Developers McCarthy and Stone are advertising retirement homes in Epworth before a land deal is finalised or plans are submitted to North Lincolnshire Council.
Furthermore, the company continues to claim it has submitted a full planning application for a Retirement Living development in Epworth on its website, despite being alerted to the falseness of the claim by the Epworth Bells several weeks ago.
It has not yet acquired the land on which the apartments would stand.
When asked about the claim, a company spokeswoman said the statement was a mistake and should have been removed from the website, but added it had been placed there “just to gauge interest and raise awareness.” No deposits for homes are being taken, she said.
Further information on the McCarthy and Stone website includes details of 39 one and two bedroom retirement living apartments for the over 60s, and information about “affluent” Epworth. It claims construction is provisionally due to start in September 2015 and invites viewers to register interest.
The spokeswoman said Tillbridge Developments continues to drive the entire project within its plans for a supermarket, a doctors’ surgery, 150-space car parking and other executive homes on the site stretching from Belton Road and behind Epworth’s High Street, but is “still waiting to get other partners on board.”.
Initial consultation events held last year sparked considerable protest against a new supermarket, and although a planning application was expected from Tillbridge before last Christmas, nothing has materialised. Over 300 comment sheets were submitted by townsfolk after the first showing of the proposed development.
Epworth town councillor Eddie Mardell said: “I think it’s disgusting that McCarthy and Stone are advertising properties for sale when they have not got planning permission. Any plans at all have yet to come before Epworth Town Council and North Lincolnshire Council.
“They are jumping the gun when it is not known by anyone yet if there will be a development at all.
“There is also no mention of whether these properties will be freehold or leasehold, or other details that will be of importance. These would be asked and found out as part of the formal planning process.”
The McCarthy and Stone spokeswoman said she could give no further details about the proposed development at this stage but again said the planning claim would be removed from the website.