Dozens of people who have campaigned both for and against Plus Dane’s £15m plans to demolish hundreds of homes and build new ones turned out at the town hall for the meeting.
The approved plans would see the demolition of up to 280 houses and 152 new ones built in the Dingle.
Passionate pleas were made by both sides, with pro-bid campaigners saying they had been forced to live in rat-infested, squalid conditions.
In turn, objectors said they did not necessarily oppose the demolitions, but believed up to 40 or 50 homes extra to the 40 to be refurbished – including Ringo Starr’s former Madryn Street home – could be saved from the wrecking ball.
But council planners said those proposals were not on the table, and could not be considered.
This afternoon the Department for Communities and Local Government issued an “Article 25 Direction”, which stops the council issuing the planning approval.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles must now decide if he wants to call a public inquiry.
A number of supporters spoke at the meeting, with emotions running high.
Welsh Streets resident Paula McInerney said she had medical conditions that were being worsened by living in a deteriorating house, adding: “Unless you have to live in rat, slug and cockroach infested houses then you’ve no idea what we are having to put up with.
“We are living in Victorian conditions, some of us are living in Third World conditions that are slowly killing people.
“I require a heart and lung transplant and before I die I just want to live in a warm, cosy house with a garden.”
By Marc Waddington