Hundreds sign petition against Lancaster village homes plan

Residents at a drop-in event in Dolphinholme in 2015 having their say about future housing development in the village. Photo by Peter Adams.
Residents at a drop-in event in Dolphinholme in 2015 having their say about future housing development in the village. Photo by Peter Adams.
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Controversial plans to expand the number of houses in a Lancaster village by almost half have been withdrawn.

A petition with 365 signatures and at least 96 letters of objection went in to Lancaster City Council against a proposed development at Dolphinholme.

The village south of Lancaster currently has only 140 houses and a population of around 250.

The proposed housing scheme was for 68 new homes at Higher Bond Gate, Abbeystead Road on the north east fringe of the village.

The applicants, Mr and Mrs D Wallbank, also wanted to open a new village 
convenience store at the 
entrance of the site. Residents feared the scheme would create extra traffic, there was no public transport/infrastructure to support it, it would impact on the countryside and there would be possible draining and flooding issues.

Council planning officers recommended the plans should be refused.

A council report said: “The development is not well related to the existing scale and character of Dolphinholme and it is not considered that exceptional circumstances exist.

“There would be a detrimental impact to the character and quality of the landscape.”

The report also said information about transport to the site was “lacking in detail” and there could be “severe impact” at junction 33 of M6 and the 6 corridor through Galgate to Lancaster.

It also said the site was “unattractive to walk and travel by other means of transport between workplaces, shops, health care centres, recreation, leisure and community facilities”.

The application was withdrawn last Monday days after this report was published.

The Lancaster Guardian contacted the agent, Avnish Panchal of Graham Anthony Associates in Garstang, for a comment but we had not received a response as we went to press.

This row comes months after Lancaster City Council revealed the village was one of its options for mass housing development.

Residents are worried that if Dolphinholme is picked as a location to help the council meet a major districtwide housing shortfall, it could ruin the tranquillity of the village.

A survey revealed in 2015 that 98% of residents in Dolphinholme were against proposals to build 500 new houses in the village.