UNWELCOME plans for a 12-pitch Gypsy Traveller site in Dunham on the Hill have been recommended for approval despite the development defying planning policies.
More than 60 homeowners have registered objections to the authorised site – which will feature toilets, parking spaces, play areas and ancillary areas – on land adjacent to Renley, Chester Road.
Principal planning officer Lucy Hughes, of Cheshire West and Chester Council’s spatial planning unit, has recommended the plans should be accepted, despite the proposal contravening current restrictions for building on undeveloped land.
Her report stated: “The unmet need for Gypsy and Traveller accommodation can be viewed as a special circumstance which can outweigh Green Belt policy.
“In light of this, if it was considered that there were ‘very special circumstances’ then any permission should be granted for a temporary period of perhaps three years.”
Angry residents have waged a war of words claiming the plans would be a ‘threat’ to the community and raised concerns including existing Gypsy Traveller sites in the surrounding areas, fears over increased crime, reduced house prices, hazards caused by horse and carts and an insufficient educational provision.
Homeowner John Platt, of Primrose Lane, Helsby, said: “Please, for the sake of all right-minded, decent, law-abiding members of society, don’t allow this situation to continue.”
James Evans, of Dunham Court, Dunham on the Hill, added: “This is not a case of nimbyism.”
Sarah Booth, of Talbot Road, Dunham on the Hill, said: “Had I wanted to live next to a trailer park I would have considered a bigger, cheaper house in Alvanley or Helsby.”
Mr and Mrs Jackson, of Primrose Lane, Helsby, added: “If these people are Travellers why do they not travel?”
Cheshire West and Chester Council say the application is not due to be heard by the planning committee in the near future.