Despite the best efforts of Crompton Ward Councillor Dave Murphy, speaking at February’s Planning Committee the application for 42 houses was approved by Oldham’s Labour-dominated planning committee, after two Conservative members left the meeting because they had failed to put enough money in the parking meter.
Despite one of the directly-affected, local residents speaking passionately to the Committee, telling them about the impact this development will have on him and his neighbours, the majority of the Committee agreed decision to approve.
“The main aim of the Other Protected Open Land (OPOL) policy is that the designation is to protect it from development – but Oldham’s is out of date – which means that this type of land designation becomes a free-for-all to developers. Haven Lane was passed last year and the flood gates opened for building on OPOL – this includes Cowlishaw and now Denbigh Drive,” said a disappointed Cllr Murphy.
“The Places for Everyone policy has not been accepted, so why are we working with that policy. It seems that we have just got to accept what Oldham wants and get on with it, rather than listen to residents and make a sensible decision.”
Cllr Diane Williamson, who serves on the Committee, put forward a refusal but this was defeated. The two Conservative Councillors showed utter contempt for the residents of Denbigh Drive, and left before the vote was taken and the meeting was over.
Obviously, the residents of Denbigh Drive are extremely disappointed with the outcome, but Crompton Liberal Democrat councillors will support them, when the development starts.
Cllr Murphy added: “The residents living in that area, know what the issues are; we heard them last night – sewerage and access to name but two – but it appears residents voices do not matter. It’s all about filling the Conservative government building targets – it’s a shame Conservative Cllrs Woodvine and Lancaster did not even stay to vote on this important matter.