An application to build dozens of homes on the site of a former bakery has been approved despite being described as a “dead parrot”.
Councillors clashed over the number of employment sites compared to residential areas, as planning permission was
granted for the construction of 74 homes on the site of the former Allied Bakeries factory in Saltney.
The proposal to go forward with officers' recommendations to approve planning appeared to be sailing through unopposed at Flintshire Council’s planning committee meeting yesterday.
But Cllr Derek Butler,
Flintshire Council cabinet member for economic development, said it was important employment land was retained for its use, rather than to become a residential area.
Cllr Patrick Heesom said he felt the proposals were a “dead parrot” and the site was “not a worker” for new homes.
Agents for the developers had argued there were limited opportunities within the area for development.
The applicant site was a brownfield location and sustainable with a lack of residential areas compared to an “over supply” of employment sites.
The former factory site closed down in November 2016.
Proposing that the recommendations be followed, Saltney councillor Richard Lloyd said “sadly the smell of baking bread has gone” but he added that most people “would rather have homes than a factory” nearby.
He said he hoped Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board would provide a “much- needed” health centre in the town as a result of planning approval to meet demand.
Seconding the proposal, Cllr Veronica Gay admitted she had concerns on highway issues and wanted double yellow lines installed along Chester Road where the site is situated.
In opposition, Cllr Butler said: “The council seems to be taking the lowest common
denominator view with some applications.
“There are flood issues here that aren’t addressed.
“The economic development team is opposed to this and it is important employment sites are retained for this use.
“There are too many red herrings in this.”
Cllr Heesom added: “We can’t jeopardise employment sites like this, they don't grow on trees.”
Saltney town councillor Barry Gregory told members that he felt the impact on traffic is being “brushed aside” and Saltney faced becoming a “go-slow area like Shotton”.
Cllr Gregory said there would be increased hazards for pedestrians and pupils at the nearby St David’s High School as well as a burden on local facilities as Saltney does not have a library or medical centre.
He also questioned if another play area was needed and suggested anti-social behaviour could increase as a result.
See full story in the Chester Leader