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Unveiled, new plan for 43 homes on old playing field
2:00pm Friday 11th October 2013 in News
A DEVELOPER has unveiled plans for more than 40 new houses on a controversial former playing field site in Malvern Wells.
Cala Homes wants to build 43 homes on disused playing fields between Rothwell Road and Hanley Road.
The site is earmarked for 35 new homes in the emerging South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP), a planning blueprint mapping where growth should occur between now and 2030.
Its inclusion in the document came despite the efforts of Malvern Wells residents who lobbied that the site – in an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) – should be left untouched.
A previous application by developer Landseer Homes to build 45 homes on the site met with considerable public opposition and was withdrawn earlier this year.
Now Cala has stepped in and put forward a proposal for the site which it says is “in keeping with the character of the local area”.
The developer held a consultation event for local residents last week and plans to make a presentation to Malvern Wells Parish Council’s planning committee on Wednesday. It wants to build two, three and four bedroom homes, built from designs and materials in keeping the area, 15 of which would be affordable housing Cala’s regional managing director Darren Humphreys says it will retain many of the site’s existing hedgerows and trees and provide new ponds, woodland and grassland.
A new footpath is proposed to improve access to bus stops on Hanley Road as well as shops on the main A449 Wells Road.
Cala said if the development is approved, it will make “significant” investments towards local services and facilities. Mr Humphreys said: “The consultation event was part of an on-going programme to engage with the local communities in which we build and allow them to have their say on the kind of development they would like to see locally.”
Rothwell Road resident Peter Walter, who has been a vocal opponent of developing the site, said he would still rather it was returned to use as a playing field.
But he feels people now accept some development is inevitable since its inclusion in the SWDP and the latest proposal improves on previous plans.
“It is much more imaginative and in keeping with the area,” he said. “We are still upset that it is going to be developed at all but if it is going to be, this seems a much better plan.
“I think there is now a general acceptance there will be some development there. People are also tired. They feel they had their say and that it was not really taken notice of.”
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