We are pleased that United Utilities (UU) has now submitted their outline planning application to Preston City Council for a 12 property development on their site fronting Preston Road in Grimsargh. If the proposal is given planning permission and when the housing site is sold, this will result in the former reservoirs – known as Grimsargh Wetlands – passing over to Grimsargh Parish Council to further develop the area into a Nature Reserve in perpetuity, an invaluable haven for wildlife and a community asset.
Their proposal includes a relatively modest amount of development which qualifies as “infill” and does not extend the developed village boundary. Although we understand that some residents would prefer not to see any building at all, we feel this proposal represents an acceptable compromise which will allay fears about the future of the site. The potential for a huge housing development covering the whole of the brownfield site has been a persistent worry for many.
Throughout the project so far, we have been impressed with the team at UU. The many meetings and communications have been open and honest and a sound working relationship has evolved. They undertook two genuine consultation events, one for those living in close proximity to the site and a second for the whole village. Where possible, within the confines of planning restrictions and their commercial requirements, they have made adjustments to their plans and proposals to address the concerns of residents. Taking into account the styles of property in the vicinity, UU have drawn up a detailed Design Code, submitted as part of the planning application, in which they lay out stringent parameters within which the development would proceed - very unusual for this stage of an outline planning application, and welcomed by Grimsargh Parish Council as it will ensure the quality and design of the properties are sympathetic to their rural location.
The planning application can be viewed on Preston City Council's website - application number 06/2015/0690.