Frustration grows over Sheffield 'new village' plans with nearly 500 objections

Frustration is growing over controversial plans for a 'new village' in the Sheffield countryside, after a decision was yet again postponed.

Friday, 8th March 2019, 7:43 am
Updated Friday, 8th March 2019, 7:48 am
The site off Hollin Busk Lane, between Deepcar and Stocksbridge, where up to 93 new homes are proposed

Residents have now been waiting nearly 16 months to learn whether plans for up to 93 homes on grazing land off Hollin Busk Lane, between Deepcar and Stocksbridge, will get the go-ahead.

Nearly 500 objections have poured in to Sheffield Council's planning department since Hallam Land Management applied for planning permission for the site near Royd Farm in November 2017.

The site off Hollin Busk Lane, between Deepcar and Stocksbridge, where up to 93 new homes are proposed

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The council originally aimed to bring the application before councillors in March 2018 but the deadline for a decision has been repeatedly pushed back.

Hopes were raised that a decision would finally be reached when it was listed for consideration by the council's planning committee next Tuesday, March 12, only for the matter to be pulled from the agenda with no explanation and no new date set.

The Upper Don Action Group (UDAG), which opposes the plans for what it says would effectively be a 'new village' on greenfield land, claimed residents were growing ever more exasperated at the ongoing delay.

Outline plans for new homes at the 'Royd Farm village' site

Its chairman, John Hesketh, said: "How on earth are local people in Deepcar and Bolsterstone meant to live a normal life?

"A massive housing development is planned next door, one that will utterly transform the area, yet the council cannot seem to decide the fate of the planning application....

"The council ought to be ashamed of how it has handled this planning application."

The 16-acre plot lies beside the green belt, close to a nature reserve and is designated as 'open space', affording it some protection against development.

Objectors, including Stocksbridge Town Council, argue that the new homes would ruin views, threaten wildlife habitats and add to congestion.

But the developer claims the homes are needed to help fill the huge housing shortfall locally, and it says the land's 'open space' status is outweighed by changes to planning policy designed to promote house building.

The Government states that the statutory time limit for major planning decisions to be made is usually 13 weeks from the application being validated, or 16 weeks if an Environmental Impact Assessment is necessary.

It says that if an extension has not been agreed with the application, a decision should be made within 26 weeks at most to comply with what it calls the ‘planning guarantee’.

The Star has contacted Hallam Land Management and Sheffield Council.

The planning application is available to view here.