Planning officers under fire over Welton homes

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Welton District councillor Malcolm Parish has renewed his attacks on West Lindsey’s planning department.

His criticism came as planning committee members voted to overturn an officers recommendation to approve up to 63 houses off Cliff Road in the growing village.

The councillor told last week’s meeting the site was the original location of Welton village and though archaeologists had inspected it for the district council, their search was just for three hours “and that gave them time to put their spades away.”

“What they found wouldn’t empty a rabbit hutch. That was pathetic,” he told the meeting.

Coun Parish also complained the officer’s report recommended approval for the project be given by the WLDC chief operating officer.

“The decision was made before we (committee members) saw the site. That to me, isn’t democratic,” he said.

The member also said neighbouring roads were already busy and dangerous, and Welton Parish Council was working on a neighbourhood plan, which could lead the Secretary of State to ‘call in’ any approval.

Planning agent Andrew Allison for the applicants RH Ward (Welton) & Mr P Linder said the site was relatively small and close to local facilities. The project offered a range of housing and play facilities and would help alleviate the housing shortage in the district.

But the committee refused the application, saying it was outside the settlement limit, it would create environmental harm from loss of open land, and increase demand on health, education and roads.