Dozens of local people have taken part in a three-day programme of public consultation events around a proposed new residential development in a County Durham town.
North East family-owned employer Banks Property is drawing up plans for up to 100 family homes on a 5.5 hectare site to the north of the A67 Darlington Road, around a mile to the north east of Barnard Castle town centre.
In order to share information about the proposals, gather feedback and answer residents’ questions, the County Durham-headquartered firm organised a socially-distant outside exhibition at the TCR Hub in Barnard Castle, while its project team also led two interactive online webinars about its plans.
Chris Kelsey, communications manager at The Banks Group, says: “Given the difficulties of staging public consultation activities in the current climate, we’re very pleased with the number of local people who participated over the three-day programme of events and very grateful to all those who have engaged with us on this project so far.
“After delivering an information leaflet about the project and our consultation events to over 4,000 properties in Barnard Castle, Stainton and Stainton Grove, we had more than two dozen local residents attending appointments at our socially-distanced outdoor exhibition, while 16 people logged onto the webinars that our project team also held.
“We gathered around 40 separate written questions from local people during the events about different aspects of the project and we’re now working on providing written responses to each one.”
Alongside the new properties, the Darlington Road development would also include direct access to existing local public transport routes, new landscaping and enhancement of local wildlife habitats, and an electric vehicle charging point installed at all homes.
Chris Kelsey continues: “Housing market data shows there is a high demand for homes in Barnard Castle and we were encouraged by the degree of recognition of the need to increase the local supply of high-quality homes that will enable more local people to move to or stay in the area.
“The Darlington Road site has been chosen as the most appropriate location in the area for a development of this type and would offer a range of different property sizes and designs, including affordable housing.
“Providing a supply of new family homes is essential to the vitality and sustainability of every community, and in the current economic climate, it is more important than ever to ensure investment continues to flow into local communities and the regional economy.
“We’re now working towards submitting a planning application for this project in the coming weeks and will keep all interested parties up-to-date as work progresses.”
Further information on the proposed Darlington Road development, along with links to recordings of the two webinars can be found at https://www.banksgroup.co.uk/projects/property/darlington-road-barnard-castle