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Homes to be built near river collapse site
9:20am Thursday 10th January 2013 in News
TEN new homes will be built in Woolston - just metres from where banks of the River Mersey suddenly collapsed.
Warrington Borough Council approved the houses during a meeting of the development management committee on Thursday.
David Wilson Homes will now build the properties on land adjacent to Riversdale with work due to start immediately.
Angry residents hit out at the decision at the stormy meeting, with some standing to challenge evidence given by DWH officials.
After the application was approved, many left with one moving forward to remonstrate with councillors on the committee.
Following the meeting homeowners contacted the Warrington Guardian to complain.
David Foster, of Battery Lane, said: “They have not taken into consideration that the land is sinking.
“Their engineers talked about natural erosion but haven’t mentioned when the river was drained and the banks collapsed.”
In September riverbanks across a long stretch of the River Mersey caved in.
Peel Ports has admitted lowering water levels that day to carry out repairs at Latchford Lock.
Other residents fear more homes will mean traffic problems on Manchester Road - marked as a red route for accidents - increase, putting pedestrians at risk.
John McMillan, of Riversdale, said: “People’s feelings here have never been considered.
“The whole thing has been for the appeasement of David Wilson Homes.
“You have to live here to understand how horrendously difficult it is to get out of Riversdale in the morning.
“Somebody will be killed - it might be an adult, it might be a child.”
When traffic concerns were raised to the committee, a Warrington Borough Council planning officer replied that he was a ‘confident driver’ and could emerge onto Manchester Road without difficulty.
Jane O’Neil keeps six horses including two foals on a field off Battery Lane, next to the development site.
During the meeting officials from DWH had claimed that horses were not kept in the field.
She says she was then given 24 hours by DWH, who own the land, to move the animals as her contract had finished.
However, bosses have now backtracked and given her two weeks.
Mrs O’Neil said: “I’ve had horses here for more than 20 years.
“I have no idea where we will go.
“They are very popular and the children come to feed them.
“We are absolutely devastated.”