Image caption The development would be on fields off Shaw Drive (pictured) between the villages of Scartho and New Waltham near Grimsby
A developer has won an appeal to build up to 160 homes in North East Lincolnshire, despite opposition from the council and a village action group.
The planning committee at North East Lincolnshire Council initially turned down Cyden Homes’ application in June 2014.
The greenfield site is between Shaw Drive and Glebe Road in Scartho near Grimsby.
Outline planning permission was granted by the Secretary of State last night.
Objectors said the “strategic gap” was there to separate built-up areas like Grimsby from surrounding settlements.
North East Lincolnshire Council said: “This application was rejected by our planning committee in June 2014 due to concerns about highway safety and the impact of the development on the village’s strategic gap.
“The developer appealed and the Secretary of State has overturned the committee’s decision following an inquiry.”
Outline planning permission has now been granted but the council will make future decisions about access to the site and the design of the scheme.
Philip Major, planning inspector for the Secretary of State, said encroachment on the strategic gap would be small and, if designed correctly, would not be “unduly harmful” to existing residents.
He said the area would also benefit from the local jobs and affordable housing, which the council had failed to meet for many years.
Philip Jackson, leader of the Conservatives at the council, said: “This is a greenfield site between two key villages. We did not want to see this strategic gap developed.”
He added: “We recognise we’ll have to build on some greenfield sites but it’s a matter of choosing the right ones.”
He said the appeal was granted partly because the council had no local plan for a long-term vision for the area and could not demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land.
A council statement said: “It’s a myth that developers are free to build what they like, where they like without a local plan in place.
“All new development must show how it meets current planning policies and guidance, with or without it.”