Residents urge Wellingborough councillors to reject plans which they fear will turn their village into a town

But the application for 98 dwellings in Wollaston has been recommended for approval

Saturday, 31st October 2020, 6:00 am
The site of the proposed development in Wollaston

Residents are urging councillors to reject plans for 98 homes which they fear will turn their village into a town.

Bloor Homes Ltd has applied for full planning permission for a residential development consisting of 98 dwellings as well as community woodland, a sustainable urban drainage pond, infiltration basin and swale, open space including children's play area and access arrangements off Hookhams Path.

The application, which has received numerous objections including from Wollaston Parish Council, will be considered by Wellingborough Council's planning committee on Wednesday (November 4).

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The proposed site is 6.3 hectares of agricultural land adjacent 25 Hookhams Path on the eastern edge of Wollaston.

If the plans are approved, there would be 59 market dwellings and 39 affordable dwellings.

About 300 people attended a consultation event in January and 127 feedback forms were returned.

Most of the comments received related to off-site issues such as traffic, transport, parking and capacity of local facilities such as local medical facilities and schools.

Feedback showed design of the scheme did not feature as a major concern and the applicant said that generally comments on this subject were positive.

A report prepared for councillors ahead of next week's meeting says 30 letters of objection have been received from people living near the site.

Their concerns include the impact of increased traffic on the narrow and already congested streets causing bottle necks.

They say Hookhams path is busy and at school drop off and pick up times is extremely congested.

Other concerns include that the doctors surgery would require extra capacity to cope with the increased population and residents have questioned the lack of a shop, dentist or GP facilities within the development.

They are also calling for clarity on Bloor Homes' contribution to local facilities.

The report states another concern: "Do not turn the village into a town, the village should be kept the size it is and so existing residents can continue to get to know our residents that we already have.

"Build on the towns for the people that want to live in a town and do not mind growth."

The report says that while the parish council is not opposed to the principle of development on the site, it is opposed to a development of 98 dwellings on the site.

However, the recommendation for councillors is to delegate to the director to approve subject to various conditions and following completion of a Section 106 planning agreement.

And the report for councillors concludes: "There are no objections from any consultees and no evidence of any material harm arising from the number of dwellings proposed.

"The proposed development is well thought out and accompanied by a very comprehensive package to mitigate any harm caused by the development to existing infrastructure and community facilities.

"In relation to the planning balance, the social, economic and environmental benefits of the proposed scheme far outweigh any harm caused by the proposed development and would result in the delivery of much needed housing to meet the current needs of Wollaston.

"In the absence of any material considerations of sufficient weight, it is recommended that the proposal be approved subject to conditions and the completion of a suitably worded agreement under s106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 including the heads of terms set out above."

Wednesday's online meeting starts at 7pm.

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