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Keyworth: New 73-home housing development refused

Plans for 73 homes in a Keyworth have been refused over concerns about the impact on the local community.

Rushcliffe Borough Council’s planning committee refused the plans for Hillside Farm, south of Bunny Lane in Keyworth, at its meeting on Thursday (September 14).

The committee had been recommended to approve the plans, lodged by applicant Charlotte Henson, because the land had initially been identified for housing.

Planning officers said the Greenbelt village needs to increase by about 600 homes in the coming years to help the authority meet housing requirements.

However, concerned councillors and residents spoke in the meeting to object to the proposals.

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Objections were summarised through 141 letters of opposition lodged during a consultation.

These raised concerns about the location, effect on green spaces, noise, dust and odour.

The meeting heard the application is close to nearby farms and objectors said “unsuspecting” potential new residents would be affected by issues when moving into the homes.

The impact on Keyworth’s “already under pressure” infrastructure fuelled by other new developments also led to objections.

There were also objections to the plan’s design and density, drainage and flood risk, and the impact on road safety and access.

Cllr John Cottee (Con), who represents Keyworth and Wolds, was one of three ward councillors to officially object to the plans.

He told the meeting: “[No] housing should have its amenities diminished, nor should a farm have its business impacted, by the damaged by any new housing.

“The applicant has failed to demonstrate beyond doubt, that new residents can exist in harmony with a busy working farm next door with no detriment to residents’ amenity or impact back to the farmer’s activities.

“Actual complaints from nearby residents – particularly many new to Keyworth living over the road – have led to many comments of objection.

“These are residents with local knowledge and experiences.”

Residents also spoke in the meeting to voice “substantial” opposition which echoed comments raised during the consultation.

This included desktop studies of the area not being adequate or reflecting the picture felt “on the ground” about noise, dust, odour and flies.

However, the meeting heard from a spokesperson for the applicant who told councillors these assessments had been conducted.

“We’ve completed 16 site assessments in total … in relation to odour arising from the nearby beef cattle farm and by Keyworth wastewater treatment works,” they said.

“These quote the amenities of residents should not be affected by odour or dust.”

A further 26 letters of support were also submitted to the authority suggesting the site was a “good location for further housing”.

They said more homes were needed to make Keyworth a “vibrant” village and said the site was “well planned out”.

Papers confirm 20.5 per cent of the homes – or 15 out of the 73 – would be listed as affordable properties, with landscaping, public open space and associated infrastructure promised.

A new access point would also be formed off Bunny Lane alongside off-site improvements to pedestrian access, bus stops and junctions.

A three-metre acoustic fence was also proposed to mitigate the impact of the plans.

However, plans for the site had previously been both rejected and withdrawn and councillors opted to side with the objectors to refuse the application.

Cllr Stuart Ellis (Con), who represents Cotgrave, said: “I don’t think we can dispute the on-the-ground evidence [from residents].

“Many of those [objections] are valid and – if we listed all of them – we’d have 10 or 12 reasons for refusal.”

Cllr Jonathan Wheeler (Con) also raised objections to the layout, appearance and design of the development as well as noise and the impact on the community.

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