DESPITE initial opposition to the development, teamwork has proved to be key in getting the Coate Water development off the ground.

On Tuesday night, the planning committee approved plans which will see the first set of homes built on the site, which is located between the country park and Great Western Hospital.

It now means developers Redrow can start building houses as well as the roads which go with it.

When the application was first put forward several years ago, more than 50,000 residents signed a petition against it going ahead.

Although it was rejected by the council, the government approved it on appeal. Following that decision, a working group was set up comprising representatives from Redrow, Chiseldon Parish Council, Liddington Parish Council and the ward councillors.

They have been able to cooperate to put together a proposal which suits everyone.

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Eric Shaw, of Chiseldon Parish Council, above, said: “The developers have listened to what we have said and taken it on board.

“Ever since they had permission they have been able to move forward with everything but they have been happy to work with us.

“For example, they have moved some of the development near the Coate houses so they do not back onto them. They deserve credit for that and hopefully it will reduce opposition to the plans.”

Eric says there are likely to be more discussions about further parts of the development as it progresses and the current co-operation bodes well.

He said: “It has been suggested, I believe by the minister who looked at the plan, that Day House Lane be closed completely. We would be dead against this but from what has happened so far I think we could easily work together.”

One area of concern which was raised by members of the planning committee was the dangers posed by the main boulevard which will run through the development.

It is believed hospital staff may try and use it for parking, which would decrease the visibility for drivers coming out of their driveways onto the road.

There is £60,000 worth of Section 106 money available for road safety measures and while not originally intended, may now be used for parking restrictions.

A council spokesperson said: “We are investigating if it will be possible to put double yellow lines along the road from the beginning, as requested by councillors.

“One of the reasons this isn’t clear at the moment is that when it is first built the road will be owned by the developer, and won’t have been legally adopted by the council.

“This might affect whether or not we can enforce parking restrictions.”