Conflicting views over Hartlepool’s housing needs

New houses being built in Hart village
New houses being built in Hart village

Conflicting opinions about the amount of housing needed in Hartlepool have been received in the creation of a major new development blueprint plan.

A number of residents expressed concerns about the level of housing development proposed within Hartlepool Borough Council’s new Local Plan.

But the House Builders Federation says the council’s target of securing 6,000 new homes over the next 15 years may be too low and it should increase the figure by 20% to give more flexibility.

Planning services manager Andrew Carter told a meeting of the Regeneration Services Committee: “I think we can do some work with this and amend our housing strategy to incorporate what the HBF are telling us so we will take that into consideration going forward.

“On the flip side of this there was a representation made by a member of the public who suggested that we were significantly over-providing our housing provision and also making too much estimate of what was going to come forward.”

The feedback came during a consultation on the Preferred Options stage of the Local Plan which ran between May and July.

I don’t mind the delay because we need to get this Local Plan right

Councillor Kevin Cranney

Mr Carter said there was general support for an Elwick bypass and new A19 junction.

But residents also raised concerns about the impact a proposed new large new housing development at High Tunstall will have on existing roads, especially at the junction of Elwick Road, Wooler Road and Park Road.

Mr Carter said council engineers were aware of the concerns and would be addressed within the plan.

About 100 people opposed a proposal to set aside land south of Seaton Carew for up to six wind turbines.

Mr Carter said the publication of the amended plan will be delayed slightly to take all the feedback into account.

A further eight-week round of public consultation is due to take place between December and February.

Committee chair, Councillor Kevin Cranney said: “I don’t mind the delay because we need to get this Local Plan right.”