Lower Peover Parish Council are calling for Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) to take stronger action following months of misery for residents living adjacent to the new development.
Having initially been refused planning permission by CWAC, with strong local opposition which was supported by Cllr Mark Stocks, the developer Harvey Homes won an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate to build 30 homes at a site adjacent to Holly Tree Drive, with a new entrance to be built on Middlewich Road.
From the start of the building early in September 2018, when earthworks were started by contractor Westshield, the site has solely been accessed via Holly Tree Drive, with HGVs driving up and down Holly Tree Drive on a daily basis ever since. On some days residents have logged up to 50 truck movements a day consisting of mostly 30 ton tippers carrying hard core, articulated trucks delivering huge concrete drains and ready mix concrete deliveries. Due to the limited width of Holly Tree Drive, trucks have been seen mounting the kerb to pass, unloading onto the residential street and blocking residents’ driveways and pavements. This has led to resident concerns about pedestrian safety.
Cheshire West and Chester Planning Enforcement Department issued a Breach of Condition Notice on September 21 to Harvey Homes, giving the builders 28 days to stop using Holly Tree Drive as a construction site access, but this has been challenged by the developer and an additional application to vary the condition was submitted and subsequently refused.
With the builders now blaming delays on the Highways department to give the go ahead for the new access, CWAC state that they are awaiting action from the Westshield before signing off the agreement. The action from the Planning Enforcement department now lies with the legal team and the timeframe for action is unlikely to provide an outcome before the access to Middlewich Road is completed. The stalemate between the contractors and the Borough Council now leads to increasing frustrations for residents caught in between.
Cllr Louise Corlett, Chairperson of Lower Peover Parish Council said: ‘’The Parish Council are extremely concerned about the use of Holly Tree Drive by Westshield to gain access to the building site. We are unhappy that residents are being subjected to daily inconvenience with over 50 articulated lorries going down their narrow street every day. This was a quiet, calm and safe residential area of Lower Peover but, since September, the neighbourhood peace and the safety of residents has been put at risk. Residents’ driveways have often been blocked, access by car or on foot is often disrupted by lorries and the size, noise and weight of these lorries mean that there is considerable concern about the health and safety of the residents. This situation needs to be addressed urgently ‘’
Cllr Mark Stocks adds ‘’ I completely support the residents in Lower Peover and their concerns regarding access to the new housing development in Lower Peover. The council should be taking enforcement action against the developer and ensuring access to the site is via Middlewich Road only. the council should with immediate effect put a stop notice on the site until the completion of the new access. It is unacceptable to use Holly Tree Drive and Birchwood Drive to access site it both dangerous an unsafe for all residents’’