AN “ILLEGAL” mobile home site for lorry drivers in Deeping St Nicholas has been given planning permission until the end of 2014.
However, its owner Ray Turner Labour has been urged to “start looking and start looking quickly” for a permanent replacement site by one of South Holland’s councillors.
The district council’s planning committee agreed to give the 43-home site temporary permission at its meeting on Wednesday, despite a string of objections from residents.
In November 2005, enforcement action was started to stop the use of the site for mobile homes but council officers failed to follow it through.
Lewis Smith, speaking on behalf of agent Robert Doughty Consultancy, told councillors how Ray Turner Labour had made efforts to house the site elsewhere but had been unable to get planning permission.
He described the site on Bar Farm, Main Road, as “well managed and unobtrusive”. Deeping St Nicholas Parish Council chairman Coun Geraldine Scholes spoke on behalf of objectors.
She told the committee the parish council had thought the site unsuitable on health and safety grounds and they did not think residential and commercial aspects went well together.
Coun Bryan Alcock said he believed officers had used “an awful lot of common sense” in reaching their recommendation to grant permission.
Coun James Avery told the council he did not know there were 43 mobile homes on the farm.
He said the situation was “not ideal” but the site was “discreet”.
“I am concerned about what might happen in December 2014 but on balance I would support this because I am not sure what the alternative might be.
“There might be 43 workers come knocking on the door here looking where to live,” he said.
Coun Howard Johnson said he felt the five-year temporary permission, which would now have about two-and-a-half years left to run, seemed a long time.
He said the council wanted the site to be permanent and within settlement limits.
He added: “I will support this but urge the applicant to start looking and start looking quickly.”
However, Coun Paul Przyszlak said he felt there had been a “blatent disregard for planning” and he was concerned the site would continue to grow.