A PETITION demanding all decisions relating to future housing in Sedgefield are postponed has been handed over to Durham County Council.

Sedgefield Residents’ Forum collected 1,406 signatures in support of its request for the council to hold off making a judgement on proposed housing developments until the issue has been explored within the Sedgefield Plan.

It follows an application to build 113 homes near Eden Drive and a vision for 2,000 homes, plus new industrial units, shops, schools and leisure facilities, on land to the east of the town.

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In a letter accompanying the petition, Julia Bowles, chairman of the forum, said: “We are aware that there are several other developers about to submit planning applications; therefore, in the spirit of the petition there is objection to any applications until our Neighbourhood Plan Group have established further information from our community, in particular the preferred areas of land for any future development.

“The process of establishing preferred areas is underway.”

Mrs Bowles has also written to Eric Pickles, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, asking him to support the proposal “in the spirit of the Localism Act.”

When complete, the Sedgefield Plan will be a statutory document that Durham County Council must consider when determining planning applications.

A recent survey, carried out by the plan steering group revealed only one percent of respondents were in favour of large- scale developments in Sedgefield.