MORE than 80 homes are set to be built in Middlewich after a deal was struck to make the scheme better for first-time buyers.

Cheshire East Council’s southern planning committee gave the green light for Russell Homes and Stewart Milne Homes’ blueprints to transform land off Jersey Way on June 6.

The plans have been revised to provide 19 affordable houses and apartments out of 83 homes rather than 15 affordable properties out of 77 homes.

This comes after councillors raised concerns that the authority’s affordable homes policy was being undermined.

Alison Freeman, agent for the applicants, said: “This site is highly sustainable, on brownfield land and would benefit residents who would be in easy walking distance of Middlewich town centre, particularly families in urgent housing need.”

Plans for the 2.4 hectare site have evolved over the last five years and had previously been met with concern by residents who feared narrow Jersey Way would be unsuitable.

But the committee heard that the principle of the site and its access point had already been approved in an earlier set of plans and could no longer be disputed.

As part of a package of community benefits, allotments are set to be built alongside the railway, nearby footlinks improved and bus stops upgraded on the A54.

The play area in Angus Grove and Roman site Harbutt’s Field have also been targeted for improvements.