CONTROVERSIAL plans to build up to 250 houses on greenbelt have now been approved - despite being refused two months ago.

Pipestone Limited resubmitted proposals for a site to the west of Wakefield Road at Staincross which borders Mapplewell.

The original application was refused because of concerns over access from Wakefield Road. An appeal was subsequently lodged by the developer and is still active.

However, at last Tuesday's planning meeting outline consent was given by officials, which decides on whether the scale and nature of the proposed development is acceptable in principle.

Before the decision was made, David Hilton, chairman of the Mapplewell and Staincross Greenspace Action Group, appealed to planning officials to reject the proposals.

He said: "The thing that has changed significantly in our area since the last application was refused is planning has been granted for a development of 200 houses at Lee Lane, Royston, 150 houses at Low Barugh and not to mention up to 400 houses at the former North Gawber pit site - that is 750 new homes and all the developments are within a radius of less than two miles of Mapplewell.

"This has a fundamental impact on the entire infrastructure of the area."