Delay on decision over massive Green Belt homes scheme for St Albans

PUBLISHED: 18:00 25 March 2015

Green Belt land to the rear of Harpenden Road

Green Belt land to the rear of Harpenden Road


A decision on a controversial housing scheme which has already cost St Albans taxpayers more than £130,000 to fight should be known in early June.

Hunston Properties has appealed against two refused schemes - one for 85 homes and another for 116 houses and a 72-bed care home - on land in the Green Belt.

The firm has been trying for several years to have a large residential development, named Sewell Park, accepted for a 12-acre site to the rear of 112-156B Harpenden Road, between Woollams playing fields and St Albans Girls’ School.

After a public inquiry last July, both appeals were called-in by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles.

But a St Albans district council’s cabinet meeting last Thursday (19) was told that although the authority was to have been informed of the decision by Monday (23), the outcome will not be revealed until early June due to an illness within the planning inspectorate.

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I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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