Business park creating up to 1,500 jobs near Northampton set to be approved

Government will not be calling plans in for further review despite protests

Tuesday, 21st June 2022, 11:47 am
Updated Tuesday, 21st June 2022, 11:49 am

Plans for an employment park creating up to 1,500 jobs near Northampton will not be “called in” by the Government, effectively giving the scheme the go-ahead.

Developers put in a bid for the jobs park to the east of Tiffield Road, to the north west of the A43 Towcester earlier this year, prompting concern and objections from nearby residents in Tiffield and neighbouring parish councils.

The scheme was agreed in principle by the former South Northants Council and later West Northamptonshire’s Council’s strategic planning committee said it was “minded to approve outstanding access and highway matters for the application”.

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An artist's impression of how the jobs park could look

But plans were put on hold by the Secretary of State for further review in March.

That review has now taken place and WNC has been told the Government won’t be calling in the plans, meaning the council is now obliged to issue formal approval.

In the letter to the Council, officials from the Government’s Planning Casework Unit said the Secretary of State had decided not to call in this application and ‘is content that it should be determined by the local planning authority.’

Councillor Jonathan Nunn, leader of WNC, said: “Having taken over three months to come to a decision it is clear the government have been thorough in their consideration of the application. By deciding not to call in the application for examination, an option that was open to them, the Government has made it clear that we must now continue to proceed with the remaining stages of the planning approval process, with no other options now available.

The location of the planned jobs park

“We know there is much strong feeling surrounding this planning application and that many people have been waiting for the past three months whilst the Secretary of State considered it to find out the outcome.

“Having inherited an application that the previous local authority had effectively granted permission on, a decision based on existing policies in the South Northants local plan, we continue to work with developers and residents to ensure we get appropriate development in the right places in the future, providing clarity and guidance that will assist all parties.”

Applicants IM Properties said the scheme will create up to 1,500 jobs as well as generating an additional £82 million into the economy.