RESIDENTS are concerned about a huge mountain of earth being piled up on a new housing estate next to Haden Hill Park in Cradley Heath.

Developer Dunedin Haden Cross Ltd is building 53 homes on the site at Haden Cross, off Halesowen Road.

Residents say the mound has been getting bigger and bigger and are worried it could collapse.

But Sandwell Council and the developer have moved to reassure residents and say the mound is safe and the earth will be either reused or removed from the site.

Local resident Stephanie Jackson, aged 54, of High Haden Crescent, said: "The developers are digging away even more of the bank and piling it at the bottom of High Haden Road in one big huge mountain. It's getting bigger and bigger.

"I spoke to a another local resident who said he had complained to the council - we are worried because it's a huge pile and it looks like it could collapse.

"I've never seen anything like it on a development. The residents of High Haden Road used to enjoy views of Clent and now they have this."

Mrs Jackson also raised concerns over the loss of trees on the site.

But a Sandwell Council spokesperson said the site is safe.

They said: “Planning officers have been in dialogue with the developer who has confirmed that the surplus material is being monitored daily and stored safely.

"The material will either be reused as part of the development or removed from the site before completion of the building works.

“The Council’s Tree Preservation Officer has also spoken with the developer’s arboriculture expert in relation to tree work on the site and has raised no concerns.”

David Kelly, a director at Dunedin Cross Ltd said of the mound of earth: "We have had building control assess the situation and environmental health and their opinion is it's perfectly safe.

"It's stored safely and has no harmful effects to the locals."

Mr Kelly said the site is inspected multiple times a week.

He said: "Every time we touch a tree it has been fully authorised by Sandwell Council's tree officer - nothing is done without their full consent."

The houses are being built in three phases - phase one is the building of 16 homes - which will be occupied in August.

The second phase of homes will be built between now and the end of the year

And the final 12 homes will be built at the top of the site where the mound is - with the site cleared by August.

The properties are a mix two, three and four-bed terraces, semi-detached and detached homes.

Mr Kelly said they are all two-storey and cost between £200k and £400k. He said they are being "snapped up."