Council pushes plans to build on south Warwickshire green belt

Land off Europa Way between Leamington and Warwick which has been earmarked for development as part of the Local Plan.

Land off Europa Way between Leamington and Warwick which has been earmarked for development as part of the Local Plan.

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Senior councillors have approved preferred options for developers to build more than 800 houses on rural land - including green belt land - in Warwick district.

As part of the area’s Local Plan, outline proposals to allocate some 835 of the 12,300 new homes earmarked for the district in and around its villages were agreed by councillors on the council’s executive committee on Wednesday. They will now be subject to a period of public consultation.

The council wants to build on green belt land in Baginton, Burton Green, Cubbington, Hampton Magna, Hatton Park, Kingswood, Leek Wootton, Shrewley, Hill Wootton and Hockley Heath. And under the plans, the size of Bishops Tachbrook would increase by 20 per cent, while Burton Green would grow by 28 per cent.

During the most recent public consultation on the Local Plan, 358 people responded and out of these, 328 - 92 per cent - objected to the plans, while only 30 people supported them.

The council’s development policy manager David Barber said he recognised that “some” people thought the figure of 12,300 was too high for the district - although he also said that the number was considered “too low” by some developers.

But he said: “However, unless the evidence suggests otherwise, it remains a reasonable level of growth to plan for.

“The villages which are currently in the green belt are technically ‘washed over’ with green belt, which substantially limits development or growth options.”

The council has received objections from villages across the district. One of many examples is the people of Bishops Tachbrook, who raised concerns about “unreasonable and unmanageable strain” on its school, doctor’s surgery and roads. The council has responded by saying that infrastructure planning is in place.

To find out more about the Local Plan and consultation dates, visit www.warwickdc.gov.uk/wdc/planning