Vital decision on Top Wighay housing development to be made soon

The Top Wighay development off the A611 Annesley Road
-Credit: (Image: Joseph Raynor/ Nottingham Post)

A vital decision which could allow a vast Nottinghamshire housing development to move forward will be made soon. The long-planned construction of 805 homes on farmland at Top Wighay, off the A611 near Linby and Hucknall, is currently being halted by planning "anomalies" but these could be ironed out at an important meeting this week.

Nottinghamshire County Council, which had owned the land before handing it over to developer Vistry and is building its new headquarters on part of the site, has asked if the already agreed masterplan for the estate can be changed to fit the housebuilder's designs - which the council's planning committee will consider on Wednesday, June 5. Vistry submitted its detailed proposals for development in December, with planning documents explaining a total of 763 new homes would be constructed in four stages by three Vistry Group housebuilders, along with bell mouth entrances for the school and local centre planned, and public open space.

However, its allocation of open space differed from the agreement Nottinghamshire County Council had initially made with the local council when its outline plan was approved in 2020. Councillors will decide on June 5 if the changes proposed by the county council, which would enable Vistry's own more detailed plans to go before the committee and be decided, should be allowed.

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Nottingham County Council officials explained in planning documents that it was not possible to deliver all the proposed open space originally agreed upon. Representatives said the development could not fit two full-sized football pitches, but did have space for two pitches suitable for smaller teams - which was objected to by Sport England which lobbied for the larger space to be provided.

A report from a Gedling Borough Council planning officer said: "Importantly, the applicant confirms that the delivery of these provisions has therefore been tested at detailed design stage and are feasible and deliverable." The officer, who advised the planning committee to authorise changes to the agreement, stated all parties agreed there were "anomalies" in the existing agreement and added "there are exceptional circumstances for the proposed change to the agreement to be supported in this instance".

The construction of Nottinghamshire County Council's new 'Oak House' base at Top Wighay is ongoing, with officials claiming it is on track despite being delayed at the start of 2024 by poor weather. Top Wighay could be extended further north in the future, increasing the number of homes beyond 1,400.