A controversial plan to build 165 houses right next to a school in a Wyre village has been passed.
The scheme at Arthurs Lane Hambleton was given the go-ahead by councillors on Wyre’s planning committee despite around 500 objections from residents and MP Ben Wallace.
The outline application from Gladman Developments of Cheshire is to build the two to five bedroom homes including 50 “affordable” homes on the 10.7 hectare site.
It was recommended for granting by planning officers and councillors made a visit to see the site before deciding.
But villagers wanted it thrown out as they said it was too big for the village and would change its character, would cause major traffic congestion there and at nearby Shard Bridge, would cause drainage issues and would mean new residents would get priority over the rest of the village for places at the school.
They formed an action group and the Parish Council also objected to the plans saying that 300 more cars on the road would cause chaos. They added a developer’s claim in the application that there were good facilities such as a Post Office and police station near their site, and a bank nearby were untrue.
Villager Andy Meredith said: “It is very disappointing.
“The key issue was that all the statutory bodies have responded to the application in favour so the councillors, with the exception of one, did not want to go against it despite the fact we all pointed out the huge flaws in the reports.
“Local knowledge shows this is not a great place for a development.
“It is apparent there is a fear of developers among councils. There was no agreed local plan in place and developers took advantage of that with the presumption to allow developments to go ahead.
“We have no realistic chance of appealing, but the Hambleton Action Group will watch and wait for the detailed plans to come through.”
A statement from Wyre Council said “A site visit was undertaken by members to help them understand the nature of the area.
“Three members of the public, a Parish councillor, a Ward councillor and the County councillor for Wyreside spoke to the committee, objecting to the application.
“The application was approved as per the recommendation in the report of the Head of Planning Services to grant planning permission subject to conditions.”