A PLANNING application to build a two-storey block of 12 flats has been refused by Gateshead Borough Council following opposition from residents and ward councillors.

The council reached its decision after receiving an 81-signature petition, and a visit to the site by members of its development control panel.

The land is the site of the Save garage, in Bensham Road, Gateshead, which provides a valued shopping facility to people living close to the newly-developed Windmill Hills Estate.