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Councillors have given the go-ahead for a housing development in Fradley despite local opposition.
Fradley and Streethay Parish Council had objected to the plans for eight new properties on land alongside Turnbull Road.
Cllr Simon Roberts, chairman of Fradley and Streethay Parish Council, told Lichfield District Council’s planning committee that the proposed development made “a mockery” of future plans for the area.
“Fradley Neighbourhood Plan sets out our vision for the village and specifically identifies housing needs and aspirations for the development of the village.
“This development does nothing to address the needs of the village and by approving this application, it not only makes a mockery of the neighbourhood plan system, but poses serious questions to whether our neighbourhood plan has any validity at all.”Cllr Simon Roberts, Fradley and Streethay Parish Council
The parish council’s stance was supported by more than 50 letters from local residents complaining about a move in 2018 to clear the area before any planning approval had been granted.
Cllr Mike Wilcox, Fradley ward councillor, told the meeting:
“The land in question had previously been home to various species of website and vegetation and bordered by mature trees.
“This area was subsequently cleared by bulldozers and without any consultation or engagement with anyone, including the parish council or the district council.
“There is precious open space left in Fradley that has not been earmarked for development.
“The parish council through the neighbourhood plan and in consultation with residents has tried to preserve any relatively small pieces of land left to be a haven for wildlife.
“But the truth, unfortunately, is that the district council in this situation has no power.”Cllr Mike Wilcox, Lichfield District Council
“The site is allocated for housing”
But Christopher Timothy, from CT Planning speaking on behalf of the applicant, said the land had not been earmarked for any use other than the one being proposed.
“The site is allocated for housing – there is no designation on this site regarding open space.
“The site has no national or local designations protecting any tree or ecological feature. No protected trees are proposed to be removed.
“It does not result in the loss of protected open space.”Christopher Timothy, CT Planning
The debate saw Lichfield District Council’s planning committee vote 10 to 2 in favour of approving the scheme at a meeting yesterday (5th May).
Cllr Richard Cox, who proposed the eventual decision said:
“I propose approval – I am reluctant, but I can’t genuinely find a reason to refuse it.
“There is no reason not to recommend.”Cllr Richard Cox, Lichfield District Council
The whole debate can be seen on the stream of the planning committee meeting: