Sanctuary Hereward gets green light for affordable homes plan on outskirts of Ely

A view of the proposed housing site in Ely

A view of the proposed housing site in Ely - Credit: Archant

A HOUSING association has won permission to build 19 new affordable homes in Ely, despite opposition from neighbours.

Sanctuary Herward applied in September to build the new properties, comprising eight flats, nine two-bedroom houses and two three-bedroom houses, in The Gardens, just off Lynn Road, on land that was formerly used as an orchard.

According to Sanctuary, the land was overgrown and no longer maintained, though the group was required to carry out an extensive bat survey before submitting the application.

The association added that all 19 homes would be social housing and would be a mixture of socially rented units and shared ownership. Access to the cul-de-sac will be via Lynn Road, with a new access road being built.

The City of Ely Council immediately opposed the plans telling East Cambridgeshire District Council planners: “Lynn Road is a busy main route into the city and members felt the additional traffic from this new development would put an additional strain on this road and increase the possible risk of traffic accidents.”

Neighbour Mark Deas, of Williams Close, added: “Given the scale of development planned for north Ely, it would seem more appropriate to preserve the existing greens spaces between the city centre and the urban extension.”

The Ely Society also added its voice to the objections, lamenting the loss of green space and trees on the site.

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Despite their concerns, however, the council said the plans were acceptable and that it would not be an overdevelopment of the site.

Planning officer Yvette Mooney concluded in her report: “Whilst not ideal, given the demand for affordable housing and the fact that the principle of 19 units on this plot was agreed at pre-application stage, it would be unreasonable for the authority to refuse the scheme.”