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News Archive > General > Opposition to scheme for 60 homes in village

Opposition to scheme for 60 homes in village

By Beth Perry 14th November 2018

Opposition to scheme for 60 homes in village

CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a housing estate in Cubert are being vehemently opposed following concerns the village will be changed forever to the detriment of parishioners, visitors, wildlife and future generations.

More than 100 residents have objected to Kingsley Developments’ outline planning proposal to construct up to 60 houses on greenfield land off Wesley Road.

Cubert Parish Council and a campaign group titled Wesley Road Action Group, which has been established to fight the plans, have also lodged objections due to fears the scheme would irreversibly change the historical boundaries of the village, would concrete over Grade Two farming fields, increase traffic congestion and cause unnecessary harm to the intrinsic character, beauty and wildlife of the parish.

Objectors also argue there should not be a special exemption for the greenfield land being permitted to be built upon as there is no identified exceptional need for affordable housing that has not already been catered for within the parish.

A spokesman for Wesley Road Action Group said: “We fully understand the pressure to deliver housing targets, the need for truly affordable homes and to develop sustainable communities, especially in rural areas, but believe this development is entirely unjustified and should be rejected.

“The identified housing need of 30 individuals, of which only 17 have a specified local connection due to their current or previous address being Cubert, will be met by developments which have already gained planning permission.

“Cubert and its wider Community Network area already have a surplus of 61% upon their housing target to be delivered by 2030 – some 674 extra houses. The development will cause cumulative and residual harm to our road network with approximately 450 additional cars driving through the village on a daily basis.

“Our idyllic village will be changed forever to the detriment of parishioners, visitors, wildlife and future generations – the village boundary being changed by the backdoor by developers interested in personal profit rather than true local need and views. Once breached where will it stop?

“Further significant development could not be sustained by the existing infrastructure as there is minimal employment in the village, poor roads, restricted public transport, dangerous cycling routes and vehicular access onto the A3075, limited medical provision, primary and local secondary schools bursting at the seams and a sewerage system already under stress.

“The rich landscape and rolling views towards St Austell and down the coast will be destroyed, changing the setting within which valuable Cornish heritage assets and potentially valuable archaeological sites are to be found.

“From everyone we’ve spoken to in the village everyone agrees with the fundamental concept of delivering truly affordable local homes for local people, but this needs to be achieved by siting these in the right place, at the right scale, in line with the character and preservation of the unique heritage of the village and not by concreting over our greenspaces and countryside.

“The need for development also needs to be underpinned by evidenced local need. Our local need has been more than adequately offset by developments already with planning permission and therefore this proposal, if agreed, will bring no benefit to the village. Instead our sense of place will be irretrievably damaged whilst developers’ profits expand.   

“Decision-makers need to ensure development is proportionate to the size of the existing community and take into account developments, and the associated impact, which have already achieved planning permission. At nearly five acres and with the number of houses increasing the village by 15% without the infrastructure to support it, there is no justification for this development in this place or at this scale.”

A spokesman for Cubert Parish Council added: “This application is allegedly being made for an affordable-led Cornwall Plan Policy 9 Rural Exception Site, used to provide affordable housing to cater for an identified local need using the Local Connection indicators and family preferences on the Homechoice register. The parish council has no knowledge of the preferences of the 28 Local Connection families on the Homechoice Register regarding where those families wish to be housed.

“Rural Exception Sites are used for just that, an exception, to cater for the local need of a rural parish in exceptional circumstances. There is no identified exceptional need for affordable housing that has not already been catered for within the parish, and there is no need for this Rural Exception Site.

“Conversely, there would be adverse and harm provided, as this site would be used to house families from outside of the parish and ward areas, to the detriment and loss of Grade Two farmland, the addition of yet more gridlock and chaos on roads in the immediate area, and the enforced transportation of local children to primary schools outside of the parish and ward areas for many years to come.”

By Beth Perry 14th November 2018

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