Campaigners celebrate as plans to build new 214 home estate axed in Houghton
Campaigners are celebrating after plans to build hundreds of homes in the Houghton area were withdrawn.
In 2018, outline proposals were submitted by R&K Wood Planning LLP to build 214 houses as part of a hybrid planning application at Willow Carr.
The homes were planned for 7.5 hectares of land south west of the A182 behind Fairburn Avenue, with neighbours raising concerns about traffic and the impact on local wildlife.
An action group was later set up to fight the plans with around 174 objections lodged with Sunderland City Council.
Although a decision on the plans was expected in June 2018, the ruling was pushed back as developers continued to apply for time extensions.
More than two years later, it has been confirmed that the plans have been officially withdrawn.
Local councillors for Copt Hill, Kevin Johnston, Melanie Thornton and Jack Cunningham, have since welcomed the developer’s decision to withdraw the plans.
A joint statement posted on social media reads: “The site is a vital settlement break and also a Site of Special Scientific Interest and so the withdrawal is great news for local wildlife.
“It is also great to see this green open space saved for wildlife and local residents alike.
“This is fantastic news for residents and something we have campaigned against since before the official application was submitted by the developer.
“Thank you to everyone who was involved in organising and submitting substantive objections against this proposal.
“It really shows when we all work together how we can achieve successful outcomes for everyone.”
R&K Wood Planning LLP has also issued a statement on behalf of the applicant following the decision to withdraw the plans.
It reads: “In light of the circumstances currently present the applicant made the decision to not progress further the planning application.
“Whilst we were confident that all technical matters on the site could be overcome, a decision has been made to not pursue the scheme at this present time.
“We consider the site still provides an excellent opportunity for much needed market and affordable housing within the area and going forward the land owners will keep the matter under review.”