CONTROVERSIAL plans to build 86 new homes on the northern edge of a village have been pulled at the last minute.

Greenfields Community Housing withdrew its application for Bovingdon Road, in Bocking, just before a meeting on Tuesday evening when councillors were set to rule on the plans.

A spokesman for the housing group, which is based in Braintree, said: “We’ve taken on board all the feedback so far and, as a result, we’re now refining our application and will be re-submitting very soon.

“We are committed to helping to tackle the housing crisis in the region.”

The application was recommended for refusal by planning officers, who had raised concerns about the threat of flooding at the site and the impact the new homes would have on the surrounding area.

They said the proposals would result in an “unnatural extension” of Bocking and would be harmful to the character of what is seen as the northern entrance to the Braintree area.

Officers had suggested the number of proposed homes be reduced in their pre-meeting report, but Greenfields has not confirmed if it plans to listen to the advice.

The housing group, which is working on the proposals with George Tanner Ltd, planned to allocate half of the 86 homes as affordable, while another 40 per cent would have been offered out for shared ownership.

Both the Environment Agency and Braintree Council’s environmental health department had objected to the scheme due to concerns over flooding.

But only two objections had been raised by the public, with the main concerns centring on the impact the new homes would have on traffic, wildlife and key services in Bocking.