New homes in Ashwell given green light despite 250 objections

PUBLISHED: 12:02 29 September 2019

The proposals by Croudace Homes for land behind Claybush Road in Ashwell has been designed to meet the requirements of the draft policy AS1 in the emerging NHDC Local Plan. Picture: North Herts District Council

The proposals by Croudace Homes for land behind Claybush Road in Ashwell has been designed to meet the requirements of the draft policy AS1 in the emerging NHDC Local Plan. Picture: North Herts District Council

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Plans to build 33 new homes in Ashwell have been given the green light by North Herts District Council – on the condition that plans for pedestrian access be improved.

The development will bring 20 three and four-bedroom houses to the market, and 13 social rented homes - four flats, and nine two and three-bed houses - on land behind Claybush Road.

The application was put forward by Croudace Homes - based in Letchworth - and FINC Architects, receiving 252 objections and three comments in support of the development during the public consultation.

The district council's planning control committee discussed and approved the application during a meeting on Thursday last week.

The site was allocated for development in the council's Local Plan, which is currently under review by independent planning inspector Simon Berkeley.

At the meeting, representative for Croudace Homes, Richard Kelly said: "We pride ourselves on the quality of the homes and communities we create. 
"The scheme has been designed to meet the requirements of the draft policy AS1 in the emerging Local Plan.

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"In designing the scheme we have sought to minimise the impact of adjoining properties and the wider area through careful consideration of height and positioning of dwellings.

"I commend the application to you as one I can trust you can support."

District councillor Daniel Allen and others raised questions over the safety of the pedestrian access to the site, and therefore was one of two who voted against granting planning permission.

Reacting to the decision, Councillor Steve Jarvis took to Twitter and said: "Regrettable that the NHDC planning committee has granted permission for development at Claybush Road, Ashwell, with a condition for improving pedestrian access which in unachieveable.

"We shouldn't be building houses where the only safe access is by car."

Mr Allen, the planning committee's vice-chair, replied: "The pedestrian access was dangerous and unsuitable for children or anyone of limited mobility.

"Ashwell is identified as a village that can accept more homes, but they must be sustainable."

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