Yarm School Yet to Decide on Planning Appeal
Yarm School is “taking stock” before deciding whether to appeal the rejection of its controversial plans for new playing fields on a green wedge site.
It is reviewing Stockton Council planning committee’s decision to vote unanimously last week to refuse the application for 11 new playing pitches and pavilion in part of the Tees Heritage Park.
The multi-million-pound proposals included a new footbridge over the River Tees and the creation of a public park and new public car park.
But 313 people objected to the scheme, with many arguing the commercial development would be out of place in an area of natural beauty.
The committee’s decision went against a recommendation to approve the development by Stockton Council’s own planning officers.
The plans had also been radically changed from a previous larger-scale proposal.
Yarm School was intending to sell the site of its current playing fields on Green Lane to reinvest in new state-of-the-art sports facilities.
The independent school has already submitted a joint application with Bellway Homes (North East) for a 735-home development on the site, which has yet to be considered by Stockton’s planning committee.
Yarm School has not yet decided on whether to appeal last week’s planning rejection. A spokesman said: “At the moment we are taking stock and no decision has been made.”
In the meantime, campaigners have welcomed the rejection of the playing field plans for Tees Heritage Park.
Shane Sellers, of the Egglescliffe Area Residents’ Association, said: “This has been a long hard fight by residents from across the borough of Stockton and it has clearly been worth it. It was clear from the outset this proposed development was not about what local residents wanted, but it was a commercial enterprise where money was the issue at the expense of the Tees Heritage Park.
“Nevertheless, we are conscious of the fact the applicant may appeal to a planning inspector and we will offer our support to Stockton Council to ensure this appeal is also rejected.”
Phil Dennis, Eaglescliffe ward Conservative councillor, said: “It is a fantastic result for the local residents that we have supported for the last year.
“They have worked really hard to achieve this result and persuade the planning committee members to do the right thing for our community.”
Information from: www.gazettelive.co.uk