Connah's Quay housing estate gets go-ahead on appeal


Owen Evans

HIGHLY controversial plans for a housing estate have been allowed on appeal.

Plans for 37 homes on Fairoaks Drive in Connah’s Quay, which were thrown out by Flintshire Council’s planning committee, have been allowed by a planning inspector.

The application, by M. J. Davies Northern Ltd, was opposed by residents close to the site, as well as councillors from the area.

The council received 167 letters of objection to the applicant’s plans, citing a variety of reasons for opposing the build, and residents packed into County Hall in November to watch councillors throw out the plan.

But in a report released last week, planning inspector Iwan Lloyd said the development should be allowed to go ahead.

He dismissed the reasons given by councillors for refusing the plan, which included the development’s effect on people living nearby, the adequacy of the provision of affordable housing and the effect of the proposal on highway safety.

He said: “I do not consider that the development would be harmful to living conditions of nearby residents in relation to overlooking.

“The layout would meet the minimum separation distances applied by the council accounting for levels and scale of the development.”

The inspector added: “The council’s housing strategy manager did not oppose the provision of eight discounted rental homes.

“The officer’s report to planning committee describes that the particular needs for affordable housing would be met by the amount and type of provision.

“I therefore find the provision of affordable housing as a component of the proposed residential development as adequate.”

Mr Lloyd added there was no compelling evidence to indicate that the shortfall from the maximum parking standard would cause a highway safety concern.

He concluded: “I have considered all other matters whereby numerous points have been raised in representations, although none outweigh my conclusions on the determining issues of this case.”

Documents released with the inspectors decision showed serious concerns being raised by members of the public living close to the planned development.

In one letter, Ian Davies, who lives on the street, said: “The proposal is a cheaply planned extension to the estate and Connah’s Quay, and will in my opinion set a precedent for the wrong type of development in our town.

“We have always known that the field was going to be developed and at no time have we objected to planning but the type of development and houses will be detrimental to what is one of the most sought after areas of Connah’s Quay.”

When making their case to the inspector, Philip Moren, the agent acting on behalf of the applicant, said in a statement: “It is not accepted that the council has justified its decision to refuse planning permission by reference to compelling evidence.

“On the contrary, it now seeks to adopt a position that conflicts with the stance taken by its professional advisers, as evidenced by the planning officer’s report and recommendation to committee.

“The latest application is the culmination of years of negotiations with relevant council officers and has been informed by the results of an independently verified viability assessment, whose conclusions have been submitted with this appeal.”

See full story in the Leader

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