The decision to give the go-ahead to a new housing estate in Bromsgrove with 490 homes is ‘outrageous’ says a local councillor.

He says it violates local democracy and threatens to bring gridlock, pollution and a risk to road safety.

Councillor Luke Mallett, who is fighting for a relief road, said the decision by a planning inspector to give outline permission for the plans was ‘very poor.’

Bromsgrove District Council had failed to make a formal decision on the controversial housing development off Whitford Road in the Rock Hill area amid concern of a ‘severe’ impact on local roads from the extra traffic.

The plans also involve demolishing the old Greyhound pub, part of which dates back to the mid 1800s.

Hundreds of objections had been received by the council, but the inspector ruled that road works promised by the developers meant there were no safety issues, the pub’s heritage value was limited, and the land was part of the council’s housing expansion strategy.

But campaigners have vowed to fight on, and Councillor Mallett says the inspector’s decision is ‘overturning democracy.’

“This does not listen to the views of Bromsgrove residents, whilst not actually getting answers from the developers to the many problems within this proposal.

“Instead of refusing permission the inspector has chosen to kick decisions on issues such as road safety down the track.

“Of course we need houses, but it cannot be at the cost of gridlock, air pollution and risking road safety. If this build does ultimately get full planning permission we will lose the opportunity for a relief road for ever.

“This decision could also let the developer off the hook for the impact they will have on areas like Millfields.”