Campaigners make legal move over Whaley greenfield estate

Whaley Bridge campaigners, still in shock over planning permission being given to a 107 homes estate on a greenfield site, are fighting back. Whaley Bridge Matters (WBM), the group set up in January to try to stop the development on fields bordered by Macclesfield Road and Linglongs Road, has taken legal advice which could lead to a Judicial Review over how the planning committee’s decision was reached.
The campaigners raised hundreds of pounds from a ‘whip round’ among nearly 200 supporters to seek the legal advice.

WBM chair Kevin Worthington said: “We were all disappointed with the committee’s decision, after all the hard work we had done since January. Our supporters were wonderfully generous in getting together the money for the legal advice.

“Our grounds for challenging the decision are linked to not only the process generally , but also problems of access to any new estate. The community has been very upset over the dangers from increased traffic, especially the latest proposed access on Macclesfield Road near a blind bend. If necessary, we are ready to raise more money should it come to a full Judicial Review with legal costs to be met.”

Gladman Developments, a large company from Congleton, announced their project just before Christmas last year.

The proposed estate on a greenfield site, used over the years as a play area for local children and a prime walking route to the Goyt Valley, provoked outrage. A protest march, which appeared on BBC TV, was followed by months of campaigning, with support from other areas in the High Peak. At one stage, the Whaley Bridge site only stayed in the council’s Local Plan for future housing needs by just one vote.

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