Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Councillors Hit out at Plan for Estate

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Councillors Hit out at Plan for Estate

Article excerpt

Byline: ALEX METCALFE Local democracy reporter alex.metcalfe@reachplc.com @Mecs_LDR

A NEW estate featuring a primary school and community centre has been given the green light - despite worries that two Teesside settlements are merging together.

Councillors voted 10 to two to grant permission for 200 homes off Low Lane and Thornaby Road, near Ingleby Barwick, at a planning meeting on Wednesday afternoon.

But there was a tense backand-forth between Thornaby independent Cllr Steve Walmsley and Stockton Council officers over the boundaries of Thornaby and Ingleby Barwick.

Developers have scaled back their plans from 400 homes to 200 on the land - with a "neighbourhood centre", a "multi-cultural" centre and a new primary school all part of the scheme.

Planning agent Steve Barker, speaking on behalf of the applicants, told councillors the site had a "complicated planning history" - but he believed the new development would offer facilities to ease pressure on others nearby.

He added: "This scheme has its own neighbourhood centre, its own community centre and could link to the adjacent to the large housing scheme if that's what the council wants to happen."

However, a fired-up Cllr Walmsley hit out - arguing Thornaby residents and councillors hadn't been consulted properly and Thornaby's boundaries were being "eroded" west of the Bassleton Beck Valley.

He said: "Both I and Thornaby Town Council would contend this application encroaches onto Thornaby-on-Tees and does already amount to coalescence with Thornaby and Ingleby Barwick."

The Mayor of Thornaby believed it was "astonishing" that traffic concerns weren't considered a problem and accused the council of departing from its own plans.

Meanwhile, Cllr Sylvia Walmsley added her own highways worries.

The member for Stainsby Hill added: "Anybody who drives up Thornaby Road and Low Lane knows the traffic is horrendous. …

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