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The decision was posted to the planning portal 20/01/2021 for refusal.
This can be viewed on the Durham County Council Planning Portal
Extracts from the Delegated Report
Esh Parish Council – Raise objections.
Objection is raised to the delays in the determination of the application and it is considered that this has happened to permit the County Durham Plan process to complete. Questions are raised as to why some documentation has only been made available in November 2020. The planning permissions should have expired. The development is considered to be in the wrong place and unnecessary. Assurances are sought that any subsequent detrimental effects of the development on Parish Council land are compensated by the developer. The existence of a drainage ditch on the eastern boundary of the site appears to have been overlooked. The existing fenced pumping station is not referenced. The main access route remains unclear and informed by outdated and inaccurate traffic survey data. Public footpath no. 27 and the LVRP will be damaged by the proposal. The recreation ground is now a Fields in Trust Centenary Field dedicated to the war dead and could face harmful flooding and tree removal impacts. The Local Planning Authority had up until recently misunderstood the land ownership of the recreation ground. Concerns regarding subsidence and the coal mining legacy of the site. The development would potentially not be completed until 2034 and both existing and prospective residents would be impacted upon by a build duration of this length. Further development which will lead to cumulative impacts have occurred since this scheme was granted outline planning permission including upon local services and facilities. Adequate housing is available for sale in the area. Any benefits of the development would fall within Witton Gilbert Parish not Esh yet it is Langley Park which would receive the impact. Objections are raised to the delivery of the access and impacts upon the LVRP and its users. No updated utilities assessment has been undertaken with particular reference made to internet provision. An improvement to services in Esh Parish should be funded by the developer. The sustainability and energy efficiency credentials of the development are criticised. No consultation has been made in regard to the provision of access routes to the adjacent Esh Parish recreation ground and works to trees therein.
Cllrs Simpson and Coult – Raise objections.
There have been unacceptable delays with the application and there is a clear lack of deliverability of the scheme. The Neighbourhood Plan does not allocate the site for housing. Concerns are raised over the severity of the flood risk. The site is a considerable distance from services and facilities and the gradients unappealing for elderly residents. Concerns are raised over the impact of the development upon local service capacity. The development has only one access and no emergency vehicle arrangements. The sustainability credentials/energy efficiency of the dwellings is inadequate. Significant concerns are raised in regards to the traffic implications of the development together with concerns over the structural integrity of the bridge over the River Browney. Detrimental impacts upon the Lanchester Valley Walk are cited.
Former Cllr McGaun – Raised objections.
Concerns were expressed regarding whether the correct procedures and due diligence have been followed. A great number of local residents have expressed their concerns including in regards to the scale and layout of the development, environmental impact and safety. Attention is drawn in particular to concerns in regards to flood risk and traffic implications.
Though the Reserved Matters have been REFUSED there is the possibility they may appeal the decision with the Secretary of State within 6 months.
COUNTY DURHAM PLAN
The site is included in the County Durham Plan (MAP)
(SHLLA) Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment 2019 (MAP)
It is also mentioned in the document below.
It is unlikely this will go away while the County Durham Plan runs until 2035.
Quad Bikes are NOT PERMITTED to be used on the Old Recreation Ground. This is public land and it is illegal to use such vehicles. Details have been passed on to Operation Endurance. If residents could also report incidents directly to 101, the postcode is DH7 9TE or use what3words,
Park Drive Entrance : importing.swatting.firm
Bridgeway Entrance : pits.powers.duties
Work will take place to address the access points on to the site, retaining pedestrian access, pushchair / pram and wheelchair. Final design and installation dates are to be confirmed.
Work will take place to tackle two areas that have been identified as hotspots for antisocial behaviour. In addition work will be carried out on the bottom entrance. We have already spoken to Fields in Trust and as we are the landowners these works fall under maintenance.
- Sycamore x2 by gate entrance – crown lift to 3m
- Fell mixed shrubs as close to ground level as practical
- Fell as close to ground level all mixed shrubs and self-sown trees as close to ground level 3-4m either side of the steps
The above works have the support of the County Councillors and Durham Police.
Esh Play Park
There are a few final installations to take place to enable the park to reopen in the Spring.
Sir Bobby Robson Play Park
Park will remain closed until works to the hedging has been completed to lower. Works will be commencing shortly. Once completed the park will be open again without time restrictions daily. Weekly park checks of the equipment / litter bins will continue as normal. Local authority wardens and police will also attend to ensure the area is been used correctly. Any concerns or issues need to be sent via email to email@example.com so these can be addressed or if this is a police matter, ring 101 to report.
UPDATE : Work is due to start Monday 18th January 2021.
The Old Recreation Ground
Footpaths have been cut back and additional works are planned identified as concerns by residents. Having already contacted Fields in Trust any works carried out by Parish Council as the land owners this would fall under maintenance. Some areas will be thinned, while some might need cleared down to ground. Anything that is deemed a risk will be removed. There are no tree preservation orders on the land. All will be carried out by a professional company who deals with this type of work. A site visit is planned shortly with work to commence before nesting. These works have the full support of all local authorities and to address antisocial behaviour.
UPDATE : Work is due to start Monday 18th January 2021.