A controversial application to build 31 new houses in Buxton has been refused by the council.
High Peak Borough Council unanimously voted against the proposed development on land of Macclesfield Old Road, Buxton, at a meeting on Monday.
The scheme – which proposed nine ‘affordable homes’ – received 72 letters of objection from nearby residents, as well as from Buxton Civic Society.
Mr Salt, a resident who spoke at the meeting on behalf of the objectors, said the proposed development would have a “disastrous impact” on the landscape if approved.
He said that the site was home to extremely old and protected trees, as well as to a whole host of wildlife – some of which are protected species – which would be put at risk if the plans went ahead.
Many residents – who specifically moved to the area to be in the countryside – objected on the grounds they “did not expect to be part of a budget housing estate in the country”.
There were also concerns that roads and schools would not be able to cope with the increased numbers of people moving to the area, among many other things.
Planning officers recommended refusal on the grounds that “the proposals would result in a loss of open countryside” which would be a “prominent encroachment” into the Peak District, beyond the Buxton boundary.
Officers also recommended refusal on the grounds that the driveway to the development would cause “serious risk to the future health and retention” of a group of mature trees, which are currently protected by a Tree Preservation Order.
The development proposed removing 11 trees. But surveys found that those remaining would be put at risk due to pressure on the roots.
Cllr Kappes said: “I don’t believe this [location] is a good place to build houses.”
Cllr Thrane added: “Any development there would have a disastrous effect on the trees.”
Members of the council unanimously voted against the proposals, which had been submitted by Homes North West.
Once the decision had been taken, a round-of-applause sounded from members of the public, who were relieved that the application had been refused.
The public gallery was almost completely full ahead of the meeting, the majority of which were there to hear the decision specifically on these proposals.