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Newark and Sherwood District Council planning committee approved plans for nine dwellings on Barnby Road, Newark

Plans to turn former allotments into nine homes have been approved by a council — despite concerns over the loss of open space and the impact on wildlife.

A proposal submitted by Len Bateman was approved by the Newark and Sherwood District Council planning committee at a meeting last Thursday (June 6).

Five of the places are depicted as detached houses and two plots are depicted as semi-detached dwellings, with none of them having garages or outbuildings.

Barnby Road, Newark dwellings plan
Barnby Road, Newark dwellings plan

All the proposed houses are two storeys apart from plot 9 which is set to be a bungalow.

Newark Town Council planning committee member Lisa Geary was present at the meeting to object to the proposal on behalf of the town council.

The town council felt the site had not been allocated for housing — and that it could be one of the last wildlife sites in the area, as other developments have been approved along Barnby Road.

Coun Geary said: “This is nine large properties and there is no evidence that we need four-bedroom properties. They’re just about to build some four-bedroom properties on a sports pitch on Elm Avenue so that’s another green site that we are losing in Newark.

“There is enormous pressure on green sites in Newark.

“It’s not fair to the people in Newark that they have no green sites left and their toad population has been decimated by development that has been allowed to continue along Barnby Road.

“This is not going to be safe for the people on Barnby Road in terms of traffic management.”

Barnby Road, Newark dwellings plan
Barnby Road, Newark dwellings plan

The proposal also includes vehicular access being taken off Barnby Road — between two detached dwellings known as The Gables to the west and Ascot House to the east.

The road (to be adopted) would extend into the site and then sweep around to the east, parallel with the railway line, to provide cul-de-sac access to the new homes.

The layout plan shows an area of managed traditional orchard alongside the western side of the access, next to The Gables, which would be open space.

Beyond that is a larger area containing an attenuation and wildlife pond and an area of habitat, that has no public access, to the north-western corner of the site adjacent to the railway line.

Land to the north-east, alongside the railway line, would be a managed traditional orchard.

The houses are set to be located in a broad line to the rear of the existing ribbon development of Barnby Road.

Newark and Sherwood District planning committee members shared Newark Town Council concerns with the loss of wildlife on site.

The original proposal was for 10 houses but this was amended to nine.

Peter Harris said: “I share that concern, particularly with the degradation from 10 to 9 that seems very suspicious to me.

“I noticed that there is no condition to preclude any development on the other side of the development road closer to the East Coast Main Line. There may well be subsequent development and I think that that should be automatically refused.”

Highways officers and tree and biodiversity officers supported the application.

Committee member Tim Wildgust also had concerns over the loss of biodiversity — but agreed with the opinion of the tree and biodiversity officers.

“We have to have some faith in our lead ecologist in this,” he said.

He added: “These were allotments, I guess they could be used as allotments tomorrow if you went and stripped and planted potatoes in there, which they could do. You’d potentially destroy the ecology that built up over the last 10 years in there anyway with no mitigation at all.”

Despite the concerns raised, the application was approved by a majority vote.

What do you think? Should this plan have been passed? Let us know in the comments below…

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