Residents resist housing development
PLANS to build more than 100 homes on conservation land in Wroughton have met with opposition from local residents.
Among the many concerns voiced to developers Hannick Homes, of Dammas Lane, are fears over road safety at the access point to the site, as well as the effect on landscape character and water drainage.
The pre-application plans for the development were shown to residents at a public consultation on Saturday, and the most recent planning committee meeting at Wroughton Parish Council attracted more than 60 residents. Catherine Roberts, 44, of Marlborough Road, which backs onto the fields where Hannick Homes propose to build, is co-ordinating a long list of objections.
“However big the list of objections is, you get the feeling it is just going to go ahead anyway,” she said.
“It is to be located in the old quarter of Wroughton, which is a conservation area, so it will impact the environment and the general outlook of the area.
“How they are going to access it is a huge concern. They have approached residents to buy their properties in order to gain an access route to the site, and have bought one and two The Old Bakery for demolition.
“When the current houses were built they had to install a mini roundabout at the top after there was a fatality on the road, and if it wasn’t for the houses being demolished they would have a real problem in getting access to the land.
“The junction will be on a very narrow road, with on-road parking spaces. If those parking spaces go it will turn the street into a rat run.”
Another resident of Marlbor-ough Road, who asked to remain anonymous, said: “We want assurances about water supply capability. We have had a number of water leaks in the area and we do not want to add to that. It feels like the infrastructure will be very fragile and we wonder how it would cope with expansion.”
Jamie Lewis, planning consultant at Hunter Page, acting for Hannick Homes, said: “I would say most people are concerned that there needs to be as much housing in Wroughton as the Local Plan sets out.
“People who live close to the site are concerned about the usual things. Difficult issues have been raised but we have also had people saying it is a good site and we need more housing, But they are certainly in the minority.
“We feel we have a suitable access point. We have been looking at putting in drop kerbs and a crossing to the other side where they have a footpath.
“Our initial conversations with Highways at Swindon Council indicated that they feel there is a capability for this level of development. They have no issues at this stage with the access point.
“Where we can address concerns, we will do that before making any application. There will be conversations with Thames Water and we have had a hydrologist look at the site. They have confirmed the issue of the high water table, and we will need to make provision on the site.”
Hannick Homes declined to comment.
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