PLANS for 120 new homes in Southminster have been thrown out after causing uproar among neighbouring residents.

Around 150 residents living near the site off New Moor Farm called for Maldon District Council to refuse permission for the development, which has halved in size from the original 240-home application in 2014.

Despite being promised a new children’s play area and 36 affordable houses, residents slammed the plans, saying the extra homes would see schools and doctors’ surgeries in the area oversubscribed, and cause a potential traffic nightmare.

Tony Cox said the application would be “detrimental” to Southminster’s infrastructure.

He said: “There is a lack of doctors and medical facilities for this, and not enough high school places even now.

“The location is far away from hospitals, and there is a lack of employment.

“It would change the character of the village.

“It would plan on building on valuable farmland which is detrimental to the environment and nature, and our sewerage works are almost at full capacity.

“There will also be an increase in traffic in the surrounding roads especially in North Street and Station Road. The treasured view to the North Sea will disappear. That land is used for walks and leisure.”

Louise Mockler, who has lived in Station Road for ten years, said she had “watched the steady decline of services caused by the already excessive building developments” around Southminster.

Council planning officer Anna Tastsoglou also raised a number of issues, agreeing with residents’ concerns that while some social and economic benefits had been identified, it would “harm the character and appearance of the rural area and the countryside”.

Miss Tastsoglou said: “The development would result in a residential development outside the defined settlement boundaries of the district, identified within the local development plan.

“The council is able to meet a housing land supply in excess of five years without allowing development which would otherwise be unacceptable.”