CONCERNED villagers are gearing up to fight a proposal for a major housing development in Shobdon – branded the equivalent of being “dumped on” by the local member for Herefordshire Council.
Also this week, those living in Clehonger have been invited to take part in a consultation on a 90-house proposal – another plan likely to prove controversial.
Around 100 people attended a meeting in Shobdon after being alerted by Councillor Roger Phillips that David Wilson Homes is drafting a plan to build 74 houses on farmland adjacent to an existing new development.
He says that would increase the village by about 25%.
It’s anticipated an application for 26 affordable homes, and 48 three/four bedroom homes for the open market, as well as a new village hall, will be submitted by September.
Concerns raised included the strain on existing services – the meeting heard the local primary school is already over-subscribed; drainage problems and traffic worries.
Cllr Phillips said the developer was exploiting a “grey area” as far as planning was concerned, as Shobdon’s local neighbourhood plan – which specifies modest development over the next 20 years – is yet to be completed and ratified in law.
The council’s core strategy – a blueprint for development of the county over that time – is also still not rubber-stamped due to the deadlock over proposals for a Hereford bypass.
This situation left villages “vulnerable”, the meeting heard – especially in a climate where the council isn’t meeting government house building targets.
In Clehonger, Gladman Developments is asking residents to have their say on proposed plans for up to 90 homes off the B4352 Madley Road.
In a leaflet distributed to more than 380 homes and businesses in the area, Gladman claims the site is "well located with good access to existing community facilities and the local public transport network".
The development, of which 35 per cent of homes will be affordable, would include public open space and landscape planting.
Gladman is asking for comments as part of a consultation period before it submits an official application to Herefordshire Council.
Comments can be sent to Your Views Clehonger, Gladman House, Alexandra Way, Congleton, Cheshire, CW12 1LB or by using the online feedback form at your-views.co.uk/clehonger