Decision time extended for homes plan near Therfield Heath after Gladman U-turn

PUBLISHED: 17:30 14 April 2020 | UPDATED: 19:39 14 April 2020

A pair of jays in hedgerow that currently divides the field Gladman want to build on in two, running north to south. Picture: David Hatton

A pair of jays in hedgerow that currently divides the field Gladman want to build on in two, running north to south. Picture: David Hatton

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The housing developer proposing to build 99 homes near Therfield Heath has agreed an extension on their application, which was requested by North Herts District Council in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Gladman proposed development site from the southern end looking north towards Echo Hill in Royston. Picture: David HattonThe Gladman proposed development site from the southern end looking north towards Echo Hill in Royston. Picture: David Hatton

Gladman submitted an application two weeks ago to build on land south of Echo Hill in Royston, just over a year since their previous application for 107 homes at the same site was refused by NHDC.

Last month the Government’s chief planner said councils could agree an extension to the determination date with the applicant if required.

The entrance into Echo Hill from Sun Hill, residents say this is the scene of many a near-miss as traffic comes down Sun Hill from top of Briary Lane, often transgressing into Echo Hill in bid to clear the parked cars. Picture: David HattonThe entrance into Echo Hill from Sun Hill, residents say this is the scene of many a near-miss as traffic comes down Sun Hill from top of Briary Lane, often transgressing into Echo Hill in bid to clear the parked cars. Picture: David Hatton

NHDC requested this from Gladman on the basis that the most vulnerable people are self-isolating for 12 weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The developer initially declined to agree the alteration of the prescribed statutory period, but NHDC confirmed this afternoon that the statutory determination period had been extended.

Royston Says No To Gladman campaigner and resident Mr Bubbins with billboard campaigning against the development. Picture: David HattonRoyston Says No To Gladman campaigner and resident Mr Bubbins with billboard campaigning against the development. Picture: David Hatton

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Councillor Paul Clark, NHDC’s executive member for planning, said: “Following discussions between NHDC’s Planning department and Gladman, the statutory determination period has been now been extended by 12 weeks by mutual agreement to allow all members of the community who may be self-isolating, to fully participate in the planning process should they wish to do so.”

A spokesperson from campaign group Royston says No to Gladman said: “We are pleased that pressure from residents and our elected officials has forced Gladman to finally review and reverse their original decision to decline the extension.

“This really was a blatant attempt to gain an unfair advantage at a time of national crisis, adding to resident’s stress as they are not able to exercise their democratic rights.

“When we have seen fantastic community spirit across our town and the country, Gladman and those profiting from the sale of land or property have shown their true colours, they should all be ashamed of themselves.”

The Crow has approached Gladman for comment, and has not received a response.

To view the application and submit your thoughts on the plans search 20/00744/OP at https://pa2.north-herts.gov.uk/online-applications. The previous deadline for this was April 26 – a new date, if there is to be one, is not yet known.

For more information on the Royston says No to Gladman campaign, including how to get involved go to www.roystonsaysnotogladman.co.uk or search for the group on Facebook.


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