Fears for cemetery are allayed by council
ACEMETERY will not be built over or relocated as part of plans to expand a West Country village by around 2,000 homes, a council has said.
A ‘garden community’ will be created to the south east of Whitchurch under the Local Plan 2016 to 2036 proposed by Bath and North East Somerset Council (B&NES).
On documents out for consultation on the proposal, illustrations show two options for the community, which will include homes, schools and a park and ride.
Fears had been raised locally that the plans show development on Whitchurch Cemetery, located between the A37 and Woodlard Lane.
However, a spokesman for B&NES has moved to reassure residents.
He said: “The maps in the options document are diagrammatic at this stage in order to show the broad options.
“Cemeteries are subject to statutory protection and there is no intention to relocate or build on Whitchurch Cemetery.
“As the Local Plan progresses we would look in more detail at the physical relationship and proximity of development to the cemetery.”
The Local Plan is put together by the council to provide a guide for future development in the region. It looks to address housing shortages.
Other schemes proposed as part of it include a North Keynsham Link Road from the A4175 to A4, plus another ‘garden community’ to the north of Keynsham, providing 1,500 homes.
Councillor Bob Goodman, cabinet member for development and neighbourhoods, said: “The Local Plan will shape the future of Bath and North East Somerset for the next two decades so it’s really important that it works for all our communities.
“We’ve asked residents for their views at every stage of its development and this consultation is another opportunity to comment on these options and inform the next step which is the preparation of a draft plan setting out the council’s proposed site allocations and policy for developments.
“In addition to our Local Plan people are also being asked for comments on the wider Joint Spatial Plan which affects planning for homes and growth across the region and transport plans which would deliver the infrastructure to make future new developments possible.”
All consultation documents can be viewed by visiting www.bathnes.gov. uk/localplan2016-2036.