Residents left furious after Royal Mail mistake leads to resubmission of plans to build 13 homes in Northampton

"We didn't know about the development at the time of purchase, hence it is unfair and we feel cheated with the description of plot and its price."

Friday, 6th August 2021, 1:08 am

Fresh plans to build 13 homes on green space in Northampton have had to be re-submitted following a Royal Mail mistake.

West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) has confirmed this week that the planning process to build seven three-storey homes, a block of six flats and associated parking in Blackthorn Road has started again this month (August).

The reset is because Royal Mail admitted that they may have delivered letters late from the council about the initial plans, which were submitted in September last year.

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The 13 homes have been earmarked for the green space in the top left of the image. The new Vicarage Farm Drive is now located in the green space in the bottom left of the picture.

The letters were there to make residents aware of the plans and allow them the chance to object in the correct amount of time, which did not happen.

Multiple people objected saying that the letters were dated November 4 but received around 83 days later in January.

One person wrote to WNC earlier this year saying: "There are many factors as to why this application should be denied.

"One being that planning application notice letters were dated November 4 but only delivered on January 26, meaning they were delayed for 83 days - some may consider them intentionally delayed.

The proposed site plan.

"Also, on the letter dated November 4, there were very few people living in the new development [Vicarage Farm Drive].

"There are also people who are yet to move in who would be effected, but due to the deadline they won't be able to voice their concerns."

As seen in submitted planning documents, Royal Mail did respond earlier to residents earlier this year apologising for the mishap but were unable to provide a reason as to why the letters took so long to be delivered.

Other complaints in the initial plans also mention that some people had already bought a house in the nearby new 115-home Vicarage Farm Drive estate before they knew about these plans.

One unhappy Vicarage Farm Drive homeowner wrote: "We didn't know about the development at the time of purchase, hence it is unfair and we feel cheated with the description of plot and its price."

And another person objected in February saying: "These issues will not only affect our home, but eight or nine other homes on the development, who have all invested substantial sums into their new home purchases.

"Many of the residents have not even moved into their new homes and thus will have no opportunity to reject this application."

These residents will now have the opportunity to submit their objections by August 26.

According to planning papers, this site has been the subject of of two previous outline planning planning permissions for residential developments which have not been implemented for reasons unknown.

To view the application, click here.