‘Invest’ plea as extra homes added to plan
Call for new facilities before housing is ‘shoehorned’
PLANS to build 166 homes in the north of Bishop’s Cleeve could be given the go-ahead next week despite a councillor’s demands for community facilities.
Developer Persimmon Homes wants to add 40 smaller homes as part of a resubmission of plans to build 126 homes in the Cleevelands development.
But Councillor Richard Stanley told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that community centres should be built before these homes were “shoehorned” into the village.
The builder has proposed that 40 per cent of the 166 homes would be affordable and has applied to build an area of public open space with an equipped play area, as well as a number of greenways through the housing estate.
Persimmon said the development was “sensitive to the local context of Bishop’s Cleeve”.
The new proposal, known as phase 3 of the Cleevelands scheme, shows a greater number of smaller houses – designed for couples and small families – fitting into the existing housing plan, replacing larger homes.
Council officers have recommended Tewkesbury Borough Council’s planning committee approves the proposal at its meeting next week.
The village has a population of around 15,000, boosted in part by the recent developments of 450 homes in Homelands and nearly 600 in the Cleevelands development, which were approved by the Government in 2012. The borough council appealed the decision in the High Court, but the plans were given the go-ahead in 2013.
It is also set to grow. Persimmon wants to extend the Greenacres site north by an extra 500 homes on fields opposite the Farmers’ Arms.
The Cleevelands development includes 590 homes in the north of Bishop’s Cleeve split into five phases, with a new convenience store and retail spaces.
In 2017, a plan to approve a 64-bed care home was approved as part of the scheme.
Fencing and signs were erected in April around the plot in Sapphire Road, stating: ‘Your new shopping centre at Cleevelands’ is ‘coming 2020.’
Throughout the past year, Bishop’s Cleeve Parish Council, borough councillors and residents have raised concerns over a lack of infrastructure in the village as large-scale housing developments are approved.
Councillor Stanley, who represents the village, said: “Bishop’s Cleeve is a fantastic community but its infrastructure was not designed for a population the size of a small town. Residents are clear that they want to see investment in services before additional housing is approved.
“Our community is still waiting for two long-overdue community centres and this issue should be being resolved before the developers are permitted to shoehorn in more housing on an existing site.”
A design and access statement submitted by Persimmon said it believed the proposed development met the aims and objectives of the outline masterplan.
It also felt the design was in keeping with the surroundings and created “a simple, elegant and contemporary character of its own whilst maintaining the feel of a coherent development”.
Persimmon said it was committed to building a high-quality development “sensitive to the local context”. Its scheme aimed to make the most efficient use of land, was appropriate to the setting and promoted better access to local facilities. It added that the layout also supported crime prevention and community safety.
According to a council report, a planning official said: “The principle of residential development on the site has been established and is considered to accord with joint core strategy and emerging borough plan policies.”
Councillors will determine the application on Tuesday, from 10am.
Councillor Richard Stanley says community centres should be built before the homes are ‘shoehorned’ into Bishop’s Cleeve