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Redrow Homes launches appeal over refusal to change Lymington Shores footbridge agreement

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DEVELOPER Redrow Homes has formally launched an appeal to cancel an agreement to build a £1m footbridge linking its Lymington Shores site to the town centre.

The challenge has been made by Redrow against New Forest District Council's refusal to delete a condition in the approval of the 168-home development, including building the bridge before a set number of properties were sold.

Redrow is now asking for a further two years in which to build the bridge, and in the meantime it wants to get rid of its remaining 17 units. Legally, Redrow cannot sell its outstanding homes because it failed to keep up its side of the bargain.

The controversial Lymington Shores development
The controversial Lymington Shores development

Having 17 vacant properties was a "wholly unsatisfactory situation when the country is in the midst of a national housing crisis and there is a need to stimulate economic growth to aid recovery", Redrow argued in its appeal statement.

"The site itself is located within 300 metres of the town centre and there are opportunities to walk and cycle to local shops, services and employment opportunities.

"It is important to not lose sight of how accessible this site already is."

But NFDC maintains the addition is a "major component" of the original application as it was agreed.

The proposed rail bridge at Lymington Shores
The proposed rail bridge at Lymington Shores

It has also been stressed that Redrow's shortfall in the provision of affordable homes was considered "justified" by its promise of the footbridge.

Under NFDC's Core Strategy, the developer had been required to deliver 50% of the units as affordable, but a much lower figure of just 26 homes was agreed in the end.

Redrow sparked further outrage last month by trying to backtrack on more promises it made to enhance Lymington Shores.

It is now seeking permission from NFDC to delete planning conditions attached to the scheme that compel it to build an art gallery, restaurant and commercial units.

Instead it is suggesting those currently empty spaces be filled with nine self-contained flats – comprising one three-bed, six two-beds and two one-beds – as well as car parking spaces.

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