Controversial plans approved to build 200 homes on former golf course
Sandwell Council has approved plans for 190 homes, a primary school and a 26-hectare public park on the former Brandhall Golf Course.
Plans were approved in July, but the cabinet’s decision had been called in by scrutiny board chairs. The loss of green space was the main reason for concern, alongside increased traffic, but the development has now been confirmed.
The council said a new primary school is needed to replace the existing Causeway Green Primary School, which is the “worst condition school in the borough and in critical need of replacement”.
The redevelopment will deliver a 26-hectare park as well as keeping the 1.47 hectares at the existing Parsons Hill Park. Space will also be provided for around 190 new homes, at least a quarter of which would be ‘affordable homes’ for local residents on the council’s housing register.
Councillor Peter Hughes, Sandwell Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Growth, said: “We are delighted to be proceeding with our plans to redevelop the former golf course and deliver a new, state-of-the-art primary school, new housing, as well as creating the first public park in Sandwell’s 48-year history. These facilities will serve residents of Sandwell for generations to come and help improve the quality of life in the community.”
The council also says the number of new homes needed in Sandwell is currently “much greater” than those being built. While Sandwell Council has a ‘brownfield first’ policy for development, the council says that even using all brownfield sites available will still leave a significant shortfall in how many new homes the government has calculated Sandwell will need over the coming years.
Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, took to Twitter to voice his concerns. He said: “Given the range of brownfield sites in the WM, it’s deeply concerning to see plans for 190 homes at the former Brandhall Golf Course. The strength of opposition from the local community is clear. I hope that Sandwell Council will revisit this decision.
“Since day one as Mayor of the West Midlands I have championed our Brownfield First approach to safeguard our region’s greenbelt & precious green spaces. I stand with the local campaign group & I recently wrote to Sandwell Council to voice my concerns for this site”.