Fierce objections to estate housing plans

PLANS to create 48 homes and eight hotel suites at a historic Clevedon estate have come up against some intense opposition from nearby residents.

More than 40 people attended a meeting of Clevedon Town Council’s planning committee on September 26 to voice their concerns about the proposals for the Clevedon Hall estate.

The plans would see 20 detached houses created in its north field, some backing on to homes in Pyne Point, and a further 28 created in the south field, behind homes in Old Church Road and The Homestead. Eight self-contained hotel suites are also planned for the estate’s Walled Garden.

This is the third application submitted for housing at Clevedon Hall. Previous plans for 111 houses and a care home were refused after plans for 123 homes and a care home were withdrawn in 2008.

During last week’s meeting, objectors raised many concerns about the latest proposals, including the accesses which would see vehicles only able to leave the site via an entrance and exit onto Elton Road. Access to the estate would also be created at the one-way entrance off Victoria Road.

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Concerns were raised the development would create extra flooding and issues were also raised about its potential detrimental effect on wildlife.

Val Burgess of Old Church Road said: “If you start building on the north field then any excess water will just run off down to the south.

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“The foliage will be taken away where there is a badger run. The estate is also home to bats, deer and owls – they will all be affected.”

Roger Thackeray of Pyne Point said: “If this application is granted it is quite possible these detailed plans would never be built.

“It wouldn’t be the first case when permission is granted and the land is sold on to a developer and the developer then comes back to the council, when the precedent has been set, saying they need to build more homes.

“The reason for the last application being refused was because the scale and location of the development would have caused irreversible harm to the Grade II-listed hall.

“Building on this site would counter North Somerset Council’s recently-agreed Core Strategy which clearly designates Clevedon Hall as an amenity area and a historic park and garden.”

During the meeting, councillors were asked to vote on three applications for the site: Listed building consent for alterations to the existing estate wall, the creation of 48 homes and eight hotel suites and listed building consent to install buttresses to strengthen part of the Walled Garden.

They voted to recommend all three be refused and their comments will now be sent to North Somerset Council, which has also received more than 30 other comments objecting to the plans.

Cllr Bob Garner, who said he would call the application in to be discussed by North Somerset Council’s north area planning committee, said: “The entrance from Elton Road is ludicrous and dangerous.

“I see no proposal to establish standard sized roads on the estate either.”

Cllr David Shopland said: “It is a tragedy the estate is going to be developed. It is also a tragedy that the council cannot buy it.

“We cannot expect a private individual to conserve a green space.”

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