PLANS to create a children's home in Test Valley that could generate ten jobs have been delayed by almost six months.

A planning application was submitted to Test Valley Borough Council (TVBC) to change the use of Lone Barn Studio in Stanbridge Lane, Awbridge, which would help "vulnerable" 11 to 17-year-olds.

If approved, the child care agency, Chances Gives Choices, would offer short breaks in the home for up to 28 days and a maximum of three children would be cared for at one time.

Now, it has been revealed the plans have been delayed after they were meant to be decided on by Thursday, January 16.

It is thought the delay has been caused by nitrogen pollution in the Solent, which has caused a backlog in planning applications.

As reported, it was discovered nitrogen from housing wastewater and agricultural sources accelerated the growth of algae, which is believed to be damaging protected wildlife habitats and bird species around the straight that separates the Isle of Wight and England.

Community leaders also shared their thoughts on the plans.

Former deputy head at The Romsey School, Cllr Dorothy Baverstock, said: "Anything that supports vulnerable children I am for.

"I think this is such a testing time in their lives and to have a really nice and supportive environment for them would be very good.

"Putting it in the countryside would be lovely, but they do need to have transport to be able to incorporate them into the environment and link them to the community.

"That is very important for them and at that age they will be coming into Romsey for their secondary school education."

She added: "Children need to keep up with their peers outside of school, because a month in a child's life is a long time if they are away from their families."

Cllr Nik Daas, who represents Romsey Abbey on the borough council, said: "It is really good to hear there will be ten jobs for people to take on.

"If children are being given some respite this will allow them to build up their confidence again.

"When they go back to normal life they should be happier and it will be beneficial for their mental health as well."

Cllr Nick Adams-King, who represents Blackwater on the borough council, added: "Providing facilities like this for respite care is important.

"I am pleased it is being considered, but how it is managed is going to be really important and I am sure that will be picked up by the planning process."

Chances Gives Choices aims to provide a "unique package for the most vulnerable children and young people in the care system", according a statement from a spokesperson.