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Uproar over Gainford house plan
ANGRY villagers are demanding urgent talks with developers behind controversial plans to build 20 affordable homes in a Teesdale village.
The scheme was unveiled at a consultation event in Gainford earlier this week.
Residents were told the new estate would be made up of eight two-bed homes and 12 three-bed properties with a single point of access from Academy Gardens.
A planning application has yet to be submitted, but if the scheme proceeds, it would be developed by Partner Construction for Riverside Housing.
Matthew Spawton, land manager for Partner Construction, said the scheme would help meet a 'massive need' for affordable housing in the area.
“Affordable housing is an identified need in rural locations in County Durham west of the A68,” he said. “The county council is under pressure to provide affordable houses in rural areas.”
However, such was level of opposition, Gainford and Langton Parish Council has called a special meeting for Thursday, October 25, to consider its response.
Representatives from the developers have been invited to attend.
Parish council chairwoman Linda Britton said: “We have received a significant number of complaints about the way the consultation has been approached and delivered.
“It’s come to our attention that many people in the village did not receive a letter inviting them to attend the consultation and were unaware of the development or the consultation.
“Many of those who attended were bitterly disappointed by the lack of information on offer and lack of response to their questions. “
Other consultations have included presentations, senior people from all the major organisations involved and question and answer sessions.
The land proposed for the housing estate is currently fields, but the area is identified in the draft County Durham Plan as being suitable for housing.
Among those at the consultation event were Alistair and Helen Plant, who live close to the proposed development site.
Mrs Plant said: “The infrastructure in the village for where this is located can't cope. There is a need in the county for affordable homes, but there are other plots of land for development.”
She envisaged problems with increased traffic going through already busy streets to get to the new estate.