Cat rehoming centre on hold

THE Planning Service have agreed to hold off on issuing a decision on a new cat rehoming centre in Hillsborough after concerns were raised at a meeting of Lisburn City Council’s Planning Committee.

Planning permission is being sought by Cats Protection for a new build cat adoption centre, incorporating rehoming, administrative, education and veterinary facilities on Carnbrae Road in Hillsborough.

There were seven letters of objection lodged with the Planning Service opposing the centre, as well as two petitions with 29 signatures.

The application, which had been previously deferred following a late objection to the scheme, was brought before Lisburn City Council this week for approval.

However, a number of councillors asked for the application to be reconsidered due to the number of complaints from local residents and concerns about the road infrastructure in the area.

A Senior Planning Officer at the meeting on Monday evening agreed to hold back on issuing the decision but stressed that all objections and concerns had been carefully considered and that the Planning Service was still minded to approve the application.

“The application had been placed on the schedule before and was taken off again due to a late objection,” he explained. “That objection concerned the roads. Roads Service have been consulted and have said this application should be approved.

“We have considered all the material considerations and have looked in detail at the roads infrastructure,” he added.

He agreed to hold back on issuing the decision but made it clear that unless there were new material considerations that had not yet been examined, the application would be approved.

Speaking at the council meeting, Alderman Jim Dillon said: “There is considerable anxiety about this application in the village. Holding back on the issuing of the decision will help to allay the fears of the residents.”

A spokesperson for Cats Protection said: “It is an important strategic objective for Cats Protection to have an adoption centre in the area to act as a hub for all our activities in Northern Ireland.”

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