Bargates will become "just another housing estate" because of a £20 million residential development proposed for the Burton "village green" site, it is claimed.

Burton Parish Council is the latest organisation to object to plans to turn the seven-acre site off High Street into 140 homes, comprising 72 sheltered apartments, 24 private apartments and 44 houses, including two shops.

The council says that while Burton may have a bowling alley at the Meadowside Leisure Centre, it does not have the restaurant, games and birthday party facilities the Bargates site once boasted.

The so-called 'green village' will be cleared for the development

Developers Cannock-based Jessup Build Develop has come under fire after finally submitting its long-awaited planning application to East Staffordshire Borough Council.

But Burton Parish Council has now attacked the plans, claiming there is a lack of seating areas for future elderly residents, plus a lack of entertainment facilities.

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On behalf of the parish council, Councillor Terry Robinson said in the objection: "This is a missed opportunity to provide the residents of Burton with a landmark development, not another housing estate, this time on a prime area at the gateway to our town.

"Surely the development was meant to bring people to our town? We have an opportunity to utilise our riverside areas, not hide them behind houses or flats.

"Other towns with a major river running through the centre of the town offer riverside recreational developments, encouraging people into town to use these facilities, not Burton. That is with the exception of Stapenhill Gardens.

"This proposed development is only a new housing estate and not a development to encourage visitors to our town or residents of the town to enjoy a wonderful natural facility such as the River Trent and surrounding green spaces."

The authority also said it had concerns over the elderly residents as well as noise worries.

The scheme is set to cost £20 million

Councillor Robinson said: "How do the residents, who may be unsteady on their feet, get to the bus stops or shops, especially in dark nights and poor weather? Are there going to be benches or seating areas between the sheltered housing and High Street for the elderly residents to rest on their trek to the shops and buses?

"Is there a communal area in the accommodation? We know there is a recreation/cafe area which is for use of the general public as well as the residents. Shouldn't the residents have their own area, where the residents could have entertainment?

"Would the elderly residents want to share an area where there may be young people and children running about? Will tourists coming to visit the town look for sheltered housing to sit and enjoy refreshments, surely they would prefer to sit by the river at bars or restaurants?

Bargates will also consist of two shops

"The accommodation is adjacent to a main road, such as Burton Bridge, which generates road noise 24 hours a day. We know it was suggested to us that adequate insulation will be fitted but surely during warm weather the residents will want to open their windows/doors for ventilation? Where is the insulation then?"

The parish council also compared the former Bargates site to the current proposals.

The report said: "In the original Bargates development the area included shops, restaurants, bars, nightclubs and a well-used bowling alley. When the bowling alley was demolished we were promised that a new bowling alley would be built in the town. The current development does not include any restaurants, bars, nightclub or any form of recreation, for example the promised bowling alley."

Bargates was flattened in 2012 and turned into a 'village green'
A sale sign is still in place at Bargates

The parish council is the latest in a string of organisations who have objected to the proposals, including Burton Civic Society and the adjacent Burton Bridge Brewery. It has also attracted two petitions calling for entertainment on the site. Bargates was previously home to a shopping centre and bowling alley before it closed in 2007 and subsequently bulldozed a few years later.

A spokesman for the developers said: "Jessup has now been provided with the Bargates consultee responses by the planners.

"The company will be considering these in conjunction with the case officer and will respond back to the planners."

Time Line

Burton's Bargates

  1. MARCH 2004

    Council admits the Riverside Leisure Centre, known as Bargates, had become an embarrassment with just a few units open, including Superbowl 200 which still had 14 years on its lease and had 'no desire to move'.

  2. SEPTEMBER 2004

    The council reveals a cafe quarter plan for Bargates with accommodation, bars, cafe and a hotel.

  3. MAY 2005

    The Mail exclusively reveals that the council has lined up a deal with Tesco, which would see Bargates turned into a giant Tesco Extra store. The deal in principle included Tesco paying the council £8 million towards the cost of a new leisure centre to replace the Meadowside, which would have been demolished under the plans.

  4. AUGUST 2007

    One of the last remaining units on Riverside, Indian restaurant Manzil, moves to the former Ocean nightclub, off Guild Street, where it remains to this day.

  5. AUGUST 19, 2007

    Superbowl 2000 closes to make way for the Tesco development. At the time Superbowl owner Jerry Hodges said he was keen to relocate and was looking for a site in Burton.

  6. DECEMBER 2007

    The council pulls out of a deal with Tesco to demolish the neighbouring Meadownside Leisure Centre due to sky-rocketing costs. An application for the Riverside Centre is still expected to be submitted.

  7. FEBRUARY 2008

    Arsonists strike at former Superbowl 2000.

  8. NOVEMBER 2008

    A Tesco plan to build nine glass-fronted retail units on the site is unanimously rejected by council planners after the scheme is branded as "unimaginative".

  9. DECEMBER 1, 2009

    Three options are listed for Bargates' future: a residential-led redevelopment, a retail-led redevelopment or a mixture of both.

  10. MAY 30, 2010

    Tesco indicates a willingness to relinquish the site and move to the former Condor site, which never came to fruition. Proposals are put forward for a mix of retail, office and residential buildings, including a hotel overlooking the River Trent.

  11. JUNE 3, 2010

    Tesco installs large wooden boards to screen the eyesore from public view.

  12. JUNE 15, 2010

    East Staffordshire Borough Council announces its intention to appoint a developer by the end of 2010.

  13. SEPTEMBER 21, 2010

    Tesco's board of directors agrees the sale of the site to East Staffordshire Borough Council for £4 million.

  14. APRIL 12, 2011

    Meanwhile, Tesco is given permission for a superstore in Hawkins Lane. This plan never came to fruition after financial difficulties led Tesco to put the site up for sale.

  15. FEBRUARY 2, 2012

    Demolition begins at the Bargates site.

  16. MAY 28, 2012

    The council announces Bargates will be turned into a 'village green'.

  17. JULY 4 2012

    The council puts up 'The Bargates Job' on the site.

  18. FEBRUARY 21, 2013

    The council announces it has full ownership of Bargates and it is up for sale – maintaining the preferred mixed use option in a bid to attract developers.

  19. JULY 15, 2014

    Councillors reveal plans to spend part of a £1.5 million grant on making Bargates more attractive. It came after work started to improve the appearance of shops opposite, to show the authority was keen to regenerate High Street.

  20. MAY 2015

    Councillor Richard Grosvenor, leader of East Staffordshire Borough Council, said the authority was hoping to work in partnership with other agencies to bring sheltered housing to the site.

  21. JANUARY 2016

    A major developer is in talks to buy Bargates but discussions break down in March.

  22. AUGUST 2016

    Contractors were spotted drilling on the site to ascertain the site's development costs.

  23. SEPTEMBER 2016

    It is revealed a deal has been struck for offices and extra-care facilities on Bargates.

  24. AUGUST 2017

    Developer Jessup Build Develop reveals a planning application could be submitted in September.

  25. December 2017

    Jessup Build Develop submit planning application to East Staffordshire Borough Council

  26. January 2018

    Jessup Build Develop hold public consultation at Meadowside Leisure Centre. Burton Civic Society formally objects to the proposals

  27. February 2018

    The consultation period ends and objections submitted by Burton Parish Council and Burton Bridge Brewery are revealed.