Tantallon Homes’ application for 58 residential units on land north of Fairfields, in Longframlington, has been given the go-ahead by a planning inspector.
The proposals for 58 three, four and five-bedroom houses and bungalows as well as two-bedroom apartments were submitted in September 2018 and then recommended for approval at the North Northumberland Local Area Council meeting last August.
Now, however, planning inspector Gareth Wildgoose has granted planning permission.
In his decision notice, published last week, he stated: ‘The development would result in a loss of open countryside. However, given that it would be largely viewed against the backdrop of a modern residential development when in close proximity and that more distant views in the landscape would be largely screened, I have found no significant harm to the character and appearance of the area, landscape character and visual amenity.’
Although the site benefited from an extant planning permission for 17 homes, there was opposition to the scheme – including from the parish council – in the village, which has been the subject of significant house-building in recent years.
But Tantallon says it has ‘designed its development to be at the heart of the community’.
It points out that the plans include provision for a roundabout which would allow buses to turn, increasing the potential for public transport within Longframlington, and the developer is set to hold talks with the local authority and bus companies to determine the feasibility of this becoming reality.
Craig McClen, director of Tantallon Homes, said: “The landowner initially secured permission for the 17 homes, and while that would have created a fantastic luxury development, what we really want to achieve is homes that are accessible and affordable for local people.
“By including 34 starter and family homes in our development, we think this better serves the community of Longframlington and gives options to young people and first-time buyers who want to stay in this village.
“The second phase will include the executive home provision, so that aspect is still there, and together we believe this will create a vibrant development which will add positively to the community.
“We are known developers in the village already through the creation of Sea View, which has been warmly welcomed, and have built a strong reputation across the region as a whole since we were established in 2014 on the basis of our commitment to creating bespoke, high-quality housing developments which are at the heart of their local communities.”
Although the Covid-19 lockdown means plans for a start date on site remain unconfirmed, the developer hopes to begin work before the end of the year.
Fellow director James Bell added: “Despite the very frustrating delays in the planning process, we are delighted to have secured approval and look forward to being able to get on site and begin work on our latest development.”
As well as the appeal, Tantallon had lodged a second bid for 47 homes on the site, which was due to be decided by councillors in March, but the meeting was cancelled at short notice as coronavirus restrictions started to come into force.