Opposition to controversial plans for Swanland retirement blocks prompts council site visit

By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 12 May 2017

Councillors have delayed a decision on controversial plans for a luxury retirement complex in leafy Swanland after opposition from villagers.

The site in the upmarket village will now be visited by East Riding councillors before they rule on the multi-million pound scheme.

McCarthy and Stone Group and Duchy Homes want to build 36 retirement apartments and 13 dwellings at the disused White Lodge site, in Tranby Lane.

But dozens of residents have objected, saying that blocks of flats and the number of properties proposed are “not in keeping" with Tranby Lane.

Objectors claim the scheme would change the character of Swanland. They say the three-storey development is not suitable for a village and would set a precedent.

Swanland Parish Council, which has also objected, has suggested the complex should be reduced to a two-storey design.

East Riding ward Councillor Julie Abraham lobbied members of the western area sub-committee to visit the site before making a decision.

The disused White Lodge site at Swanland.

Cllr Abraham said after Tuesday's committee meeting: “I am pleased members agreed to visit the site.

“Whilst I agree the need for housing for older people and also affordable housing, this would be a significant development in Swanland and involve the loss of a substantial number of trees.

“I wanted to ensure that members have a good knowledge of the site and the potential impact on neighbours before they reach a decision."

The council received 37 letters of objection, which also raised concerns about additional traffic and pressure on local services.

Seven letters of support were submitted in favour of the scheme.

A McCarthy & Stone spokesman said: “Following a detailed consultation with East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Swanland Parish Council and over 1,000 local residents our plans were adapted, where possible, according to the feedback received.

“The significant existing natural screen to the boundaries will be reinforced by either a new close boarded timber fence or railings.

“In addition, new landscaping will also be included to enhance the privacy for neighbouring properties.

“A new public footpath link from Tranby Lane to the High Street and large landscaped public open space for the whole village to use will be situated close to the village pond and will add a sense of community to the development.

“Some residents have raised concerns over an increase in traffic however, McCarthy & Stone developments have been shown to reduce car ownership, and are purposely located close to public transport links for that reason."

“More than two thirds of respondents to our consultation were supportive of the plans, with many welcoming the provision of housing on a derelict site.

“Others have said this is the perfect location for accommodation for older people, due to its proximity to the centre of the village."

The application will go back to East Riding Council's western area planning sub committee for a decision once councillors have seen the site for themselves.

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