PLANS to transform former depot buildings in Stone into 22 live/work units and nine affordable houses are being opposed by local residents and rural campaigners.

The application by County to County Professional for a site in Butts Lane was granted planning permission in 2007 but a building was then demolished which invalidated that approval.

An objection by the Campaign to Protect Rural England has now been submitted that states: “This is fundamentally an unsuitable development in the green belt and should be refused.”

The statement adds that there is no evidence of a need for live/work units in the district or for affordable homes in Stone parish.

Stone Parish Council has also objected to the scheme adding that a “prominent eyesore” would be retained in the proposed development.

Two letters of objection from neighbours raise concerns such as loss of privacy, impact on highways, an ongoing sewage problem and existing “completely inadequate” storm water drainage.

Paul Wrigglesworth, Wyre Forest District Council planning case officer, has recommended the application for delegated approval.

He said: “The scheme makes good use of an existing building resource by providing affordable housing and rural employment with associated residential accommodation in an imaginative scheme.

“It is recognised however that there are opponents to the scheme. These issues have been carefully assessed but on balance the revised application is considered to provide the best solution to the issues raised within the confines of adopted planning policies.

“The road network is not ideal and the highway arguments have been revisited by the highway authority but no objection to the scheme is being raised.”

The delegated approval is subject to a still to be confirmed contribution towards educational facilities,a community provision and various highways works.

The application will be decided at a meeting of the district council’s planning committee on Tuesday at 6pm in the Earl Baldwin Suite, Clensmore Street, Kidderminster.