PLANS to build a major housing development are to be discussed by councillors.

Gladman Developments wants to build 290 homes on open space near Hustledown Road in South Stanley.

Durham County Council has received six letters of objection raising concerns about the increased volume of traffic, air pollution, risk of flooding and demand for school places.

Fears over the lack of car parking in the town centre and the impact of building works on existing residents have also been highlighted.

The application has been submitted to Durham County Council and is due to be discussed next week.

The authority’s school places and admissions manager has said the development could produce an additional 87 primary pupils and 35 additional secondary pupils.

Steven Pilkington, senior planning officer, said: “It is identified that based on projected school rolls, taking into account the likely implementation timeframe of the development there are sufficient secondary school places to accommodate the development.

“However, a contribution of £558,714 would be required to provide an additional 38 primary school spaces, to mitigate the impact of the development.”

The council’s public rights of way officer has said a byway extends for a considerable distance south of the development site to Wagtail Lane and is a very popular recreational route for horse riders, cyclists, pedestrians and off-road motor cyclists.

Mr Pilkington has said the byway is not suitable for other motor vehicles due to the restricted culvert crossing at the golf course, the narrow width and lack of passing places.

He said: “It is advised that the two new access roads identified on the masterplan crossing the byway, have the potential to conflict with public use of the byway as there is a high likelihood that residents will attempt to drive down the byway to access Middles Road, particularly if they intend to turn left on to the road.”

Mr Pilkington has written a report for councillors, who meet at County Hall in Durham, on Tuesday, advising them to refuse planning permission.

He said: “The proposed development would amount to a substantial and inappropriate incursion into the countryside, not in keeping with the existing pattern of development and beyond an established settlement edge which would result in significant adverse harm to the character of the local landscape.

The development is considered to have an adverse impact on the setting, character and function of the historic byway West Ousterley Road.”