Monday, 21 September 2020

Developer plans 51 homes in field at edge of village

FIFTY-ONE new houses could be built on a farmer’s field on the northern outskirts of Goring.

McAdden Homes, of Spencers Wood, Reading, is seeking  permission to develop the 3.6-hectare site to the east of Wallingford Road, which runs behind the houses in Springhill Road.

The land is earmarked for about 46 units in the village’s neighbourhood plan.

The developer originally planned to build 48 homes but increased this following a public consultation in June.

A total of 40 per cent would be “affordable”, meaning the rent or purchase price would be fixed below the market rate or sold under shared ownership schemes, in line with the neighbourhood plan.

McAdden proposes to build 20 two-bedroom properties, of which 13 would be “affordable”, 18 three-bedroom homes (five affordable), seven with four bedrooms and four with five bedrooms as well as two affordable one-bedroom units. There would be a mix of detached, semi-detached and terraced properties, including bungalows, with a total of 118 parking spaces.

The company also intends to demolish a property in Springhill Road to create a smaller three-bedroom home overlooking a new pedestrian and cycle access to the site.

Cars would enter the development from the main road to the west.

The properties would be in varied styles incorporating red brick and clay roof tiles to reflect the look of neighbouring streets.

They could have rooftop solar panels, heating systems which absorb warmth from the outside and wiring to enable the installation of electric car charging points.

All would be located at the foot of the sloped field, which is owned by the Hildred family of farmers. This is to address concerns that building on higher ground would spoil views of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The developer says the estate would be invisible from the surrounding countryside as it would be hidden behind a ridge.

McAdden would designate 0.42 hectares of land at the north-eastern corner of the field as public open space with landscaping and a play area and there would be a footpath leading to the field to the north.

Acanthus Clews, the company’s agent, says: “The complex site constraints have been overcome and tested by seeking pre-application advice and consulting the public.

“The proposal provides a positive addition to the existing setting though a high-quality design which responds to the local vernacular.

“The overall layout is well connected with the wider community through pedestrian and cycle routes as well as vehicle access.

“It forms a well-considered edge to the existing village and the low-level ridge heights reduce the impact on the wider environment.”

Five neighbours have objected, claiming the scheme would increase traffic on surrounding streets and pose a risk to children travelling to and from Goring Primary School.

McAdden was originally proposing to build a new primary school on the field because the village’s existing school, which was built in the Sixties, is too small and is in poor condition.

This plan proved impossible because the developer also wanted to build more housing on another field which was not included in the neighbourhood plan. The school now hopes to expand and renovate its existing premises.

South Oxfordshire District Council, the planning authority, is due to make a decision by the end of October and must take into account the neighbourhood plan, which passed a referendum last year.

Goring Parish Council, which supervised the volunteers who wrote the plan, will  recommend acceptance or refusal.

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