ANGER has erupted after developers launched an application to build 175 homes on farmland at the edge of a village where other plans for large-scale developments have overcome strong opposition.

While Hurworth residents have repeatedly been assured the proposal to build the estate to the east of Roundhill Road, at the northern edge of the village, will be rejected by Darlington Borough Council, many remain concerned.

Fears persist despite residents having been told that other housing developments under construction in the village were approved because the council had left itself open to legal challenge, an issue that has since been rectified.

But in documents submitted to the authority, a spokesman for developers Bellway said the proposal was “a well planned sustainable solution with dwellings which will meet high architectural standards alongside the creation of pleasant and well planned streets”.

He said the northern edge of the village had “undertaken a transformation in recent times as a result of new developments” and said the proposed development would form “a gateway to the village”.

He said: “Development will not detract from the historic character and will deliver an appropriate contemporary style and an additional chapter in the village’s architectural narrative.”

The developers said the proposals would “combine historic elements of the village with the contemporary styling of recent developments” in the area.

The spokesman added: “This approach will ensure a coherent identity for the site, reinforcing existing character and adding buildings of architectural merit to the settlement."

Within days of the application being lodged Hurworth residents have detailed their objections to the scheme, saying the estate would spoil the appearance of the village and exacerbate traffic issues. Objectors have claimed two current housing developments in the village were progressing at a slower than expected rate due to a lack of demand for housing there.

One resident wrote: “It will destroy the character of a small rural community and lead to undue and unwanted pressure being placed on services such as the GP practice and local schools.

“Judging by the rate of development of the two parallel sites to the east of Roundhill Road, the disruption will be extensive, making Roundhill Road an even more dangerous road than it currently is. This is a small country road, exposed to increasing amounts of through commuter traffic, but the additional load due to construction and occupation will have detrimental effect on the road and its safety.” Another objector added: “The slow rate of development of the two existing Roundhill Road developments proves the borough plan, generated in 2018, which indicated that no further development was needed in Hurworth.”