Councillors throw out 14 ‘affordable’ homes for Witchford - impact too severe, too far from village centre and add little benefit

Site of 14 homes proposed for 7 Sutton Road, Witchford

Site of 14 homes proposed for 7 Sutton Road, Witchford - Credit: Archant

Councillors voted to throw out a scheme that would have seen 14 ‘affordable’ homes provided for Witchford.

East Cambs planning committee had been recommended by their officers to allow the development subject to conditions.

But councillors listed seven reasons for refusal – leaving A J Lee Developments either to amend the proposals or lodge an appeal.

The houses would have been built to the rear of 1 to 9 Sutton Road.

Councillors said the application:

•Is a cramped form of development

•Is backland development

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•Would have a ‘severe’ impact on residential amenity

•Is located too far from the centre of the village

•Has made insufficient allowance for refuse collections

•Raised concerns regarding an open ditch

•Added little community value.

A J Lee Developments wanted to build the 14 affordable semi-detached houses on one and a half acres to the rear of 1 to 7 Sutton Road.

Neighbours, backed by the parish council and ward councillors Steve Cheetham and Stuart Smith registered their objections.

Objections included:

•Concerns over the visibility splays on the access road to development off Main Street;

•Loss of amenity;

•Fears the village infra-structure won’t cope

•Potential flooding

•The proposed homes are out of keeping with other properties in the vicinity.

Jon Pavey-Smith, planning officer, had recommended approval subject to a raft of conditions including a section 106 agreement.

He said: “On balance it is considered that there would be no adverse impacts.”