Sheffield Council overruled - planning inspector gives controversial housing development the go ahead.
Campaigners have lost a lengthy battle to stop a housing estate from being built on a wildlife haven in Sheffield after a planning inspector ruled in favour of developers.
Avant Homes has the go-ahead to build 71 properties on Owlthorpe Fields at Moorthorpe Way, Crystal Peaks.
The inspector’s decision was released today following a fortnight long planning appeal in January.
It will be a bitter blow for Owlthorpe Fields Action Group, which had spent 18 months fighting the development.
Coun Chris Rosling-Josephs, who sits on the planning board, said it was extremely disappointing.
“The board was reflecting the opposition across the community. This area is very important and valued by residents and has fantastic nature and wildlife. It’s important that we consider how people want the area to look for the future and this is the wrong approach from Avant Homes,” he said.
“The community will be living with the impact of what is decided now for long after the developer has left town and they need to be respectful of that.
“We want to continue to work with the Group to try and protect the environment and open space in the best way possible.”
Fellow board member Coun Bob McCann blamed Labour for not having an updated Local Plan.
He said: “The community worked extremely hard on a fantastic case but their hand was sadly weakened by the lack of a Local Plan from the council.
“I warned the council that not having a Local Plan would result in inappropriate development being pushed through and that’s what happened.”
“We put forward some good arguments to have a masterplan for the area and to save more of the open space but that was not listened to,” he added.
“I’ll continue to work with residents over the next few weeks to see how we can save as much of the open space and environment as possible and how we can make the best of this decision.”