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Representations on Preferred Options Consultation - Land at Stratford Road, Warwick - 1 Introduction
SUPPORT Carta Developers (Stuart Carruthers)
Representing Gypsies and Travellers evicted from Kites Nest Lane, Beausale and who are homeless.
The family's are in desperate need of accommodation. If the Council should be making the site at Stratford North available they would wish to have the opportunity to live on this land, and enter into negotiations with the Council. The land designated for industrial use should possibly be changed to enable the Council to facilitate this rather than the land being identified as for use as a Gypsy Site in its consultation being in private ownership.
If the Council should have no intention of making provision for Gypsy / Travellers in the district it needs to identify this unambiguously so that the Kites Nest Lane site can be reopened to meet need. The site might not be ideal. However, currently it is all that is available. They are unable to identify alternative affordable land on which they can live.
There needs to be a fair resolution to the problem caused by there being a lack of accommodation for the Gypsy / Traveller community.
OBJECT Cllr Elizabeth Higgins
Warwick Town Council has rejected this site on planning grounds and feels the Localism Act is being ignored with such a weight of evidence against this site.
1. Too close to main arterial road leading to historic town & Castle, will not attribute to the aesthetics of Warwick
2. In close proximity to two hotels
3. Ditto to prestigious training centre
4. Tournament Fields (employment) not yet fully let
5. Near existing employment land
6. Near huge 21st C housing estate
"The above site was not included in previous consultations because of the proximity of the sewage works.
All the other proposed permanent sites, with one exception have fallen and the DC have now identified a site on the land referred to above and which is located within some 37 metres of the nearest residential property and located 400 metres from the Stratford Road and 760 metres from the M40 Junction.
Schools and communities are located within some 1.2 miles of the access to Longbridge Farm and there is a regular bus service in Stratford Road.
There may well be issues regarding flooding and access, for unless access is provided through the proposed commercial development, access would be via a narrow country lane, which passes a number of rural houses. The WCC have not yet advised on this issue.
Residents consider that the land should be regarded unsuitable for residential use because:
1. The close proximity of the sewage works and the M40
2. The inadequacy of access via Longbridge Lane
3. Issues regarding flooding possible contamination to the River Avon
4. The possible loss of amenity to residents on the access route
Access, Air, Water & Soil Quality, Flood Risk: the effect on the local economy and the fact that this proposed site pitch for 15 units is on the main highway from J 15 M40 down which most of Warwick Castle's 775,000 visitors arrive. It is unacceptable for a G & T site to be sited on an attractive entrance to the main Castle car park. The proposal for a G & T site is a negative proposal.
The illegal encampment on Tapping Way, this summer, has frightened many residents. So they have direct experience of living with G & Ts.
This land is not suitable for human habitation as planning would not be considered for houses, so why is it suitable for caravans?
Nearer the sewage works and cross the road in Chase Meadow and adjacent in Longbridge Manor the sewage works lets out a terrible smell four times a day, presumably when they release a valve to emit the gases, at 9 am, 2 pm, 9 pm and 2 am.
Chase Meadow Residents' Association organised a Public Meeting, at Aylesford School, on 4th Dec 2014. There was no representative from WDC Planning Dept or the Leader. One objection that hadn't occurred to me was the amount of money it will take, from WDC to make this land suitable. Figures of £250,000 to £3M have been suggested. The money will not be there.
Both Newburgh School and New Dispensary (GP practice) are fully subscribed and there is no hope of anymore children being admitted or patients registering there. WCC have recently expanded Newburgh School to accommodate the primary school children from Chase Meadow and there is now a proposal to build an extension to Aylesford School to be a 4-18 year old school, but that is not there yet. Budbrook School is in "special measures" because of over-crowding.
The land straddles a transition from the urban fringe of brown field environment to an area of open agricultural land which provides an appropriate setting for both the town - with St Mary's Church Tower visible for miles around - and the Castle. The aesthetics of Warwickshire Countryside should be maintained and the uncluttered view from the M40 of Warwick town centre and its Castle should be kept.
Warwickshire's Director of Public Health report cites various aspects of planning almost encouraging road traffic accidents (dangerous corner of A429 by Longbridge Lane) so siting this G & T units alongside J15 M40 and the A46 is just asking for .trouble. Once again, WCC Highways have not put in an objection on these grounds. There is no room for trucks/4 x 4s towing caravans to get down there. Therefore there must be another access.
Tournament Fields is a Severn-Trent Water investment in employment land with office blocks approached by a beautifully maintained entrance of two lakes (balancing ponds) with fountains. This is now 10 years old and almost fully let. Longbridge Manor, now HQ of Forever Living Products, is beautifully maintained and has lovely gardens. Longbridge Lane is one of the few remaining remnants of historic landscape on the main route into Warwick. Additionally there is no need for any more employment land as Tournament Fields is not yet fully let.
HMG's advice for G & T sites state they should be in a safe environment, WDC has flagged up this aspect as RED (negative) so what mitigation are you proposing? Is it safe to put caravans and families with children in between a river (flooding problems) and a motorway junction with noise 24/7? It is safe for them to be adjacent to a sewage works with its stink? Surely that is a "hazardous process"? So will this site ever get through the planning process?
WDC cite this as YELLOW (minor negative) as it is within flood plains 2 & 3. G & T sites are vulnerable (caravans and families with children) and should not be permitted where there is a high probability that flooding will occur.
OBJECT Mr Patrick Burrows
The two land owners have advised Chase Meadow Residents Association that they are both objecting to the G&T site. WDC has not, and cannot, provide evidence that the 'chosen site' is more available, more deliverable and/or more viable than all of the other previously considered and rejected sites on same basis. If CPO considered all similar sites should be brought back in for consideration.
Access cannot be achieved if land owners unwilling to allow it over their land and track would need bringing up to standard as set out in government guidance. Access to site would be on sharp bend on A429, the scene of accidents which could increase with large vehicles using access.
Caravan sites for permanent residence are considered "highly vulnerable" and should not be permitted in zone 3 areas. In the Consultation document, WDC indicates that mitigation could be taken to eradicate the threat completely. However there is no further detail. WDC has undertaken insufficient research to prove that mitigation work can be undertaken to completely eliminate any flood risk.
Air, Water & Soil Quality
In the SA air, water and soil quality was an area of significant concern. WDC have suggested that these issues could be 'mitigated' against but with little detail. Site located close to sewage works and a busy motorway is likely to have issues with all 3 and therefore is not suitable for a permanent residential development, particularly where children will live.
Proximity to the M40 must be an important factor because when considering alternative sites (WDC Gypsy and Traveller Site Assessments, August 2014) along the M40 corridor, WDC advised that there are severe noise issues within this area which could not be overcome in a way that may be possible for conventional houses.
In the WDC Sustainability Assessment, it identified that Economy was flagged as an uncertain (?). Tournament Fields owners feel that a G&T site in such close proximity to Tournament Fields would have a detrimental effect on prospective businesses considering Tournament Fields for office space.
We may be moving out of recession, but the addition of a G&T site in such close proximity to "Warwick's Premier Employment Site", can only have a negative effect on attracting local business.
One of the key criteria used to assess G&T sites, is "Promotes peaceful and integrated co-existence between the site and the local community". My objection on these grounds is influenced by over 400 signatures have been collected by Chase Meadow Residents Association in objection to the G&T site off Stratford Road on planning grounds. This does not include additional residents contacting you to object directly but, does include residents of The Peacocks and Longbridge village who will be most affected by the disturbance, noise and traffic from the residents of such a large permanent G&T site. Surely the volume and strength of opinion on this matter has to be taken into consideration?
SUPPORT Stratford-on-Avon District Council (Mr Sean Nicholson)
The proposed allocation at Stratford Road is supported.
The provision of an Emergency Stopping Place on the land East of Europa Way is not considered appropriate as the County Council is seeking to provide such sites elsewhere. It is also not considered appropriate to mix permanent pitches with an Emergency Stopping Place.
It would be preferable if the land east of Europa Way were allocated for permanent pitches, removing the need for 5 additional pitches at Harbury Lane/Fosse Way.
OBJECT Mr & Mrs Lee & Lucy Nash-Jones
Aware of need for Gypsy and Traveller sites and list of 20 potential sites, reduced to 5. Checked to see where sites were before purchasing property. Sites now reduced to 3, one on Stratford Road, not previously consulted on.
More housing will increase burden on local facilities: GP surgery and school.
Site not well placed close to M40. Smell from sewage works. Flood plain. Cost of flood defences.
Why is Stratford Road site more desirable than other 20?
OBJECT Mr Amrik Sembi
Accelerated choice of site to bypass fair and true selection process.
Loss of Green Belt.
Increased risk to road users with increase in traffic from new developments and Gypsies and Travellers.
OBJECT Mrs vicki rash
Having recently moved into the area, realise will now be sharing residential location, doctors surgery and schools with Traveller community.
OBJECT Mr Neil Owen
Site introduced at short notice and not on previous consultation list giving people less time to formulate an opinion.
Would lead to fall in desirability of Warwick as place to live and trade having seen mess left behind by travelling community on illegal encampment sites. This would be no different.
On prime route into Warwick with potentially damaging effects to Warwick's image.
OBJECT Michael Richer
The existing single farm track is completely unsuitable, with no viable plans for improving it or adding an alternative for emergencies.
Air, Water and Soil Quality
The claim that the effect of the smell from the sewage works can adequately be 'mitigated' by drawing a smaller circle round the works is disbelieved by residents of the nearer parts of the Chase Meadow estate. It depends which way and how strongly the wind is blowing.
The roar of traffic on the A46 70mph dual carrriageway very close to the site also blights all parts of the Chase Meadow estate. This location clearly breaches Government guidelines.
Part of the site is on a designated flood plain within flood zones 2 and 3, and there are no specific plans (or costings) to mitigate that.
Effect on the local Economy
Need to attract more business development to complete occupation of Tournament Fields business park, and there is ongoing residential development on and around Chase Meadow. Take-up of either is likely to be affected by the proposed G&T site.
OBJECT The Warwick Society (James Mackay)
This land represents, on a very small scale, the informal 'green belt' of the ancient hamlet of Longbridge, damage having already been done by the M40 and its junction.
Site would not provide satisfactory amenity for its occupants - close to River Avon and liable to flooding/unsafe for children.
It is severely affected by noise and air pollution from the m40. Impact on health would be unacceptable
OBJECT Jenny & Carl Johnstone
Site not included in original list of options, so no time for residents to share thoughts.
Little information/communication from the Council.
Two meetings were held during the day so workers couldn't attend, queues were long, time with planners, minimal and incorrect information given out.
Lack of public engagement in short timescale. Consultation should be redone.
Not an attractive place to live with motorway noise and air quality poor. Near sewage treatment works which can smell at a considerable distance.
Busy, fast road with difficult bend; a known accident spot
Safety issues of road, river and works for small children.
No real access and turn in dangerous for large vehicles. Visibility not good.
Impact on doctors surgeries and schools.
Lack of integration with local community.
Potential impact on tourism/local economy. Out of character.
OBJECT Ms Ellen Miller-Haynes
Process for choice of this site flawed. Consultation has been misleading.
Severn Trent land is not immediately available and they do not support this plan and will not allow access over their land.
CPO would fail criteria of land being immediately available and not in Council ownership
Size of site inappropriate for small village of Longbridge.
Building this close to M40 has health risks.
School oversubscribed and no funding for promised new school.
Poor access on dangerous corner off A429
Flood plain, but study needs more work and no costs given for work required
SA raised red flag against air, water and soil quality but doesn't say how you will resolve this.
Noise assessment not of acceptable quality occurring in single 4 hour period in good conditions
OBJECT Ms Iona Thomson
Access difficult and on a bend in the road.
Not a safe place for children.
Proximity to sewage works not ideal.
Concerns relate to:
Access - no details
Quality of the Environment - air, water and soil. Close to sewage works and motorway
Flood Risk - caravans are highly vulnerable and therefore not suitable in flood plain/zone 3 areas. Accompanying report is high level and sets out options but doesn't say that risk can be eliminated or outline costs.
Local Economic Impact - negative effect on Tournament Fields which remains partially undeveloped
OBJECT Mr Andrew Cruise
Stratford Road site was selected without being properly considered or previously consulted on.
The site has inadequate access.
The site is unsuitable due to its proximity to the sewage works.
Significant constraints and issues needed to overcome even to use the site for business use. These issues have not been addressed.
Potential serious damage to the unique Avon riverine.
The site is at risk of flood and should be excluded.
The local GP surgery is already over subscribed and has objected that there are inadequate local facilities.
Proximity to the M40 creates a health hazard to the potential gypsie and traveller residents.
There would be a serious negative impact on the local economy
A site on the main road into Warwick could damage the image of and visitor numbers.
There would not be good cohesion with the local established community
The council has failed to consult properly with local residents by failing to offer discussions and meetings at times that the majority can make.
The council should not ignore the will of such a high number of residents.
The council has failed to show why the Stratford Road site is more suitable than the other options; highly relevant if the decision is genuinely to be objective.
OBJECT Mr Jeremy Justin's Ashley
Not on original list of sites or short list. How can including site now be justified without due consultation similar to that for other sites.
OBJECT Mr Sam Jenkins
Not previously proposed site and with no public consultation.
Huge detrimental effect on the local area and will cost people a lot of money in falling house prices and increased house and vehicle insurance policies.
GP surgeries and primary schools are oversubscribed. Why should people living there for free share same facilities.
OBJECT Lisa Cressy
Site would mean permanent Gypsy site right next to schools.
Previous illegal encampment caused problems for local community.
Effect on house prices.
OBJECT Mrs Lisa Bacon
Stratford Road was never on original consultation list or subsequent short list. Assumes this has taken place without any communication to local residents/businesses?
Why is this considered a reasonable course of action?
OBJECT Miss Rachel Frost
Negative impact on Chase Meadow estate.
Would not be happy with school child walking to school alone if plan goes ahead.
OBJECT Dr Clara Green
Not a site previously considered and no information on Council's website. Local residents association forced to hand out flyers to tell residents when clearly not their job.
Traveller site will make area unsafe to detriment of local businesses.
House prices will plummet discouraging investment and having impact on jobs.
Recent illegal encampment showed no respect for people on the estate with:
1. Parking caravans in area not designated for such
2. Parking caravans on pavement stopping pedestrians having safe place to walk
3. Parking caravans which obstructed traffic
4. Drinking and noise late at night
5. Groups of men hanging around on-street at night being aggressive in nature.
6. Extensive littering
Caused local people to stay inside and children kept indoors.
Concern for safety of school children when site is constructed.
What financial compensation will be available when house prices fall?
OBJECT Mr Mark Carter
Recent developments have already placed burden on local infrastructure and amenities. Current and future development will increase burden on schools, doctors, road and recreational/social facilities; only exacerbated by Gypsy and Traveller sites.
Negative impact on tourism and local businesses with shop/restaurant owners already closing early at Bank Holiday race meeting when there is an influx of Gypsies and Travellers.
Site added at late stage, 'under the radar'.
Hope Warwick population views continue to be considered seriously.
OBJECT Mr Steven Baker
Already aware of necessity for permanent sites for travelling community and 20 sites on shortlist, reduced to 5. Bought house on basis that none were close by. Now find that new house overlooks potential site previously not under consideration. Severe implications for people in similar position.
OBJECT Mr Rudd
Incidents on M40 cause traffic to be diverted along Stratford Road. More traffic not needed, especially convoys of travellers, trailers and assorted vehicles.
Occasional illegal encampments nearby in last few years, causing noise and nuisance. Never can or will be harmony and integration between the two communities.
Realise it is a requirement to provide sites so they should be hidden away from other communities.
Businesses would not welcome traveller custom.
Bad smells from sewage treatment works.
Increase in lower flying air traffic since new B'hm airport runway. Enough inconvenience already shouldered by existing residents.
OBJECT Mr & Mrs Frank & Anne Busby
Site included at the last minute.
Schools, doctors surgery and other facilities are fully stretched.
Do not understand the way that travelling community works if expecting the number of pitches to be adhered to.
OBJECT Mr peter Whiting
Previous temporary encampments caused trouble, noise and inconvenience.
Effect on house prices.
Inadequate local facilities.
They will take priority at the GP surgery etc.
Needs and wishes of tax paying community should take precedence.
Europa Way should be first choice, especially as land at Harbury Lane is unlikely to become available for several years
OBJECT Tracy Davidson
Site not mentioned in previous consultations. Why were we not informed? Previous residents comments have not been taken into consideration. What has happened to the other proposed sites?
OBJECT Mr & Mrs Claire and Simon Carroll
There are better sites at Europa Way and Harbury Lane.
Detrimental effects on house prices, crime and quality of life.
Previous negative experience of site elsewhere.
Site should be nowhere near to Chase Meadow.
SUPPORT Bishop's Tachbrook Parish Council (Sean Deely)
Offers a larger number of positive characteristics than any other site proposed during the previous rounds of consultation
Can better meet the health needs of residents, with a number of GP surgeries and dental practices within walking distance
Access to and from the highway for articulated vehicles is made safe with excellent sight lines along the Stratford road in both directions. Provides excellent access to major roads
Site is lower lying and the proposal would have minimal impact on the local landscape and create negligible visual impact, particularly with the proposed landscaping.
Flooding risk has been assessed as low
Site is well served by public transport and there are a range of amenities available in nearby Warwick