Building firm set for green light over 110-home housing estate in Hartlepool

The entrance to the site of Valley Drive where there are plans for 110 new houses
The entrance to the site of Valley Drive where there are plans for 110 new houses

A new 110-home housing development is being recommended for approval when it goes before councillors for a decision next week.

The detailed scheme by Taylor Wimpey for Tunstall Farm, on fields off Valley Drive, is recommended to Hartlepool Borough Council’s Planning Committee for permission next Wednesday.

The development already had outline planning permission for the overall principle of building.

The latest application seeks full permission for the scheme’s appearance, landscaping, layout and scale.

A decision whether to grant permission was deferred for a month in December due to worries around drainage and flooding.

It followed Storm Desmond when heavy rain saw the levels in a beck, which runs along Valley Drive, rise.

A report says the council’s principal engineer has reviewed the drainage plans for the new development and is confident it will be suitable with some amendments.

Meeting papers state: “The principal engineer has further advised that both the council’s internal operations team and the Environment Agency have both reported no recent flooding incidents.

“Some debris removal was undertaken and the new grilles allowed this to be safely removed.

“It is considered that the proposed development is acceptable in respect of flooding and drainage matters and that such matters can be satisfactorily agreed and concluded through the relevant discharge of conditions application.”

The flooding concerns around the site entrance in Valley Drive was among the reasons why the planning committee turned down the original planning permission in April 2014.

The decision was later overturned on appeal by the Planning Inspectorate last January. The inspector said planned works would improve the land’s drainage and not add to the flood risk.

To date, a total of 86 letters of objection have been sent to the council on issues including the size of the development, loss of green belt, flooding, pressure on local school places and road safety from the extra traffic.

The council report adds: “Overall, it is considered that the appearance, layout, scale and density of the development is acceptable and is reflective of the surrounding area.

“It is considered that the development would not have a detrimental impact on the character and appearance of the area and that the proposal accords with the general provisions of the relevant saved local plan policies and the National Planning Policy Framework.

The council says the overriding message of national planning guidance is to favour sustainable development.