Express & Star

Plan for 30 homes on empty industrial land in Great Wyrley gets go-ahead

Vacant industrial buildings in a South Staffordshire village can make way for a new housing development after district councillors gave the green light.

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The industrial site off Gorsey Lane. Photo: Google

Outline planning consent has been granted for up to 30 new homes on land at Loades Business Park in Great Wyrley, enabling more detailed plans to come forward at a later date.

South Staffordshire Council’s planning committee heard that the 1.05 hectare (2.59 acre) Gorsey Lane site was previously allocated as employment land but had been vacant since 2019. Existing industrial and commercial buildings are set to be demolished to make way for the new development.

A report to Tuesday’s committee meeting said: “The buildings were last used as a warehouse/factory unit, with adjoining ancillary office block, have a total floorspace of some 4,980 sq.m. and are sub-divided into 10 bays of differing sizes.There is also a large open yard comprising some 2,000 sq.m. located within the northern part of the site.

“The Marketing Report submitted with the application demonstrates that the site was advertised for rent between November 2020 and January 2023. During the marketing period only 15 expressions of interest were received, with six viewings.

“The potential occupants noted a number of concerns with the buildings, which resulted in no formal offer being made. The concerns included that the bays are too small, the layout of the building doesn’t suit modern practices regarding HGV movements and the buildings require significant expenditure to ensure they are usable.

“Documents identify the site as an employment site, which is sought to be retained. The applicant has however supplied sufficient evidence to demonstrate that employment is no longer a viable use for the site and therefore residential development is appropriate.”

There were no objections raised to the application. A member of the public said the site was “an eyesore and ought to be demolished”, adding that new homes would improve the look of the site.

Planning officers recommended the application for approval before Tuesday’s meeting. Committee members voted unanimously in favour of the proposal – and the opportunity to redevelop brownfield land in the district was welcomed.

Councillor Kath Perry, one of the Great Wyrley representatives, said: “I fully support this application. This site has been vacant for a number of years now and it’s becoming a bit of an eyesore.

“The new development would improve the area and be better for the community as well. If we are minded to approve the application there may be an opportunity to utilise Section 106 powers to procure community funding for a wellbeing project that would benefit the whole community.”