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Bishops Green residents blast proposals to build 400 homes in village

Development would "devastate" area

Jonathan Ashby

Jonathan Ashby

jonathan.ashby@newburynews.co.uk

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01635 886637

Bishops Green residents blast proposals to build 400 homes in village

BISHOPS Green residents are up in arms about proposals to build 400 new homes in their village.

As reported in the Newbury Weekly News last week, a huge housing development could be built on Bishops Green Farm after the owner entered an agreement with Catesby Estates to promote the site.

This means that Catesby Estates would seek to get outline planning permission for a development and then market the site to housebuilders.

The company has put together a ‘vision’ for the village, transforming it from an “incidental settlement” to a “sustainable village community”, bringing social and economic benefits.

However, in a virtual Ecchinswell, Sydmonton and Bishops Green Parish Council meeting on Tuesday, December 15, as part of a consultation on the project, concerned local residents lined up to voice their opposition.

Robert Mallinson said: “I’m shocked at what’s been shown this evening – it looks like it’s going to devastate our area if it were to proceed.

“The whole area is on an edge anyway.

“When it rains we see a lot of standing water, there’s a lot of drainage off the farmland already and if that was a built-up area, that’s going to be massively increased.

“For me, I like running but even now I don’t feel safe running down over the bridge, and that’s during the day.

“At night it’s even worse, it’s very treacherous, and if we had another up to 800 cars I think we’re going to see serious, serious problems.”

Fellow resident Ade added: “We bought these houses 20-odd years ago and have enjoyed the spectacular views ever since.

“This would completely mar why we bought the houses in this area.

“It would completely destroy it.”

The council also heard from Basingstoke and Deane borough councillor Graham Falconer, who is the ward member for Burghclere, Highclere and St Mary Bourne.

Mr Falconer said the proposals had come completely out of the blue.

He said: “It’s not in any of our plans, it hasn’t had any consideration and the council is in the same position as you are.

“Catesby Estates has raised a flag and we wait and see what’s coming down the track.

“Until it becomes a formal application, there’s nothing we can really look at.”

The consultation is ongoing.

For more information, go to http://www.ecchinswell-pc.gov.uk/Home_2082.aspx 

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