An appeal lodged by the Tamworth-based developer Lovell Partnerships following Blackpool Council’s refusal to grant permission for the construction of 86 dwellings on land off Warren Drive in the resort is set to be heard from today(29th January 2019), scheduled to last up to 4 days.

Lovell, whose successful redevelopment of the Queens Park area of Blackpool included the demolition of several blocks of 1960’s-era high-rise flats launched the appeal after their initial 2017 application was refused, contrary to planning officer recommendations, for reasons of flood risk, highways and ecological impact and that the council, through its adopted Local Plan 2012-2027, could demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land.

Partnering with their Bolton-based agent Sedgwick Associates Lovell will seek to convince the Planning Inspector that steps to overcome the area’s historic flooding issues can be successfully implemented, and that the latest data suggests that Blackpool Council cannot demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land. Some contention exists between the applicant and the council regarding the ecological value of the site, owned by Asda through its Nordicline Limited subsidiary, which forms part of an uninterrupted green corridor that includes a golf course and playing fields.

The latest projected figures for Blackpool using the government’s proposed Standard Method for assessing housing need produced by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) indicates a drop from a requirement of 93 dwellings per annum in 2017, to zero in 2018. A shortfall of 820 dwellings from the 4,200 Blackpool Council are required to construct between 2012-2027 has recently been met by 22 sites identified within the town by planners, estimated to deliver 1,056 homes. Predominantly brownfield in nature, the areas earmarked include those previously occupied by several public houses and a former high school, and urban infill sites.