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Plans for up to 265 homes in 'Henwick Park' submitted

Sports pitch, allotments, parks and provision for GP surgery included

John Herring

Reporter:

John Herring

Contact:

01635 886633

Plans for up to 265 homes in 'Henwick Park' submitted

ANOTHER application for hundreds of homes on the edge of Thatcham has been submitted.

Croudace Strategic’s outline application could see up to 265 homes on land to the north of Bowling Green Road and the west of Cold Ash Hill. 

The homes would be built to the east of the Regency Park Hotel on land outside the settlement boundary currently used for pasture.

Croudace adds that 40 per cent (105) of the homes will be affordable.

The plans, referred to as Henwick Park, also include 12.75 hectares of public open space, including a park, allotments, a community orchard, a sports pitch and pavilion, along with children’s play areas.

Croudace says the land will be open to the general public and reached by a wide range of transport.

However, it proposes handing the land and money to maintain it over to West Berkshire Council, Cold Ash Parish or Thatcham Town Council.

The developer also says there is provision for a GP surgery to meet local demand.

And, to protect the new homes from flooding, Croudace is proposing to build flood alleviation ponds on the site.

The development would sit in Cold Ash parish on the boundary of Thatcham’s North and West wards.

Croudace argues its scheme will provide economic and social benefits by helping to “maintain the vitality and viability of services and facilities in the village centre”, while the public park and play area will “address the deficiency” in Thatcham.

Henwick Park would be accessed off an enlarged roundabout at the junction of Heath Lane and Cold Ash Hill, while another route will be created off Bowling Green Road between Northfield Road and Conway Drive.

The developer argues that “there would not be any demonstrable harm” from extra traffic and that there would be no severe impact on local roads.

It adds that discussions to extend the 101 bus route through the development are ongoing. 

The chairman of Cold Ash Parish Council, Richard Marsh, said: “In the past Cold Ash Parish Council had great concerns over this site. The main issues being traffic on the neighbouring roads, flooding and the sustainability of the development.”

The site was left off West Berkshire Council’s list of preferred development sites as it was deemed as being too far from the town centre, with flooding issues and limited public transport options.

The developer has wasted little time in using a government ruling to support its case; highlighting a recent ruling in Burghfield where 90 homes were approved on appeal after a planning inspector ruled that the district council’s housing strategy and figures were out of date.

To view and comment on the application enter 15/01949/OUTMAJ into West Berkshire Council’s planning website.

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