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76-home plan is 'over urbanisation' of Headley

No local need for number of houses off Thornford Road says council

Jonathan Ashby

Jonathan Ashby

jonathan.ashby@newburynews.co.uk

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01635 886637

76-home plan is 'over urbanisation' of Headley

MORE than 90 people have objected to a major housing development in Headley.

Kelmscot Building Company has submitted an application for outline planning permission for an access road and up to 76 homes and associated parking and landscaping to be built on a greenfield site off Thornford Road, just south of the Thornfield residential area.

The houses would be a mix of detached, semi-detached and terraced two-storey houses, 30 (40 per cent) of which would be classed as ‘affordable’.

Although the site is outside the defined settlement boundary, it has been included in Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s strategic housing and economic land assessment as a site identified for housing.

The design and access statement for the proposal said: “The proposed development has been sensitively designed to respond to its context with regard to the local architecture and setting within the landscape.

“The scheme will retain high-quality ecological habitat within the layout and retain natural landscapes features, including existing ditches.

“High-quality open spaces are provided, including a natural play area next to the semi-natural broadleaf woodland.

“A well-considered landscaping scheme is proposed for the open spaces.

“These spaces will provide an attractive environment, usable community amenity space and will encourage biodiversity.”

The application is only for outline planning permission, meaning that the applicant is establishing whether the scale and nature of the proposed development would be acceptable to the borough council, before a fully detailed proposal is put forward.

The application – submitted in July – has attracted 91 objections online, and Ashford Hill with Headley Parish Council has labelled it “excessive and disproportionate”.

The council said the scheme would over-urbanise the rural setting and have a destructive impact on the surrounding nature, while also arguing that Headley lacked the amenities to serve the potential development and that the houses would put even more pressure on the local transport infrastructure.

In its response, the council said: “This proposed development will significantly change the look, characteristic and population of Headley and further urbanisation will add nothing to the characteristics of this ancient village.

“There is no local need in the parish for the number of houses proposed by this application.

“To fulfil the borough’s need for more housing, it would be more sensible to place developments of the proposed size in or adjacent to larger settlements which have the facilities to support them and the public transport infrastructure to reduce commuter traffic pressures.”

To view the application, go to the borough council’s planning portal and enter the reference 20/01796/OUT.

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