COUNCILLORS in Wrexham have been accused of using ‘grandstanding fiction’ after refused plans for more than 130 new homes were resubmitted.

Members of the local authority’s planning committee turned down proposals to develop two areas of green barrier land near Lane Farm in Rossett in January.

It came after more than 70 objections were received from members of the public concerned about the loss of green land, the risk of flooding and the impact on pedestrian safety.

Politicians also suggested the company behind the scheme had deliberately entered it to avoid potential new requirements for developments to include more affordable housing.

However, Bellis Brothers Limited has now reapplied to the authority in a bid to gain approval.

It also highlighted its intention to appeal against the original decision as consultants acting on its behalf criticised councillors for not backing it the first time round.

In a statement accompanying the resubmission, a representative from J10 Planning said: “Some members made it very clear during the planning committee meeting that they felt the application had been submitted in advance of the Local Development Plan being adopted and was “jumping the gun” so as to avoid a potentially higher 40 per cent levy.

“The applicant was unable to respond to this accusation, so this is his right to reply to set the record straight and draw attention to the facts rather than the grandstanding fiction spun out in a public chamber.

“The applicant commenced pre-application discussions with the authority way back in June 2015, when there was no indication of any increased affordable housing levy.

“To suggest that the submission was a “cynical” attempt to subvert the 40 per cent levy is therefore unwarranted and refuted.”

The planners echoed the company’s disappointment at the committee’s decision to refuse the proposals on pedestrian safety grounds.

They also went on to describe comments made by the council’s deputy leader about nearby homeowners being denied flood risk insurance because of their proximity close to the River Alyn as ‘mischievious’.

During the meeting, Cllr Hugh Jones (Cons) said the development was not wanted or needed in the area.

He said: “We’ve heard that this report is quite dismissive on the flooding issue.

“Evidence has been presented, contrary to what was said earlier on, that this site flooded in 2000.

“The applicant made reference to hearsay yet five major insurers fail to insure these properties.

“I know there are substantial reasons and substantial grounds for rejecting this application.”

Ahead of the crunch meeting, Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board also warned it would add to existing pressures on Alyn Family Doctors, which has practices in Rossett, Gresford and Llay.

However, the application was recommended for approval by planning officer Matthew Phillips.

The planning statement includes letters sent by a number of house builders expressing an interest in the site.

If successful in gaining permission, work could start as soon as the summer of next year with an indicative completion date of 2022.

The plans will be reconsidered by the local authority at a future date.