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Plan for homes on land surrounding Doncaster miners' welfare club deferred again

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A plan to build 49 homes on land surrounding a miners' welfare club in Doncaster has been deferred for a second time.

Gleeson Homes want to build the properties on derelict green belt land surrounding Askern Miners' Welfare Club on Manor Way.

The proceeds of the sale would be passed on to the club owners who host a range of sports clubs including football and cricket and community groups.

Councillors on the planning committee had already deferred a decision back on May 5 to visit the site and pushed the decision back again to ensure any cash obtained by the club would be used to benefit the community.

The applicant has said the cash will be used to improve sporting facilities and renovate the club which is in need of 'essential works' and the land is a hotbed for anti-social behaviour and drug use.

Speaking at the planning committee, Dave Hewitt, the club's secretary, said: "We need this extra money so we can fully fix the roofs. We've got roofs leaking which will cause further structural damage.

"The green space which has been mentioned is derelict land and has not been used for 50-odd years and the tennis courts have not been used since I was 15 and I'm now 71.

"On that land, we've had people taking drugs, fires breaking out including the bowling green which has been set on fire three times.

"All we want to do is keep the club going for football and cricket and all the community activities that takes place here."

The majority of councillors spoke in favour of the application despite principal planning officer Gareth Stent recommending the application should be refused.

He added because the application is on green belt land, only in 'very special circumstances' should it approved.

A solicitor acting on behalf of Doncaster Council said a loss of earnings for the club was 'not a material consideration'.

Councillors deferred the decision and the application will be discussed at a later date.