Controversial housing in Morecambe village could still go ahead as councillors defer decision

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Discussion on controversial plans to build 129 homes near Torrisholme Barrow ended on Monday with no final decision being made.

Councillors voted on Monday to defer a decision on the planned Oakmere Homes scheme.

Oakmere want to build properties - of unspecified size - along with a new access road on land east of Fulwood Drive in Torrisholme, backing onto Torrisholme Barrow.

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The scheme would provide 129 new houses, with a minimum of 27 per cent as affordable units.

An example of an Oakmere Homes development.An example of an Oakmere Homes development.
An example of an Oakmere Homes development.

The plans have seen around 130 objections from members of the public lodged with the city council, in particular raising concerns about increased traffic and noise, a flood risk, the visual impact and impact on wildlife.

They also suggest there is a need in the area for more bungalows rather than family houses, and there is a limited capacity of local health services and schools.

Ward councillor Roger Dennison has also lodged an objection, while both Slyne-with-Hest Parish Council and Morecambe Town Council have objected to the plans and raised concerns about the unsuitability of the scheme for the site.

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However, council officers had said that while the layout, scale and design of the properties is not known at this stage, it is considered the number proposed could be adequately accommodated and achieve an appropriate development in keeping with the character of the area, without having a detrimental impact on highway safety, residential amenity and flood risk.

They had recommended planning permission be granted subject to conditions including the provision of a minimum of 27 per cent affordable housing, a financial contribution for an open space, a Travel Plan contribution of £6,000, and the management and maintenance of all landscaping, unadopted roads, lighting and drainage infrastructure, on-site open space and on-site watercourses.

They said that "whilst the development is considered to cause less than substantial harm to the setting of designated heritage assets [Torrisholme Barrow], it is considered that this is outweighed by the public benefits of the scheme".

A vote to defer the decision was passed at Monday's planning meeting, and a final decision on planning permission will now be made at a later date.