A controversial housing development has been given the go-ahead. 

An outline planning application to build 760 homes, a care home and a school at Vearse Farm in Bridport went before West Dorset District Council's planning committee today.

Plans to develop the site, which lies within Symondsbury parish to the west of Bridport, come from developer Hallam Land Management - representatives of which were present at today's meeting.

At a packed-out meeting at South Walks House in Dorchester, the proposals were met with fierce opposition from the public.

Councillors voted in favour of the plans.

Cllr Ian Gardner, WDDC's portfolio holder for planning, said: “The 2015 West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland Local Plan, approved after public examination, allocated the Vearse Farm site for mixed use development.

Following on from the initial application in 2015, the applicant has consulted widely and engaged in many discussions with expert consultees and council officers. This resulted in the amended scheme which has now been approved.

"We’re satisfied that we have been able to work with the applicant and reach agreement on plans for the site.

"Once completed, the scheme will provide significant off-site highway improvements to the Miles Cross junction, a good range of open market and affordable housing as well as community facilities and employment land.

"Housing and employment land is essential for the future sustainability and growth of our communities, and we are committed to working with communities, developers and partners to meet local need."