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Plans for gypsy sites in Hurworth to go before Darlington Council planners
A CONTENTIOUS gypsy development is set to go before planners this week.
Applications to build two travellers’ sites on Snipe Lane in Hurworth, Darlington will be discussed at a planning meeting on Wednesday (August 28).
One application requests permission to extend an existing site to incorporate space for a mobile home, touring caravan and utility building.
A landscaped belt of trees to the west of the site could also be built in order to minimise the visual impact of the site on the local landscape.
Another application asks to transform a horse paddock at the end of Snipe Lane into a site that will also allow for the siting of a mobile home, touring caravan and utility building.
Planning applications for six pitches at Snipe Lane have already been approved and Darlington Borough Council has recommended that the applications outlined above also be allowed.
Their recommendation is that planning permission be granted for both sites, providing applicants meet certain conditions.
Conditions that could be imposed include the requirement that the sites are only occupied by gypsies, that they should be used for residential purposes only, that no commercial vehicles over 3.5 tonnes should be parked on the site without permission of the planning authority and that no commercial activities or storage of materials should take place on the land.
Council documents state: “It is considered that the development is acceptable in this location, being adjacent to an existing residential Gypsy or Traveller site, with the material planning considerations referred to above outweighing any minor conflict with adopted local planning policies.”
The plans have been met with worry from Hurworth Parish Council, whose chairman earlier expressed concern about an increase in applications to build Gypsy/traveller sites in the area.
Councillor Tony Winnett said: “While appreciating the need for provision of such sites for genuine travelling folk, we feel that the situation is out of balance in the Darlington borough and particularly Hurworth parish."
“To date, there has been little appetite among other Tees Valley local authorities to apportion site allocations. “Darlington has borne the brunt.”
Coun Winnett also said that local residents had approached him to speak out about the issue, which will be discussed in detail at the next Parish Council meeting.
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