A decision by councillors to approve a redevelopment scheme in Lichfield has been hailed as “excellent news” by a community group.
Members of the planning committee at Lichfield District Council gave the green light to the project on land around the former Angel Croft Hotel.
A report from a planning officer had recommended the development be rejected over concerns about the impact on local historic buildings.
But although some conditions are still to be decided at a meeting in March, the Friel Homes project has been given the go-ahead in principle.
The developers hope to build a boutique hotel and new homes on the land, as well as creating a new link between Beacon Park and the city centre.
Beacon Street Area Residents’ Association said locals would welcome the news.
“It is excellent news that councillors in Lichfield have listened to the electorate and backed the development.
“The tragedy is that this development has been delayed for so long.
“There are still some details to be resolved, but hopefully they will be sorted soon.”
The planning committee meeting was told by Cllr Andy Smith, Leomansley ward representative, that officers had failed to take into account the level of support for the development.
“There have been no objection letters. The main reason for refusal appears to be our own heritage officer and Historic England – but the question is balance.
“Historic England say the authority needs to weigh up heritage concerns with the public and economic benefit of the development. I think our planners have failed to take that balance into account.
“This will replace a pot-holed, unmaintained car park with an excellent development that fits in very well.”Cllr Andy Smith, Lichfield District Council