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Campaigners lose fight to stop 99 homes being built

DISAPPOINTED campaigners have lost the battle to stop 99 new homes being built in Clayton after the plans were given the green light.

Residents from the Keep Clayton Green Action Group objected to the development proposed by Barratt Homes for a green field site off Westminster Avenue and Holts Lane.

But councillors sitting on the Regulatory and Appeals Committee at City Hall yesterday approved the scheme by a slim majority vote of four to three.

Councillor Carol Thirkill (Lab, Clayton and Fairweather Green), speaking against the application, said: “The residents of Clayton are a welcoming community and understand the need for homes. However, this application is not the right place.”

She said that residents and members of the action group felt the village could not accommodate the traffic the new development would create.

She added that the new homes will put pressure on doctors’ surgeries, dentists and schools in the area and raised concerns about the impact on the village’s “heritage”.

The committee heard that 1,300 people signed a petition against the development and 300 residents wrote objection letters.

But planning officers said the council’s education department raised no objection to the plans and highways were “satisfied” with the development.

The project will see 75 three or four bedroom family homes built on the land and 24 two-bed properties. Twenty of the houses will be built as affordable housing.

Mark Jones, speaking on behalf of Barratt Homes said: “It is unusual but we did some CCTV surveys on the road networks. We went to lengths to do a robust survey, undertook public consultations and liaised with residents.”

Members of the committee said they “sympathise” with residents but that the planning application met the criteria for approval.

Councillor Jack Rickard (Con, Craven) said: “This does meet all the requirements but the details don’t stack up. This is pretty much doubling the village. That amount of housing has an impact on the community.”

But planning permission was granted for the project.

Speaking after the meeting, John Fox from the Keep Clayton Green Action Group said: “We’re disappointed that the decision has gone against us. I’m not sure it’s about winning or losing. The important thing is that the voice of Clayton has been heard.

“We have now started to build working relationships with the local authority. Residents are so much more aware now of potential development.”

Cllr James Vasey, vice chairman of Clayton Parish Council, said: “We absolutely welcome new people to the village but not at the compromise of others who are already living there.”

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