CONTROVERSIAL plans to build 110 homes at a Highbridge beauty spot have been approved despite more than 140 letters of objection from residents.

On Tuesday morning (February 4) Sedgemoor District Council’s (SDC) development committee met to discuss the plans for the site between Lakeside and Isleport.

The developer, Coln Developments, originally applied for planning permission to build 121 homes on the site but during a consultation period they reduced it to 110 homes in a bid to create more public open space.

The development will consist of 39 two bedroom dwellings, 47 three bedroom dwellings and 24 four bedroom dwellings as well 290 car parking spaces, a play area and a fitness trail

The land is currently owned by five parties including Sedgemoor District Council and it is proposed that 30 per cent of the new dwellings will be allocated as affordable housing - a total of 33 dwellings.

Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge Town Council objected to the plans, citing concerns regarding the overdevelopment of the site, safety concerns about the proximity of the railway, insufficient flood mitigation measures and the detrimental effect it could have on wildlife.

More than 140 residents also wrote letters of objection against the scheme expressing their concerns including loss of public land, impact on wildlife, pressure on local services and traffic in and out of Lakeside.

But councillors from SDC's development committee voted to approve the plans subject to a number of conditions including a S106 agreement to secure play space, the provision of a pedestrian path through the site, delivery of public open space and a financial contribution for offsite affordable housing in the event that it is not delivered on site.

Charlie Tillam, a resident who lives at Lakeside and has campaigned against the plans, said she is unhappy the project has been given the go-ahead.

"I'm not sure you could put it in to words." Charlie said.

"Its taking a small piece land that is a wildlife haven and turning it into a housing development.

"Lakeside has a small entrance from a busy main road was only ever meant to be 35 houses not 140 car entrance.

"There is enough housing going up in the area. There's no facilities in the area, it puts more pressure on the doctors.

"I just feel passionate about it as there is no animal that can come forward and speak for the wildlife and the green land.

"I'm not politically minded just a Mum, Nan and Great Granny but I feel for the future of our children when all the land is being built on and the influx of more people from different areas need schools etc.

"What is the point of putting in objections voting for councillors if no one is listening."

Cllr Phil Harvey from Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge Town Council spoke out against the plans at Tuesday's meeting.

He said: "I am not happy that this application has been approved.

"The crux was the land Sedgemoor own not being formally identified as public open space which meant it was not protected as I was arguing.

"It means Highbridge has lost the opportunity to have an area of natural green space and instead gets 110 more houses."