking down the lane, the councillors could see this was not safe.

"The inspector is now saying it hasn't had any complaints of accidents and they can't see how it would be dangerous."

Inspector Sian Griffiths said: "At the site visit, it was clear to me that the lane is without footways and pedestrians would need to walk on the road.

"I note the council's comments that the lane becomes congested at times, but this in and of itself would not, in my view, support the dismissal of this appeal.

"The appeal proposals include the addition of a new footway to the appeal site.

"This would mean pedestrians would have a safe means of access to the nearby footpath linking to Broadoak Road, which leads to a number of important village services and facilities to the north at Pudding Pie Lane, including the primary school and surgery.

"There would be some additional traffic associated with the nine houses proposed, but there is no detailed evidence to suggest that this would be significant, or at a level that would result in severe adverse effects to the existing highway network.

"While I note the concerns of third parties who have put forward their concerns about 'near misses' and incidents along Ladymead Lane, I am without any substantive evidence in the form of formal accident records or evidence showing that illegal manoeuvres are regularly being performed to demonstrate that Ladymead Lane itself is unsafe in highways terms."