A NEW planning application to build 1,200 homes on Peel Hall appears to be moving closer.

An appeal against the council’s decision to refuse Satnam’s application for 1,200 homes on the land was dismissed by the Planning Inspectorate in December.

As reported in February, Warrington North MP Helen Jones said she understood the developer was in ‘pre-application discussions’ with the council, with a view to submitting a further application.

The Labour politician had called on the Labour-run authority to remove Peel Hall from the local plan.

But she, along with campaigners, suffered a huge blow after the site was included in the draft document.

Satnam has now lodged a request for an environmental impact assessment ‘scoping opinion’, in relation to its housing proposals for the land.

It is also proposing to develop a neighbourhood centre, a public open space and new vehicular access from the highway network from Mill Lane, Birch Avenue, Blackbrook Avenue and Poplars Avenue.

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Government guidance states the ‘scoping’ stage determines the extent of issues to be considered in the assessment and reported in the environmental statement.

Principal ecologist Derek Richardson has told the council the scheme will affect a wildlife site and may affect ‘priority habitats and species’.

In an e-mail, he added he considers that the inclusion of ecology-related matters should be required in an environmental assessment.

The authority has also had correspondence with Benjamin Laverick, assistant asset manager at Highways England.

In an e-mail, he said: “Given that the level of trip generation is likely to be greater than 30 trips during the peak period, Highways England will expect to see a robust transport assessment (TA), including the M62 junction nine, supporting an environmental impact assessment.

“The TA should fully consider the AM and PM peak period traffic impacts to M62 junction nine, paying particular attention to demonstrating the additional traffic impacts upon the motorway exit and entry slip roads and the performance of the junctions themselves, as well as the implications of traffic queuing from nearby junctions on the local road network interacting with movements at the motorway junction.”