Planning officers were out of step with councillors when they recommended approval of a housing development slammed as a “slum” and “inappropriate even for Tilbury”.
South Holland District Council’s planning committee chairman Coun Roger Gambba-Jones wasted no time in condemning Seagate Homes’ application for 14 homes at Little London.
He said: “I make no bones about it. I don’t like this application – I don’t like the look of it, I don’t like the way it is intended to operate and I certainly don’t like the idea that the lowest possible standard is acceptable because we need the houses.”
Coun Gambba-Jones is portfolio holder for waste management and objected to the proposal for a communal waste collection at the front of the site because it was to be served by a private drive and parking courts.
He criticised use of the lowest possible number of parking spaces, and said the properties were likely to end up as buy-to-let and rent, attracting problems of short tenancies and lack of community.
“And that’s why we’re suffering the problems we’re suffering in several areas of Spalding, including [his ward] Wygate Park,” he added.
The site had previous permission for four detached homes but the new proposal comprised a pair of three-bedroom semis fronting the site and 12 two-bedroom terraced houses to the rear.
Independent member Coun David Wilkinson endorsed the committee chairman’s views.
He said: “There comes a time, however desperate we are for housing, that you have to say enough is enough.
“This will be a second-class housing development and it will always be that.”
Ward member Coun Howard Johnson went one step further, saying: “I think what we’re looking at is a slum of the future.”
And Coun Chris Brewis said: “This would be inappropriate slapped in the middle of Tilbury, let alone Spalding.
“The density is a step too far. Goodness me, where are we going?”
Housing portfolio holder Coun Christine Lawton saw it as much-needed housing, but said there were “standards we must meet”.
The application was unanimously rejected.