Despite the COVID-19 pandemic consuming our lives with disruption and stress since March, developers and councils have still been looking to build in our area.
There have been plenty of big developments this year, reinforcing how the county is ever expanding and modernising.
Here are the key developments that have been completed this year and ones which have been given the go-ahead for 2021.
Lincoln Eastern bypass
Opened officially on December 19, the Lincoln Eastern Bypass cost Lincolnshire County Council £120 million to build, with part of the funding coming from central government.
The single carriageway bypass starts at a new roundabout on the A15 Sleaford Road and finishes at the A158 Wragby Road.
This connects the existing northern relief road and is the next step towards creating a complete ring road around the city.
Lincoln MP Karl McCartney, perhaps in jest, said it should be named after him for all the effort he’s put into enabling the project.
The Margaret Thatcher statue in Grantham
Probably the most controversial development of 2020, where South Kesteven District councillors approved a £100,000 spend on an event to unveil the new Margaret Thatcher statue in Grantham.
However, plans will be reconsidered, after an opposition member requested the call in for the scrutiny committee, which could reverse the decision by the Conservative leadership.
The £300,000 bronze statue of the Iron Lady, which would sit on a 10ft plinth (making it 20ft tall overall), on St Peter’s Hill Green, was brought to the town by Grantham Museum, SKDC and a Public Memorials Appeal.
Over 14,000 people on Facebook registered their interest in attending an egg-throwing contest at the statue next year.
Cleethorpes 72ft palm tree sculpture
You will not miss this approved development when driving to the beach, that’s for sure.
The 72ft tall white palm tree designed by artist Wolfgang Weileder is taller than the Angel of the North and illuminated by spotlights, serving as a “warning for the future” on climate change.
The project attracted mixed reactions from residents, with some describing the sculpture as a “laughing stock”.
This was all part of reinvention project of a Grimsby building into a multi-million-pound Youth Zone set to be completed as part of the town’s new Heritage Action Zone (HAZ).
The University of Lincoln Medical School
The new £21 million Lincoln Medical School is taking shape as work continues ahead of the facility’s opening in spring 2021.
The new five-storey medical school welcomed its first cohort of undergraduate medical students to Lincoln in September 2019 and a purpose-built facility to house the school is currently being developed.
Also, lots of new student accommodation has been built in Lincoln for the new intake of students, one even comes with a private cinema.
Cornhill Quarter takes shape
Cornhill Quarter’s Everyman cinema opened in Lincoln on August 21 after COVID delays. It joined new restaurants like The Botanist which opened earlier in the summer as the whole area has been revamped.
Sadly, they only briefly got the chance to open properly before the November lockdown and tier 3 measures that don’t allow cinemas and restaurants to open.
Lower Lincoln high street revamp
A £3.5 million injection into “heritage-led” regeneration in Lincoln was approved in July this year.
The City of Lincoln Council plans to create a “High Street Heritage Action Zone” which would allow it to issue grants for the area around High Street, St Mary’s Road and Wigford Way, extending to Sincil Street and Sibthorpe Street.
The grants would allow for historic shop front and heritage renovations, conversions of upper floor residential areas, developing “gap sites” and work to the public realm areas.
Norton Disney Rendering Plant resubmission
Developers behind a refused £28 million animal rendering plant in Norton Disney have announced plans to resubmit the proposals with a new heritage site.
The controversial plan was lodged by Lincoln Proteins Ltd for a site at Villa Farm and would have seen the firm move from its Skellingthorpe factory.
However, Lincolnshire County Council’s planning committee unanimously refused the plan in February following concerns over heritage and location.
There were fears the facility would “overshadow” the Lancaster Bomber gateway sculpture being built off the A46.
When the plans were originally submitted, there was objection from both local residents and North Kesteven District Council over odour and location.
The county council received 1,105 letters of objection.
New Public Sector Hub in Horncastle
East Lindsey District Council approved plans to build new £8.25 million shared base with Boston College.
The “public sector hub” is planned to be built at the former Horncastle Residential College off the town’s Mareham Road.
The development has previously been described as being a “smaller, fit-for-purpose” hub and could also house partners such as health and police services in the future.
The first courses are hoped to start in September 2021.
Lincoln Western Growth Corridor
Lincolnshire County Council submitted an objection to plans for the Western Growth Corridor housing development in Lincoln due to concerns that it could make “already difficult congestion far worse”.
Amended plans were submitted by the city council earlier this year to its own planning committee, for 3,200 new homes built on land west of Tritton Road. Among the latest revisions, large parts of the development’s proposed spine route have been designated for buses, pedestrians and cyclists only.
There have been several other large housing development stories this year:
- £20 million riverside housing development in Gainsborough
- £4.8m over 55s development in Nettleham
- 384 homes in Bourne
- 300 homes in Metheringham
- 400 homes near Grantham
- 600 homes and GP in Spilsby
Chicken farm refusal
A solicitor’s letter sent to councillors prior to them rejecting the “chicken prison” near Grantham could have been seen as “threatening” and “intimidating” a planning chairman said.
However, this wasn’t an easy decision, with councillors being “between a rock and a hard place.”
Previously, the head teacher of a school close to the proposed farm said its existence was “under threat” after parents threatened to remove their children if the plans went ahead.