Four out of 38 homes on the Clipper Teas site at Beaminster will no longer be available only to people with a local connection.

The change in a legal agreement was approved by the Dorset Council area planning committee on Thursday. It was told the whole scheme would lose funding unless the four shared ownership homes on the development were open to all.

Part of the Broadwindsor Road project is being financed by Homes England which opposes local restrictions on shared ownership schemes it supports, councillors were told.

The 38 home project is being developed by Aster Homes.

The committee heard that Beaminster Town Council had objected to the proposed change in the agreement but had since been provided with more information about the implications of the technical change to the Section 106 agreement by a council officer. An officer report to the committee said that unless the change was agreed the development would be restricted to 35 per cent of the homes being ‘affordable’ although the intention had been that all of the homes would fall into the category.

By removing the 'locals only' restriction 100 per cent of the homes on the project would be ‘affordable.’

Councillors were told that the scheme would make a significant contribution to helping people off the West Dorset housing register – with almost a hundred of the total list of more than a thousand with a Beaminster connection.

Drop-in events about the development are being planned in the future when those interested in the scheme can find out more details. No date has yet been set for this but it will be publicised locally when the details have been confirmed. It was claimed that, by definition, most of the people who were likely to attend would be local.