Garden centre to be demolished to make way for housing

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 27 Apr 2017

A North Lincolnshire garden centre site which has been sat derelict is set to get a new lease of life.

The former Belton Garden Centre site, Sandtoft Road, will now make way for housing as an application was passed through by planners today (April 26).

Planning permission was being sought to develop three detached houses on the site.

Mr Howard Root, who was representing the applicant J &S Metals Ltd, said he saw no reason why the application should be refused despite the planning officer's recommendation to turn the proposals down.

"Following a resident's meeting, it became clear that resident's would welcome a residential site," he said.

Mr Root pointed out that the former garden centre is a brownfield site and the Government's planning framework says that alternative use should be made of such sites.

He said: "A brownfield site that is not being used then other alternative use must be considered."

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The site has been brought before planning before when Mr Root proposed 13 mobile homes on the site.

Planning officer's at the council recommended approval of the proposals, but the committee turned the application down.

Mr Root argued that there was no reason why the current application should be considered unsuitable when 13 homes were supported by the planning department.

"If 13 mobile homes are considered suitable then surely three homes are," he said.

"The site is safe from flooding; the environment agency does not oppose the application."

Similar applications have being submitted for the site over the years with the most recent application being for a caravan holiday park in December 2016.

A similar application was submitted proposing five dwellings on the site in 2014 but was rejected by the council's planning committee and subsequently lost on appeal.

Council leader, Rob Waltham, who was speaking on behalf of Councillor Liz Redfern, said that the application should be approved on the grounds that residents support the proposals.

"It is not very often that we see resident's supporting an application for housing," he said.

"I think it is important to say that the site would benefit from development."

The council's planning officer recommended refusal of the application on the grounds that the application is unsustainable and on a site remote from local services and public transport.

Officers also said that there we no other available sites at lower flood risk for development.

However, Councillor Carl Sherwood said that common sense needed to be used.

"There comes a time when common sense and listening to what the committee has to say need to be thought of," he said.

The committee passed the application unanimously.

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