Plans for 700 new homes and a primary school in Hitchin have been approved despite councillors’ reservations over traffic.

BDW Trading’s proposals for Highover Farm were approved by North Herts Council’s planning committee’s October meeting by seven to three.

The scheme has attracted an almost 2,000-strong petition in opposition to it and campaigners are not about to give up.

Campaigner Richard Wilcox urged members at the group’s page: “It is terrible news for Hitchin, Letchworth and the surrounding villages.

“But this is not the end of the story, our campaign continues, so please sign the petition if you haven’t already.”

Local ward councillor Cllr Daniel Wright-Mason told the meeting: “The reason why this is such an emotive subject, and so many of Hitchin’s residents have spoken up, is because they know the risks this development poses for Hitchin if it goes wrong.

“Anyone who travels on Cambridge Road at peak times knows how overloaded our road system is already.”

He said residents face being locked in their driveways, unable to get onto the main road.

The plans had been deferred in July 2022 when the developer was asked to come back with new traffic data.

© Eastern Echo (powered by

Sign up to receive our weekly free journal, The Forum here.