Councillors approve new homes on Torrington Creamery site

Torrington Creamery - how the site looks now. Picture: submitted

Torrington Creamery - how the site looks now. Picture: submitted - Credit: Archant

Up to 149 new homes will be built on the former Torridge Vale dairy - as long as the derelict buildings are demolished first.

How the Torrington Creamery site could look.

How the Torrington Creamery site could look. - Credit: Archant

Plans to build 149 new houses on the site of the former Torrington Creamery have been given the green light - provided the old dairy buildings are demolished first.

Members of Torridge District Councillors unaninmously agreed the proposals by Waterside Construction South West Ltd today (Thursday).

But they set a condition that the derelict buildings must be demolished ‘in their entirety’ before any development takes place.

Planning officer Lewis Andrews said the fact the developer is demolishing the site is of ‘great benefit’.

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He said: “The main aim of this application is the clearance of this site which has been the legacy of the district for some 20 years.”

The dairy site was built in 1870. It was last used in 1993 and has stood vacant since.

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The application consists of two sites: outline permission for up to 136 dwellings and retail and employment space on the dairy site; and full planning permission for 13 houses, known as ‘site A’; opposite the dairy buildings.

Councillors also strengthened this condition with a legally-binding Section 106 agreement.

This means should the two sections be sold off separeately, the dairy must still be demolished before work can commence on either site.

This also includes any underground construction - something Councillor Mervyn Langmead said he was ‘surprised to hear’.

He said: “I worked on that site some years ago and I know there’s one particular area which is solid concrete.

“We had lorries pouring concrete into a hole for 24-hours continuously; it is several metres deep.”

But Councillor Peter Watson warned: “We have to be careful because if we put too much on the developers they could just walk away.

“It is going to cost a fantastic amount of money to clear this site already.”

Councillors voted unanimously to approave the application.

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