Plan for 83 homes sparks flood fears

Residents on Midgeland Road are protesting against plans to build homes on adjacent land
Residents on Midgeland Road are protesting against plans to build homes on adjacent land
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PLANS to build homes on part of Marton Moss have sparked fears of flooding locally.

Residents living on Midgeland Road say the scheme for 83 homes on land at Runnell Farm will lead to waterlogging of their properties.

Now they are calling for the development to be blocked.

A planning inspector is currently examining all aspects of the scheme following a public inquiry.

Applicant Kensington Developments has appealed against a council decision to refuse planning permission.

People living close to the site say the inspector should uphold the town hall ruling.

Patrick Hesmondhalgh and his wife Pat, whose home overlooks the land, fear their property will be flooded.

Mr Hesmondhalgh said: “In the winter the water rises by about a foot and it floods the field at the back of our house.

“The developers propose to build all that ground up by six inches higher than Midgeland Road to stop the new houses flooding.

“So that will mean our homes will be at risk of being flooded because they are lower.”

Rowland Parkinson, 67, who has lived on the Moss all his life, said: “People living on both sides of Midgeland Road are against the plans.

“We will also be losing a valuable area of open land which is home to a lot of wildlife such as foxes, herons, woodpeckers and owls.”

John Longworth, whose home is directly opposite the proposed entrance to the site, claims there will be traffic disruption.

He said: “It’s difficult getting our car out of the drive already.

“But if this scheme goes ahead, a filter lane will be put in and that will make it even more difficult for us.

“Midgeland Road is already very busy at peak times with people heading towards the motorway.”

But Kensington Developments says there is a need for good quality housing in Blackpool and says fears about drainage are unfounded.

It says measures including an on-site pumping station and permeable paving would be used to prevent flooding.

A spokesman said: “The inquiry heard evidence the site is not at risk from flooding and will not increase the risk of flooding elsewhere, and both the Environment Agency and United Utilities approve the drainage proposals. Improvements to the junction of Midgeland Road and Highfield Road will benefit existing road users, and funding for local public transport will be provided. A financial contribution for education is also included together with £1.6m for affordable housing.

“The site is currently privately owned with no public access. These proposals will provide a wide choice of high quality family housing in a landscaped setting with public open space for all to enjoy.

“Very importantly, the development will create much needed construction and supply related jobs for local people that in turn will help stimulate the local economy.”