DEVELOPMENT: It's not in the public interest
I believe the application, other than perhaps additional social housing, is not in the public interest and there are no beneficial economic grounds to justify it.
The proposed site is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in close proximity to an eroding coastline and in the middle of a flood plain.
It is not sustainable for permanent residential occupation – there are no real jobs within close proximity, no school, a shop that only opens part-time in winter and a sub-standard transport infrastructure.
It will put additional strain on utilities – electrical, water and sewerage infrastructure. We have already suffered power cuts and blocked drains within the past 12 months.
There will be little or no call for three or four bedroom houses from local residents and I would suggest that when the restrictions of Section 106 fall away these houses will quickly become second holiday homes in an area with one of the highest percentages in the country.
I realise that in terms of the outline application the council can only consider planning law, but councillors can take cognisance of other factors, including the fact that the area is home to various species of wildlife.
If this application is granted it will no doubt open the floodgates to a follow-up application for a further 55 dwellings to the north of Swinhoe Road. The inevitable increase in traffic will pose an increased risk to children who live and play in the Kennedy Green area.
All of this is happening at a time when nearby caravan sites are expanding and contributing to further strain on the utilities.
We live next to the public footpath that leads to the caravan site and Beadnell Beach. During school holidays, public holidays, etc, we get a constant stream of visitors using the gate, often under the influence of alcohol, into the early hours of the morning.
Many shout through the fence and many days we have to clear up beer bottles, glasses, crisp packets and other detritus. Gates are left open with the result that cattle and sheep escape into the residential area.
Similar anti-social behaviour occurs in the Kennedy Green playground area. Approval of this application will only increase and exacerbate this type of behaviour.
It is my firm opinion that this scheme holds no benefits whatsoever for the village and that its implementation would be a serious threat to the fabric and harmony of the community.
I urge councillors to recommend that this outline application be refused.