Privacy concern over new East Lothian development

Wednesday June 7th 2023


Longniddry South has been named Large Development of the Year.

Written by Local Democracy Reporter, Marie Sharp

Developers of an award-winning housing estate have been ordered to work with neighbouring residents amid claims new housing will take away their privacy and leave them unable to park outside their homes.

Residents living in a row of Category C listed cottages next to the Longniddry South development, in East Lothian, say the latest phase of the project will see their current access blocked off and their driveways turned into a public footpath.

A meeting of East Lothian Council’s planning committee was asked to approve detailed matters for 130 new homes at Longniddry Farm for applicants Places for People at a meeting yesterday.

The developers agent told the committee the larger site, which is expected to have around 450 new homes once complete and is being provided by Places for People along with Cruden Homes had won the ‘Development of the Year’ title at the Homes for Scotland Awards 2023.

And councillors praised the project as one of the best examples of new housing they had seen.

However the meeting heard the latest phase had received objections from people living in cottages at its edge who will no longer be able to use their front gardens as driveways.

The residents of Longniddry Farm Cottages are being provided with a new access through the development with the current road to be closed to traffic and turned into a footpath.

Paul Brown, who lives in the cottages, appeared at the meeting on behalf of residents and said while they understood the development was going ahead they were concerned about the impact on their lives.

He pointed out plans to create an access at the rear of the houses did not take into account some people having oil tanks and outbuildings in the garden space which would be open to passing members of the public.

And he said the proposed new road would be just eight metres wide leaving no space to turn cars without a “40 point turn”.

Developers had said a new footpath would be created around the cottages which people moving into the new homes would use instead of passing the back of the properties.

But Mr Brown said: “There is an assumption people will not go through our back gardens to get to the shops but we already have builders from the site doing it every day.”

Planning convenor Norman Hampshire called for an additional condition to be drawn up between planners and the developers to ensure the concerns of people living in the cottages were taken into account as the roads and paths for the new houses are developed.

Councillor Hampshire said: “We need to ensure people living in the cottages are able to continue living there without major disruption.

“At the very beginning of this development there were a lot of commitments made by the landowner that they were going to ensure every developer on site would adopt and they have been true to their word with a high quality development there.

“We need to make sure we continue to take care of people living around new developments and that they can continue to live in a comfortable manner.”

Councillors voted unanimously to approve the plans for the new houses with the additional condition to ensure access for the cottage residents to be approved by the planning convenor after discussions with the developer.

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