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Development site ‘suits more homes’

Posted on October 22 2011 at 9:15:19

A proposal to build just 10 houses on one of the last remaining development sites (ADRs) in Alvechurch has been rejected by planners.

Bromsgrove planning committee heard the site, on the east side of Birmingham Road and to the north of Old Rectory Lane, could provide for 30 homes.

Alvechurch Parish Council objected to the plan, saying they were “obviously concerned about a proposal which now seeks to provide 10 dwellings on a substantial site which could accommodate 30.

“Given the proposal for development on the site on the opposite side of Birmingham Road, this will effectively take out, in one go, all of the available sites for the village.

“This will inevitably lead to an early unwelcome review of the Green Belt boundaries in the parish,” the council warned.

The applicants, D Reading and A Walpole, offered to make financial provision for affordable homes to be built elsewhere, but the planning officer told councillors that because so few houses were being sought in the first place on the site “the council would be at an overall loss, given the number of affordable units which should really be provided on a site of this scale”.

The officer concluded: “There is no affordable housing being provided on site and I do not consider that off-site provision is acceptable and no valid reasons have been presented to show why it cannot be provided on site.”

Bromsgrove Council leader Roger Hollingworth, who is an Alvechurch district councillor, spoke in favour of the 10 houses at the meeting, according to the minutes.

But the committee agreed with the officer’s recommendation to refuse the plans on the grounds of inefficient use of the land, failing to provide the right mix of housing and providing no affordable housing.

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