Barking dogs failed to stop Lower Stondon homes plan

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Noise nuisance from nearby Henlow Stadium was deemed insufficient to stop a scheme to build 149 homes at Lower Stondon being approved.

The plans involve demolishing two semi-detached properties at 133 and 135 Station Road, and developing the land behind.

The owner of the greyhound stadium Tony McDonnell told Central Bedfordshire Council’s development management committee there are 88 races a week and trials.

There are 75 residential greyhounds now, compared to 25 when the original noise assessment was done, he explained.

“Kennel barking is in the region of 95 to 115 decibels,” he said. “That is mitigated by the wind direction, the building and the distance from the kennels.

“An accoustic bund proposed as part of the housing project would take away only 15 decibels, which still leaves the noise at a very high level.

“I am concerned it would deflect noise back to the kennels and impact on the welfare of the greyhounds.”

Nigel Benson, who chairs Stondon Parish Council, told last week’s meeting it objected to the plans as the site is “outside the settlement envelope”.

He described the application as “premature and inappropriate for the location”.

While £50,000 was being offered towards building an indoor sports hall, it “only provides less than a fifth of the cost of the building and the equipment for such a facility”.

There will be 52 affordable homes, which planning manager with Bloor Homes, Emily Bishop, said is 35 per cent of the development.

Councillor Nigel Young told the commitee: “This application is not premature.”

Councillors approved the plans by nine votes to three.