Firm tees up £200million “garden city” project for golf course

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VIEWS are being considered over the future of a £200million development scheme.

The Banks Group wants to create a new estate of homes, businesses units and play areas, which would open up access and manage woodland on the Mount Oswald golf course, in Durham.

The accommodation plans by Banks include halls for up to 1,000 students, 16 exclusive self-design homes, 56 executive houses, 250 family homes and community facilities.

The company says it has come to an agreement over the land 
with the golf course owners, who previously fought against development.

Public consultation on the plans closed yesterday.

Critics of the proposals include Durham MP Roberta Blackman-Woods.

She has filed a formal objection stating the loss of green land would be detrimental to the area and the entrance to the city.

Others say it will also cause traffic chaos.

However, the Durham Wildlife Trust, the Woodland Trust and the Durham Bat Group have said they recognise Banks’ efforts to provide wildlife and habitats in its plan.

It has suggested the scheme would be a 21st-century garden city, following in the wake of earlier examples such as Hampstead, Welwyn and Letchworth.

Some 42 per cent would be developed with buildings, hard standing and gardens, with 16 per cent to be private green space and 40 per cent to be public realm, including parkland.

Banks has applied for outline planning permission for the development.

Durham County Council’s planning committee is expected to discuss the application before the end of the year.

Twitter: @EchoEastDurham