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Self-build homes get the go-ahead after some assurances

The site of the proposed homes to the south of Hillside West in Rothbury. Picture by Mary Scott
The site of the proposed homes to the south of Hillside West in Rothbury. Picture by Mary Scott

Controversial plans for new homes in Rothbury have been given the green light – but only after councillors sought extra assurances.

Northumberland Estates’ outline bid for nine self-build plots on land south of Hillside Road West was back before the county council’s planning committee on Tuesday.

It had been deferred at the October meeting to allow the members to go for a site visit and it was clear that their seeing the location had reinforced fears about road safety.

A condition which requires the widening of Hillside Road West was already attached to the suggested approval, but it is to be looked at again after Coun Bernard Pidcock queried whether it would happen given that the nine self-build plots could have nine separate owners/developers.

In addition to this, the committee agreed to add a further condition, which will require the provision of passing places on Gravelly Bank. The need for a design code for the new properties was also agreed as an additional condition.

Earlier in the meeting, planning officer Tony Lowe confirmed that a tree preservation order had been issued for a crab apple tree on the site, but said that it ‘does not outweigh the benefits of new housing’.

Objector Jospehine Ellis said there were no benefits of the development other than to the developer, adding: “We find this cavalier attitude deeply troubling.”