Religious group submit plans for church on North Anston green belt land

By Gareth Dennison | 01/09/2017

Religious group submit plans for church on North Anston green belt land
The proposed site at Common Lane in North Anston

A RELIGIOUS group hoping to build a church on green belt land have submitted plans for a third time.

Previous applications for a Plymouth Brethren Christian place of worship at Common Lane in North Anston were rejected in 2013 and 2015.

Rotherham Borough Council said the loss of the green belt could not be justified and planning board members raised road safety concerns.

Now applicants Elsworth Acres have returned with another proposal - this time including a multi-million centre for Anston Rangers Junior Football Club.

A spokesman said: “The development proposed is submitted following a diligent search for a suitable site to serve the local community over many years.

“This statement also supports the football club requirements, as they have outgrown their existing facilities with numbers of young people provided for continuing to increase.

“The proposed development is a sensitive response to the site, constraints, locality and landscape. 

“Designs have been adjusted following detailed consultations with the public and local authority to deliver a sustainable, beneficial and safe development.”

Plans for the 18-acre site include a church and 211 parking spaces. Elsworth said the church had outgrown its previous premises in Sheffield and was now using another hall in Doncaster temporarily.

The football facilities, including six pitches, a clubhouse and a further 120 parking spaces, would be sited to the north of the site, next to Thornberry Animal Sanctuary.

One businesswoman, based at the nearby North Anston business centre, said: “My objection is purely on traffic and road safety. 

“An application with parking for over 300 vehicles, which will use the premises predominantly at weekends has got to adversely affect the road infrastructure and cause danger to residents and other road users.”

Previous versions of the plan included a Brethren school but the campus on Hellaby industrial estate has now been expanded instead.

Rangers said they approached Elsworth about the plan after seeing membership rise to 200 since the club’s formation in 2011.

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