COUNCILLORS this week approved outline plans for up to 80 new homes near Stourbridge’s soon to open state-of-the-art new medical centre.

Dudley’s development control committee gave the thumbs up on Monday (March 31) to a plan by Quadrant Land Partnership to develop derelict sites in Lowndes Road and Bradley Road surrounding the new Lion Heath surgery which is due to open on Monday April 14.

The landscape-changing proposal includes opening up culverted stretches of the River Stour to regenerate the area which has long been tipped to accommodate new waterside homes.

Councillor Colin Wilson said: “The sooner this is developed the better. It will really bring up that side of town."

Planning approval was granted on condition the developers provide an area of public open space and children's play facilities, contribute to improvements to bus shelters or bus services in the area - and provide affordable housing within the scheme.

An additional requirement to upgrade the nearby canal towpaths was also added - after members agreed to an amendment put forward by Tory councillor David Caunt, Dudley Council's former leader.