CONTROVERSIAL plans for 100 new homes on farmland in St Osyth have been rejected by council planners.

Bennett Homes had applied to Tendring Council to demolish buildings on the 6.8 hectares of land south of Clacton Road and east of Rochford Road.

The developer instead wanted to build 100 new homes along with public open space and a woodland walk.

A planning statement said the application was submitted last year in the context of Tendring Council then failing to have a planned five-year housing land supply.

But the council, which is now set to approve its new Local Plan, will shortly have its plans future housing supply in place, putting an end to so-called "speculative development" on sites outside settlement development boundaries.

A report by planning officers said: "One of the main concerns raised by the parish council and local residents is the total number of new dwellings that have already gained planning permission on sites around St Osyth over recent years and the cumulative impact that any additional homes could have on local services, traffic, other infrastructure and the character of the village.

"While St Osyth is categorised in the emerging Local Plan as a rural service centre where sustainable growth could be supported, this is not a license to allow an unlimited or disproportionate level of growth in the village."

The developer had said the plans would have addressed the need for new market housing in St Osyth, would deliver 30 per cent affordable housing on-site to help alleviate the number of people living in sub-standard local accommodation, including caravans.

It added that the scheme would have integrated well with the rest of the village, delivering new open space and a woodland walk.

But St Osyth Parish Council said it "strongly objected" to the plans.

It said: "The application is considered to be further and unnecessary overdevelopment of a village which is lacking in infrastructure.

"Permissions having already been approved for developments at West Field and Wellwick, which will see the building of 73 and 190 properties respectively, there are concerns as to the impact of a further 100 properties, including the increase of about 45 children at the village primary school, the shortage of patient places in the two surgeries and the lack of sufficient parking places in the centre of the village."

The council also claimed the area of the proposed woodland walk was prone to flooding.