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Blackburn travellers’ site growth bid brings protests
A NEW row has broken out over the growth of a controversial travellers’ caravan site in Blackburn.
Jimmy Evans and his son-in-law, John Price, have applied for permission to make alterations to the development on a former coal merchants’ site at the rear of Vincent Street in Ewood.
Two nearby residents have objected to the plans and ward councillor Maureen Bateson expressed concern.
In July 2010 Blackburn with Darwen Council gave Mr Evans approval for two caravans, a chalet and an amenity block on the Acorn Park site. In September 2011 he asked for backdated permission to retain five caravans, a chalet, an amenity block and a WC building on the encampment which had been enlarged.
Hardstanding had been installed and fencing erected around the site. The four extra caravans were used by Mr Evans’ grown-up children.
The planning committee refused to approve the scheme but Mr Evans’ appeal was upheld by a planning inspector in 2012. The decision was reversed, giving the site official designation as a ‘gipsy caravan site’.
Now Mr Evans wants to replace the chalet with a bungalow and reduce the number of caravans on the site from the current four to three, retaining the existing utility building.
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His son-in-law John Price has asked for permission to use the neighbouring site of a former garage colony on Vincent Street for a touring caravan, mobile home and shower/toilet building to house one family.
The two applications will be considered by Blackburn with Darwen planning committee on Thursday.
David Andrew of Vincent Street has objected to Mr Evans’ application for the changes to Acorn Park, expressing concerns over drainage, access and parking.
Residents of another house in Vincent Street, Anne-Marie Leatherbarrow and Stephen Huckle, have objected to Mr Price’s application on the grounds of loss of privacy, loss of trees, poor highways access and parking.
Coun Bateson said: “I am aware of residents’ concerns and hope the committee will take note of them when in comes to its decision.”
Officers have recommended approval of both applications with conditions imposed.
Both Mr Evans’ and Mr Price’s agents said they were happy with the officers recommendations.
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