CAMPAIGNERS are being urged to 'carry on fighting' proposals for 770 homes in Appleton and Grappenhall Heys after the controversial plans were approved.

At the end of June, decisions on the Homes and Communities Agency's (HCA) outline planning applications for 370 homes at its Appleton Cross site, on Dipping Brook Avenue, and 400 at Grappenhall Heys, off Witherwin Avenue, were deferred.

But the applications came before the development management committee and almost 200 residents at the Parr Hall again on Tuesday.

Both applications were approved subject to section 106 agreements, which would deliver contributions towards bus service enhancements, bus stops, road safety measures, primary school provision, secondary school provision, healthcare facilities and sports facilities.

Cllr Bob Barr (LD – Lymm North and Thelwall) moved a refusal on highway grounds but after it failed to get enough support a recommendation for approval was put forward, with both applications receiving six votes in favour and three against.

After the meeting, Cllr Ryan Bate (LD – Grappenhall)  vowed to continue campaigning against the development plans.

He said: "Don't think we will give up, we have to carry on fighting this proposal and carry on fighting the local plan.

"If we speak loud enough and work together like we have done so far then I am sure we can achieve more success in the future.

"We are taking advice from both lawyers and planning consultants regarding whether we can call this decision in – we are still not content that the grounds of sustainability, which have been claimed by the applicant, are actually true.

"I think the HCA has been found wanting in a lot of what they put forward and, unfortunately, council officers looking to make their housing commitments be fulfilled are being all too supportive for the HCA applications in this situation."

The council has confirmed there is no 'call-in' facility with a decision of the development management committee, with it having full decision-making powers as incorporated in the authority's constitution.

However, an appeal could be made to the High Court.

Warrington South MP Faisal Rashid has been left 'deeply disappointed' by the decision and confirmed he will be meeting council leader Cllr Terry O'Neill, as well as Peel Ports representatives, to discuss concerns.

He said: “I have real concerns about the impact these developments could have on south Warrington.

“I do not believe that the council or the HCA have shown these applications to be ‘sustainable’.

“The opposite is true – these two developments are not sustainable.

“My main concern about the applications concerned the additional pressure that building this number of homes will have on roads in south Warrington.

“Council leader Cllr O’Neill has publicly said that large-scale developments will not be brought forward unless the infrastructure is in place to cope with the added traffic demands.

“But there are no plans to tackle the additional road infrastructure pressures that these applications will add to our roads in south Warrington.

“At peak times roads can barely cope with existing pressure and as we have seen it only takes an incident, such as that with the swing bridge, to bring the town’s road network to a standstill.

“Putting additional traffic on these roads will make them gridlocked, which means more traffic misery.

“Warrington residents deserve better.

“I will be meeting Cllr O’Neill to press for action and calling on the Government to ensure that the HCA responds to these concerns.

“I will also be meeting representatives from Peel Ports to discuss the action they can take to help tackle these issues.”