Homes plan for area of outstanding natural beauty branded 'an absolute disgrace'

First published in Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Abingdon and Wantage, South Oxford and Kennington. Call me on 01865 425431

PLANS to build 85 houses in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty have been described as “an absolute disgrace”.

More than 30 residents have objected to the plans for land east of Chain Hill and south of Orchard Way in Wantage.

Wantage Town Council and the Campaign for Rural England have also objected.

Developer Croudace Strategic is planning to include woodland and an open meadow as part of the new estate.

Orchard Way resident Dr Jennifer Smith told Vale of White Horse District Council that the estate would overshadow her house.

She wrote: “These buildings will tower over mine and my neighbours’ properties at an equivalence of a four-storey building.

“It will both seriously overlook my property and block all morning sunlight for much of the year.”

In its letter of objection, the town council wrote that access would be a problem, and creating a new pavement on Chain Hill would narrow the road.

Other residents also raised concerns about increased traffic, environmental damage, and the amount of infrastructure needed for the development.

Vale district councillor for Wantage Jenny Hannaby said: “Putting houses up there is absolutely disgraceful. It is already totally gridlocked on Ormond Road.

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“It is also inappropriate to have the housing estate coming out onto the main road.”

Croudace bought the four-hectare site in autumn 2007 as a “strategic site with medium to long term potential”.

Croudace marketing executive Paula Parsons refused to comment until the application has been dealt with.

The council is due to make a decision on February 19.

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