PLANS to build eight homes near Halstead’s cemetery have been criticised by town councillors and residents.

The land next to 85 Colchester Road received planning permission in 2015 to build five homes, but the town council feels the jump to eight homes is too much for the area.

Separate plans to build five homes on the site were dismissed on appeal in 2012.

The plans look to build eight, four-bedroom homes, each two-and-a-half storeys high.

Halstead Town Council discussed the plans at Monday night’s full town council meeting, with a number of councillors raising issues with the plans.

Councillor Jackie Pell said: “I visit the cemetery regularly, and you can get in, but you cannot get out. You have to get half way into the road before before you can see what is coming."

Adding, “I cannot believe that Highways have raised no objection to the plans.”

The town council objected on the grounds of overdevelopment, concerns with entering and leaving the site, and the height of the development.

Concerns were also raised about footfall in the area, with a large number of Ramsey Academy students crossing Colchester Road to get to and from school.

Residents echoed these concerns, with two objecting through Braintree Council’s planning portal.

Lindsay Lindford, of Colchester Road, submitted an objection stating: “Pedestrians also cross the road nearby, using the footpath opposite the cemetery as a safe passage to local schools and Leisure Centre, observing hoards of schoolchildren crossing here after cessation of lessons, a constant stream of children are attempting to cross with the line of vision curtailed by parked cars.

“Recent accidents have resulted in minor casualties; additional movement from accessing this sight could increase risk.”