Plans for Basildon shelved by agency

Plans for a 1,300-home village on greenfield land at Dry Street in Basildon have been put on hold by English Partnerships.

Local residents, supported by Basildon District Council, have been fighting the development and see English Partnerships' decision not to submit a planning application as a victory. But the agency said it may apply again once Basildon's local development framework (LDF) is in place in a few years' time.

Dry Street Green Action Group chairman Colin Wind said: "We hope that the delay will enable the council to do something permanent to protect the site."

English Partnerships confirmed the withdrawal but said it is not abandoning the scheme. A spokeswoman said: "The planning application will go through the LDF, providing an opportunity for further debate. We are aware of local feeling but are committed to finding a way forward."

But council leader Malcolm Buckley warned: "Submitting the application through the LDF could mean the final decision lies with government inspectors rather than the council."

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