Decision on controversial Stanneylands development deferred due to lack of detail

The decision on the controversial planning application for a new residential development on land north of Stanneylands Road has been deferred due to insufficient information being provided.

Following a lengthy discussion at a meeting of the Strategic Planning Committee on Wednesday, 22nd November, Councillor Toni Fox, Independent councillor for Wilmslow Dean Row Ward, proposed that David Wilson Homes' plans for 174 homes be deferred until a later meeting.

Cllr Fox's proposal was approved by 7 votes to 6 and was supported by an Independent, two Labour and three Conservative councillors.

Councillor Toni Fox told "This application was put before the Committee without the detail we would expect to be provided for consideration of a full planning application and it was deferred.

"Insufficient detail was submitted on the three proposed vehicular accesses to the development on a very narrow section of Stanneylands Road, catagorised as a rural road, and the required footpath and cycle links to facilities and schools in both Handforth and Wilmslow.

"The latter is of particular relevance given that one of the four principles of this site being released from the Green Belt by the Inspector cannot be met; Provision of a new pedestrian and cycle bridge across the River Dean and improvement of public access along the river valley to include a footpath link from Linneys Bridge to Manchester Road.

"As an alternative a footpath link is proposed via Sagars Road however this is a significantly longer route that will negotiate a severe incline and a wooded valley.

"Clarification has been requested if this is feasible alternative route, that it will meet with legislative and Council Policy requirements, if it is considered to be a safe route, if it will be suitable for disabled access and whether it will meet the recommended minimum distances required for services such as railway stations, bus stops, health centres, post offices etc."

Cllr Fox added "Both residents and committee members also raised concerns on the lack of evidence of safe pedestrian access to Wilmslow, the nearest local primary school at Lacey Green and to nearby public footpaths. CEC's Director of Planning was willing to include, as a late addition to the application during the debate, a requirement for a pedestrian crossing over Stanneylands Road. Additional information has been requested to confirm this is both viable and compliant with regulations.

"Similarly the submitted details of the public open space/play area were not considered by CEC's officers 'to be acceptable' and amendments sought by the Principal Nature Conservation Officer to the landscape plan and drainage scheme had not been addressed.

"I am delighted that enough committee members agreed with these concerns to support the deferral of the application until such time as additional information is available.

"It remains of some concern however that it would appear from comments made by some senior council officers and some committee members at the meeting that this planning application had been fast tracked to come before the Committee for the sole purpose of assisting the councils desire to have a 5 year housing supply.

"As has been evidenced in the committee's decision this is totally unacceptable and I would hope this situation will not arise again."

Cheshire East Council has received 815 letters objecting or commenting on the scheme which includes a new roundabout onto Stanneylands Road, public open space, pedestrian/cycleway connection between Linneys Bridge and the River Dean and a new bridge crossing of the River Dean.

The accommodation comprises of eight 1 bedroom properties, nineteen with 2 bedrooms, thirty 3 bedroom properties and 112 properties with 4 bedrooms. The properties are made up of 24 apartments and 150 houses with each property having access to two off road parking spaces.

The Planning Officer had recommended that the Strategic Planning Committee approve the application at their meeting on Wednesday, 22nd November, subject to a Section 106 Agreement.

Little Stanneylands, Planning Applications


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Thursday 23rd November 2017 at 5:53 pm
Well done Councillor Fox. The late planning update to the Committee was a complete disgrace. It was an attempt to blackmail councillors into voting for a scheme which was not yet ready to be brought forward.
Mark Goldsmith
Friday 24th November 2017 at 10:06 am
Well done to Toni and the Stanneylands Road residents action group who have had to battle against the developers, Cheshire East and its staff on this one.

How anyone can think that adding a mini-roundabout and a pedestrian crossing on
Stanneylands Road will magically make the gridlocked traffic there disappear is beyond comprehension. The fact those who believe this fantasy actually work for the Cheshire East Highways dept is even more baffling and deeply suspicious.

They used SEMMS as a reason why traffic would reduce on Stanneylands Road. However, their projected traffic figures do not include ANY of the other new build developments in the town or at Handforth or Woodford. How convenient.

Also, SEMMS is being paid for by taxpayers to alleviate the massive congestion around the town and in particular the horrendous queues on Stanneylands in rush hour. Residents are not paying for SEMMS, so developers and Cheshire East can jam our roads up again with even more traffic.

For this development to work, it needs access to Manchester Road, so lets hope they come back with a better solution next time. Let's also hope the six Conservative Councillors who supported this deeply flawed development grow a backbone and vote for common sense in future.
Friday 24th November 2017 at 11:45 am
Mark completely agree. As to the Councillors who voted not to defer, - they need to be named. Only in that way will it become obvious over time which Councillors "simply do as they are told" rather than follow their conscience.
Buster Wild
Friday 24th November 2017 at 2:12 pm
Hmmmm. Something smells in Wilmslow.
Stuart Redgard
Saturday 25th November 2017 at 12:24 am
I attended the Strategic Planning Board held earlier today and can confirm the following.

After about 2 hours and 45 minutes of discussing this application a proposal of "Deferral of a decision to a later meeting” was proposed by Councillor Toni Fox and seconded by Councillor Steven Hogben. The reasons for deferral being the provision of more detailed information.

The proposal was passed by 6 votes to 5 (not 7 to 6 as stated in the article above)

For the proposal (6)
Councillor Toni Fox (Residents of Wilmslow)
Council Steven Hogben (Labour)
Councillor Barry Burkhill (Handforth Ratepayers)
Councillor Janet Jackson (Labour)
Councillor Mike Sewart (Conservative)
Councillor Sarah Pochin (Conservative)

Against the proposal (5)
Councillor Gill Merry (Conservative)
Councillor John Hammond (Conservative)
Councillor Lesley Smetham (Conservative)
Councillor Steven Edgar (Conservative)
Councillor Derek Hough (Liberal Democrats)
Saturday 25th November 2017 at 7:56 am
Thanks Stuart,

Hopefully the audio will go on the website soon. Be interesting to hear the debate........
Roger Bagguley
Saturday 25th November 2017 at 10:05 am
Thanks Stuart. It is an important part of the democratic process councillors and how they vote is recorded and published. In this case a lack of safety was a detail of concern for Toni Fox and those voting with her. It is a matter of great concern that in the planning process there are councillors prepared to gamble with the safety of their public. Of concern too is that a Planning Officer either ignores the detail or does not spot it in recommending approval of a flawed application. Of those councillors who consistently take the party line, the Pied Piper comes to mind.
Lisa Reeves
Tuesday 12th December 2017 at 5:30 pm
This planning application is on the agenda to be re-considered by the Strategic Planning Board at their meeting on Wednesday, 20th December - at 10.30 am in Macclesfield Town Hall.
Tuesday 12th December 2017 at 6:26 pm
Thanks Lisa,
I see that the applicant submitted three new documents on 7th December.