Swindon AdvertiserPlan's opponents make their views known (From Swindon Advertiser)

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Plan's opponents make their views known

Swindon Advertiser: Mike Fox (Planning Inspector) at the full public inquiry into the Local Plan, being held in Swindon Mike Fox (Planning Inspector) at the full public inquiry into the Local Plan, being held in Swindon

OPPOSITION to one of the major housing projects in the Swindon Local Plan was set out yesterday as the public hearing into its soundness continued.

The Local Plan is a document which outlines all the major housing projects to take place in Swindon until 2026, and legislates for 22,000 extra homes.

The Kingsdown development, which was discussed yesterday, would be located just south of the village of Blunsdon and would consist of approximately 1,500 houses.

At the hearing, which is now into its second week, the Ramblers Association, the Blunsdon Action Group and the Blunsdon Parish Council, outlined why they felt the proposal should be taken out of the Plan.

They say that there was a major lack of consultation on the plan as it was added very late on, it would encroach too much on the village and important parts of natural habitat would be destroyed.

The council argues there is a quota of houses the plan needs to fill and the Kingsdown site is the best outside other developments, such as Tadpole Farm, Wichelstowe and the Eastern villages.

The site will be accessed via a newly built bridge over the A419 which will be constructed after the first 600 houses are built. Although no formal applications have been put forward, developers have been in talks and one would be expected if the plan was adopted.

On the first day of the public hearing last Tuesday, the Blunsdon Action Group also said while it is important the Local Plan is adopted, the Kingsdown proposal should be taken out as it is legally unsound following the lack of consultation. They argue the parish council was not informed Kingsdown would form part of the local plan until late last year, although representatives of developers say there have been discussions regarding the site going back to 2005.

It was also highlighted yesterday that the development would come up to the back garden of properties already in the village, thereby encroaching onto the village.

Speaking at the hearing, Blunsdon Parish Council Chairman Ian Jankinson said: “There are three questions being asked here. Is the plan positively prepared? We think it was in fact covertly prepared. Is the plan justified? It seems it was created in a panic. Is the plan deliverable? Possibly, but at a massive social and environmental cost.”

Richard Freeman, council spokesman, said: “The great benefit of the Independent Examination is that it’s independent. We firmly believe we have produced a sound draft Local Plan and we are making our case to the Planning Inspector. Others might take a different view but like us, they need to make their case. The Inspector will ultimately decide, based on the evidence presented to him.”

The hearing will continue this morning at the Steam museum, in which the Eastern Villages will be discussed.

Comments (2)

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10:59am Fri 9 May 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

The complaints mentioned could be levelled at most of the recent large developments in North Swindon. Didn't stop any of those going ahead so I'm not sure why this one wouldn't either.
The complaints mentioned could be levelled at most of the recent large developments in North Swindon. Didn't stop any of those going ahead so I'm not sure why this one wouldn't either. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 5

5:19pm Fri 9 May 14

Flatmandan says...

"It would encroach to much on the village and important parts of its natural habbitat will be distroyd"
So what about the article above this one the 61 homes that have been given premission, and the feild next to that 90 odd homes and the feild opposite which all week have had test holes being dug, the stadium devlopment as well,
" the site will be accessed via a newly built bridge over the a419"
So to lesson the impact on the village
"It was also highlighted that development would come up to the back garden of properties already in the village"
as above other new devoplments in the village NIMBYS
The three questions that the chairman is asking are quite easily answered,
1, all new building is positive
2, of course it's justified, the planning inspector has said there is not enough homes included in the 2026 plan
3, "is the plan deliverable" well you answered that yourself.

One more thing just think if your getting 400k for 61 hills homes just think how much you'd get for 1500!!!!
"It would encroach to much on the village and important parts of its natural habbitat will be distroyd" So what about the article above this one the 61 homes that have been given premission, and the feild next to that 90 odd homes and the feild opposite which all week have had test holes being dug, the stadium devlopment as well, " the site will be accessed via a newly built bridge over the a419" So to lesson the impact on the village "It was also highlighted that development would come up to the back garden of properties already in the village" as above other new devoplments in the village NIMBYS The three questions that the chairman is asking are quite easily answered, 1, all new building is positive 2, of course it's justified, the planning inspector has said there is not enough homes included in the 2026 plan 3, "is the plan deliverable" well you answered that yourself. One more thing just think if your getting 400k for 61 hills homes just think how much you'd get for 1500!!!! Flatmandan
  • Score: 0

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