Saturday, 17 November 2018

Plans for 40 homes set to be approved

PLANS for 40 new homes in Lewknor look set to be approved despite objections from the parish council and the Campaign to Protect Rural England.

Rainier Developments wants to develop five acres of land off Watlington Road, which is owned by All Souls’ College, Oxford.

The company originally proposed 50 homes but has reduced the total and says 16 of the properties would be “affordable”.

South Oxfordshire District Council’s planning committee is being recommended to approve the application when it meets on Wednesday.

In a report, planning officer Katherine Canavan says: “The provision of 16 affordable dwellings towards the district’s need for housing provides a social and economic benefit and the total 40 dwellings would contribute meaningfully to the five-year housing land supply.”

The development would “continue to conserve the landscape and scenic beauty” of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and “would not result in harm to it or a significant change to the wider landscape”.

She adds: “Taking into account the social and economic benefits of the scheme, the level of services and connectivity with nearby larger villages and towns, and weighing up any harm which may outweigh the benefits, I am satisfied that the development is sustainable.”

Lewknor Parish Council says that taking into account the houses already built or approved since 2011, if permission is given for this scheme the quota for the size of a small village would be exceeded by 25 per cent.

It says there are no bus services through the village, no safe cycle routes for secondary school pupils to either Watlington or Chinnor and no footpaths.

The committee of the South Oxfordshire district of the CPRE said the development would not be in keeping with the character of Lewknor or with similar settlements in the AONB.

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