Go-ahead expected for golf course

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CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a golf course on land bordering a 1950s cemetery are expected to be given the go-ahead by council chiefs.

Farmer Alan Howard, of Horden Hall Farm, wants to open a six-hole golf academy and driving range next to Thorpe Road Cemetery, in Horden.

The plans were originally aired in 2007 and the Hartlepool Mail reported at the time that bereaved relatives were against the proposals.

Some feared wayward shots could hit headstones or distract mourners paying respects at the burial site.

But Durham County Council’s County Planning Committee will discuss re-submitted plans during a meeting at County Hall at 2pm tomorrow.

Horden Parish Council has objected to the plans.

The report says: “The parish council have formally objected to the application.

“Concerns have been raised regarding the impact the proposed development would have on activities and visitors to the adjacent cemetery, the impact the proposed development would have on the landscape, local wildlife, highway safety, residential amenity and the adjacent listed building.”

But council officers are expected to approve the plans, which include the planting of mature trees to provide a screen between the golf course and cemetery.

The report says: “It is considered that the proposed landscaping and other mitigation measures will ensure any impact on adjacent residents or the use of the adjacent cemetery are minimised.”

The application is backed by Sport England, which recognises that there is currently no driving range provision in the former Easington district.

The proposals also include a small clubhouse with reception, cafe and video coaching area, a maintenance shed, with associated landscaping, fencing, car parking and access works.

Operating hours are expected to be from 9am until 9pm.