Government overrule council on Broxtowe development plan

Coun Richard MacRae has opposed two Broxtowe developments and been overruled by Government inspectors.
Coun Richard MacRae has opposed two Broxtowe developments and been overruled by Government inspectors.

A government inspector has overturned Broxtowe Borough Council’s refusal of planning consent for a former golf course site in Bramcote Hills.

The council planning committee blocked development in July 2016, saying the proposals would have an adverse impact on nature at Thoresby Road site, and detract from the character of Bramcote Ridge.

But, following an appeal by the prospective developer, on Thursday, March 2, the planning inspectorate greenlit a retirement and specialist care community consisting of up to 100 bungalows and flats.

Committee member Councillor Richard MacRae, who represents Stapleford North, said: “The original decision against this application was made by locally elected councillors doing their best to represent the will of local people.

“It is such an important wildlife corridor and I just don’t understand it. We sit at the planning committee, we listen to what the representatives say, we listen to both sides and make a decision.”

The news comes just weeks after a similar ruling against the council on plans for 450 houses on Field Farm in Ilkeston Road, Stapleford.

Coun MacRae said: “It seems it is easier to allow development on important sites yet brown field sites are left ignored.”

“It just annoys me that the government inspector has just come in and overturned it. People have got a right to be angry about it.”

Until 1978, the 3.3 hectare Bramcote Hills site was used for farming, and it borders a designated Site of Importance for Nature Conservation.

When the golf course closed in 2008, it was sold to Derby firm Champions Gate Ltd for £350,000 as a development opportunity.

Local residents have long opposed any building plans, citing the area’s importance to wildlife and as valuable open space.

The planning inspectorate imposed the decision in part because the council were unable to demonstrate a five-year land supply for new homes.

All councils are required to maintain a land supply under the National Planning Policy Framework laid out in 2012.