Ballymacrea extension gets go ahead

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COUNCILLORS have voted to agree with a Planning Department decision to approve an extension at Ballymacrea Road in Portrush.

The application, to extend a dwelling at 10 Ballymacrea Road with two new garages, stables and re-located access had been deferred three times.

At Tuesday night’s Planning Committee, the application appeared again on the deferred list as an approval.

At the last meeting, members voted to allow Council’s planning consultant to look at the plans.

At Tuesday night’s meeting, a report was available to members from the consultant.

The report did not raise any new issues about the plans, however it was scathing of the Department’s processing of the application.

UUP councillor Richard Holmes proposed that members should accept the planners decision to approve the application.

Independent councillor David McClarty did not agree with councillor Holmes.

He said: “We asked the planning consultant to look at the file. He’s raised a number of issues that are a cause for concern. We agreed at the last meeting that we should abide by the consultant’s views. Those are still very much in front of us.”

UUP councillor David Barbour said it was only “reasonable” to allow the application to go forward.

Alliance councillor Barney Fitzpatrick added: “We’ve listened to both parties. We have to rely on the views of the consultant. There are no grounds for refusal - that’s the final word now let us proceed.”

Independent councillor Christine Alexander said:” The report is fairly critical of the the Planning Service. Unfortunately no compromise could be reached between the applicant and the objectors. Whether we vote or not it’ll be a fruitless exercise.”

On being put to a vote councillor Holmes’ proposal to agree with the planners was carried by 11 votes to two.