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Locals object to plan for houses
9:00am Sunday 10th February 2013 in News
MORE than 30 people packed into a parish meeting to show their opposition to plans for 45 new homes in Malvern Wells.
Developer Landseer Homes and the Abbey College are seeking planning permission for a mixture of affordable and open market homes on land owned by the college between Rothwell Road and Hanley Road.
But they are opposed by local residents, who were boosted when members of Malvern Wells Parish Council’s planning committee opposed the bid at a meeting on Wednesday.
Although the site has been included in the emerging South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) – a blueprint for where building should take place between now and 2030 – it is only allocated 35 homes.
The parish council feels the application should be refused because it is seeking to build more homes than that figure, and the run-down land – formerly playing fields – should be restored to recreational or agricultural use.
Councillors are also concerned about the impact of the development on the area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB).
Rothwell Road resident Peter Walter felt the design and layout of the site was “considerably different” to what was presented during earlier consultation.
He also said traffic implications were “grossly underestimated” and the proposal would set a precedent for further development of surrounding countryside.
“Ideally residents would have liked to keep this site out of the SWDP as a lot of people feel there should not be any major development in the AONB,” he said.
Planning agent Boughton Butler says that planning laws protect the AONB from “major”
development. However it does not believe the proposal falls into that category, adding that there is an “established need”
for both housing and affordable housing in Malvern Wells.
It also says the application site should be considered as brownfield land as it is derelict and overgrown and that the former sports fields have now been replaced with pitches nearer to the college.