ELDC is accused of acting as ‘judge and jury’ in homes plan

Plans for land on King Edward Avenue EMN-140416-163146001
Plans for land on King Edward Avenue EMN-140416-163146001

East Lindsey District Council has been accused of acting as ‘judge and jury’ with regarding to a controversial planning application in Woodhall Spa.

Waterloo Housing has applied to ELDC to build 19 new homes on land off King Edward Avenue.

The site - known locally as ‘The Rally Field’-has been utilised as part of Jubilee Park for many years.

It plays an important role in events like the 40s Festival, which attracts thousands of visitors.

The field is owned by ELDC, which is hoping to sell the land to Waterloo.

ELDC will, of course, have the final say in any planning decision for the site.

However, a leading member of Woodhall Spa Parish Council said that as landowners, it was wrong that ELDC should be involved in the process.

Speaking at a parish council meeting, Coun Rich Sanderson said: “As the district council will benefit financially from the sale of the land, surely that amounts to having a pecuniary interest.

“The council is effectively acting as judge and jury. They should not be involved in any decision.”

Coun Craig Leyland, deputy leader of ELDC and a ward councillor for Woodhall Spa, was at the meeting.

He defended the council’s role and indicated it was not unusual for the authority to own land that was sold for re-development.

Coun Leyland said the Waterloo application would be rigorously examined and go before a meeting of the full planning committee.

There has been strong objections to the plan by residents - and by Woodhall Spa Cricket Club whose ground is adjacent to the proposed site.

One resident spoke at the meeting and said the addition of 19 homes would add to traffic chaos, particularly at the start and finish of the school day.

A spokesman for the cricket club - one of the most successful in the county - said they had concerns about healthy and safety issues.

He added that developers should pay for a protective fence between the homes and the cricket field.

Parish councillors also expressed their concerns about safety.

They also said they were worried about the loss of green space, the umber of garages and access to the site.

Councillors voted to object to the application.