Events field faces being lost forever so homes can be built

PUBLISHED: 06:51 13 February 2018

Court de Wyck Primary School pupils danced around at the May Day bank holiday but for how much longer?

Court de Wyck Primary School pupils danced around at the May Day bank holiday but for how much longer?

Archant

A housing developer wishes to build over a popular community field which has hosted events for years.

Newland Homes revealed at a public exhibition last week it wants to build on Claverham’s May Day Field as part of a large housing estate.

About 100 homes are proposed for the former UTC Aerospace Systems site, but the scheme goes beyond the factory footprint, and instead reveals Newland’s desire to build on the untouched northern field, as well as around the village hall.

Only last month the village voted in favour of a neighbourhood plan for Claverham, which is designed to shape building policy, but Newland’s ideas go against what the community wanted.

Claverham Future led the creation of the plan and says Newland has not fallen in line with what the village wants.

Its spokesman said: “As expected the proposals go way beyond what is generously provided for in our neighbourhood plan.

“Housing is shown being built not only on the brownfield element, strongly supported by our plan, but also on the greenfield elements of the northern field and the May Day Field.

“It was intimated with no guarantee suggested or given, at the meeting and within the questionnaire, that a bargain could be made by supporting housing on the north field to preserve the May Day Field.

“Any such support would be support for development on greenfield outside of the settlement boundary and would create a precedent for following developers on similarly placed fields around Claverham.

“Essentially, one of the main features of the neighbourhood plan would be brought into question.

“While it was said that the neighbourhood plan was being given ‘due regard’, it is patent this was selective regard as full regard would never have resulted in a proposal for using the whole of the site, bar the village hall.

“Patently some matters of the plan were decided as due no regard.”

Newland Homes was carrying out the consultation ahead of putting in a planning application, which it expects to submit in the spring.

It is proposing 100 homes or bungalows for the village, but says the scheme will be developed ‘sensitively’ so as to protect the listed buildings on 
site.

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