A GROUP of pensioners have signed a petition calling on Wrexham council to refuse an application to build new homes, saying it will destroy their tranquil living environment.

The controversial plans to build 82 homes in the Summerhill area of Gwersyllt will be considered by the planning committee of the council at its meeting on October 7. Macbryde Homes originally applied to the create the large development on land near Top Road in August 2017, with residents expressing concerns about the additional traffic generated by the plans in a series of public meetings held shortly after.

The current proposals have been amended to include the building of a new two metre wide public footpath on land just off Summerhill Road, which the retired residents of the parallel-running Bryn Coed say would have a severe impact on the tranquility they currently enjoy in what they call the "last of their golden years".

Donald Griffiths, 76, a retired electrician, who has lived in one of the retired bungalows since 2012, said it wasn't just the prospect of noise and disruption caused by the construction of the proposed footpath, but the potential after work is completed to increase the level of anti-social behaviour.

He said: "Since the bungalows were built in 1954, the residents have enjoyed the tranquil area behind their homes as we're not overlooked. It's a wonderful environment for pensioners to spend their last golden years, some of whom are quite able, others that are not.

"I love to sit out in my back garden in the afternoon having a cup of tea and tending to my plants. The construction of the footpath would create horrendous noise levels, churn up the grass to mud and would leave our tranquil area destroyed."

Mr Griffiths, who has responded to the council with detailed objections to the plans has the backing of the 19 residents living in the bungalows, who have all signed a petition agreeing with his strong opposition to the plans.

He added: "Even now, we have gangs of youths who congregate along the back wall, the language they shout can be quite choice, as you can imagine. They're often drinking and sometimes throw their bottles and cans into the grassy area. If the footpath ever gets built, the parades of people would only increase and will mean our treasured, grassy, peaceful environment will be destroyed after 65 years.

"Some people have lived here a lot longer than I have and it's just not fair what they are trying to do.

"The thing is, I know they won't be able to build these houses without this footpath, so it's important we have our say on how it's going to impact on our lives."

Fellow resident Dot Marsh, 73, echoed Mr Griffiths' comments and said the proposals would ruin their current way of life.

Mrs Marsh said: "We already have to put up with the odd group coming up and down the road at the back, especially on a Friday when the pub closes and the situation is only going to be made worse if the footpath gets built."

Gwersyllt West councillor Gwenfair Jones, who despite being a member of the planning committee, won't be able to vote on the matter having previously expressed her objections, has pledged to speak on behalf of villagers when the plans come under the microscope.

She said: "The road infrastructure is my main concern as the road going up there is just not fit for another 160 cars.

"Top Road is bad as it is, it’s on the corner of the junction and it’s just ridiculous really. There’s also no footpath there and Summerhill hasn’t got a single shop."

In a planning statement entered on behalf of Macbryde Homes, architects from Fieldcrest Associates said: "The development proposals will significantly enhance the existing local highway network and pedestrian infrastructure in the vicinity of the site.

"The site benefits from being located in close proximity to the bus stops located on the Top Road and Summerhill Road which provide services that are ideally placed to cater for the needs of the residents and visitors.

"There is no evidence to suggest that the proposals would have an adverse effect on road safety or the number of accidents in the vicinity.

"Based on the above it is the conclusion of this report that there are no material reasons why the proposed development should not be granted planning consent on highways or transportation grounds."

A spokesman for Wrexham Council said: “The planning application has recently been amended to include proposals for a footway on land between the properties in Bryn Coed, Gwersyllt and Summerhill Road. The Council has received a number of representations about the amendments and will have regard to the comments made when the application is reported to the Planning Committee.”