Village homes plan set to be approved

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Thursday, June 17th, 2021 5:44pm

By Keri Trigg - Local Democracy Reporter

Plans for 18 homes to be built in a Shropshire village are set to be approved next week despite opposition from locals.

Albrighton Parish Council and 31 members of the public have objected to the scheme put forward by Shropshire Homes for a site currently used as an extended garden to the property Whiteacres, off High Street.

The developer says it wants to help address a need for housing for older people in the village, with the plans including three one-bed bungalows and four two-bed apartments, alongside 11 larger four and five bedroom houses.

The land is allocated for up to 20 properties in Shropshire Council’s current development plan, which says any development should deliver “housing that is capable of occupation by people of retirement age”.

Those fighting the plans argue that the current proposals only make a minimal contribution to providing older people’s homes, and therefore do not meet the requirements set out in the development plan.

Shropshire Council’s Southern Planning Committee will meet on Tuesday, June 22, to decide the application.

A report to the committee by planning officer Andrew Sierakowski says the development plan does not “explicitly state” that only bungalows should be built on the site.

The report says: “The Development Guidelines only state that a proportion of one and two-bed units should be provided within the development.

“The applicant has complied with this requirement through the provision of three one-bedroom bungalows and four two-bedroom flats.

“The comments of the parish council and the objectors are understandable given the intention of the development guidelines and the site will have very good access to Albrighton High Street, making it ideal housing for people of retirement age.”

Mr Sierakowski concedes that the plans are “unfortunate” in that they predominantly include large family homes, and therefore “cannot be considered to make best use of the site in relation to the identified need”.

But he adds that the scheme “cannot be considered to be non-compliant with the development plan”.

If approved, the developer would demolish an existing bungalow known as Whitegates to make way for the new properties.

Two of the new bungalows would be ‘affordable’ homes.

The development will be accessed from Garridge Close and will also include an area of open space.

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