PLANS for a controversial "pedestrian heart" scheme for Darlington town centre have been formally submitted.

Darlington Borough Council's planning department has received applications for the proposed £6.5m development.

The applications relate to the High Row, Prebend Row and West Row areas of the town centre and include proposals to move the Joseph Pease statue, in High Row, and to build new steps in the town centre.

The scheme also includes Prospect Place, Northgate, Blackwellgate and Tubwell Row.

A council spokesman said the scheme aimed to provide a more attractive environment while respecting what was unique to Darlington.

The applications for the conservation area consent and listed building consent will now be considered by the office of the Deputy Prime Minister.