LAND in Halstead will be set aside for assisted living homes in Braintree’s draft Local Plan, a meeting heard.

Braintree Council’s Local Plan Sub-Committee met last Wednesday and moved forward plans for 16 one-bedroom apartments on Blamsters Farm, in Mount Hill.

A decision on the site was deferred in February while Braintree Council asked Essex County Council for advice.

The county council confirmed there was a need for specialist housing, giving the committee the push they needed to include the draft in the bid.

Council leader Graham Butland said: “I am very sympathetic to supplying this housing and an area where it is suitable, knowing that there will be an increase in demand in years to come for this type of housing.”

Originally plans were submitted for 25 separate assisted living homes which would house 54 people in two and three bedroom homes.

However, on county council advice the make-up of the properties was amended to 16 one-bed apartments.

The site has space for market housing alongside the assisted living, but the committee insisted a viability study is conducted before any agreement is made on the number of market houses required to make the assisted living viable.

At the same meeting, it was decided that land at Tidings Hill will not be included in the Local Plan.

Plans for 90 homes on the site were put forward, but planning officers raised concerns about the surrounding road networks.

Prior to the meeting, the site was recommended for refusal.

After looking at the site and the pre-meeting report,the committee unanimously agreed not to include the site in the plan.