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Westbury Leigh housing plans – opening the door to more development?

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SHOCK and concern has been expressed at a proposal to build up to 70 homes south of Sandhole Lane, Westbury Leigh.

Residents and councillors have spoken out against Gleeson Strategic Land’s  proposal, which was presented  at a recent Westbury Town Council highways, planning and development committee meeting. 

Up to 70 homes of differing sizes are proposed, with 30% being affordable housing. The site, which is currently agricultural land, will also include a play area, kickabout space and an area which could be used as allotments. It has a trackway/footway/cycle path on its edge and access will be from Leighton Park Road, which will be extended.

Mike Painter told White Horse News of his “shock and extreme anger” at the plan.

Mike Painter told White Horse News, “A local councillor emailed me, after I had sent him an email about this development, who said if this is passed, other fields will fall to developers locally and as many as 500 houses could be built on the surrounding land.”

He said he believed a landowner has decided to chance his arm bringing a plan for 70 homes, public open space and recreation area on the Sandhole Lane area of the leading field, thus making access via Old Dilton Road impossible and making access via the Leighton estates or Leigh Park the only viable option.

Mike Painter said the councillor believed that if the applicant establishes the principle of development on this small area of the available land, the rest will topple like dominos staked close together.”

Commenting on Gleeson, the land agent, Mike Painter said, “So Gleeson get the planning permission for the landowner, make their money and move on, they have no interest in Westbury at all and it is a joke that residents have to express their concerns about this development to Gleeson, who most probably will ignore these concerns.”

He added that the developers’ website testimonial that they had success with another development in Calne on appeal with Wiltshire Council made it seem as if Wiltshire Council always gives way to developers’ appeals.

Residents also took to social media to vent their concerns.

A resident said, “The services under the roads at present in Leighton Park are not coping with the weight of existing traffic driving over them, let alone more traffic and heavy site vehicles using them in the future.”

Another said, “The Leighton Park houses built back in 1972 had sewerage drains made from clay pipes, which have over a period collapsed many times. If the new houses were connected to these old drainage pipes the system would not be able to cope, so if this proposal was granted would it include the upgrade of new drainage pipes for Leighton Park?”

Another councillor said on a local public forum that the application site was  definitely outside the housing policy boundary (“Settlement Boundary”) for Westbury, as defined in the adopted Local Development Plan,  so could not get planning permission unless the developer proves that the West and North Wiltshire Housing Market Area does not have an adequate supply of development land for 5 years (the five-year development pipeline).

And the councillor added that, “The only way to defend this is to prove to Wiltshire Council that it does have a 5-year supply.”

Mike Painter also emailed Andrew Murrison MP who responded that he was not aware of the proposal but added “last time I looked, N&W Wilts area had a more than five-year supply so it should fail. If it’s dipped below, there’s a vulnerability that the developer may seek to exploit. It’s important objections are lodged on the Wiltshire Council planning site against the application number.”

Mike Painter  said, “Finally, does the council have a plan for the growth of Westbury, especially their borders which does not have any green belt areas (but it should) as this is a beautiful field they want to build on, again removing another swathe of wildlife habitat, along with destroying the landscape as well. Left uncontrolled, Westbury will soon be linked up to surrounding villages.”

2 Responses to Westbury Leigh housing plans – opening the door to more development?

  1. Not an idiot like you lot

    October 14, 2020 at 6:48 am

    Jesus Christ. Let’s list the bollocks written above.

    “the rest will topple like dominos staked close together.”

    If you were to stake dominos they would be unable to topple. You must mean “stacked”. You are idiots.

    “Finally, does the council have a plan for the growth of Westbury, especially their borders”

    Their borders? There’s only one Westbury. You must mean “its borders”. You are idiots.

  2. Bev Fox

    October 15, 2020 at 12:35 pm

    Actually Mike Painter just told me, he didn’t say half of what you printed and you’ve distorted things he said. Typical Media

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