Reduction in number of homes planned for Engine Lane

How the development in Engine Lane could look.

How the development in Engine Lane could look. - Credit: Archant

Nailsea Town Council is seeking compensation due to a drop in the number of houses which can be built on Engine Lane.

Barratt Homes was due to start building homes on the site in September 2018, but the project has been hit by delays due to National Grid's plans for underground cables in the area.

The developer was granted planning permission to build 183 homes on Engine Lane in December 2017, but the proposal has been reduced to 171 properties to enable National Grid to have access to part of the land where the cables will be installed.

More: Three-year delay to Nailsea housing development.

Nailsea Town Council clerk Jo Duffy said: "National Grid has insisted on a permanent easement over their cables of 16m in width for the full length of the cable that runs through the development land.

"This means that no building can take place within this zone and as a result, 12 houses have been lost."

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Nailsea Town Council agreed to sell the land to Barratt Homes in December 2015 to attract more families and to provide affordable homes for people in the area.

Nailsea has a declining population and the authority is desperate to attract more people into the town.

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Barratt Homes worked with the authority to draw up a proposal which conformed to the town council's housing policy mix.

A proposal was agreed in May 2017, however, work cannot start until National Grid has installed underground cables around the site to link up Hinkley Point C Power Station.

More: Council agrees to go ahead with plans for Engine Lane.

Jo Duffy added: "Nailsea Town Council continues to work with the developer, Barratt Homes, on behalf of all the landowners to seek to satisfy the conditions to the planning approval for the land that was granted permission in December 2017.

"The town council is disappointed it is taking so long to deliver the planned homes.

"The delay is as a result of the time it has taken National Grid to finalise their designs for the cables that are being laid underground between Nailsea and Portishead.

"The landowners, collectively, are still in contract with Barratt Homes to develop the land.

"It is not an option at this time to withdraw from the contract.

"A specialist consultant has been appointed to prepare a case for compensation for loss against National Grid and this work is ongoing."

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