Stapleton homes scheme set for approval despite flooding concerns

The proposed housing site at Stapleton.

A scheme to demolish farm buildings on land beside the River Tees and replace them with detached homes has been recommended for approval, despite concerns about land stability, flooding and river erosion on the site.

Richmondshire District Council’s planning committee is set to consider a plan to build five homes on a two-acre site on Teeside Farm, Stapleton, close to the A66 roundabout near Blackwell Bridge, Darlington.

A spokesman for the developer said as the site, which slopes down to the western bank of the River Tees, was located within Flood Zones 2 or 3, it was “not considered to be at significant risk of flooding”.

He added: “A Flood Risk Assessment has been submitted with the current application, which confirms that with suitable attenuation, namely the restricted discharge of surface water into the River Tees, the risk of surface water flooding elsewhere will not increase as a result of the development.”

However, Stapleton and Cleasby Parish Council said while the vacant agricultural site had become an eyesore, the planning committee needed to consider the site’s history.

A parish council spokeswoman said much of the land in the area had been back-filled after previous erosion and questioned whether “houses would disappear into river” if the area flooded as they would be built on reclaimed land.