Mansfield redevelopment plan approved

Plans for a major development of houses and businesses in a Nottinghamshire town have been narrowly approved.

Mansfield District Council debated the £250m Lindhurst scheme, which faced more than 140 objections.

It includes up to 1,700 homes, as well as a new primary school, cemetery, community centre and park on the southern edge of the town.

The planning committee voted five in favour, five against, with the chairman having the casting vote in favour.

Protesters at the meeting shouted "shame" as the decision was made.

The 169 hectare (417 acre) application is the largest ever submitted to the council.

Developers, the Lindhurst Group, said it would bring major benefits to the local economy, including up to 4,000 jobs.

Project co-ordinator, Richard Bowden, said: "We are relieved. We now have a major responsibility to deliver the jobs promised.

"For a development of the size and momentum that is going to be needed to turn Mansfield around, there was no alternative.

"We just hope that now we have the planning consent, people will look at the merits of what we are doing - at the enormous amounts of money that will be coming into the Mansfield economy."

But objections included concern from Nottingham Wildlife Trust and the Ramblers Association over the loss of countryside and habitat.

Independent Mansfield councillor Andrew Tristram, who opposed the plans, said concerns over congestion and the ability to deliver the promised benefits remained.

"Given the fact the decision was controversial and decided on a casting vote, and also the reasons for departing from the local plan were tenuous, I'm sure local residents would like to see the secretary of state call the decision in," he said.

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