Herefordshire village plans ‘Trojan horse’ for more homes

A planned housing estate on the edge of a Herefordshire village “is going to be a Trojan horse” for much larger development, a nearby resident said.

An extraordinary meeting of the Stoke Lacy Parish Council has been called to present a response to a request to develop 20 housing units in the village, on a compact site near the A465.

But Roland Horton said the site plan and the design and access statement submitted with the application depicted a much larger 3.9 hectare site, which could contain “80 to 100” houses.

He and his wife hired planning consultant Vicky Simpson to submit a formal objection to the proposal.

“It’s not clear what the site’s development plans are beyond homes and infrastructure,” his submission says.

“The inclusion of the additional land… raises concerns that the applicant is using this planning request as a vehicle to request new authorizations for residential development on the entire site. ”

He also notes that Stoke Lacy “has already delivered 28 houses in one development” as well as other developments, which puts him ahead of the 15% additional housing required by the Herefordshire Base Strategy, the development master plan in the whole county.

“As such, there is no justification for the additional homes in the countryside at this time,” Ms. Simpson’s report concludes.

Mr Horton also claimed that the sewage from the new homes “will end up in the Lodon River and therefore in the village”, and pointed out that protected crested newts were abundant in the area.

Parish Council President Janet Ivison said: “We are aware that this is over-development and will formulate a response to the planning committee (of Herefordshire Council).”

She agreed with another resident, Marcel Carrier, that “they are in the wrong place and we have no facilities for them”.

The meeting brought together around thirty concerned residents.

Local County Councilor Jonathan Lester said: “It’s important that you are here – the more people I can represent (on the planning committee) the better.

He explained that while the basic strategy “sets a bare minimum of 15% housing growth for Stoke Lacy,” planners will instead question whether the proposal amounts to “proportionate” development or whether it was “well beyond- above ”the requirements of the village. .

“Stoke Lacy can say he’s done his part already,” he said. “But I don’t know how they will react. Meanwhile, the entire basic strategy is under review. ”

At the suggestion to instead build houses in Hereford, Councilor Lester said: “You cannot determine where a development will apply to construction. ”

Concerns were also expressed that the new development would overlook a section of the A465 where speeding is common.

Parish Council Clerk Paul Hayden said: “We’ve had a significant number of accidents there – you can double the number reported to the police.”

Police are currently measuring speeds along the stretch to support an offer to lower the speed limit, he said.

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