Council to challenge housing plans

Council response to development plans in Nailsea.

Council response to development plans in Nailsea. - Credit: Archant

NAILSEA Town Council has agreed to challenge plans to allocate land to the north west of the town for hundreds of homes.

Scores of residents turned up to a meeting to object to North Somerset Council’s Sites and Policies Development Plan, which proposes earmarking land for up to 450 homes.

Residents raised concerns such as regular flooding in the area and traffic problems and, at its meeting on April 10, Nailsea Town Council agreed to challenge the proposals.

It had initially asked North Somerset Council to review the greenbelt in Nailsea in the hope of freeing up land to the north east for development and protect the green space between Nailsea and Backwell, but the appeal was declined by the authority and planning inspector.

Speaking at the meeting, council chairman Rod Lees said: “What is clear is that North Somerset is proposing a single site at north west Nailsea because no other significant sites can be considered as a result of their refusal to consider all potential sites. This is not acceptable.

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“The town council is trying to avoid opportunistic planning applications by developers, but the reality is that any designation of land, even greenbelt, can be challenged.”

The town council agreed to renew its appeal to North Somerset Council to review the greenbelt in the town.Members also agreed to ask for a number of smaller developments around the town, instead of one large settlement, which would enable the community to better absorb the extra homes.

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Cllr Liz Frappell said: “There are various pockets of land around Nailsea that could take 50 more homes rather than all of them going to north west Nailsea.”

The council stressed the importance of allowing more development to boost the falling population and keep the schools and shops open, but said growth should be limited. The authority is also asking for a mixture of homes including starter homes for young families and smaller properties to allow people to downsize.

The sites and policies document is part of the core strategy which sets out plans for the district until 2026. The closing date for comments on the sites and policies document is on Friday.

The document will then be revised before further consultation is carried out and then the plan will be submitted to an independent examiner.

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