CALLS to compulsory purchase land in Halesowen which has stood empty for years and is a magnet for crime and fly-tipping have been rejected by Dudley Council.

Campaigners have launched a petition calling for Dudley Council to use its CPO powers to buy land on Attwood Street which has stood empty since six derelict terraced cottages were demolished in 2016.

They say the land has been derelict for decades and should be used for affordable housing which is desperately needed in the area.

A planning application for five houses was granted back in 2018 to a Solihull based applicant, but no work has started.

A previous application for homes was also approved in 2015.

The council says it will not use its CPO powers to buy the site and has been in contact with the proposed developers to encourage them to go ahead with the proposal.

Councillor Ian Kettle, cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “We understand the concerns of residents over issues around the maintenance of fences and land in this area and have contacted the landowners to remind them of their responsibilities.

“It is not considered appropriate for the council to contemplate the use of its Compulsory Purchase Order powers on this land at the current time, as the council has been in contact with the proposed developers of this site and we are doing all we can to encourage the development of the dwellings, as shown in the approved planning permission.”

Halesowen News:

Plans for five homes were approved in 2018 (design above).

The campaign for action is being supported by Cllr Simon Phipps who has launched an online petition.

The petition will remain online until the end of December, after which it will be presented to the council’s planning and regeneration department.

The petition which can be seen here, calls for the council to "begin compulsory purchase order proceedings on the land north of 60 Attwood Street, which has been derelict for decades, in order to build much needed housing."

It states: "The land at this location has been derelict in different forms for many years. The original buildings on the site became dilapidated and derelict after years of neglect.

"The buildings were subsequently demolished amidst seemingly positive progress made to rebuild new homes for local people on the site. Sadly, inaction since then has proven that there is currently no desire to make use of this land to provide much needed housing.

"Despite the objections of local people, who knew that planning consent would not lead to development of the site, Dudley Council has granted planning permission to build new homes, yet there has been almost no progress made towards this outcome.

"More recently, the site has become overgrown, brick walls have fallen down into neighbouring properties and, to make matters much worse, criminals have exploited the total lack of security around the site to use the land to break in to neighbouring gardens and houses."