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Cliffe Woods homes development given the nod for second time

A revised plan to build almost 200 properties in a village has been approved again.

Redrow has been granted permission to construct 184 homes off Town Road, Cliffe Woods.

The layout of the housing development by Redrow in Cliffe Woods
The layout of the housing development by Redrow in Cliffe Woods

An application for the site on the western side of the village was initially rejected by councillors in 2017.

An appeal was then put forward and upheld, but following a "call in" by then Housing Secretary James Brokenshire, permission was refused.

This was over concerns for the impact on nearby habitat for birds and a bus service which was deemed inadequate.

The former developer, Gladman, amended its plans and in September 2020 the committee approved proposals for 225 homes despite more than 500 objections.

The development will consist of homes and apartments of up to five bedrooms and is set to include a children's play area.

Committe chairman Diane Chambers
Committe chairman Diane Chambers

A quarter of the homes will be affordable and part of Town Road will be widened to allow for two pedestrian crossings to be built.

During a meeting of the council's planning committee yesterday, head of planning Dave Harris explained how Redrow purchased the site from Gladman and reduced the number of homes following conversations with the council and parish council.

He also said developer contributions will go towards an expansion of Temple Mill School in Wainscott to ease pressure on school places in Cliffe Woods stemming from children travelling in from elsewhere in Strood.

A previously-approved investment of just under £575,000 will see a shuttle bus laid on to take people to Strood station and the town centre for a period of five years.

The committee also voted for 14 allotments on the northern edge of the proposed development.

Committee chairman Cllr Diane Chambers (Con) said: "While I appreciate the people who have objected would prefer not to have anything here, I think it's welcome the fact that the application has come in at a significantly lower number than it could of done."

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