Councillors 'disgusted' by 'ridiculous' decision to allow hundreds more new homes to be built in Pocklington

Councillors say they are “absolutely disgusted” after a developer won a lengthy battle to build hundreds of homes on the outskirts of an East Yorkshire market town, which some say is already being ruined by sprawling housing estates.

The three ward councillors accused the Planning Inspectorate of showing “no respect” for the “local area, people or democracy” by overturning an earlier refusal of planning permission for 380 homes, including a retail store and care home, off The Balk at Pocklington, in favour of developers Gladman Developments.

A similar scheme was refused in 2016 and subsequently dismissed on appeal in 2017.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Councillors Kay West, Paul West and David Sykes said Pocklington did not require any more housing and would add to congestion on the “very busy” A1079, “potentially threatening the lives of drivers and pedestrians”.

Developers have won permission for 380 homes off The Balk in Pocklington

They said: “The developers have crammed everything they could think of on the land. This is a new village, it should be placed nearer to where work is available, not in the countryside, using up excellent farming land.”

Vice-chairman of the East Riding Council’s planning committee Leo Hammond said he was “devastated and heart-broken” by the “ridiculous” decision to allow the scheme on land designated as open countryside.

Coun Hammond said the new estate would impact on nearby villages like Hayton and Burnby which would get heavier traffic.

He said: “I am so shocked and disappointed that the Planning Inspectorate have overturned a very sensible and, if I recall correctly, unanimous decision by the democratically elected councillors who sit on the planning committee.”

As well as a 60-bed care home and convenience store, the scheme on 18 hectares of land, will include allotments, community orchard, children’s play area, skate park and multiple use games area.

In her ruling Inspector Claire Searson acknowledged that Pocklington “in particular is already in excess of its housing requirement, against a wider district-wide under delivery”.

Another 380 homes would increase Pocklington’s total to 2,019 - 60 per cent over what was required.

She said the council could also not demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land - Gladman claims 4.17 years is available, against the council's estimate of 4.96 years - just 0.04 of a year short.

Ms Searson also noted the “significant” concerns expressed that allowing Gladman’s appeal would undermine “the whole plan-led system”.

However she said benefits included the 25 per cent affordable housing, the provision of a new link road and roundabout which “would also help to address current capacity issues” as well as jobs in the nursery and retail store, and during construction.

A spokesman for East Riding Council, said: "The council is disappointed in the outcome of the appeal to allow residential development on unallocated land which is a departure from the council's adopted Local Plan."