Controversial sale of Doncaster greenfield land for housing back on

A piece of land next to Doncaster Racecourse has been put up for sale again by the council after a previous developer pulled out due to a reported ‘computer glitch’.

By George Torr
Wednesday, 22nd July 2020, 3:11 pm
Updated Wednesday, 22nd July 2020, 3:12 pm

Doncaster Council bosses have put land off Rose Hill in Bessacarr back on the market for housing after a previous bidder backed out because they said a computer glitch offered the local authority more money than they wanted to pay.

The council, in an advertisement, says the greenfield site can accommodate 170 houses on the 16.8 acre plot.

The advert suggests a potential housing mix of three, four and five bedroom properties with scope to accommodate large individual ‘executive homes’ backing onto the racecourse.

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Rose Hill land

Any developer wishing to purchase the land will need to provide 26 per cent of home which fall into the ‘affordable housing’ bracket and any scheme is encouraged to include public space such as a playground or green space.

But Bessacarr Coun Nick Allen is against the sale of the land along with dozens of residents in the surrounding area. He said local people ‘have been ignored’ and the way the land has been disposed of is ‘farcical’.

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Residents who live close to the site have previously said there was no consultation with the public over the sale of the land.

DMBC bosses have previously said the site has long been allocated for development as recognised in the council’s Unitary Development Plan adopted in 1998 and the disposal was agreed in 2017.

“My opposition to this scheme is well documented and I am proud to be able to support the Rose Hill Residents Association,” Coun Allen said.

“Local people should have been at the heart of this decision and they have been ignored. The way this asset has been disposed of is farcical.

“The original buyer pulled out and various historic attempts to sell the site have always ended in failure.

“I’m all for raising money but selling assets like this one is counterproductive.

“I’m disappointed that locals couldn’t have a significant input into this advert. I’ve made that view known to council officials.

“There are other places in Doncaster which are more appropriate for development. I think we need a disposal committee to deal with these matters so councillors have a say and local people can take part democratically.”

A council spokesman said: “The council’s aspiration is to encourage a high quality development at this high profile and important location and wish to see the highest urban design and architectural standards adopted in order to realise this ambition.

“Offers are sought for the sale of the freehold interest of the site with vacant possession conditional upon the granting of detailed planning permission.

“Potential purchasers are requested to supply a draft scheme layout and details of how their proposals meet the Council’s aspirations to deliver a high quality development using the highest urban design and architectural standards in support of their bid.

“The proposed sale will be subject to an overage agreement and bidders are required to provide overage proposals as part of their bid submission.”

Any interested parties need to submit a bid by Noon on Friday, October 23.