COUNCILLORS are set to hear the latest on an appeal to allow a 1,000-home development tonight.

Despite being recommended for approval at the end of February, the proposal to build 1,138 homes, a 120-bed residential care home community, a new primary school, nursery and sports centre off Broad Street Green Road between Heybridge and Great Totham was rejected by district councillors.

They are expecting an update on the status of the developer’s appeal.

The plans, known as the North Heybridge Garden Suburb, were slammed by the council in March and then again in June.

The decision notice for the plans said: “Insufficient evidence has been submitted with the application to demonstrate the proposed development would be able to incorporate adequate surface water drainage infrastructure.

“The infrastructure that would be proposed would be maintained in a manner that would ensure the development would not cause increased flood risk within the vicinity of the site and the catchment area of the watercourses that are within the site.

“The potential impact on flood risk resulting from the development is unacceptable.”

The developer Countryside Properties launched its appeal over the summer.

The revised plans includes a guarantee that at least 30 per cent of the homes in the development will be made affordable.

Improvements have also been made to the flood alleviation scheme, which has regularly been cited as a key negative in the proposal.

Essex County Council’s flood risk engineer Richard Jackson said: “The drainage strategy provided alongside the application is appropriate for the site, the lead local flood authority as the specialist advisor on drainage matters to the council has no objection to the application.”

Although the county council has not objected to the appeal, former chairman of the Heybridge Residents Association, Don Benson was still against the plan.

He said: “The excess water from the development is shown to be released into the existing drainage system which is widely known to have serious lack of maintenance issues.”

The council will meet to discuss the appeal at the council offices in Princes Road, Maldon.

Visit the council’s planning and building control page at