Plans for over 150 new homes narrowly given the go-ahead
Katy Sandalls and Charlie Ridler
- Credit: Persimmon Homes Essex.
Plans to build 153 news homes on the outskirts of Colchester have been narrowly approved - despite fears over road traffic accidents causing long-term residents to leave the area.
Developers Persimmon will build the properties off Berechurch Hall Road.
Permission comes as another accident near the Berechurch Hall Road site, which resulted in a hospitalisation, has renewed residents’ safety fears.
Nearby resident of over 20 years, Mary Stuttle raised serious concerns and told Colchester Borough planning committee: “The developers have not driven out just the badgers, foxes, deer and other wildlife I have enjoyed during my 20 years in this area, but also a large number of local residents of over 30 years standing and my neighbours.
“They have felt compelled to move because of the real concerns over safety issues around this site.
“I come here tonight in a week that has seen yet another accident near my home, when a car pulled out into the path of a motorcycle, resulting in the rider being taken to hospital.
"How many more accidents will highways allow to happen on this stretch of road before they take our proposals seriously?"
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Councillor Sam McCarthey (Lib Dems, Shrub End) said: “It is not one or two people, it is practically every home along this stretch.
“The fear that this is striking into people is unbelievable.”
A statement read to the committee from ward councillor, Lyn Barton, said: "Berechurch Hall Road is a dangerous road. These plans do not go far enough in improving safety."
Paige Harris speaking on behalf of Persimmon, said: "Since the previous planning committee meeting we have taken the time to carefully analyse all of your comments and ensure that all of these aspects were covered by our planning proposals."
Plans had been amended to add new bus stops and footpaths since the last meeting.
The committee reluctantly agreed to approve the plans for the site - allocated for housing in the emerging local plan - after being told there were no grounds on which to fight an appeal and probably face significant costs awarded against the council should they do so and lose.
The development will be made up of a mixture of one- to four-bedroom houses and apartments. The majority will be two- and three-bed houses. There will be 46 affordable.