Belford set to get 40 new homes as plans due for approval by Northumberland County Council

Plans for almost 40 new homes in a north Northumberland village are recommended for approval next week.

By Ben O'Connell
Wednesday, 16th September 2020, 6:00 am

A decision is due on an outline application for a development of 37 houses in Belford at the Thursday, September 24, meeting of the North Northumberland Local Area Council.

The remote meeting, to be streamed on YouTube, is the first time the committee has met since February and the first of any of the five local area councils (LACs) to be held since the lifting earlier this month of their suspension from dealing with planning applications during the Covid-19 pandemic. The last LAC meeting was in the first half of March.

The bid seeks approval for a mix of 27 self-build plots and 10 affordable homes, on land south of Rogerson Road.

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The proposed site of the new homes in Belford

The proposed self-build mix is eight three-bedroom houses, 13 four-bedroom properties and six five-bedroom dwellings, while the affordable homes would feature three two-bedroom houses, three three-bedroom properties and four two-bedroom bungalows.

Belford Parish Council has a number of concerns about the scheme including flooding in the area, drainage, the access onto the corner of the B6349, and that the site is outside the proposed settlement boundary in the neighbourhood plan, which is currently under development.

Eleven neighbours have also objected, although there have been four letters of support as well.

Planning officers have drawn up a report for councillors containing detailed information on the application, as well as views from various bodies, and members of the public have also been given the chance to comment on the proposals from the developer.

The planning officer’s report concludes: ‘While the proposed housing is not needed to enable the council to meet the minimum needs of the Northumberland Local Plan, these figures do not represent a cap for housing development and the site already benefits from consent for residential development and is set within a sustainable location.’

It adds: ‘Other impacts can be satisfactorily mitigated by planning conditions.’

Approval would be subject to a section 106 legal agreement to secure the 10 affordable homes, £25,800 to support GP facilities, and a coastal mitigation contribution of £615 per unit, totalling £22,755.

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