Plans for 14 new homes near Summerhill Visitor Centre in Hartlepool to be discussed next week

Plans are to go back before councillors over whether to allow 14 new homes to be built near Summerhill Visitor Centre in Hartlepool.

Thursday, 8th April 2021, 3:16 pm
The proposed site off Summerhill Lane, Hartlepool. Pic via Google Maps.

Hartlepool Borough Council planning committee are to decide next week on proposals to demolish existing buildings and farmhouses at Southbrooke Farm in Summerhill Lane and build new three and four bed homes at the site.

The plans, from applicant Graham Anderson, were previously approved by councillors in 2017, subject to a legal agreement securing planning contributions, which the applicant had agreed to pay at the time.

However since then the applicant has contacted council officers and said they are unable to pay the required contributions, which were previously agreed following the submission of a viability assessment.

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The proposed site off Summerhill Lane, Hartlepool. Pic via Google Maps.

The costs totalled more than £230,000 and would have included contributions towards education, sporting facilities and the Elwick bypass.

Therefore the proposals will now go back before the council planning committee on Wednesday (April 14) for a decision to be made on whether they can commence.

A report ahead of the meeting from council senior planning officer Jane Tindall recommends the proposals are refused by councillors due to the financial planning contributions no longer being in place.

She said: “It is considered that the principle of the development in this instance is unacceptable as the development would represent an unsustainable form of development without securing the requisite planning obligations.

“The proposals would have a detrimental impact on the character and appearance of the conservation area, ecology and nature conservation, and the local and strategic road network.”

The site subject to the plans is accessed from Catcote Road, and is next to Summerhill Visitor Centre.

No objections to the plans were submitted by residents, however three letters of support were received stating the development would enhance the area and it would be an ideal location for such plans.

A planning statement submitted by Kingfield Developments Limited in support of the application states the proposals would provide much needed housing for years to come.

It said: “The design is driven principally by the need to meet the local and national demand and future housing needs of an ageing and more discerning population.

“Considerable time and effort has been spent by this company over the last two years in researching the provision of housing to tackle the future needs of an ageing population and those also of a growing younger population who still live at home with their parents.”

A decision is to be made at the council planning committee meeting on Wednesday, April 14, starting at 9.30am.

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