Why should Weston suffer ask councillors who are objecting to plans to build 150 homes
Councillors say that their village should not be suffer because a developer cannot come up with a financially viable plan.
Weston Parish Council will be lodging objections against an application by Persimmon Homes to build 150 homes on a site which lies between the village’s High Road and the A151.
The council, which met virtually on Monday, will be raising a number of concerns with this application, including the developer’s bid to reduce its affordable housing and financial contributions to support the NHS and education authorities.
Speaking on Monday Coun Janet Bellamy said: “Why should Weston suffer and bear the cost of a development if the developer can’t come up with a plan that actually works and is financially viable.”
Currently, South Holland District Council asks for up to 25% of new developments to be affordable units.
But Persimmon Homes is asking to remove the affordable housing element, which was put at 38 homes, and reduce the contributions required to fund improvements to the NHS and education authorities, via a Section 106 agreement.
The developer’s financial viability statement says: “It is appreciated that in order to help fund local services, it is necessary for the local authority to seek to maximise the planning gain output from all residential schemes.
“However, applying the policy position on all sites, irrespective of site specific factors, is not always appropriate and in this case will render the scheme unviable.
“In this instance, therefore, the council’s co-operation is required to help facilitate and safeguard delivery of the scheme.
“Therefore, in this instance, it is recommended that planning permission is granted with a reduced package of Section 106 contributions: Zero affordable housing and financial contributions capped at £382,000.”
Weston Parish Council will be also be lodging objections against this application with the district council on the grounds of impact of increased traffic, pollution and environmental issues.
The council will also be highlighting that 150 homes would be the over-development of the site and that it is not in accordance with the South East Lincolnshire Local Plan.
Coun Bellamy, who also questioned the £100,000 projected cost for archaeology on the field, stated: “The South East Lincolnshire Local Plan and South Holland Local Plan have three main criteria and this breaks breaks all three objection.”
Chairman of the council Chris Dicks has also raised fears about the loss of prime agricultural land which could be used to produce food.
He has also raised concerns previously about the impact of this development along with others which are planned for the village on its infrastructure, including schools and the nearby medical centres.
Persimmon Homeshas applied to South Holland District Council to build 150 homes, ranging from one bedroom to four bedroom properties on 6.13ha site.
It is hoping to build eight one bedroom dwellings, 32 two bedroom homes, 82 three bedrooms, 26 four bedroom homes.
The plans also include a play area, a central recreational area and an attenuation pond.
The design and access statement also states that Spalding is ‘within walking distance of the site’. It also states that there will be a safe and well connected route around the site.
Hopes for nature trail
Villagers could be learning more about the wildlife in their area under new plans.
Aimee-Lou Ellis is hoping to create a nature trail within Weston Playing Field in order to encourage more people to utilise this area but the plans were halted by the outbreak of coronavirus.
She has now asked Weston Parish Council for support to fund small signs to be placed around the field.
Speaking at Monday’s meeting Aimee-Lou said: “We could do with some signs about nature to make people aware of what is going on with the park.
“I used the park more in lockdown and thought it would be nice to spread out the signs around the park.”
Chairman Chris Dicks advised her to bring back some costings for the signs to the parish council.
He also suggested meeting up to discuss more about the plans for the nature trail in the park. This meeting was held before the Prime Minister’s announcement to plunge the country once again into lockdown.
Breaching COVID rules among the issues raised with the police
Breaching of coronavirus rules were among the police issues which have been reported in the Westons.
Police Community Support Officer Tracey Mason sent a report to the last Weston Parish Council meeting which outlines some of the problems reported to officers.
Members were told that there had been two acts of anti-social behaviour which breached COVID rules.
There were also two acts of violence and three reports of suspicious activity.
The council heard that police received reports of two counts of hare coursing along with a traffic incident.
Councillors were also informed that there had been three road traffic collisions.
The council had also been informed that there had also been three other traffic incidents which had resulted in the seizure of three vehicles.
Coun Richard Pratt also asked for an update on whathad happened to a previous report of a missing person.
The clerk Graham French will be asking the police for information on this.
Survey among council allotment tenants
A survey will be conducted among allotment holders to see if any are willing to give up a plot.
Weston Parish Council has been approached by someone who would like to take on an allotment but currently there are none available for rent.
Members were told some tenants hold more than one plot and might be willing to give one up to meet this request.
Village sign could be restored
A dilapidated village sign could be returned to its former glory.
The Weston Hills village sign was taken down some years ago and has been drying out in a councillor’s garage.
Acraftsman is now going to have a look at the sign to see if it can be restored and will provide a quotation.
It could then be hung in the village hall.