Appeal lodged over controversial flats plan in South Shields which sparked 'shoe-horning' fears

Controversial housing proposals dubbed as “overdevelopment” by council planners are set to be decided by a Government-appointed inspector after developers lodged an appeal.

By Chris Binding
Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 1:23 pm

The proposed site comprises an undeveloped side garden close to the roundabout junction of Boldon Lane and Harton Lane.

New plans sought outline planning permission for a building housing six double bedroom flats, with all matters such as appearance and layout set to be submitted at a later date in a “reserved matters” application.

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The site in question in Boldon Lane.

Indicative plans showed a three-storey building incorporating a fourth floor of accommodation within the roof space.

During consultation on the plans however, objections were received from a number of Boldon Lane residents and West Harton Methodist Church.

Concerns included the development being “shoe-horned” into the space, the potential for increased traffic, parking issues, loss of privacy and disruption during construction.

South Tyneside Council’s planning department said the plans represented “overdevelopment” and refused the housing scheme on May 4, 2022.

The main issues included the “insufficient amount of on-site car parking space” proposed and the “restrictive nature” of the site which would result in a “sub-standard layout”.

Council planners said that in this context, the layout would “lead to vehicles manoeuvring in conflict with one another”.

At a meeting of South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee on May 23, 2022, planning officers confirmed an appeal had been lodged.

Although the council had moved to reject the plans, councillors were told that an appeal was submitted by developers before a refusal notice was officially issued.

Appeal documents confirm that the appeal was lodged on the basis of ‘non-determination’ and states the council failed to give notice of its decision within an “appropriate period”.

Peter Cunningham, operations manager for development management on the council, told the meeting: “We got this outline application in [for 149 Boldon Lane], we weren’t happy with it, they knew that.

“We gave them a draft of our refusal reasons and they put in the appeal so it’s an appeal against non-determination.

“The appeal is progressing.”

According to council planning documents, permission for a four-bedroom house on the site was granted in 2014 – however this development was never brought forward and permission has now lapsed.

An update on new plans for the site will be published on the national Planning Inspectorate’s website once an appeal decision has been made.