Go-ahead for caravan site on farmland

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A triangular-shaped farm field that serves as a buffer between Ingoldmells and Addlethorpe is to become a caravan site.

At an East Lindsey planning meeting, members approved a controversial application by Skegness Water & Leisure Park to change the use of land off Chapel Road, Ingoldmells, to a 45-pitch static caravan park with a clubhouse, play area and fishing lake.

On the first vote, there was a five-five split, with two abstentions.

But when it was retaken, the chairman, Coun Neil Cooper, used his vote in favour of the application which had earlier been recommended for approval by officers.

He commented: “It’s a fine balance between preserving the buffer and the economic benefits of tourism development.”

The committee’s decision is certain to frustrate the two parish councils, both of which had strongly objected to the application.

It will also dismay nearby residents, some of whom now face the prospects of a leisure development abutting their gardens.

The occupants of 13, 14 and 15 Mill View Close all submitted written objections to East Lindsey - but as it turned out, to no avail.

John Chappell, representing the applicants, insisted it will be a low-density site that will be environmentally enhanced with tree and shrub planting that will create an atmosphere of ‘tranquillity’. Not only that, but 20 jobs would be created during the development phase.

The proposal received wholehearted backing from Coun Sid Dennis who insisted: “This will be a quality development by a quality company - Skegness, Ingoldmells and Chapel St Leonards are all about tourism.”

Coun Jim Swanson agreed, saying: “A few more caravans aren’t going to harm things.”

Prior to Thursday’s debate, ward representative Coun Colin Davie, who is not a member of the planning committee, expressed his respect for the applicants but said he was opposed to a development on the west side of the A52 because it would bring tourism into open countryside.

A condition of the approval is that no caravan shall be on site until 2018 to give time for the growth of plants that will ‘screen’ the site from adjacent residential properties.