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Sherburn residents want field saved from housing
VILLAGERS are calling for a farmer’s field to be removed from a council’s list of potential housing sites.
People living in Sherburn Village, near Durham, were shocked to learn Durham County Council had added arable land between Mill Lane and South Street to the list of sites allocated for housing in its County Durham Plan (CDP).
The plot, which is known as Sherburn Farm and owned by the Church Commissioners, is earmarked for up to 100 homes.
Villagers say such a development would cause traffic congestion, be dangerous for motorists and pedestrians, affect what is a conservation area and damage a nearby nature reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).
Further, they say the site’s late addition to the CDP means they have too little time to object.
Resident John Austin said: “I am really disappointed but not at all surprised that the Labour-led Durham County Council have embraced with open arms Tory politics that have released the planning laws to make it easier to develop Greenfield and valued sites like ours in Sherburn Village.”
Angry residents put their case to council planning officials at a CDP consultation event earlier this month. Now a residents’ meeting has been called for Sherburn village club on Wednesday, November 6, at 7pm.
Judith Hall, of South Street, said: “I’m very concerned about the access, which will be very dangerous on a blind bend.
“I’m also concerned about the wildlife impact. This is a beautiful area.”
Peter Pallas, who has lived in the area for 30 years, said he was concerned about wildlife and congestion.
The villagers say they have won support from Sherburn Parish Council and county councillors Stephen Guy and David Hall.
Stuart Timmiss, the council’s head of planning, previously said the site had been added to the CDP because certain issues had been resolved which made development deliverable and viable.
No planning application has yet been submitted.
Consultation on the CDP continues until December 6, with meetings held across the county until November 28. Next week they are as follows: Monday, Spennymoor Town Hall, 4pm to 8pm; Tuesday, Shildon Civic Hall, 2pm to 6pm; Wednesday, Sedgefield’s Ceddesfeld Hall, 4pm to 8pm; Thursday, Ferryhill Literary Institute, 3pm to 7pm, and Durham Town Hall, 4pm to 8pm; Friday, Woodham Village Community Centre, 4pm to 8pm.
For more information, visit durham.gov.uk/cdp
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