Laverstock and Ford Council object to Church Road application

LAVERSTOCK and Ford Parish Council voted to formally object to the Church Road Planning application at a meeting on Monday night.

The plans to build 135 homes were submitted by a land management company last week. 

The parish council has compiled a list of 13 fundamental issues it has with the plans, including Wiltshire Council’s “failure to meet its five year land supply target not being used as a justification for the plans”.

Almost 130 people have already commented on the application, and the overwhelming majority are opposed to the plans.

Salisbury Journal:

‘Very strong opposition’

Nick Baker, chairman of Laverstock and Ford Parish Council, says the parish council’s objections reflect the very strong opposition to the development from across the community.

He said: “The developer’s presentation reinforced my personal feeling that they are trying to build the maximum number of houses at the minimum possible quality in a totally unsuitable location.

“I was disappointed by their lack of prior engagement with the local community and the way this proposal is contrary to several democratically agreed core policies”.

He added that it was “clear that very little research has been done” into the traffic impact of the plans on a “already highly congested road”.

He said: “Despite branding this a sustainable development the scheme’s financial viability appears based on meeting the minimum environmental standards and making no attempt to achieve carbon neutrality.”

Salisbury Journal: Artists impression, land off Church Road

‘There is no local need’

The 13 reasons in full are:

  1. Wiltshire Council’s failure to meet its five year land supply target should not be used to justify this application.
  2. The site contravenes Core Policy 1/2 of the current Wiltshire Council Core Strategy, namely that Laverstock, which is defined as a small village, is limited to infill only (generally one or two new houses in plots between existing dwellings), unless there is a compelling need within the village for development. The parish council say: “The neighbourhood planning team has demonstrated that there is no such local need”.
  3. This site is “highly inappropriate for a large development”, adding: “Cocky Down is one of the outstanding natural features of the area and this development would intrude significantly into the views from the village and also from the down across towards the River Bourne and Castle Hill”.
  4. This site directly adjoins the Cocky Down SSSI and forms a green corridor between it and the adjoining River Bourne SSSI. The site itself is a designated Special Nature Area. Development on this site would risk loss of green space of significant ecological value.
  5. Church Road has a !long history of massive daily traffic congestion”, and it believes the road would be incapable of supporting a further 135 dwellings.
  6. The proposed car park would work against the initiative which Wiltshire Council, Laverstock & Ford Parish Council and local schools have been working on to reduce traffic congestion in the area.
  7. The proposed car park would not have a purpose or regular use outside school hours and has the potential to become a focus for anti-social behaviour.
  8. This planning application must be assessed against the background of a “long series of extensive housing developments in the parish, (1775 dwellings in the last 14 years) which have had the effect of eroding the semi-rural character and ancient landscape setting of the parish, and increasing traffic”.
  9. The site was not considered in the Wiltshire Council emerging Local Plan proposals for strategic allocation to meet planned growth of Salisbury through to 2036 because it fails the exclusion criteria – it is not adjacent to the Salisbury Settlement Boundary.
  10. Considered alongside existing the development on the opposite side of Church Road and the nearby schools, this area connects visually with the higher land of Cockey Down (Site of Special Scientific Interest) and an adjacent (County Wildlife Site). The visual gap when viewed from the road is considered locally important.
  11. The site proposed for development is “high quality agricultural land”.
  12. The area of in question is potentially considered to an “archaeologically sensitive area”.
  13. The location of the oil pipeline has not been reported accurately and its impact on the development not fully considered.

To view the planning application, or to read the comments, click here.

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